The Schiff Trial

What Everyone Should Know

- but what Judge Dawson prevented jurors hearing in his Court

The October 2005 trial of Irwin Schiff, Cindy Neun and Larry Cohen was a savage farce; the defendants' hands were tied behind their backs and their mouths were gagged. The "guilty" verdict was then inevitable.

Their whole defense was that no law makes anyone pay income tax yet this judge refused to allow Mr Schiff even to mention the Law, and even sentenced him to days in prison for daring to do so!

No Soviet show-trial was ever more egregious in its disregard of justice. We hoped jurors would decide at once to acquit all defendants on all charges for that reason alone, regardless of all other evidence.

On Mr Schiff's own web site you can read his pre-trial "Motions to Dismiss" this case. We strongly recommend you do so! They are brilliantly written yet were denied by Judge Dawson the day before the trial was to start, without stated reason. The sixth of them showed that the government's case should be dismissed on the grounds that this trial could not possibly be fair; a prediction that has turned out to be only too true. That one, in particular, should be studied with great care.

Advice: Nobody should take advice about the Law from anywhere but the law itself; not from here, not from Mr Schiff and certainly not from Judge Dawson. Instead, read the law itself for yourself. In this area it's Title 26 of the United States Code, a.k.a. The Internal Revenue Code. Here, we'll refer to that as the "Code". Its Sections are numbered over 9,000. A copy can be found on-line here.

Here are a few highlights of that law, that the judge (and, naturally, the prosecution) wanted us not to see.

No tax imposed    Nobody "liable" to pay it    Nobody required to file    After the Trial    Conclusions

1. No "Income Tax" is Imposed

- upon the ordinary earnings of ordinary Americans, which is what we normally mean in everyday speech by the term "income tax". Please study Section 1 of the Code.

Notice how it says that "a tax is hereby imposed on the taxable income of..." various people, over and over for different classes of person. So, think: upon what is this tax imposed?

Right: "taxable income"! Not on earnings or wages or personal profits - unless "taxable income" is somewhere defined as "earnings" or "wages" or "personal profits".

Now, here's the fun bit: it's not. It's not defined as anything at all, anywhere in the Code!

"Taxable income" is defined in Section 63 in terms of "Gross income" and "Gross income" is defined in Section 61 in terms of "Income", but "Income" isn't defined anywhere at all in terms of anything at all and so, of course, nor is "taxable income." Section 1 is a complete bust.

What you've just read was sufficient on its own for all charges to be dismissed - no wonder the judge, 100% of whose salary is paid by the IRS whom the prosecutor represents, didn't want jurors to hear the Law!

But there's more:

Additional considerations about the meaning of "income", covering the claim that it's a term in common use that needs no special definition, can be found here.

2. Nobody is Made "Liable" to Pay It

Hardly surprising, of course, since no income tax (in the ordinary sense of the phrase) has been imposed by Law!

In the Code, the word "Liable" is a key one. Any tax has not only to be imposed, the people required to pay it must be clearly identified and usually that's done by declaring them to be "liable" for the tax.

The alleged "income tax" is a case in point:

All three of those examples are Sections frequently invoked by the IRS itself. They seem to hope that the lucky recipients simply won't read what the Law says: that we need to take the action demanded only if we are liable.

But there is no known Code Section that makes anyone liable for an "income tax"!

Effect: nobody is obliged by Law to keep tax records, make tax returns, respond to IRS "levies" or "summonses" with respect to the alleged "income tax". By law, it's totally toothless. 

3. Nobody is Required to File a 1040

Everyone and his sister says otherwise, of course; IRS hacks, journalists, broadcasters, politicians, lawyers, and other assorted riff-raff. But by now the reader knows to enquire only what the Law says.

In small print so that you probably won't read it, and probably with grinding teeth and crossed fingers, the IRS itself confirms that nobody need file a 1040 unless they are "liable", as above. The page in the "1040 Instruction Booklet" published every January headed "Disclosure, Privacy Act, and Paperwork Reduction Act Notice" shows in its third paragraph these pregnant words:

Our legal right to ask for information [ie, demand a 1040] is {Code} Sections 6001, 6011 and 6012(a) and their regulations. They say you must file a return or statement with us for any tax you are liable for. [Emphasis added.]
We noted that in Section 6001 above, and Section 6011 says the same, adding that it's covered by regulations and not just statutes - so the IRS is, for once, telling the truth! Section 6012 however adds that
Returns with respect to income taxes under subtitle A shall be made by... every individual having for the taxable year gross income which equals or exceeds the exemption amount...
so adding the requirement that one's "income" must exceed the few thousand dollars currently specified; hence one must be both made liable for the tax and have income over a certain threshold. Odd that that didn't find its way into the IRS' summary, but of course it too is void since nobody, as above, can know what "income" is unless it's corporate profit.

Nobody is made liable for the alleged "income tax", no individual has any corporate profit, and so nobody is required to file a 1040. The entire trillion-dollar-a-year "tax" machine consists of smoke and mirrors. 

