IRS Double Standard Tax Dragnet Also Sought Out Advocates of Constitutional And Government Reform

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It wasn’t just Tea Party types whom the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) singled out for extra tax scrutiny over the past two years. The politically driven effort to stymie the goals of suspected conservatives extended to nonprofits and social-welfare groups that advocate for changes in government spending and educating the public on the Constitution and the Bill of Rights.

On Friday, the IRS apologized for going after more than 70 groups that had “patriot” and “Tea Party” in their names — groups that, starting ahead of the 2012 election season, had become deluged with extra paperwork demands after applying to the agency for tax-exempt status.

In all, though, there were about 300 groups that faced similar stonewalling. All of them had applications that were “flagged” by the IRS for extra documentation and investigation as they sought nonprofit tax exemption. And they all had a lot in common: They all betrayed some dissatisfaction with the U.S. government or the desire to educate the public about the Constitution and the Bill of Rights.

The U.S. Treasury Inspector General for Tax Administration, which functions independently within the treasury Department to audit IRS practices, is investigating the origin of the agency’s discrimination, including how it was authorized, by whom and when it all started.

FOX News reported Monday the Inspector General’s office has a rudimentary timeline of events that political opponents of both President Barack Obama and moderate RINOs were already being harassed in early 2010. But:

[I]t shows that the list of criteria [was] drastically expanding by the time a June 2011 briefing was held. It then included groups focused on government spending, government debt, taxes, and education on ways to “make America a better place to live.” It even flagged groups whose file included criticism of “how the country is being run.”

By early 2012, the criteria were updated to include organizations involved in “limiting/expanding government,” education on the Constitution and Bill of Rights, and social economic reform.

Under Obama, the IRS is looking more like a policy deployment and enforcement arm of for the executive branch than a dispassionate and aloof tax-collection agency.

For elected chief executives who aspire to dictatorship, it makes sense. That’s because, if a President wants to enact his extraConstitutional whims with an absolute minimum of resistance, there’s no other government agency that possesses such a unique combination of fear-inspiring absolutism and ubiquity. Everyone (in theory) pays taxes, and almost everyone is too afraid of criminal and financial repercussions to view the IRS as that part of government that can be reasoned with. Perfect.

Take the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (“Obamacare”) as one example.

“Obamacare relies very heavily on the IRS,” said former U.S. House Speaker Newt Gingrich Monday. “Why would you trust the bureaucracy with your health if you can’t trust the bureaucracy with your politics? … There are bureaucrats in the IRS who are capable of ruining your life while lying about it.”

In 2014, when Obamacare is the law of the land, taxpayers will have to complete an additional IRS form that will require their personal identifying health information, including information about their health insurance provider and how long they’ve been covered.

Ben Bullard

Reconciling the concept of individual sovereignty with conscientious participation in the modern American political process is a continuing preoccupation for staff writer Ben Bullard. A former community newspaper writer, Bullard has closely observed the manner in which well-meaning small-town politicians and policy makers often accept, unthinkingly, their increasingly marginal role in shaping the quality of their own lives, as well as those of the people whom they serve. He argues that American public policy is plagued by inscrutable and corrupt motives on a national scale, a fundamental problem which individuals, families and communities must strive to solve. This, he argues, can be achieved only as Americans rediscover the principal role each citizen plays in enriching the welfare of our Republic.

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  • Vigilant

    Articles of Impeachment, Richard Nixon, Section 1, Article 2:

    “He has, acting personally and through his subordinates and agents, endeavoured to obtain from the Internal Revenue Service, in violation of the constitutional rights of citizens, confidential information contained in income tax returns for purposes not authorized by law, and to cause, in violation of the constitutional rights of citizens, income tax audits or other income tax investigations to be intitiated or conducted in a discriminatory manner.”

    • buck

      And, unfortunately, that’s not all…
      The freedoms we once enjoyed, are all but gone. It’s just a matter of time before the key to the freedom gate is thrown away, and the gate fully barricaded.

  • steve

    hope and change chicogo style

  • Wellarmed

    Timely article from Mr. Bullard. It seems these days that there is a never ending example from this current Administration in how tyranny will be instituted. As I have said before in other posts, the affordable care act had nothing to do with health care and everything to do with control.

    I am fairly certain that whomever gave the order to the IRS is incredibly insulated from the person occupying our white house, and by the time it is all unraveled by investigators his term will be nearly over.

    One of the bigger issues that I did not see mentioned in the article was the IRS requesting list of donors to these groups seeking 501 C4 exempt status. If those list were surrendered to the IRS, did this allow the IRS to also go after those donors as targets for audits?

    Like most reading these commentaries I am certain that mere apologies are from the IRS are not going to to be considered justice in the eyes of the American people. Heads should roll at the IRS and if this does not create the impetus for disbanding the Internal Revenue Service then nothing will.

  • ChuckS123

    IRS = KGB = SS. The bigger the government, the more ways they can mess with you. The more money they take, the more power they have to make you do what they want you to to get or keep the money.

  • Guest

    Is the IRS sorry for what they did, or just sorry they got caught?

  • Patriot66

    The ability of the central government to directly tax US citizen, be it income, capital gains, sales, etc…, needs to be eliminated. The 16th amendment needs to be modified to reflect that taxes can only be derived directly from the States, on a voluntary basis.
    Think of all the problems this would solve. No more pork barrel spending or
    blackmailing of our State officials to do the bidding of the central
    government. The States would tax accordingly to the State budget. Anything left
    over would go to the central government, if they behaved… It would be much more involved, but use your imaginations on how many problems this would solve, not to mention eliminating one of the most corrupt agencies in American history.
    Of course, we would also have to remove the back door of allowing them to get
    loans via the Federal Reserve. The only funds they could use would be what the
    States grant them. Seem like a good idea?