Jurisprudentia Menu


by Larry Becraft

I. The Money Issue:

In the seventies and early eighties, advocates of the specie provisions in Art. 1, Sec.10, Cl. 1 of the U.S. Constitution made a concerted effort to educate people about this constitutional provision, consequently people (mostly those who were deperate and ill-prepared) began litigating the issue.  The courts have rendered the following adverse decisions on this issue:

Adverse Federal Decisions:

1. Koll v. Wayzata State Bank, 397 F.2d 124 (8th Cir. 1968)
2. United States v. Daly, 481 F.2d 28 (8th Cir. 1973)
3. Milam v. United States, 524 F.2d 629 (9th Cir. 1974)
4. United States v. Scott, 521 F.2d 1188 (9th Cir. 1975)
5. United States v. Gardiner, 531 F.2d 953 (9th Cir. 1976)
6. United States v. Wangrud, 533 F.2d 495 (9th Cir. 1976)
7. United States v. Kelley, 539 F.2d 1199 (9th Cir. 1976)
8. United States v. Schmitz, 542 F.2d 782 (9th Cir. 1976)
9. United States v. Whitesel, 543 F.2d 1176 (6th Cir. 1976)
10. United States v. Hurd, 549 F.2d 118 (9th Cir. 1977)
11. Mathes v. Commissioner, 576 F.2d 70 (5th Cir. 1978)
12. United States v. Rifen, 577 F.2d 1111 (8th Cir. 1978)
13. United States v. Anderson, 584 F.2d 369 (10th Cir. 1978)
14. United States v. Benson, 592 F.2d 257 (5th Cir. 1979)
15. Nyhus v. Commissioner, 594 F.2d 1213 (8th Cir. 1979)
16. United States v. Hori, 470 F.Supp. 1209 (C.D.Cal. 1979)
17. United States v. Tissi, 601 F.2d 372 (8th Cir. 1979)
18. United States v. Ware, 608 F.2d 400 (10th Cir. 1979)
19. United States v. Moon, 616 F.2d 1043 (8th Cir. 1980)
20. United States v. Rickman, 638 F.2d 182 (10th Cir. 1980)
21. Birkenstock v. Commissioner, 646 F.2d 1185 (7th Cir. 1981)
22. Lary v. Commissioner, 842 F.2d 296 (11th Cir. 1988)

Adverse State Decisions:

1. Chermack v. Bjornson, 302 Minn. 213, 223 N.W.2d 659 (1974)
2. Leitch v. Oregon Dept. of Revenue, 519 P.2d 1045 (Or.App. 1974)
3. Radue v. Zanaty, 293 Ala. 585, 308 So.2d 242 (1975)
4. Rush v. Casco Bank & Trust Co., 348 A.2d 237 (Me. 1975)
5. Allen v. Craig, 1 Kan.App.2d 301, 564 P.2d 552 (1977)
6. State v. Pina, 90 N.M. 181, 561 P.2d 43 (N.M. 1977)
7. Dorgan v. Kouba, 274 N.W.2d 167 (N.D. 1978)
8. Trohimovich v. Dir., Dept. of Labor & Industry, 21 Wash.App. 243, 584 P.2d 467 (1978)
9. Middlebrook v. Miss. State Tax Comm., 387 So.2d 726 (Miss. 1980)
10. Daniels v. Arkansas Power & Light Co., 601 S.W.2d 845 (Ark. 1980)
11. State v. Gasser, 306 N.W.2d 205 (N.D. 1981)
12. City of Colton v. Corbly, 323 N.W.2d 138 (S.D. 1982)
13. Epperly v. Alaska, 648 P.2d 609 (Ak.App. 1982)
14. Solyom v. Maryland-National Capital Park & Planning Comm., 452 A.2d 1283 (Md.App. 1982)
15. People v. Lawrence, 124 Mich.App. 230, 333 N.W.2d 525 (Mich.App. 1983)
16. Union State Bank v. Miller, 335 N.W.2d 807 (N.D. 1983)
17. Richardson v. Richardson, 332 N.W.2d 524 (Mich.App. 1983)
18. Cohn v. Tucson Elec. Power Co., 138 Ariz. 136, 673 P.2d 334 (1983)
19. First Nat. Bank of Black Hills v. Treadway, 339 N.W.2d 119 (S.D. 1983)
20. Herald v. State, 107 Idaho 640, 691 P.2d 1255 (1984)
21. Allnutt v. State, 59 Md.App. 694, 478 A.2d 321 (1984)
22. Spurgeon v. F.T.B., 160 Cal.App.3d 524, 206 Cal.Rptr. 636 (1984)
23. Rothaker v. Rockwall County Central Appraisal Dist., 703 S.W.2d 235 (Tex.App. 1985)
24. De Jong v. County of Chester, 98 Pa. Cmwlth. 85, 510 A.2d 902 (1986)
25. Baird v. County Assessors of Salt Lake & Utah Counties, 779 P.2d 676 (Utah 1989)
26. State v. Sanders, 923 S.W.2d 540 (Tenn. 1996).

II. Wages Are Not Income:

Back in about 1979 or 1980, Bob Golden and Pete Soehnlen published a work entitled: "Are You Required", which persuasively advocated the argument that wages are not income.  However, desperate people championed this issue and lost in the following cases:

1. United States v. Romero, 640 F.2d 1014 (9th Cir. 1981)
2. Lonsdale v. CIR, 661 F.2d 71 (5th Cir. 1981)
                 (rejecting "even exchange" argument)
3. United States v. Lawson, 670 F.2d 923 (10th Cir. 1982)
4. Granzow v. CIR, 739 F.2d 265 (7th Cir. 1984)
5. Hansen v. United States, 744 F.2d 658 (8th Cir. 1984)
6. Perkins v. CIR, 746 F.2d 1187 (6th Cir. 1984)
7. Schiff v. CIR, 751 F.2d 116 (2nd Cir. 1984)
8. Ficalora v. CIR, 751 F.2d 85, 87-88 (2d Cir. 1984) 
                (holding that income includes compensation for services)
9. Lovell v. United States, 755 F.2d 517, 519 (7th Cir. 1984)
10. United States v. Latham, 754 F.2d 747 (7th Cir. 1985)
11. Hyslep v. United States, 765 F.2d 1083 (11th Cir. 1985)
12. Coleman v. CIR, 791 F.2d 68, 70 (7th Cir. 1986)
13. Stubbs v. Commissioner of IRS, 797 F.2d 936, 938 (11th Cir. 1986),
                (rejecting argument that wages are not taxable income as "patently frivolous")
14. Wilcox v. CIR, 848 F.2d 1007, 1008 (9th Cir. 1988)
15. Maisano v. United States, 908 F.2d 408, 409 (9th Cir. 1990),
and Maisano v. United States, 940 F.2d 499, 501-02 (9th Cir. 1991).
16. United States v. Gerards, 999 F.2d 1255, 1256 (8th Cir. 1993).

Jeff Dickstein, lawyer "extraordinaire" from California, later Alaska, Montana, Tennessee and now Oklahoma, has written a book entitled "Judicial Tyranny", which discusses this issue in great detail, including all the adverse decisions on this issue through 1989.  When Jeff and I were about to start the conspiracy trial of Vern Holland and Dave Mauldin in Tulsa in August, 1990, Jeff announced that his book was hot off the press.  When we got the first copy and looked at his book just days before we were to start that trial in federal court in Tulsa, we noticed that the front cover contained the seal of the local federal court as well as a likeness of one of the local federal judges.  At times, Jeff can be harrowing.  However, we got a hung jury in that case and afterwards, six of the jurors, including the forelady, came and joined Vern's patriot organization.

III. The IRS is a Delaware corporation:

Back in 1982 or 1983, somebody started circulating the argument that the IRS was a private corporation which had been created in Delaware in 1933.  If it was created only in 1933, then why do we have the following appropriations for this agency found in Acts of Congress a decade before  1933: 42 Stat. 375 (2-17-22); 42 Stat. 454 (3-20-22); 42 Stat. 1096 (1-3-23); 43 Stat. 71 (4-4-24); 43 Stat. 693 (12-5-24); 43 Stat. 757 (1-20-25); 43 Stat. 770 (1-22-25); 44 Stat. 142 (3-2-26); 44 Stat. 868 (7-3-26); 44 Stat. 1033 (1-26-27); 45 Stat. 168, 1034 (1928); 68 Stat. 86, 145, 807 (1954).  This is indeed a frivolous argument and has properly been rejected by the courts; see Young v. IRS, 596 F.Supp. 141, 147 (N.D. Ind. 1984).  The real issue is whether the IRS has been created by law.

