Posts tagged IRS
If the IRS scandal wasn’t enough to convince you that bloated, corrupt, bureaucratic government institutions pose a greater threat to our freedoms than any terrorist attack ever could, this story should settle it once and for all. The Department of Homeland Security (DHS) is not only wasteful, power hungry, and entirely unnecessary, it is also rapidly transforming itself into the Vampire Squid of government. In light of the fact that pretty much every terrorist plot the U.S. government has “thwarted” since 9/11 has been either FBI or CIA hatched schemes rooted in entrapment, the DHS has a lot of spare time on its hands to hunt frightening acts of “domestic terrorism.” You know, like fake Gucci bags. This story is beyond unacceptable. From WIVB Channel 4 News:
AMHERST, N.Y. (WIVB) – Federal agents swept through two shopping malls Monday, seizing fake merchandise and shutting down stores.
The Department of Homeland Security spearheaded the investigation that targeted mostly kiosks in the Walden Galleria and Boulevard Mall. Agents hauled bags and boxes out of the Boulevard Mall after stripping three kiosks of their merchandise.
Jim Spero, Special Agent-in-Charge of the Buffalo office of Homeland Security, says the sale of counterfeit goods – in Buffalo and beyond – poses a major security threat.
Oh please. Get over yourself Jim.
“When you purchase counterfeit goods, when you sell counterfeit goods, you don’t know who you’re dealing with. You don’t know what kind of criminal activity you’re supporting,” Spero said. “It’s actually organized crime that is behind the distribution of these goods. It could be terrorists as well.”
9/11 was bad, but the government created “war on terror” and all that has come with it, is far, far worse.
Full article here.
By Judy Morris
Rep. Ron Paul of Texas called the recent IRS fiasco troubling — but writes that the only way Congress can protect the freedoms of Americans from a long pattern of suspected IRS abuse is to “shutter the doors” of the agency “once and for all.”
The longtime GOP congressman writes that IRS agents in the 1930s were essentially “hit squads” against opponents of the New Deal, and that allegations of IRS abuse spanned the administrations of Presidents Kennedy, Nixon, Clinton and George W. Bush.
“The bipartisan tradition of using the IRS as a tool to harass political opponents suggests that the problem is deeper than just a few ‘rogue’ IRS agents — or even corruption within one, two, three or many administrations,” Dr. Paul writes in his weekly column, “Texas Straight Talk. “Instead, the problem [lies] in the extraordinary power the tax system grants the IRS.”
The libertarian and tea party hero goes on to argue that the power of the IRS can only be countered with a complete overhaul to the country’s tax system.
By Madison Ruppert
Editor of End the Lie
Obama aide Dan Pfeiffer made the talk show rounds today saying that the “law is irrelevant” when discussing the IRS scandal and that Obama’s location in the wake of the Benghazi attack is an “irrelevant fact.”
While some of Pfeiffer’s statements were downright absurd, one must commend him for making an effort in such a scandal-filled week.
“I can’t speak to the law here. The law is irrelevant,” Pfeiffer said. Pfeiffer did admit, however, that “the activity was outrageous and inexcusable,” speaking of the IRS targeting specific groups.
See Pfeiffer make these comments on ABC’s “This Week with George Stephanopoulos” below:
On CBS’s “Face the Nation,” Pfeiffer downplayed the IRS scandal and defended the way the Obama administration has handled it.
“What would be an actual real scandal in Washington would be if the president had been involved or had interfered in an IRS investigation,” Pfeiffer said, according to Politico.
“You do nothing to interfere with an independent investigation and you do nothing to offer the appearance of interfering with investigations,” Pfeiffer said, adding that administration officials responded after they had the facts.
He said that the White House is focused and will not allow Republicans to “drag Washington into a swamp of partisan fishing expeditions, trumped up hearings and false allegations.”
Pfeiffer also appeared on Fox News Sunday defending Obama’s handling of the Benghazi attack of September 11, 2012.
The host, Chris Wallace, reminded Pfeiffer that Obama didn’t actually talk with then-Secretary of Defense Leon Panetta, then-Secretary of State Hillary Clinton or chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff Martin Dempsey that night.
“He was talking to his national security staff,” Pfeiffer maintained.
