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Surprise! The so-called IRS scandal has nothing to do with taxes!

wonk0513

It’s probably safe to say that many Americans think the current “scandal” at the Internal Revenue Service is about who has to pay how much in taxes.

But that’s not the case, as Steven Rattner MAKES CLEAR:

One of the bigger ironies about the I.R.S. imbroglio is that it had nothing to do with taxes. These newly formed entities didn’t seek 501(c)(4) status to avoid taxes — these groups don’t earn profits and therefore don’t pay any taxes, regardless of their status. The important benefit that came from achieving 501(c)(4) status was freedom from having to disclose the names of any of their donors.

That’s right, what the I.R.S. was really deciding in these cases is which organizations have to disclose their funders and which don’t. And what it was trying to do — however dumbly it went about it — was to reduce the abuse of the campaign-finance rules, not the tax laws.

Without 501(c)(4) status, these groups would have had to organize as what are known colloquially as “super PACs.” While this would have afforded them greater flexibility to overtly support candidates, the names of their donors would have to be made public.

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41 Comments

  1. Robert

    Maybe the smart thing to have done, would have been for the IRS officials to go in front of congress and explain their dilemma, so that the world would know their motive was about transparency and to ensure agents and factions in foreign governments weren’t influencing our elections and elected reps.

  2. Expdoc

    Wrong.

    This is about much more than targeting of organizations. This is about political intimidation. Kimberly Strassel nails it.

    http://online.wsj.com/article/SB10001424127887324767004578487332636180800.html?mod=hp_opinion

    Was the White House involved in the IRS’s targeting of conservatives? No investigation needed to answer that one. Of course it was.

    President Obama and Co. are in full deniability mode, noting that the IRS is an “independent” agency and that they knew nothing about its abuse. The media and Congress are sleuthing for some hint that Mr. Obama picked up the phone and sicced the tax dogs on his enemies.

    But that’s not how things work in post-Watergate Washington. Mr. Obama didn’t need to pick up the phone. All he needed to do was exactly what he did do, in full view, for three years: Publicly suggest that conservative political groups were engaged in nefarious deeds; publicly call out by name political opponents whom he’d like to see harassed; and publicly have his party pressure the IRS to take action.

    Mr. Obama now professes shock and outrage that bureaucrats at the IRS did exactly what the president of the United States said was the right and honorable thing to do. “He put a target on our backs, and he’s now going to blame the people who are shooting at us?” asks Idaho businessman and longtime Republican donor Frank VanderSloot.

    Enlarge Image

    Getty Images
    At the White House, President Obama addresses the IRS scandal, May 15.

    Mr. VanderSloot is the Obama target who in 2011 made a sizable donation to a group supporting Mitt Romney. In April 2012, an Obama campaign website named and slurred eight Romney donors. It tarred Mr. VanderSloot as a “wealthy individual” with a “less-than-reputable record.” Other donors were described as having been “on the wrong side of the law.”

    This was the Obama version of the phone call—put out to every government investigator (and liberal activist) in the land.

    Twelve days later, a man working for a political opposition-research firm called an Idaho courthouse for Mr. VanderSloot’s divorce records. In June, the IRS informed Mr. VanderSloot and his wife of an audit of two years of their taxes. In July, the Department of Labor informed him of an audit of the guest workers on his Idaho cattle ranch. In September, the IRS informed him of a second audit, of one of his businesses. Mr. VanderSloot, who had never been audited before, was subject to three in the four months after Mr. Obama teed him up for such scrutiny.

    The last of these audits was only concluded in recent weeks. Not one resulted in a fine or penalty. But Mr. VanderSloot has been waiting more than 20 months for a sizable refund and estimates his legal bills are $80,000. That figure doesn’t account for what the president’s vilification has done to his business and reputation.

    The Obama call for scrutiny wasn’t a mistake; it was the president’s strategy—one pursued throughout 2012. The way to limit Romney money was to intimidate donors from giving. Donate, and the president would at best tie you to Big Oil or Wall Street, at worst put your name in bold, and flag you as “less than reputable” to everyone who worked for him: the IRS, the SEC, the Justice Department. The president didn’t need a telephone; he had a megaphone.

