June 8, 1935 - Article - The Pink-Slip Strike, As Told By Raymond Pitcairn
Buried among the scattered files of the bureau of Internal Revenue there rest, as this is written, millions of pink slips, recording the intimate details of your personal income and mine. They had a strange purpose - which remains unfulfilled. It was to place this data on public display; to exhibit you and me and every taxpayer in the forced indignity of a sort of fiscal fan dance.
But the pink slip will never be read, except by authorized officials. Perhaps by the time that this is printed, they will have been destroyed. We are spared the ordeal of financial nudity. For Congress, you will recall, repealed the law enforcing publicity of income-tax returns, and in doing so scrapped what promised to be a card-index system available to every kidnapper, blackmailer, blue-sky security salesman, town gossip, gold digger, alimony hunter of other exploiter on the prowl for victims.
"I haven't made enough this year," said a young lawyer, "to pay a tax. But I have to file for publication the fact that my income is so small. A fine start, that, for my career. I begin it by broadcasting to the world that I am a dud." (pg. 23)
Comments: Again, we must recall that, at this period in history, the income tax affected less than 3% of the population and was viewed as a tax upon the wealthy. But imagine that there was a time in our history when some lawyers didn't make enough money to pay income tax.