From the April 2003 Idaho Observer:
Feds prove point of banned book
LAS VEGAS -- Irwin Schiff is a well known author with over 500,000 books in print about the economy and the income tax. He is also now amongst the few who have had a book banned by the U.S. Government. On March 19, 2003, Federal Judge Lloyd George ordered Schiff to stop selling his book "The Federal Mafia" which has been in print for over 13 years. According to Schiff, the federal government is using the American people's preoccupation with the war in Iraq as an opportunity to squelch freedom here at home.
Schiff says, "The 1st Amendment is designed so people can have opinions different from the government and there is no legal basis whatsoever for banning my book. Its all contrived, it's bull***t. The government is banning the book because the information is accurate and correct."
With the exception of the Las Vegas Review Journal, there has been very limited press about this book banning. Schiff attributes this to the timing of the government's actions. He said:
"The reason there haven't been more articles is that the government banned the book the day the war broke out. A number of people have already told me they wanted to do material but because of the war they couldn't. For example, Alan Combs, of Hannity and Combs, said he couldn't believe they banned my book and that he would love to do something, but they were really pressed because of the war. I really believe the reason they issued their restraining order on the day they did was so the war would cover it up . If there was no war going on, this would be a major story throughout the country. Also, it's fear of an IRS audit that keeps the media in line to a large extent."
Schiff was asked to explain why a book that had been in print and circulating freely for over 13 years was suddenly banned. He replied, "The answer is easy. Within the last 2 months I started advertising nationally. My ads were on major stations. For instance, in L.A. I was on station 97.1 with Howard Stern and Tom Leicus . I was also on the Michael Savage show two times a day. Until this year I didn't advertise nationally, and my business really picked up. Businessmen were hearing my commercial, calling me, and buying my book. The book is very persuasive; it was becoming increasingly more popular."
According to Schiff's website (www.paynoincometax.com), Judge George's order also bars Schiff from lecturing on the income tax. Schiff was asked if his free speech rights were being violated.
"Absolutely," he said. "This is a pure violation of my 1st. Amendment rights. I have been doing a radio show on KLAV for the last seven years. They got a call from the FCC lawyer telling them not to let me on. I told KLAV that I wouldn't advertise my book, I just wanted to explain to my audience how my book was banned, and wanted the audience to know they didn't even take any testimony. The Judge didn't even look at the book. But apparently KLAV is so intimidated by the IRS, they wouldn't honor my contract with them."
Irwin Schiff's books also include The Great Income Tax Hoax and How Anyone Can Stop Paying Income Tax. Mr. Schiff was asked why only The Federal Mafia was banned but not his other books. He replied, "The reason they don't like The Federal Mafia is because it provides a method whereby the public can avoid paying income tax without running the risk of being charged criminally. The other books expose the illegal collection of income taxes but don't provide the method to stop paying."
According to Schiff the banning of his book may be a first in American History.
"This has never happened before," said Schiff. "This is prior restraint. Never to my knowledge has a book on economics and taxes been banned. The only books that have been banned were primarily pornographic, like Tropic of Cancer. Never before has a book been banned primarily because the government didn't agree with what was written. Americans should be shouting from the rooftops. If the government can do this, the Constitution is really dead. People should go to my website and download a letter to the editor and send it off. They shut me down because they don't like what I say. The minute the government can shut you down because they don't like what you say, it's all over: that's the mark of a police state. People should write their Congressmen."
Schiff's final statement was, "As U.S. forces seek to bring democracy and freedom to Iraq, the U.S. government is seeking to eliminate it here."
Update: Judge continues injunction
LAS VEGAS, April 8 -- Federal Judge Lloyd George agreed to extend the injunction against Schiff and partners pending the outcome of Defendant's Motion to Recuse before Judge Hunt scheduled for April 10.
At the April 10 hearing, the motion for recusal was denied and the injunction order remains in effect.
Schiff, et al, have been enjoined from publicly discussing the income tax or selling books and tapes about the income tax. Always cavalier, the Shiff camp commented, "The IRS' case appears to be on the verge of getting delightfully out of hand."
The Federal Mafia is the book the government does not want you to read. You can read the first chapter for free at http://www.paynoincometax.com
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