  3. Expdoc

    Peggy Noonan further explains.

    http://online.wsj.com/article/SB10001424127887323582904578487460479247792.html?mod=WSJ_Opinion_LEADTop

    The IRS scandal has two parts. The first is the obviously deliberate and targeted abuse, harassment and attempted suppression of conservative groups. The second is the auditing of the taxes of political activists.

    In order to suppress conservative groups—at first those with words like “Tea Party” and “Patriot” in their names, then including those that opposed ObamaCare or advanced the second amendment—the IRS demanded donor rolls, membership lists, data on all contributions, names of volunteers, the contents of all speeches made by members, Facebook FB +0.88% posts, minutes of all meetings, and copies of all materials handed out at gatherings. Among its questions: What are you thinking about? Did you ever think of running for office? Do you ever contact political figures? What are you reading? One group sent what it was reading: the U.S. Constitution.

    The second part of the scandal is the auditing of political activists who have opposed the administration. The Journal’s Kim Strassel reported an Idaho businessman named Frank VanderSloot, who’d donated more than a million dollars to groups supporting Mitt Romney. He found himself last June, for the first time in 30 years, the target of IRS auditors. His wife and his business were also soon audited. Hal Scherz, a Georgia physician, also came to the government’s attention. He told ABC News: “It is odd that nothing changed on my tax return and I was never audited until I publicly criticized ObamaCare.” Franklin Graham, son of Billy, told Politico he believes his father was targeted. A conservative Catholic academic who has written for these pages faced questions about her meager freelance writing income. Many of these stories will come out, but not as many as there are. People are not only afraid of being audited, they’re afraid of saying they were audited.

    All of these IRS actions took place in the years leading up to the 2012 election. They constitute the use of governmental power to intrude on the privacy and shackle the political freedom of American citizens. The purpose, obviously, was to overwhelm and intimidate—to kill the opposition, question by question and audit by audit.

    It is not even remotely possible that all this was an accident, a mistake. Again, only conservative groups were targeted, not liberal. It is not even remotely possible that only one IRS office was involved. Lois Lerner, who oversees tax-exempt groups for the IRS, was the person who finally acknowledged, under pressure of a looming investigative report, some of what the IRS was doing. She told reporters the actions were the work of “frontline people” in Cincinnati. But other offices were involved, including Washington. It is not even remotely possible the actions were the work of just a few agents. This was more systemic. It was an operation. The word was out: Get the Democratic Party’s foes. It is not remotely possible nobody in the IRS knew what was going on until very recently. The Washington Post reported efforts to target the conservative groups reached the highest levels of the agency by May 2012—far earlier than the agency had acknowledged. Reuters reported high-level IRS officials, including its chief counsel, knew in August 2011 about the targeting.

  4. Brian Opsahl

    according to everything I have been reading this type of crap has been going on forever…it is not new as Doc is trying to accuse.

    What proff are you swriting from or is this just your take on it…?

  5. And how many of those organizations had to reveal their donors? ZERO! That’s the scandal.

  6. Robert

    I’d like to know who was the whistleblower on this event? How did this supposed abuse by the IRS become what it is today. Who was the Woodward and Bernstein on this story and who were they informed by?

  7. doc: The best take on that pile of crap from Peggy Noonan comes from Andrew Sullivan.

    Much of what he says is hidden behind a pay-wall, but here’s the heart of it:

    “Her column today is simply unhinged from the first sentence:

    ‘We are in the midst of the worst Washington scandal since Watergate.’

    “Can she actually believe this? Has this president broken the law, lied under oath, or authorized war crimes? Has he traded arms for hostages with Iran? Has he knowingly sent his cabinet out to tell lies about his sex life? Has he sat by idly as an American city was destroyed by a hurricane? Has he started a war with no planning for an occupation? Has he started a war based on a lie, and destroyed the US’ credibility and moral standing while he was at it, leaving nothing but a smoldering and now rekindled civil sectarian war?

