The people asked, "Is it lawful to pay the census tax to Caesar or not? Should we pay or should we not pay?" . . . Jesus replied, "Give unto Caesar what belongs to Caesar." (see Mark 12:14-17)Catholic teaching has long held that, while one has an obligation in good conscience to resist if government seeks to compel you to do evil, one nevertheless has an obligation to pay taxes.
"Submission to authority and co-responsibility for the common good make it morally obligatory to pay taxes, to exercise the right to vote, and to defend one's country: 'Pay to all of them their dues, taxes to whom taxes are due, revenue to whom revenue is due, respect to whom respect is due, honor to whom honor is due.' (Rom 13:7)" CCC 2240That being so, would it be moral if government were to impose a tax on being homeless as a remedy for ending homelessness? How about a tax on being hungry? Would it be moral to "eliminate" unemployment merely by mandating that everyone get a job and impose a tax on those who remain unemployed?
Is it within a government's rightful authority to not only to tax a person's goods and activities, but to tax his inactivity, to tax his liberty to be left alone? Is it within a government's rightful authority to go so far as to tax a person's misfortune, to tax the hungry for not buying food, to tax the homeless for not buying or renting a home, to tax the unemployed for not getting a job?
Before you object that such questions are completely absurd, let us add another example. It is said by some that there is a moral right to healthcare and that the large numbers of uninsured persons is a problem of moral dimensions. Setting aside the question of conflating in this way the provision of health care and treatment with the holding of a medical insurance policy, is it morally licit to address the problem of people lacking insurance by imposing a tax on them for that very lack of insurance?? Is it moral, under Catholic teaching, to impose a tax on the uninsured for merely being without insurance?
Again, before you object that such is a completely absurd proposition, know this -- the United States Supreme Court, per Chief Justice John Roberts, has just ruled that, whether it is moral or not, it is entirely permissible under the taxing power of the United States Constitution to impose a tax on the uninsured merely for being uninsured.
To be continued, i.e. application of the sophistry and exercise in relativism that is the Roberts Rule to the now "no contraceptive coverage tax," formerly known as the contraceptive mandate, and even worse things.