IV. The IMF Argument:

Some contend that the Secretary of the Treasury is in reality a foreign agent under the control of the IMF; the argument has been rejected by the courts.

1. United States v. Rosnow, 977 F.2d 399, 413 (8th Cir. 1992)
2. United States v. Jagim, 978 F.2d 1032, 1036 (8th Cir. 1992)
3. United States v. Higgins, 987 F.2d 543, 545 (8th Cir. 1993).

V. Non-resident Aliens:

Some contend we are for tax purposes non-resident aliens; again, this improper argument has been correctly rejected by the courts.

1. United States v. Sloan, 939 F.2d 499, 501 (7th Cir. 1991)
2. United States v. Jagim, 978 F.2d 1032, 1036 (8th Cir. 1992)
3. United States v. Hilgeford, 7 F.3d 1340, 1342 (7th Cir. 1993).

But the rejection by the courts of this issue has not deterred Lynn Meredith, who has continued to promote this argument through her book, "Vultures in Eagles Clothing", via a multi-level sales scheme.  Lawyers know that fraud is a knowing misrepresentation of facts (or in this case, law) to another upon which that other party relies to his detriment.  Concerned Americans try the program promoted by Meredith in her book, but when they get into trouble, they get absolutely no help from Meredith as she refuses to even answer their calls.  She spends her spare time on cruise ships.

VI. The Form 1040 is Really a Codicil to a Will:

This argument was rejected in Richey v. Ind. Dept. of State Revenue, 634 N.E. 2d 1375 (Ind. 1994), along with other popular arguments of that date.

VII. Filing 1099s against IRS Agents:

At one time, some asserted that when an agent of the government inflicted damaged upon somebody, the proper response should be filing a Form 1099 against the agent because the agent was "enriched" by the damaged so inflicted.  Parties doing this went to jail.

1. United States v. Yagow, 953 F.2d 423 (8th Cir. 1992)
2. United States v. Kuball, 976 F.2d 529 (9th Cir. 1992)
3. United States v. Dykstra, 991 F.2d 450 (8th Cir. 1993).

Of course, today we have essentially the same thing in the format of filing of common law liens.  More than enough people have gone to jail with such lunacy.

VIII. Land Patents:

Back in 1983 and 1984, Carol Landi popularized an argument that the land patent was the highest and best form of title and that by updating the patent in your own name, you could defeat any mortgages.  This contention violated many principles of real property and when Carol started trying to get patents for most of the land in California brought up into her own name, she went to jail.  Others who have raised this crazy argument lost the issue.

1. Nixon v. Individual Head of St. Joseph Mtg. Co., 612 F.Supp. 253 (N.D. Ind. 1985)
2. Nixon v. Phillipoff, 615 F.Supp. 890 (N.D. Ind. 1985).

IX. Not a "Person" Under the Tax Code:

Some have contended that they were not "persons" under the Internal Revenue Code, an argument which has been lost.

1. Lovell v. United States, 755 F.2d 517, 519 (7th Cir. 1984)
                 (all individuals, natural or unnatural, are subject to federal income tax
                  on their wages)
2. United States v. Karlin, 785 F.2d 90, 91 (3d Cir. 1986)
3. United States v. Studley, 783 F.2d 934, 937 (9th Cir. 1986),
                 (defendant who contended she was not a "taxpayer" because she was an
                  "absolute, freeborn and natural individual" raised frivolous argument);
4. United States v. Price, 798 F.2d 111, 113 (5th Cir. 1986)
5. Itz v. United States Tax Court, 1987 WL 15893, at *5, 87-2 USTC P 9497 (W.D.Tex. May 6, 1987)
                 (claim of plaintiff that he is a "de jure" citizen as opposed to a "de facto" citizen is without merit)
6. Lonsdale v. United States, 919 F.2d 1440, 1447-48 (10th Cir. 1990)
                (plaintiff is a person subject to federal income tax, invalidating numerous other frivolous
                 tax protester arguments);
7. United States v. Silevan, 985 F.2d 962, 970 (8th Cir. 1993)
8. United States v. Gerads, 999 F.2d 1255, 1256 (8th Cir. 1993)
               (these parties raised but had rejected the arguments that the US has no "inland jurisdiction,"
                that wages are not income, and that the federal income tax is voluntary.  "And finally, we reject
                appellant's contention that they are not citizens of the United States, but rather
               'Free Citizens of the Republic of Minnesota,' and consequently not subject to taxation").