    “So far as I can tell, this president has done nothing illegal, unethical or even wrong.

    “You have to bend yourself into several pretzels to even understand what the Benghazi thing is about. All the emails released show what amounts to a classic inter-agency conflict, resolved dispassionately by Ben Rhodes, in a period of considerable confusion. For the half-baked talking points, someone has been already fired. On the DOJ’s aggressive pursuit of a leaker who might have endangered national security, I thought Republicans like Noonan approved of that. But not when it’s Obama, when it suddenly becomes an “assault”.

    “The IRS story is a different matter and an entirely legitimate scandal at a lower level. I want those responsible to be fired or prosecuted. But there is no proof whatever of any connection to the president, his campaign or anyone near the administration itself.”

    —–

    I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again, doc. For all her skills as a wordsmith, Peggy Noonan is second- or third-rate political analyst. She simply doesn’t know much about politics. I’ll never forget the nonsense she wrote the day before the election of last November. Utterly foolish.

  8. By the way, doc, let me know when you or those dimwits Noonan and (especially) Kimberley Strassel come up with any good evidence of wrongdoing on Obama’s part.

    (Cue the crickets.)

  9. Brian Opsahl

    They want a scandle so bad they can taste it…problem is …that it taste like BS …cause that is all they have.

    Im like Robert ….I dont approve of everything the President had done, but if you compare him to the last President….well lets just say him showing up is better than anything we before..

  10. expdoc

    Ah yes, cue the crickets, a devastating blow.

    I will indeed let you know as soon as any evidence against Mr. Obama is revealed, although I don’t expect (or even hope) that it will be.

    But Kimberly Strassel gives a very convincing argument that Mr. Obama has showed very poor form, particularly when he feigns shock and outrage when the IRS and other institutions did just what he and other Democrats suggested they should do.

  11. Brian Opsahl

    Wrong Doc, if they had that numbskulls like you would be screeming from your high horse..scandle,scandle….just as you attempted to do on Benghazi….after 9 hearings…take some nyquil and call me in the morning…

  12. Craig Knauss

    Can anybody tell me why ANY political group needs tax exempt status. They are not charities and are not performing any viable service for the general public. So why do they need a tax exemption?

    And, of course, doc has not produced one single ounce of proof that the Republicans wouldn’t do or haven’t done the same.

    BTW, where was the big investigation for dropping the ball before the 9/11 attacks? Who was fired for that? 8 months of security briefings and President Bush was caught by “surprise” by the attacks. Talk about “poor form”.

  13. wilson

    I choked and almost you know what when I read this.
    “Piers Morgan: Say, I guess government can become tyrannical after all”
    “Piers Morgan, who engaged in some of the worst demagoguery outside of the White House and Capitol Hill over the last six months on that issue, routinely derided the idea that the American government couldn’t be trusted to abide by the law and tell the truth. Now, after watching what happened at the IRS — and to the Associated Press — the CNN host admits to Penn Jillette that maybe people had a point about creeping tyranny after all”
    “I’ve had some of the pro-gun lobbyists on here, saying to me, ‘Well, the reason we need to be armed is because of tyranny from our own government,’ and I’ve always laughed at them,” Morgan said last night. “But, actually, this is vaguely tyrannical behavior by the American government.”

    So this is about tyrannical behavior by our government.
    Get those tin hats out!
    Guest Penn Jillette agreed with his assessment: “I think that it shows you that how much we can trust the government and just sit back, which is not very much at all.

    http://hotair.com/archives/2013/05/17/piers-morgan-say-i-guess-government-can-become-tyrannical-after-all/

  14. Brian Opsahl

    Whats your point Wilson…?

    You really give a rats behind what Piers Morgan thinks..really..?

  15. The Comedian

    I don’t know about you, Pat, but I sure am glad Big O has cable television. If he didn’t, I’m not sure how he’d get informed on anything happening outside his man-cave.