4. After the Trial

The government railroading of Schiff, Neun and Cohen didn't end when all the evidence that the judge allowed to be heard was heard. Here is what happened next, to show how the government completed the railroad job.

Jury Instructions

Dawson lied to the jury, just in case there were any who had seen through his smokescreen during the trial itself.

Here are the instructions themselves and here is a short table of lies they contain. Probably the most outrageous is the second, concerning what the word "income" means in the Law.

As US v Ballard confirmed, Title 26 Subtitle A purports to tax "income" but doesn't get around to defining it. On those grounds alone the "income tax" should be recognized as a complete myth. As shown above one Section of it, however (#61) does throw a little light on what the term does not mean - and the conclusion there was that "income" can not consist of any of the listed sources, such as "compensation for services", profits derived from business, pensions, etc etc.

Yet in his second and biggest lie, Judge Dawson told the jury that "income" DOES include "salaries and wages"; yet he must have known full well that in 1954 Congress deliberately removed that source from the list in Section 61. For that lie alone, the entire trial should be reversed, the prisoners released and Lawyer Dawson disbarred.

Judicial Misconduct

Several admirers of Irwin Schiff complained to the 9th Circuit court of appeals in November 2005 about Dawson's egregious manipulation of this trial's outcome. One of them included and illustrated the claim that he "repeatedly and deliberately used an alleged prerogative of the Court to prevent the defendants deploying their only available defense" and although the rules on what does and does not consist of "judicial misconduct" made this a borderline procedure to use, it would have been very easy for Circuit 9 to spot that a gross injustice had been perpetrated and to apply a remedy.

Chief Judge Schroeder did no such thing. He rejected the complaint on the technical basis that its subject matter should be addressed in a formal Appeal; and meanwhile left the prisoners to rot in jail.

The Sentences

This was handed down early in February 2006 for Larry Cohen (33 months including 12 of probation) on February 23rd for Cindy and the 24th for Irwin - the day after his 78th birthday.

Cindy was given 68 months in prison, plus 36 of probation, which may satisfy the lust for vengeance by the IRS mafiosi whom she so valiantly defied in case after case in their Las Vegas offices. She will at least be able to enjoy a resumption of life when she emerges.

Irwin was sent to one for 13 years, to make almost certain that he will not; nor ever again be a direct threat to the continued, miserable existence of the barbarians who brought and manipulated this case.

Those are the actions of government, which some readers of this page helped elect. That is what the words of Washington (whose birthday was celebrated three days before Irwin's) mean: "Government is not reason... it is force." That is how government will, eventually, treat everyone in its power. That is why it has to go.  

5. Conclusions

a) Schiff is a hero of liberty who has struggled for over a quarter century to make the US Government stay within the bounds of its own law; and one day, statues will be erected to honor his memory. By his enemies' own reckoning he has prevented them wreaking several billion dollars' worth of havoc and mayhem and has awakened hundreds of thousands of Americans to the fact that the "income tax" is a fraud. He came close to collapsing the government's house of cards and proved conclusively in this trial that it had no way to answer him except to silence him by force; an open admission that his findings are correct.

b) His evident failure is proof that it cannot be so confined, and so that (as theory would in any case predict) the whole concept of "limited government" is fatally flawed. This is not what he set out to prove, and it will not comfort some readers of this; but it's a fact anyway. Government, once established, can not be kept subject to higher authority, such as laws or constitutions, because in any given domain there is no higher authority, by definition of "government." The only choice for any society is to have no government at all, or to establish one that will for sure, in time, devour everything in its path.

c) It also proves government is utterly reprobate; that it hides behind its facade of "law, order, compassion and justice" the reality that it consists of no more than a bloodthirsty gang of thugs, plunderers, pimps, tyrants, extortioners, hypocrites and liars intoxicated on power for its own sake who, when its vital interests are at risk, will do whatever it takes ruthlessly to crush dissent.

d) It also proves that "tax" resistance will not work - that is, that it will cause government neither to obey the law nor to go out of business. It's abundantly clear as above that no law imposes an income tax; it's also perfectly clear that what Congress failed to enact, courts will enforce anyway. Nobody is more articulate than Irwin Schiff; yet even he could not overcome the vicious partiality of the judge. The resolve of the three Branches of the Federal Government is rock-solid; they will steal a trillion dollars a year from productive Americans, no matter what.

e) Therefore, we must choose another way to bring about a free society, we who desire one. Such a method is not hidden, and is not at all impossible - nor is it impossibly slow. It requires no violence, no open resistance. It can be done, well within the lifetime of many reading this. But it does impose some requirements:

The result will double the number of people who desire a zero-government society and know why and how it will work - every year. That means that after a couple of decades, nobody in that society will want government to continue and hence that all its previous supporters will walk away; it will accordingly evaporate, and take its taxes and restrictions and spying and torturing and imprisoning and warmaking into the ashcan of history.

For Further Reading: