Dear Joe Stack,


Dear Joe Stack,

I’m sorry to hear that the IRS has mistreated you. I too am upset that the federal government has gained so much power over the people that the law is all but meaningless to them, as are the plights of the regular folks.

You mentioned that you wanted to be the first of many to throw themselves into the machine in a fiery blaze of glory.

Joe, it doesn’t work that way. See, that’s the communist in you speaking. They want nothing more than to grind you into dust and have you and your ambitions of actually providing for yourself be distant memories. If you fall into their trap, of course you are going to turn to violence.

Joe, your American political forebears faced much greater odds than we do today. While we can at least claim ourselves as citizens, and while we at least have the right to speak out to our government, our Founding Fathers had no such rights. The moment they would send a letter of complaint asking for redress, the king would send more troops and more taxes. The English people in parliament and in power, much like our current political class, seemed to find the plight of the common man almost funny. All the while they would tatter on and on about natural liberties and the rights of kings and such, as if it gave them power from God himself to rule and oppress a burgeoning country half a world away.

What did they do? They rose up. The exhausted every political device, and then, and only when they were assaulted as an enemy, then they turned with unity in open war.

There weren’t any suicide bombers among our Founding Fathers. If there were, they were erased from our collective memory, and rightly so. No, our patriots are people like George Washington and John Adams and Thomas Jefferson, people who fought the good fight by first rallying the troops into a common cause, and ensuring that the mob, once rallied, didn’t result in a worse predicament than they started with.

Joe, your story could have been heard and told to countless millions. You are not alone. The IRS is absolutely despicable, an operation of outright oppression. The income tax exists not to punish the rich but to punish those who intend to get rich out of their own hard work and ingenuity. Communism is your enemy, Joe, not capitalism.

In fact, it can hardly be said much of our society is capitalist anymore. I have only 4 choices for health insurance, all from the same company. I have limited economic opportunity, limited by absurd regulations and an unnavigable tax code. I have to turn to my lawyer simply to see if we can start a business.

This isn’t the America our Founding Fathers left us. No, it’s far from it.

However, they did leave us a few weapons, weapons far more effective than guns and cannons.

First, they left us the courts. While we can’t expect the courts to treat us fairly, we can use them to take the fight to the oppressors. When someone is being oppressed, it’s time to lawyer up and fight and fight and fight until your natural rights are recognized and all the damages are restored.

Second, they left us the voting booths. No, we can’t expect a fair vote every time. However, we can, as citizens of this country, take control of the ballot box for ourselves and ensure the votes are fairly counted. We can also bring our friends and neighbors out to vote.

Third, we have our voices. Let us use them, Joe. Speak out against tyranny and oppression. The louder, the better. And never give up. Keep speaking until you die. Do you think Thomas Jefferson and John Adams ever went home to rest, even after the constitution was ratified? Of course not. Victory in our system goes not to the strong, but the persistent.

Joe, I’m sorry that you were caught up in the hopelessness that communism teaches. I’m sorry you came to believe that you were alone. I’m really sorry you decided that somehow blowing up the IRS building was going to solve anyone’s problems.

Joe, we’re going to fight for you and everyone else who is oppressed by government taxes, bureaucracy, and regulations. We’re going to fight to ensure that taxes are minimal, spending is minimal, and regulations are all but extinct. We’re going to take on our government and fight it at ever point until we get back to where we were in 1782. That’s our goal, Joe.

Sincerely, Jonathan Gardner


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