    And yea, Doc! Let me know when these dimwitted knuckleheads come up with some evidence of wrongdoing! I mean, you can’t blame the man for woeful dereliction of duty.

  16. The Comedian

    I just read some more comments here. Can you do us all a favor Pat? I’ve noticed when a “right-wingnut-wako-maniac-idiot-bible thumper-dimwit-republican-libertarian-doofus-moron-poorly educated southern hick” makes one minor grammatical error your spidey sense sends you here faster than a speeding bullet to point out A) said grammar offender is an idiot with little intellectual value, and B) that you are some form of grammar god reborn from eons passed. So, how in the holy sweet Moses in the desert is Brian Opsahl able to get away with his 3rd grade grammar skills?? Why aren’t you educating him, Pat. Where’s your compassion?? Did you see how he spelled “numbskull” “screeming”?? Seriously. Educate this poor fellow.

  17. Comedian: Sorry, but I’m more snarky about the errors of wingnuts than I am about those of libs or quasi-libs.

    I’ll give some thought to your suggestion that I be more even-handed.

  18. expdoc

    Brian,

    I would love to follow your advice, but I am working all night.

    I think it is hilarious that during the course of the 2 Obama administrations an oft heard liberal refrain has been along the lines of “you guys did it first” or ” Bush did the same thing” or “why didn’t you complain when the Republicans did teh same”.

    Pathetic.

    It would seem that at the end of the second Obama term that all political discourse should stop as apparently Bush and Obama followed most of the same policies, made all of the same mistakes and took none of the responsibility for their various missteps.

    As I have said before, politicians are and odd lot, not to be trusted. Anyone who believes more government is the answer to most problems is doomed to be disappointed.

  19. Robert

    I’m guilty of making grammatical errors. I do my best catch them, but some get by. Funny how things read right when your read them back, but after you press the post comment button, the errors blatantly stare back at you and you think, “how the hell did I miss that”.

    I never liked English class. In fact, I thought my worst years growing up were in Jr and Sr high (probably had something to do with hormones), life got much better after the teens were over. Grade school was great though. Anybody remember the room mothers who would bring in cookies and Muller’s ice cream cups with little wooden spoons for Christmas and Valentine’s Day. Who would we be without memories?

    I writes’s as I speaks’s.

    Robert, the quasi-liberal

  20. expdoc

    I don’t know anything about Congressman Mike Kelly, but he nailed it today.

    http://www.realclearpolitics.com/video/2013/05/17/gop_congressman_mike_kelly_receives_standing_ovation_after_he_rips_irs_commissioner.html

    REP. MIKE KELLY (R-PA): This has nothing to do with political parties. This has to do with highly targeted groups. This reconfirms everything the American public believes. This is a huge blow to the faith and trust that the American people have in their government. Is there any limit to the scope where you folks can go? Is there anything at all? Is there any way that we could ask you is there any question that you should have asked?

    My goodness. How much money do you have in your wallet? Who do you get emails from? Whose sign do you put up in your front yard? This is a tax question? And you don’t think that’s intimidating? It’s sure as hell intimidating. And I don’t know that I got any answers from you today. And I don’t know that — what Mr. George said is great work — but you know what? There’s a heck of a lot more that has to come out in this. Any anybody that sat here today and listened to what you had to say, I am more concerned today than I was before, and 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. Any time you want. I gotta tell you. You could talk about how you’re a horribly run organization, if you’re on the other side of the fence, you’re not giving that excuse. And 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, and if you do, you’re held responsible right then. I just think the American people have seen what’s going on right now in their government. This is absolutely an overreach and this is an outrage for all Americans.

  21. Robert

    expdoc, what remedy will make you and the rightwing noise machine claim victory? I’ll see what I can arrange.

  22. expdoc

    Victory?

    I don’t see a real winner here, do you?

  23. Robert

    I’m going to catch hell for this, but if I were to assign a sex to the rightwing noise machine, I’d say they are a woman. They seem awfully vindictive and bit-chee. Because they can’t define what winning an argument would look like. Isn’t that what men say is so difficult about woman?

