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  1. #1
    Senior Member Gerry Clinchy's Avatar
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    Danny Werfel said that after becoming acting IRS chief last month, he discovered wide-ranging and improper terms on lists screeners were still using to choose groups for careful examinations. He did not specify what terms were on the lists, but said he suspended the use of all such lists immediately. "There was a wide-ranging set of categories and cases that spanned a broad spectrum" on the lists, Werfel said. He added that his aides found those lists contained "inappropriate criteria that was in use." Werfel's comments suggest the IRS may have been targeting groups other than tea party and other conservative organizations for tough examinations to see if they qualify. The agency has been under fire since last month for targeting those groups. His comments also indicate that the use of inappropriate terms on such lists lasted longer than has been revealed previously. A report last month by a Treasury Department inspector general said agency officials abolished targeting of conservative groups with those lists in May 2012.
    The IRS was still doing this discrimination right up until Werfel was made the new IRS chief! It had never stopped.
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  2. #2
    Senior Member Buzz's Avatar
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    So, the truth finally comes out...

    http://takingnote.blogs.nytimes.com/...i-r-s-scandal/

    Revisiting the I.R.S. ‘Scandal’

    By DAVID FIRESTONE
    If it weren’t already clear that the White House never ordered the Internal Revenue Service to crack down on its political enemies, the most convincing piece of evidence was released yesterday: a document showing that the agency didn’t just scrutinize Tea Party groups applying for tax exemptions, but also those with names including the words “progressive” and “occupy.”
    And also, bizarrely, groups interested in medical marijuana, open-source software and disputed territories in the Middle East.
    The document shows that the I.R.S. has no idea what it’s doing when it wades into the political world, and helps bolster the case that the agency ought to get out quickly.

    Every year, tens of thousands of groups request a tax exemption under Section 501(c)(4) of the Internal Revenue Code, which allows them not to pay taxes on donations and to keep their donors a secret. The section is reserved for “social welfare” groups, and politics is not supposed to be their primary activity. But in recent years, many overtly political organizations have abused that designation, calling themselves 501(c)(4)s even as they run ads for and against candidates and raise tens of millions of dollars.
    The I.R.S., after initially ignoring the problem, tried to weed out the political players, and many conservative groups complained. That led to an inspector general’s report that exposed the so-called “I.R.S. scandal,” which showed excessive scrutiny only toward the right-wing groups. Republicans immediately tried to paint a picture of a White House-led conspiracy, though without any actual evidence.
    That’s why the document released yesterday was so important, showing for the first time that mid-level agency officials had used a variety of keywords from across the ideological spectrum to pull applications for tax exemptions.
    “Common thread is the word ‘progressive,’” according to a lookout list that showed employees which applications to examine closely. “Activities appear to lean toward a new political party. Activities are partisan and appear as anti-Republican.”
    This information should have been in the initial report by the inspector general. If it had been, the public could have seen the scandal for what it really was: a management problem, not a political witch hunt. Agency employees simply didn’t know how to properly identify a political group, so they used simplistic shortcuts.
    The newly installed acting commissioner of the I.R.S., Daniel Werfel, announced yesterday what he clearly hoped would be an easier rule to follow: A social welfare group can spend no more than 40 percent of its time and money on political campaigns. That’s an improvement over the current “primary activity” standard, but it still leaves agency workers hunting for political signposts and trying to apply formulas that clever campaign lawyers will try to bend.

    The better solution is to
    get politics out of the agency entirely
    , and return to the original language of the tax code prohibiting social welfare groups from engaging in politics at all. Those groups should also be required to disclose their donors, eliminating the primary incentive for abuse of the code. That single change would remove the need for keywords, inspector general’s reports and politically motivated hearings.
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    Have you actually read Werfel's report? A lawyer for a tea party said that the liberal groups were singled out but that they then were passed on within a matter of days. I note that not a single liberal group has complained that they were asked for their members names or what books their members read (our T-P group got that one in the midst of some 70 questions). Note also that not a single liberal group has complained about the time it took them to get 501(c)(4) status. For all the talk about this over the last 6 weeks or so, not one liberal group has said, "We were too."

    I note that having the Acting Comm of the IRS investigate the IRS is just insane.
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    Senior Member Gerry Clinchy's Avatar
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    Further releases of employee interview transcripts today indicate that the liberal groups' applications were approved at the local office level, while the conservative groups' applications were sent to Washington.
    G.Clinchy@gmail.com
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    Senior Member Buzz's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Gerry Clinchy View Post
    Further releases of employee interview transcripts today indicate that the liberal groups' applications were approved at the local office level, while the conservative groups' applications were sent to Washington.

