Cryer Inspires Would-Be Tax Critics in Dallas
Calls for educated, unified front of American citizens against federal income tax, IRS
By Mark Anderson
DALLAS, Texas—Tommy Cryer left a deep impression on attendees of a recent conference by pointing out with wit, insight and humility that successfully slaying the federal income tax will take a sustained, unified effort—not the usual scenario in which each tax resister fights “the beast” individually, which produces too many martyrs and not enough heroes who actually win the fight.
“We’ve been sending people into the cave one at a time for 30 years,” he remarked, “and look at how many lives it has wrecked.”
However, Cryer, a gutsy attorney from Shreveport, Louisiana, actually took on the income tax “beast” and won his July 2007 court case; hence the anticipation felt by those wanting to hear his story the evening of Nov. 17 during the Justice, Peace & Freedom Conference co-sponsored by Freedom Law School, American Free Press and others.
FLS is well-known for teaching citizens about financial betterment, financial privacy and how to fight an income tax system that’s said to be contrary to the Constitution and wrongly applied to the compensation (salaries, wages, fees, etc.) of working Americans—without any known written law behind it. So, Cryer’s remarks were a great fit for the event.
Cryer, who challenged the government for years on the legality of filing federal income taxes, was acquitted on charges he failed to file returns. In July, a federal jury unanimously found Cryer not guilty on two misdemeanor counts of failure to file. And the prosecution dismissed two felony charges of tax evasion prior to trial, as The Shreveport Times reported in a local story that evidently did not “go national.”
“The court could not find a law that makes me liable or makes my revenues taxable,” Cryer told the Times. “The Supreme Court has ruled that the government cannot impose an income tax on anything but profits and gains. When you work for someone, you give your service and labor in exchange for money, so everything you make is not profit or gain. You put something into it.”
The indictment alleged he evaded payment of several thousand dollars in income taxes during 2000 and 2001. But that’s history.
“It’s not my victory, it’s our victory,” he reflected at his Dallas speech, while thanking those who supported him along the way. “I owe you, the tax honesty community, a debt that I’ll never be able to repay for the rest of my life.”
The basic idea of a permanent income tax to rope the masses appeared as one of the 10 planks of the 1848 Communist Manifesto. The federal income tax was “adopted” by Congress in 1913 via the 16th Amendment to the Constitution—the same year that the private, megamonopolistic Federal Reserve System was created and empowered with the monetary powers reserved to Congress by the Constitution. But the Federal Reserve’s creators didn’t even bother to amend the Constitution.
Cryer said this income tax system is conceivably worse than conventional slavery.
“The only difference between a slave and an ignorant man is that the slave feels his chains,” he said. His Mark Twain-style remarks were met with considerable applause.
Cryer, while noting how shocked he was early this year when he realized how “fragmented” the tax honesty movement has become, strongly urged the different organizations and individuals to take a step back and take stock when dealing with such a treacherous issue.
“In the cave, the beast defines reality—but outside the cave, we define reality,” he noted, while warning that the Internal Revenue Service is planting “dummy
information” to discredit the tax honesty movement. Therefore, he said those in the movement need to be careful what they believe and should “study themselves” as least as hard as they study IRS regulations.
He said tax honesty people need to stop cobbling together fragments of the law and sloppily assembled facts before marching off to battle the beast unprepared while wrongly assuming they are prepared. Better preparation with a unified effort makes it harder for “the beast” to single any one person out and send them to debtor’s prison, as Cryer sees it.
A former Army captain, Cryer, 58, reflected: “This victory of mine in July—oh, it was so sweet—was ours, not mine.”
Cryer’s “motion to dismiss” filed prior to his acquittal showed that the law, as it is written, does not make him liable nor tax his revenue from his law practice. His motion took another bold step, however, revealing that the income tax, as applied to wages, salaries and fees personally earned, is unconstitutional, citing four separate grounds for the unconstitutionality of the law as to almost every citizen’s revenue that is personally earned.
Ironically, Cryer’s journey to facing the IRS in court began when a client approached him for legal help several years ago, arguing that the income tax was a fraud. Cryer strongly rejected that position at the time. But he researched the matter for more than two years, back to the very foundation of the nation, finally determining that the client was basically correct. Cryer then decided to apply what he had learned—to himself.
In his Dallas speech, Cryer stressed that each individual must assess if they’re ready for this fight. “If you’re not, leave it to somebody who is.”
But he tempered that statement by stressing the sheer importance of spreading the word even when it’s not time to fight.
“Infect thousands with the truth,” he urged. “Let them know this is not a frivolous but a legitimate issue with the income tax.”
He likened the fight against the income tax to the civil rights and abolitionist movements, in the sense that these movements had four crucial steps: circulating sound information, which leads to consensus, which leads to growing public awareness, which culminates in proper political action.
“No more marching in place,” he said. “We must march forward. Real change comes when people care most for each other’s right—not me, mine. What you need to do is start using the truth—the weapon of mass instruction—to take the will to fight away from the enemy.”
As Cryer sees it, America’s War of Independence is over but the actual revolution has just begun and keeps going every generation.
“Save the Constitution and the Republic it promised,” he admonished his listeners, who were moved by his heartfelt oratory. Recalling his near-fatal 1995 heart attack, he said he wasn’t afraid to die then. But now he is afraid. He feels God told him to forge ahead and win—not just “try”—yet he says he’s afraid to die and have to face the nation’s founders in heaven with the country still in dire straits.
Cryer suggested that those wanting more information should look into the Freedom Above Fortune (freedomabovefortune.com) organization founded by Joe Banister, who’s a former IRS agent-turned-tax protester; or look into Freedom Law School (livefreenow.org); or the Free Enterprise Society (freeenterprisesociety.com), whose founder, Steve Hempfling, also spoke at the Dallas conference on income tax matters, as did successful IRS challenger Robert Lawrence and several others. Freedom Law School can be reached at (760) 868-4271; or write to:
FLS, 9582 Buttemere Road, Phelan, CA, 92371. Other helpful information is posted at truthattack.org and liefreezone.com.
AFP’s Mark Anderson can be reached at [email protected].
(Issue #49-50, December 3 & 10, 2007)