  24. wilson

    Robert when there is corruption and tyrannical behavior by our government in addition to zero transparency we all lose. So tell me how you measure victory. I want Americans to win regardless of party.

  25. expdoc

    Robert,

    Your comment is hardly confined to the right. Turn on MSNBC on any random night. My impression is that it is a left wing “noise machine”. If what you hear there doesn’t fit your description of vindictive and bitchy then I don’t know what does.

    Back to your original question about victory, I didn’t know that this was a game, particularly the IRS thing. That is some serious and scary stuff.

  26. Robert

    wilson and expdoc, I share your concerns about an ever invasive and intrusive government, that is owned by the banks and major corporations. You on the right are feeling what we on the left did during the GWB years and its was frightening. People felt like they couldn’t have an opinion that wasn’t in alignment with the war party. Even that Ari Fleischer guy said people need to be real careful about what they say. Don’t think that didn’t send chills down several 10s of millions of spines.

    I’ve noted in past post about the police state I think millions of us see encroaching every day. I don’t think its conspiratorial to be aware that just about everything we do has some sort of tracking feature assigned to it, from banking activity to purchasing habits to what website’s we patronize, to the content of our emails, to the recording of every phone call made, to visiting your local retail stores. I’ve read that marketing techniques are getting so intuitive that the stores will know what we want before we do. I’m not kidding. Read about in a story about a well known retailer and how they track peoples buying habits to know who is pregnant or will soon be, so they can get their store to be one those new “moms to be” choose for all their kids needs.

    Heck, my insurance company is offering to install a device on my car to monitor my driving habits so I can get a cheaper rate. My internet carrier demanded I give them my cell phone number. All we are now is servants to that state endorsed private corporations that see us as pockets to pick and will full immunity.

    So yes, when you look at the broader picture, it’s real scary. And people are giving up their privacy, all in the name of either entertainment based toys that track everything you do and everywhere you go or out of fear of the next terrorist event.

    Do you ever wonder about the term “zombies” and why its so popular in the youth culture? Is that what we are becoming?

    Is this what progress looks like?

  27. expdoc

    Bob Schieffer has been around the block a few times and he gives a pretty good take.

    http://www.realclearpolitics.com/video/2013/05/16/schieffer_on_scandals_its_very_very_disturbing_what_were_seeing.html

    BOB SCHIEFFER: People were talking in Washington about — some people were saying, “Are we back to the Nixon administration? This is what they did in the Nixon administration.” This is not the Nixon administration, where you had burglars and people talking about blowing up the Brookings Institution. This is more of a case, is anybody home?

    I mean, just all of a sudden you have this thing with the Justice Department where they’re getting all these phone records of all the reporters. The Attorney General, well he didn’t know anything about it. You get to the IRS, they don’t seem to know anything about the Tea Party thing. You come to White House, they don’t know anything about Benghazi. Somebody’s got to grab hold of this thing. It’s very, very disturbing what we’re seeing here.

    NORAH O’DONNELL: What do you make of the president’s actions yesterday? He dealt with all three things yesterday: He fired the head of the IRS. Released 100 pages of emails that deal with Benghazi. And then on the third scandal the snooping into the AP reporters’ phone records, the president then put out that he’s for this shield law for journalists. The White House took a lot of proactive action yesterday.

    SCHIEFFER: They did. But that was yesterday. How is it these things all – nobody seemed to be taking very seriously up until this point? There is no question though, that the administration was trying to get the story out that the War on Terrorism, the threat of terrorism had been lessened, wasn’t as serious as it had been pictured, and that erupts into this thing with all these emails. We see at the State Department, the spokesman there saying “my higher-ups in the building are worried about this.” Well which higher-ups? Why?

    O’DONNELL: You’re speaking about Victoria Nuland, who is the State Dept. spokesperson, and in these emails back and forth, she was saying “my higher ups were worried about this.” And the question is, was it the Secretary of State, Hillary Clinton?

