Honoring a good man

I spent the morning at a funeral today. It wasn’t the least bit depressing, though. The deceased was the grandfather of a good friend of mine, and it was interesting to see the size of his legacy, both familial and spiritual. He was survived by 13 grandchildren and around 18 great-grandchildren, and it was a pleasure to serve witness to the depth of their love, affection and respect for the man.

It was also good to feel the genuine sense of celebration of a race well run. There was a little sorrow expressed, but not much, and I like to imagine him walking up a hill in the sunshine with his arms stretched out towards a little girl, smiling as he tells her that great-grandaddy’s finally here, just like great-grandma promised. (The family lost an infant girl in a car accident a few years back.) Perhaps that’s not how it works, but that’s how I’d prefer it to be, anyhow.

Of course, the man probably never walked up a hill in his life; he always ran. I rather enjoyed him, for he was not only a man of God, but something of a character who had an absolute obsession with performing the sort of daily exercises that are disdained these days by physical trainers. But then, he not only made it to 95, he was also considerably more spry than many individuals three decades younger. In light of that, I may have to consider adding jumping jacks and deep knee bends to my exercise regimin.

It was a beautiful day.

A little good news to balance the bad

From WND:

A former IRS agent who believes citizens are not required to pay federal income taxes was acquitted today on charges he attempted to defraud the government.

Joseph Banister, a Certified Public Accountant in San Jose, Calif., had been telling his clients they don’t need to file federal income tax returns because the 16th Amendment, which gives Congress “power to lay and collect taxes on incomes,” was never properly ratified. A leading figure in the “tax honesty” movement, Banister was taken into custody Nov. 19 by IRS agents and released on $25,000 bond after pleading not guilty.

A jury in the U.S. District Court in Sacramento found him not guilty on a charge of conspiracy and on all three counts of aiding and assisting the filing of false tax returns for a client.

I don’t think Banister’s defense was entirely predicated on the 16th Amendment question, but in any case, it’s good news that the jury saw through the tax fraud on the part of the IRS. Still, it’s not much use being able to keep the money you earn if you can’t buy any property with it.