X. Notice of Levy:

A popular argument currently circulating is that a mere "Notice of Levy" is not equal to a levy and thus may not be used for tax collection purposes.  The courts have not accepted this idea.

1. United States v. Eiland, 223 F.2d 118, 121 (4th Cir. 1955)
2. Rosenblum v. United States, 300 F.2d 843, 844-45 (1st Cir. 1962)
3. United States v. Pittman, 449 F.2d 623, 627 (7th Cir. 1971)
4. In re Chicagoland Ideel Cleaners, Inc., 495 F.2d 1283, 1285 (7th Cir. 1974)
5. Wolfe v. United States, 798 F.2d 1241, 1245 (9th Cir. 1986).

XI. The UCC Argument:

Some assert that some unknown treaty back in the 1930's placed us under the control of the "international bankers," thus every action filed in this country, both civil and criminal alike, is for the benefit of the bankers.  Under these facts, when the government attacks a patriot, he should assert the UCC argument; this silly contention has been rejected.

1. United States v. Stoecklin, 848 F.Supp. 1521 (M.D. Fla. 1994)
2. United States v. Greenstreet, 912 F.Supp. 224 (N.D.Tex. 1996)
                 (also raised flag and common law court issues)
3. United States v. Klimek, 952 F.Supp. 1100 (E.D.Pa. 1997)
                 (also raised nom de guerre and flag issues).

XII. The CFR Cross Reference Index:

The Code of Federal Regulations contains a separate volume which list various statutes and the regulations which implement those statutes.  This is not an exclusive list nor is it an admission made by the government that there are no regulations for Title 26, U.S.C..  Parties making this argument have suffered defeat.

1. United States v. Cochrane, 985 F.2d 1027, 1031 (9th Cir. 1993)
2. Russell v. United States, 95 CCH Tax Cases 50029 (W.D. Mich. 1994)
3. Reese v. CIR, 69 TCM 2814, TC Memo 1995-244 (1995)
            (this and several other arguments described as "legalistic gibberish")
4. Morgan v. CIR, 78 AFTR2d 96-6633 (M.D.Fla. 1996)
5. Stafford v. CIR, TCM 1997-50.

XIII. The Flag Issue:

A current popular argument is that the gold fringed flag indicates the admiralty jurisdiction of the court.  Naturally, pro ses have made this argument and lost.

1. Vella v. McCammon, 671 F.Supp. 1128, 1129 (S.D. Tex. 1987)
                  (the argument has "no arguable basis in law or fact")
2. Comm. v. Appel, 652 A.2d 341, 343 (Pa.Super. 1994)
                 (the contention is a "preposterous claim")
3. United States v. Schiefen, 926 F.Supp. 877, 884 (D.S.D. 1995):
                   in this case, the CFR cross reference index argument, and those regarding the UCC, common law
                   courts and the flag issue were rejected.  Of course, there are other decisions which have not been
                   published.  But against all odds, Dave Miller still travels the country promoting this lost cause.

XIV. Common Law Court:

These courts have been declared non-existent.

1. Kimmel v. Burnet County Appraisal Dist., 835 S.W.2d 108, 109 (Tex. App. 1992).

XV. "Nom de Guerre":

According to a book written by Berkheimer, a "nom de guerre" is a war name symbolized by a given name being written in capital letters.  The argument contends that because of events in 1933, we have been made "enemies" and government indicates our status as enemies by the nom de guerre.  If this is true, then why have the styles of the decisions of the United States Supreme Court since its establishment been in caps?  This argument has gotten lots of people in trouble.  For example, Mike Kemp of the "Gadsden Militia" defended himself on state marijuana charges with this argument and he was thrown into jail.  I have not even seen a decent brief on this issue which was predicated upon cases you can find in an ordinary law library.  In any event, at least one case has rejected this argument; see United States v. Klimek, 952 F.Supp. 1100 (E.D. Pa. 1997).