    SCHIEFFER: And we still don’t know the answer to that. It’s a pretty easy thing. Obviously, I think the president did the right thing in letting the temporary head of the IRS go, but what happens now? Where does this go from here? That should not have happened.

    ROSE: It all goes to the center of government: The Oval Office, doesn’t it? The president has to take control of his own government.

    SCHIEFFER: Well, that’s where you’re seeing some of the criticism now, there’s no question that the situation in Washington is as toxic as I’ve ever seen it. But you are now seeing those on the left saying that the president got to start participating in the presidency, I believe is the way Dana Milbank phrased it in the Washington Post – this is not somebody coming at him from the right. The president has got some serious problems here, and can he grab hold of this? If he doesn’t he’s not going to get anything done in the second term.

  28. Robert

    What would be so unusual about a probe going on, considering the new features that Citizens United decision allowed. Isn’t this Citizens decision at the heart of the uproar over the IRS right now? Wouldn’t we want to know that these 501 c3/4 organizations weren’t subverting our system of elections and governing with money that it shouldn’t be accepting? How else do you know about a new product and how its being used if you don’t investigate what’s going on? Just playing the devils advocate. Is more being made of this than what is really there? How many of these conservative organizations were turned down? None, from what I heard. The only one to be turned down was a liberal based one.

    http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2013/05/17/irs-probe_n_3295076.html

  29. expdoc

    You are missing the point Robert. Mark Steyn is not (cue the personal attack on the author)

    http://www.nationalreview.com/article/348687/autocrat-accountants-mark-steyn

    Speaking at Ohio State University earlier this month, Barack Obama urged students to pay no attention to those paranoid types who “incessantly warn of government as nothing more than some separate, sinister entity.” Oddly enough, in recent days the most compelling testimony for this view of government has come from the president himself, who insists with a straight face that he had no idea that the Internal Revenue Service had spent two years targeting his political enemies until he “learned about it from the same news reports that I think most people learned about this.” Like you, all he knows is what he reads in the papers. Which is odd, because his Justice Department is bugging those same papers, so you’d think he’d at least get a bit of a heads-up. But no doubt the fact that he’s wiretapping the Associated Press was also entirely unknown to him until he read about it in the Associated Press. There is a “president of the United States” and a “government of the United States,” but, despite a certain superficial similarity in their names, they are entirely unrelated, like Beyoncé Knowles and Admiral Sir Charles Knowles. One golfs, reads the prompter, parties with Jay-Z, and guests on the Pimp with a Limp show, and the other audits you, bugs your telephone line, and leaks your confidential tax records. But they’re two completely separate sinister entities. So it’s preposterous to describe Obama as Nixonian: Beyoncé wouldn’t have given Nixon the time of day.

    *snip*

    If some lippy broad in the papers won’t quit her yapping about it, they can always audit her, too — as they did to Miss Strassel’s sometime colleague Anne Hendershott, a sociology professor who got rather too interested in Obamacare and wrote about it in the Journal and various small Catholic publications. The IRS summoned Professor Hendershott to account for herself, and forbade her husband from accompanying her, even though they filed jointly. She ceased her political writing.

    *snip*

    Left-wing groups had their 501(c)(4) applications approved in weeks, right-wing groups were delayed for months and years and ordered to cough up everything from donor lists to Facebook posts, and those right-wing groups that were approved had their IRS files leaked to left-wing groups like ProPublica. The agency’s commissioner, a slippery weasel called Steven Miller, conceded before Congress that this was “horrible customer service” — which it was in the sense that your call is important to him and may be monitored by George Soros for quality control.

    A civil “civil service” requires small government. Once government is ensnared in every aspect of life a bureaucracy grows increasingly capricious. The U.S. tax code ought to be an abomination to any free society, but the American people have become reconciled to it because of a complex web of so-called exemptions that massively empower the vast shadow state of the permanent bureaucracy. Under a simple tax system, your income is a legitimate tax issue. Under the IRS, everything is a legitimate tax issue: The books you read, the friends you recommend them to. There are no correct answers, only approved answers. Drew Ryun applied for permanent non-profit status for a group called “Media Trackers” in July 2011. Fifteen months later, he’d heard nothing. So he applied again under the eco-friendly name of “Greenhouse Solutions,” and was approved in three weeks.

