Irwin Schiff, serving a 13-plus-year prison sentence for challenging the federal government’s mass robbery scheme known as income taxation, has passed away. Schiff was a political prisoner whose “crime” was to refuse to have his money stolen by the state. His free-market teachings have reached countless people, with his son Peter continuing to spread the ideas of the Austrian School of economics. I was first introduced to Austrian economics by Peter, who wrote the book inspired by his father called “How an Economy Grows and Why It Crashes.” Irwin himself was the author of a few books, including “The Biggest Con: How the Government Is Fleecing You.”
David Gordon writes:
Irwin Schiff, imprisoned for his resistance to the federal income tax, died yesterday. Efforts by his son, the noted financial commentator Peter Schiff, to secure his release from prison so that he could die with his family, were unsuccessful. Schiff’s sad passing illustrates an essential truth about the state: if you resist its orders, you will be dealt with by force.
Lew Rockwell followed up:
David, I only saw Irwin speak once. He was running for the Libertarian nomination for president. (He lost to Ron Paul, not exactly a disgrace.) Like his son Peter, Irwin was an extraordinary speaker: no ums or ahs, eloquent sentence following eloquent sentence in logical progrression, classical rhetorical skills.
He was caged for the last years of his life in the big prison in Angola, Indiana, a desperately ill, 87-year-old man handcuffed to his bed, just in case he might wobble out and challenge the machinegun-toting guards.
Irwin was punished for answering a question in public about his last book, which a federal judge had ordered him never to discuss.
Irwin Schiff was a hero in every respect who stopped at nothing to continue fighting for our freedom. We are eternally grateful.