When Pfeiffer was asked if Obama entered the Situation Room that night, Pfeiffer said, “I don’t remember what room the president was in on that night, and that’s a largely irrelevant fact.”
Pfeiffer later said that the host’s questions about Obama’s handling of Benghazi were “offensive.”
An unnamed California healthcare provider is suing the embattled Internal Revenue Service (IRS) and 15 agents for allegedly seizing 60,000,000 medical records belonging to “more than 10,000,000 Americans, including at least 1,000,000 Californians.”
The complaint, posted by National Review, states that IRS agents’ search warrant for financial information did “not authorize any seizure of any healthcare or medical record of any persons, least of all third parties completely unrelated to the matter.”
The medical records reportedly included sensitive private information about individuals’ gynecological counseling, sexual and drug treatment, and psychological services received.
Read the rest at Breitbart: http://www.breitbart.com/Big-Government/2013/05/17/Claim-IRS-Illegally-Seized-60-Million-Private-Medical-Records
I disagree, there was apparently plenty of “performance” out of Obama’s IRStasi. Meanwhile, Obama lectures the rest of us about “shared sacrifice” from the vacation golf course.
There is a new report by the Washington Examiner claiming IRS Director of Exempt Organizations Lois Lerner took home tens of thousands of dollars in bonuses, and she is not alone. Nearly $100 million went toward agency bonuses since 2009 during the period when the IRS was targeting conservative groups, according to the report.
Washington Examiner executive editor Mark Tapscott joined Neil Cavuto to discuss the findings. He said that about 16,000 of the IRS’ 97,000 employees got bonuses that averaged about $5,500 per year.
What were the bonuses based on? Tapscott said, “The civil service bases its performance award system on a number of factors, many of which are very vague, escape definition and generally leave a great deal of discretion to whomever you work for. Trust me, they have very little relationship with the kind of bonuses people get in the private sector for actually producing.” He added, “This is indicative of the culture of pay without performance, which is typical of federal civil service.”
Appearing before the House Weighs and Means Committee today, exiting IRS chief Steven Miller couldn’t do much more than just squirm in his chair as Rep. Mike Kelly, R-Pa vented the frustrations felt by millions of Americans.
Miller was immediately intimidated by Kelly’s tone and after a few “erms” and “uh-uh-uhs” Kelly let ‘er rip:
“If you think it’s uncomfortable sitting over there you ought to be a private individual when the IRS is across from you asking you questions!”
Here’s a few of Kelly’s best punches:
“I have a grandson who’s afraid to get out of bed at night because he thinks there’s someone under the bed that’s going to grab him. And I think most Americans feel that way about the IRS.”
“It’s always these are low-level people that pushed the wrong button.”
“Yes or no, does it come back to DC?” (Yes – one of Miller’s few coherent responses.)
“So DC and Cincinnati are pretty well connected?”
“This kind of reconfirms that, you know what, they [the IRS] can do almost anything they want to anybody they want, anytime they want. This is very chilling for the American people.”
“This is a Pandora’s Box that has been opened and I don’t think we can get the lid back on it.”
“I don’t believe that the White House just found out about this in a news report, the president happened to grab a TV shot or just read Mr. George’s report and said, ‘You know.. what… anybody heard about this before?’”
“I got to tell you, where you’re sitting, you should be outraged — and you’re not. The American people should be outraged, and they are.”
“This reconfirms everything the American public believes! This is a huge blow to the faith and trust the American people have in their government!”
“Is there any limit to the scope of where you folks can go?”
“It’s sure as hell intimidating. And I don’t’ know that I got any answers from you today.”
“There’s a heck of a lot more that has to come out in this.”
“I am more concerned today than I was before. The fact that you all can do just about anything you want to anybody. You know, you can put anybody out of business that you want anytime you want.”
“You talk about how you’re a horribly run organization? You’re on the other side of the fence.”
“And when the IRS comes in, you’re not allowed to be shoddy, you’re not allowed to be run horribly, you’re not allowed to make mistakes, you’re not allowed to do one damn thing that doesn’t come in compliance. If you do, you’re held responsible right then.”
“This is absolutely an overreach and this is an outrage for all America!”
May 17, 2013
The Internal Revenue Service official in charge of the tax-exempt organizations at the time when the unit targeted tea party groups now runs the IRS office responsible for the health care legislation.
