The recent IRS scandal should be the opportunity America has been waiting for. It may be the hinge in our history that moves us back to our founding doctrine. Not that the other scandals don’t deserve an equal place in the history of this administration. But the most overreaching organization in the US because it is the most feared by its citizens, the IRS, sits ripe for the picking.
The tax collecting agency for the US government has admitted it overstepped its boundaries by singling out individuals and groups having the audacity to have a different political view than their Executive leadership. Their boss allowed, through his behavior, the government agency to act as it never has before. The individuals targeted by the agency had the temerity to contribute to the Republican Presidential campaign of 2012, against their boss. The groups in question had applied for tax-exempt status, as the law allowed, with the purpose of campaigning against their boss.
Liberal groups applying for the same status with the IRS, received their approval within a matter of weeks. It’s been several years and most of the conservative groups still don’t have theirs. One conservative group even gave up, changed their name to ‘Green something’, and were approved within three weeks.
Certain individuals, contributing to the Republican Party, who had never been audited before, received heavy scrutiny by the federal government. And not just simple audits but full-bore investigations into their backgrounds and affiliations, as they reported the details on TV news. They were even accused of being criminals. A Wall Street Journal article related past employees indicated the agency used phone records and social media to determine their political connections.
Conservative groups with words in their names like, tea party or conservative or 9-12, were scrutinized with greater than normal questions. The questionnaire prior to the beginning of the crackdown in 2010 contained hundreds of question not characteristic of the tax office. Questions like ‘what was the subject of your meetings?’ were asked. These were not questions asked in 2009, but in 2010 through 2012, because it became politically expedient during an election year. The IRS might have reasoned that their boss, the Executive, should not lose the upcoming election, and if they could help him, they would.
Congress even called the IRS director to a Hearing in 2010 to answer questions and he denied any such allegations or IRS targeting of conservatives by the agency.
So, what’s the big deal and why is the action of the government wrong? Because the Founders deemed it necessary to protect the people from tyranny by a ruthless government. This action by the Obama IRS should make every Democrat, Republican, and Independent afraid. The IRS is controlled by the Executive Branch. The Constitution, and particularly the Bill of Rights, was written to restrain the government from taking tyrannical action against its citizens. Each Amendment is written with a voice telling the government what it CAN NOT do.
The citizens of the US may not agree with the President or the government but it is their right to equal protection under the law. For the government to step in front of our rights, to step on our rights, to deny us our rights, is against the law and the tyranny our Founders fought to protect us from. Is it right that Americans should fear their government?
The solution for this overreach may come with the opportunity to rectify another problem: the convoluted tax code will live under, administrated by the IRS. Many people and organizations (rich corporations, rich unions, etc, with ties to the government) pay little or no income tax while the middle class pay the larger share due to Congress’s continued stirring and mixing of tax regulations in favor of the few.
A ‘fair tax’ would tax all citizens and organizations equally. The President has campaigned and stated that he wants equality for all. Hence his tax on the wealthy and his admitted redistribution that has gone nowhere.
Well, here’s his chance to do something productive for a change. Revenue to the government through a ‘fair tax’ would increase because many of the loop holes that rich lawyers help corporations and unions get out of would be eliminated. And, the new tax system wouldn’t require the massive expense of a government agency: we wouldn’t need the IRS. The middle class wins, the rich win, and the poor win. The bureaucratic, overreaching government loses.
The ‘fair tax’ system has yet to be defined, but it might consist of a flat tax with some charitable contributions still intact, I don’t know. These are details that would have to be worked out. But it is a conversation that needs to take place.
What are your thoughts? What do you think of what the IRS did to Americans? Was it that bad? Should more heads roll? Should anyone go to jail? Did the President know about it? Is this an opportunity for America to begin to shrink Big Government? Is it right Americans should fear their government? Write a comment.