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These are the types of invasive tax maneuvers that boiled the blood of our founders. But there’s still a way out of all of our Internal Revenue Service wars and woes.
U.S. News & World Report highlighted some more encroaching news last week in the article, “IRS High-Tech Tools Track Your Digital Footprints.”
The IRS is “collecting a lot more than taxes this year – it’s also acquiring a huge volume of personal information on taxpayers’ digital activities, from eBay auctions to Facebook posts and, for the first time ever, credit card and e-payment transaction records,” the report explains.
It added, “the agency reveals little about how it will employ its vast, new network scanning powers. … sweeping changes being implemented with little public discussion or clear guidelines …”
Edward Zelinsky, a tax law expert and professor at Benjamin N. Cardozo School of Law and Yale Law School, explained that taxpayers should understand that whatever they say and do electronically can and will be used against them in IRS enforcement.
And what is the IRS’ official response to its gargantuan Big Brother violation of our personal lives?
But Dean Silverman, senior adviser to the IRS commissioner, director of the IRS Office of Compliance Analytics and the IRS’ leader of private sector recruits who advance the agency’s digital surveillance, explained last year in a keynote speech to insiders at the Predictive Analytics World Government Conference that the new system will “improve voluntary compliance.” (Interpretation of “improve voluntary compliance”: Bully and threaten citizens into submission.)
Silverman also boasted in trade publications about the IRS’ new intrusive monetary reconnaissance: “Private industry would be envious if they knew what our models are.”
The last thing American citizens need is more government regulation and overreach into our private lives, pocketbooks and now electronic banking and credit card purchases.
What we need now more than ever is not a new electronic way of monitoring taxes or even a complete overhaul of our run-amuck taxation bureaucracy. What we need is to shut down the IRS and initiate a flat or Fair Tax.
The IRS is an unconstitutional system that has no checks and balances. It can’t be held accountable to We the People, who posses the real power in our republic. Moreover, the present tax code penalizes productivity and cripples entrepreneurs and our capitalistic economy. And it is inequitable and unfair in its implementation.
As the Heritage Foundation and countless watchdog organizations have reported, the top 10 percent of income earners pay 70 percent of all income taxes, while more than a third of all U.S. households pay no income taxes – and 47 percent pay no federal taxes.
It’s time we had a system through which people didn’t have to figure out ways to cheat or even weigh through 66,000 burdensome pages of IRS codes to save their own money. And the Fair Tax is that system.
The Fair Tax is a simple consumptive-based tax system in which equity rules and from which no one can dodge or evade their dues. With the Fair Tax, the harder you work and the more money you make, the better off you and our economy will be. You pay taxes only when you buy something, which means you can control how much you’re taxed, and you’re never penalized inequitably for working hard.
Another huge plus about a Fair Tax: It will bring back to the U.S. economy trillions of dollars hiding in off shore accounts, which would give a monumental boost to our economy. As my friend and now media mogul, Gov. Mike Huckabee, says:
The Fair Tax is a completely transparent tax system. It doesn’t increase taxes. It’s revenue neutral. But here’s what it will do. It will bring business back to the United States that is leaving our shores because our tax laws make it impossible for an American-based business to compete … the fair tax was designed by economists from Harvard and Stanford and some of the leading think tanks across the country.
The Fair Tax is the biggest stimulation package there is. As the Fair Tax website says, “Think of it as the world’s biggest economic jumper cables!” (Of course, the Fair Tax rate would have to be palatable with or even incorporate state taxes, too.)
And there’s one last benefit worthy of noting here.
As Huckabee has often asked, “Wouldn’t it be nice if April 15 were just another sunny spring day?”
(With April 15, Tax Day, falling next week, the fight and title of my next column will be “America’s founders vs. the IRS.”)