The recent revelations about the IRS targeting citizens and organizations based on their political views should be a matter of grave concern to all citizens who love our form of government and desire to protect our personal civil liberties. The scandal is much worse than is being reported by mainstream media - many individuals and organizations that aren't making the headlines were targeted for audits based on their political views, resulting in illegal harassment and a great waste of time, energy and money, including taxpayer dollars.
This scandal is not primarily about Democrats vs. Republicans or "liberals" vs. "conservatives" or "left" vs. "right". It's not even primarily about the Tea Party. Even if you don't like the Tea Party, you should want their right to freedom of speech protected. For next time, it could be you or your favorite group that is the target of government abuse.
This scandal primarily is about the abuse of government power. This abuse of power is exactly the sort of abuse our founding fathers were concerned about and tried to guard against with our Constitutional form of government and our Bill of Rights (with freedom of speech protected in the very first of the Bill of Rights).
With approximately 100,000 employees, the IRS is overgrown, over-bloated and much too powerful. The IRS is so powerful that White House Press Secretary, Jay Carney, and even President Obama, recently referred to the IRS as "an independent agency." (It's not. The IRS is part of the Department of the Treasury, under the Executive Branch.)
"Power corrupts, and absolute power corrupts absolutely." "The power to tax is the power to destroy."
The problem has been identified. What's the solution? There are three possible solutions that can be implemented jointly or independently.
- Repeal the 16th Amendment, abolish the IRS and eliminate the U.S. Tax Code (which, by the way, is more than 10 times longer than the English Standard Version of the Bible). Replace the Income Tax with The Fair Tax - a national sales tax on consumption (with adjustments to protect the poor from a regressive tax structure) and with no tax on income. This is, by far, the best solution. (See my comments below from April 22, 2013.) If our nation does not have the political will to do this, two other options are presented below.
- Require the IRS to get a court order before it can audit a citizen or domestic organization or corporation - similar to the requirement that police officers must get a court ordered search warrant before conducting a search of a citizen or his or her property.
- Create an independent, bipartisan watchdog agency to approve and oversee all IRS audits.
Are you ready for some good government?