  30. Robert

    expdcoc, the National Review is hardly a neutral news organization. For Christ sake, they even dragged out the old George Soros involvement boogyman. Why do you fall for this propaganda so easily. “The agency’s commissioner, a slippery weasel called Steven Miller, conceded before Congress that this was “horrible customer service” — which it was in the sense that your call is important to him and may be monitored by George Soros for quality control.” ……………..Stop being so gullible.

    I was listening to the radio this morning (early am). A question I asked on this board about how this IRS story was leaked was answered on the top of the hour news. Apparently there was a high level meeting of IRS management. A question had been planted by a person in the audience opening up this situation was asked and that’s how this all came to light (or may have been the ruse to make it the news). Apparently, it was a deliberately staged question to begin the narrative. We the people are being hustled.

    I want to know who was behind that question.

  31. Robert

    Even though we never hear about the Tea Party being infiltrated by the FBI and NSA, its happening and with good reason. Let’s face it, there’s a strong element within that group of anti-government sentiment. That kind of sentiment is where revolutions begin and take hold. It makes sense that they would be scrutinized. For the sake of civility being the norm in our country, I think it is a good thing they are being looked at with a squinted eye.

    Of course the Tea Party and other conservative covert organizations are going to be upset about that. How dare the authorities get in the way of the their plans. All organizations are infiltrated. The FBI has files on every group and just about all of us who patronize any blog or posting sites have electronic files of our activity.

    I think civilized people know the Tea Party movement is full of anti-government types. Do we really want to enable that kind of movement to get real legs under it, so we can become like those nations we read about in the Middle East, Eastern Europe, Africa and South America, where people who don’t believe as they do, are taken out in fields and you know the rest?

    http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2013/05/17/irs-probe_n_3295076.html

  32. wilson

    So Robert do you trust your government? Would you be uncomfortable if they questioned you about who your friends were, what prayers you say at night and their content.
    Well so do you prefer we become like the USSR with government controlling most aspects of our lives? As our government grows it seems to infringe on our “rights” ever so slowly, well maybe I need an aluminum hat..

    I thought a Patriot loves his country, are we changing the definition?

    “a person who loves, supports, and defends his or her country and its interests with devotion.”

    “a person who regards himself or herself as a defender, especially of individual rights, against presumed interference by the federal government. ”
    dictionary.com
    There are nuts on the right and left, but it appears the IRS thinks anyone whose is a Patriot is a threat to “a society of true democracy”

  33. Brian Opsahl

    I make spelling errors all the time, thats a fact jack..!! it’s obvious I do not use spell check
    I do have 3rd grade grammer at times …true also..!
    My high school education was lousey ask anyone who went to Jefferson high in the 70s
    My opinions however are just as important as anybody elses, and every single blogger on this site has made a spelling or grammer error at one time or another…if you can’t argue your point with me you just complain about my grammer…really..! thats it

    Doc if your working all night what the heck are you doing on the blogs….shouldn’t you be treating your patents….just sayin.

    I was pointing out the hypocracy from you on these Embassy attacks….why do you only care about them now (Obama) why no complaining from what went on back when Bush was ruining things…?

    Remember it was Bush who fired several attorneys from many States that would NOT go after Democrats that he wanted targeted….oh the hypocracy

  34. Robert

    wilson, I think our system of government is broken, to the point of being corrupt. Corrupted by big money from corporations. Corporation that our supreme court say are people too. But since our politicians, who reap benefit and succor from those corporate dollars and make the rules through the lobbyists that pay them off, they’re not going to arrest themselves or have a “have you no sense of decency” moment.

    I’m not anti-government by any means, as I think an orderly society has governing rules that change with the norms of the times. But, I think there is a huge element in our country that is anti-govt, and I suspect many of them applied for tax free status, under the guise of some tax free social service organization.

