The problem, IMO, is that there are just enough legal “loopholes” to make the desperate or the uninformed believe there must be one for every situation, and if you only look long enough you will find it. This is wrong, obviously; the fact that an exception exists to one rule (or some rules) does not mean there are exceptions to every rule. And not every rule is a “loophole;” sometimes that’s just the way the law is.
For example: As lucwarm correctly notes, in most jurisdictions a conveyance of real property must be in writing in order to statisfy the Statute of Frauds. This is because it was decided a looooong time ago that land was important enough (and expensive enough), and fraud so easy to perpetrate, and oral contracts so hard to prove, that where land is concerned you have to write the sale down in order for it to be valid. (Note to those who would point out I am grossly oversimplifying the Statute of Frauds: Don’t bother.) So let’s say you selll your farm but then change your mind. You can point to the lack of a written sale agreement and argue that there never was a valid sale. Does that mean you’ve taken advantage of a “loophole”? No. You’ve just taken advantage of the settled law.
Similarly, in many jurisdictions, a will must be witnessed or attested to in order to be valid. No witnesses, no will. Again, there is long historical precedent for this and good reason: It’s easy to forge a will, and once Daddy Warbucks is dead, he can’t clarify whom he really meant to leave the money to. So he must sign his will in the presence of witnesses who can testify that, yes, he really signed it and, yes, he did it of his own free will and, no, he wasn’t senile at the time. But even if everybody and their dog knows D.W. wanted to leave his money to Little Orphan Annie and not his wastel nephew (and presumptive heir), the nephew will still get the money if the will is not valid. Does that mean the nephew took advantage of a “loophole”? No. That’s what the law provides for.
IMO, a “loophole” is a law that can be twisted so that it is misapplied or rendered meaningless, or else is an obvious gap in the law so that it does not cover something it pretty clearly was meant to cover – like lucwarm’s gun example.
But in both cases – laws and loopholes – we are talking about things that actually exist: Laws as correctly applied, or laws as incorrectly applied or gaps left by the law. What I take Bricker to be speaking of is something different: The non-existent law or loophole. Income tax is not unconstitutional. Period. You can argue from now until the end of time that it is – in fact, you can continue to argue it once they’ve repo’d your house and put you in jail. But it ain’t. Believing so is believing in a nonexistent law. Barfing into the Breathalyzer will not get you off the hook for DUI, because – contrary to persistent rumor – an officer can administer the test more than once, if something goes wrong the first time. Believing otherwise is believing in a non-existent loophole.
People in this category are putting their faith in fantasies – rules and laws that simply don’t exist. I used to deal with this a lot when dealing with pro se “free men.” “The state can’t make me get a driver’s license! I have an inherent right to drive!” Uh, no, sorry, you don’t. “The state can’t tell me I can’t run a slaughterhouse on my property! I can do anything I want on my own property. Property rights are absolute!” Wrong again. “I can put a lein on the local sheriff’s house for a billion dollars, because if I follow the letter of the statute for filing leins, then a judge can’t invalidate the lein as bogus!” No, you can’t, and yes, he can.
IMO, a good rule of thumb is that if you “heard it from this one guy” or you read it on the Internet, you’d be a fool to believe it. The government can almost always do whatever it claims it can do, because there are lots of people who are willing challenge its power to do [whatever], either for philosophical reasons (“the government is being overzealous and must be checked, so I’ll challenge this”) or practical ones (“if I can show that the government screwed this up, then I can get out of jail, so I’ll challenge this”).
In other words, there’s loopholes and then there’s loopholes. But “no loopholes based on fantasy or wishful thinking” does not translate to “no loopholes.”