XV. Title 26 is not positive law:

Ryan v. Bilby, 764 F.2d 1325, 1328 (9th Cir. 1985) (stating that "Congress's failure to enact a title into positive law has only evidentiary significance and does not render the underlying enactment invalid or unenforceable"); United States v. Zuger, 602 F. Supp. 889, 891-92 (D. Conn. 1984) (holding that "the failure of Congress to enact a title as such and in such form into positive law . . . in no way impugns the validity, effect, enforceability or constitutionality of the laws as contained and set forth in the title"), aff'd without Op., 755 F.2d 915 (2d Cir.), cert. denied, 474 U.S. 805 (1985); Young v. IRS, 596 F. Supp. 141, 149 (N.D. Ind. 1984) (asserting that "even if  Title 26 was not itself enacted into positive law, that does not mean that the laws under that title are null and void"); Berkshire Hathaway Inc. v. United States, 8 Cl. Ct. 780, 784 (1985) (averring that the I.R.C. "is truly 'positive law'"), aff'd, 802 F.2d 429 (Fed. Cir. 1986).

XVI. Wangrudites:

1. McKinney v. Regan, 599 F.Supp. 126, 129 (M.D.La. 1984)

                ("Petitioner's shield of the 'Common Law' as an 'Unenfranchised Sovereign Individual
                 of the United States of America, a Republic
,' provides him with precisely the same degree
                 of protection from federal income taxation as did the Ghost Dance of the Sioux warrior from
                 the repeating rifles of the federal Calvary [sic] -- ZERO")

2. Lonsdale v. United States, 919 F.2d 1440, 1448 (10th Cir. 1990)

                (the following arguments are completely lacking in legal merit and patently frivolous:

                            (1) individuals ("free born, white, preamble, sovereign, natural, individual common law
                                 'de jure' citizens of a state, etc.") are not "persons" subject to taxation under the
                                 Internal Revenue Code;

                            (2) the authority of the United States is confined to the District of Columbia;

                            (3) the income tax is a direct tax which is invalid absent apportionment;

                            (4) the Sixteenth Amendment to the Constitution is either invalid or applies only to corporations;

                            (5) wages are not income;

                            (6) the income tax is voluntary);

                                 United States v. Studley, 783 F.2d 934, 937 (9th Cir. 1986);
                                 United States v. Buras, 633 F.2d 1356 (9th Cir. 1980);
                                 United States v. Neff, 615 F.2d 1235 (9th Cir. 1980).

3. United States v. Kruger, 923 F.2d 587, 587-88 (8th Cir. 1991)

              ("The Krugers' principle argument below and on appeal is that the Thirteenth, Fourteenth, and
                 Fifteenth Amendments to the United States Constitution unlawfully purported to bestow
                 citizenship upon non-white races and other 'artificial statutory persons.' This argument is absurd").  
                 Perhaps the most famous "Wangrudite" was John Cheek, whose criminal conviction went to the
                 U.S. Supreme Court; see Cheek v. United States, 498 U.S. 192, 111 S.Ct. 604 (1991).  John sent
                 to me copies of his motions and briefs that he filed in his case, one of which was just a single page
                 motion which in essence stated that he could not be prosecuted because he was not a 14th amendment
                 citizen.  Naturally, such a non-substantive motion was denied. Cheek's appeal would have involved this
                 argument if he had reached the conclusion that it had merit.  However, the only issue which was decided
                 in the appeal to the Supreme Court regarded the validity of the "willfulness" jury instruction given at trial.

XVII. Implementing regulations:

United States v. Hartman, 915 F.Supp. 1227 (M.D.Fla. 1996): argument regarding implementing Regs and the cross references in CFR index held frivolous.  Stafford v. CIR, TCM 1997-50.

XVIII. Taxes are contractual:

In McLaughlin v. CIR, 832 F.2d 986, 987 (7th Cir. 1987), this argument was held to be without merit.






Revised: August 30, 2020