    I think more is being made of this IRS situation than is there. Why, as a citizen of the USA, would I want to give succor in the form of tax free status, to a group of people who call themselves patriots, but may very well be a group of people gathering momentum to overthrow the government?

    I think the Tea Party and other conservative initiatives probably have some decent people in them, but there are also some and I suspect many more, who hate the government and will use aspects of it, like tax free status, to gain further momentum for their movement with the benefit that status will give them. So once again, they anti-government crowd finds a way to use govt to their advantage.

    When and if the FBI and NSA ever gives the anti-government movement the freedom to pursue their goals, is when the USA becomes the modern day counterpart of what the Nazi Party became to 1930s Germany. There’s no difference in motive. Both came to power to clean up society and make it an example of their narrow world view where only the right people get to live.

    I’m listening to Rush Limbaugh as I type (repeat of this weeks shows). He’s fanning the flames of division as usual. That man is responsible for more of the anti-govt sentiment in this country than any other player other than Fox News, Rupert Murdoch, Roger Ailes.

  35. Robert

    I like this comment I found on the Huffington Post under a headline They Knew.

    “THEY KNEW. WHO CARES? So the IRS isn’t supposed to keep an eye on Tea Party crackpots who’s goal in life is to not pay taxes and dismantle the government. At the same time we can all get the third degree at the airport and look the other way to indefinite detention in the name of government-provided “national security”. “

  36. wilson

    Robert,
    ” think more is being made of this IRS situation than is there. Why, as a citizen of the USA, would I want to give succor in the form of tax free status, to a group of people who call themselves patriots, but may very well be a group of people gathering momentum to overthrow the government? ”

    Robert, you may need the aluminum foil hat, I’ll make one for you. I think if there was a group that was all for overthrowing the government the likelihood of them applying for non exempt status would be the least of our worries.
    I am waiting for the IRS to tell us which groups of Patriots is planning an overthrow and that was their criteria for targeting them.

    Maybe all tax exempt statuses should be re-evaluated for only churches and charities.
    Well the IRS rules are:

    “The group must be founded for purposes related to charitable, religious, educational, scientific, literary, public safety testing, fostering national or international amateur sports competition, or preventing cruelty to children or animals. ”
    Gosh media matters definitely falls into one of these..hmmm

    Once founded, however, more rules apply. The organization must not

    1) Be organized or operate for the benefit of private interests (in other words, the nice money can’t end up funding a private organization or person).

    2) Attempt to influence legislation as a substantial part of its activities and it may not participate in any campaign activity for or against political candidates.”

    I think that somehow our wonderful government is out of control.

    I also believe the majority of patriots what smaller government and more adherence to the Constitution. Feel free to prove otherwise. Can you show me any group of any significance whose goals are a government resembling Nazi Germany?

  37. Robert

    I guess we’ll never know the motives of these groups and if they are the benign force you believe they are.

    Tin foil isn’t becoming on my stature. I prefer wool or cotton headpieces.

  38. The IRS regulation 501(C)(4) clearly states “Civic leagues or organizations not organized for profit but operated exclusively for the promotion of social welfare…”. The real IRS scandal is why and how did “exclusive” get turned into “primarily”.

  39. Brian Opsahl

    Why is it you think this is new…getting caught is the new part, but this has been going on forever.

    Remember when Karl Rove had all those Attorneys fired by Bush for not going after the Democrats that they had asked them to…this kind of crap happens all the time, what’s new is getting caught for doing it…!

  40. expdoc

    “But, I think there is a huge element in our country that is anti-govt, and I suspect many of them applied for tax free status, under the guise of some tax free social service organization. ”

    And you don’t think there are groups on the left that fit that same description?

    Please.

  41. Brian Opsahl

    Oh absolutly and my hope is that they all get fired for it Doc…this kind of crap is wrong no matter who is doing it to who…dems or repubs. I hope Mr.Obama fires all of them..!!

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