Sarah Hall Ingram served as commissioner of the office responsible for tax-exempt organizations between 2009 and 2012. But Ingram has since left that part of the IRS and is now the director of the IRS’ Affordable Care Act office, the IRS confirmed to ABC News today.
Her successor, Joseph Grant, is taking the fall for misdeeds at the scandal-plagued unit between 2010 and 2012. During at least part of that time, Grant served as deputy commissioner of the tax-exempt unit.
Grant announced today that he would retire June 3, despite being appointed as commissioner of the tax-exempt office May 8, a week ago.
Image added to original post.
The topics mentioned are serious and signs of our sad state of affairs, with issues such as IRS scandal, Benghazi, Monsanto, Fast & Furious, continued wiretapping, etc., some from the video, some additional, but taking a time out for a touch of what I consider some comic relief.
By Gary DeMar
If you underpay and are assessed a penalty, just quote back to the agency what senior IRS official Lois Lerner said when she was asked a question: “I’m not good at math.”
If it’s good enough for the IRS, then it should be good enough for us. Tax payers of America unite! We have nothing to lose but our chains!
In 2012, the Internal Revenue Service targeted conservative political groups to see if they were violating their tax-exempt status. The rules regarding non-profit organizations are very specific. The IRS was asking questions and searching for information that was not part of the requirements. It was obvious harassment.
Folks at the IRS are blaming “low-level” employees in its Cincinnati office. The problem with is lame excuse is that the Cincinnati office is THE office “where determinations on tax-exempt organizations’ eligibility are made and is the only physical office in the complex IRS bureaucracy dedicated to tax-exempt determinations.”
The IRS hierarchy demanded that groups reveal the internal workings of their organizations, a provision that is not required by the law. This included “the identification of members, how they are selected, who they associate with, and even what they discuss.”
The tip off to the IRS was words like “tea party” or “patriot” on their exemption applications.
An Associated Press story made me laugh out loud:
“The agency — led at the time by a Bush administration appointee — blamed low-level employees, saying no high-level officials were aware. But that wasn’t good enough for Republicans in Congress, who are conducting several investigations and asked for more.
It’s not the fault of liberals. It was George Bush’s fault . . . I’m not good at math . . . low level government employees. Everything but the fault of liberals.
Let’s get something straight. Administrators and appointees come and go, but bureaucrats go on forever. Most government employees are liberal. Talk by conservatives to shrink the size of government is a threat to government unions and their employees.
It’s time to abolish the IRS and implement a low-level consumption tax that includes a requirement to shrink government expenditures.
Here is a great talk given at The 21 Convention in 2012, by Doug McGuff, MD, a prominent member of the ancestral health (paleo-primal) community: “Fitness, Health, and Liberty.” Doug, an emergency room physician, is well known for his ‘Body By Science‘ program, a high-intensity interval training program.
This is an important presentation because Doug presents the historical picture on how the physician-patient relationship went from a fiduciary relationship between provider and consumer to a 3rd party morass of collectivized medicine that sacrificed individual services to the needs of the masses in general in order to conform to the rules outlined by the medical establishment-insurance industry alliance.
While it is easy to blame the Democrats or blame Obama for the nationalization of medical care, this system began to form many years ago under the auspices of self-serving medical practitioners who built alliances with the government-medical establishment in the pursuit of rent-seeking arrangements. Dr. McGuff notes that doctors, who had short-term gains in mind, ultimately sacrificed their profession to these pursuits and thus “set into motion the long-term unintended consequences that resulted in their ultimate enslavement.”
His discussion of the formation of the “Blues” plans to guarantee payment for services while receiving tax-exempt status in exchange for community ratings is spot on. Community ratings, that did not allow for discrimination based on individual health status, were the beginnings of socialized medicine and thus opened the door to moral hazard and the current system of pre-paid medical care that defies all the principles of personal accountability and the free market.
This presentation is 72 minutes, but it is worth every minute of your time. I work in this industry and can tell you that Dr. McGuff has presented the best short timeline I have seen on the topic of how 3rd-party insurance and government-business alliances came to destroy the U.S. health care system. Dr. McGuff is also a libertarian, as if you can’t tell by the presentation.