Ed Brown was charged with tax evasion. Apparently, he was delinquent on his taxes for many years without any government charges.
One day, Ed Brown began to question the authority of the federal government to collect taxes. He found no legal justification for tax collection, so he simply stopped paying. It was not without legitimate struggle that led Ed to his conclusion. He did petition the IRS asking them to explain what law specifically required him to pay taxes. Ed never received a straight answer.
Ed then withheld taxes from the federal government. He was distraught to find that his checking account had charges against it without Ed’s consent. The IRS was taking money from Ed, no trial, no judge, just theft.
In order to keep his money Ed relied less on banks, paying his mortgage with money orders. This arrangement worked well for Ed and his wife, Elaine. Five years later was when the feds decided to harass Ed, and brought him to court. Ed feeling that his trial was a sham decided that he was not going to court anymore. Ed complained that evidence that he wanted to present was not allowed to be presented. Ed, who represented himself, was told repeatedly by the judge that his argument was not allowed to be presented in court. This leads me to the question. Why was Ed not allowed to present the defense that he wanted to? It would seem to be prudent to allow Ed to present his case, right or wrong, and the prosecution should debunk the invalid parts of his argument, if any. This was not done, and Ed was found guilty, without Ed present.
Elaine disagreed with Ed about his not going to court. The court required that she stay with her grown son and not visit Ed. She also was made to wear an ankle bracelet that would track her movement much like how scientists track animals that they are studying. Ed simply stayed home where he has independent power, water, and a stockpile of food in a standoff type situation.
Elaine, tired of being separated from her husband, decided to ditch the bracelet and join her husband. April 26 rolls around and so does Ed Brown’s sentencing. Both Ed and Elaine were sentenced to more that five years in prison in their absence. The standoff ensues, and one is left to wonder if America has another Waco on its hands.
That leads us to the events of this week. An appeal was filed. An appeal was filed, not by Ed, not by Elaine, but by a judge. The meaning of this appeal is not clear to me. Is the federal government actually realizing that it can’t just go around beating up on people? Will Ed finally be able to put this whole thing behind him? The resolution of this situation remains unclear.
What is clear is that we have a wonderful demonstration of the proper use of guns so far. Both armed parties abstained from their use.