    Where can I find a list of conservative groups that whose applications were rejected? As I have said here before, I don't think that any of these political groups should have tax exempt status. I don't believe the letter of the law entitles them to it. They all deserve extra scrutiny but adequate resources are non-existent. Today I heard complaints over the sheer volume of conservative groups that were singled out. I guess that the surge in group formation had zero connection with the emergence of the tea party and the recent Citizens United ruling. I think the Republicans have overplayed their hand on this.
    "For everyone to whom much is given, of him shall much be required." -- Luke 12:48

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  6. #6
    Senior Member road kill's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Buzz View Post
    Where can I find a list of conservative groups that whose applications were rejected? As I have said here before, I don't think that any of these political groups should have tax exempt status. I don't believe the letter of the law entitles them to it. They all deserve extra scrutiny but adequate resources are non-existent. Today I heard complaints over the sheer volume of conservative groups that were singled out. I guess that the surge in group formation had zero connection with the emergence of the tea party and the recent Citizens United ruling. I think the Republicans have overplayed their hand on this.
    You might start by asking the 2 "rogues" in Cinncinatti that ADMITTED they did it!!
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  7. #7
    Senior Member Gerry Clinchy's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Buzz View Post
    Where can I find a list of conservative groups that whose applications were rejected? As I have said here before, I don't think that any of these political groups should have tax exempt status. I don't believe the letter of the law entitles them to it. They all deserve extra scrutiny but adequate resources are non-existent. Today I heard complaints over the sheer volume of conservative groups that were singled out. I guess that the surge in group formation had zero connection with the emergence of the tea party and the recent Citizens United ruling. I think the Republicans have overplayed their hand on this.
    I have not seen a "list" of the groups affected by this practice. We do know of the woman who testified at the Congressional hearing; and we also know that one Congressman had received more than one complaint about the practice.

    I don't necessarily disagree with you about the rules for tax exempt status ... the big issue is whether the IRS, or any agency, should be discriminatory based on political views. It goes beyond just this one issue of the 501 groups. It extends to the targeting of IRS audits against individuals as well. Worse yet, it shows some coordination between IRS and other agencies like EPA, as one example.

    If we viewed this in a bi-partisan fashion the threat to the 1st amendment would be clear. The problem is that the offending political power (this time it happens to be Ds), were not going to reveal the dirt on themselves (I think we can agree that those willing to use the IRS as a bludgeon, have no conscience.) In fact, some people at the IRS had investigated this problem prior to the IG and never have revealed their official reports on it. It is very possible that one could easily reverse the D and R letters in any of the events at a different point in time.

    The other issue that this brings to the surface is that government has, indeed, grown too big for the citizens to uncover all the chicanery, waste, and fraud that is buried.

    This is just one symptom of a much larger problem with the power of big govenment.

    Some WH video tapes have just been released that show a WH meeting about a proposed "Council on Women and Girls" that was supposed to be closed to the press. Yet Carney's wife was present representing ABC, and her marital relationship to Carney was never mentioned. Both the POTUS and FLOTUS participated in the "conference", as well as Jarrett. The IRS Chief, Kelly, was also part of this meeting. http://spectator.org/archives/2013/0...e-house-tapes2

    In this tape, ironically, the IRS's union's chief describes how govt agencies operate:
    “Things tend to kinda roll down hill to the front line managers and they first have to believe that it’s really OK to do this and then they have to believe that it’s valued.…If managers were told that this was not only OK to do but that it was expected — and if they were recognized and rewarded when they do it, they would do it.” — IRS Union Chief Maureen Kelley at the White House explaining the way the federal government bureaucracy works.
    Does this explain the $70 million in IRS bonuses that are going to take place in spite of sequestration? This would not seem to gel with the IRS position that some rogue agents in Cincinnati were acting without upstream supervision & approval.

    The tapes, made by the White House for its “Council on Women and Girls” and the Council’s “Conversation on Workplace Flexibility,” reveal a close working relationship between the White House, the IRS union chief and, in addition, two ABC journalists.
    What do we have in these White House videotapes?
    The Washington Inside Game.
    Is there any wonder no one trusts the IRS or the media?
    Yes, this is a "right wing" publication, but the information is on tape for those who would wish to look at it themselves.
    G.Clinchy@gmail.com
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  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by Gerry Clinchy View Post
    .................................................. ................................................

    The other issue that this brings to the surface is that government has, indeed, grown too big for the citizens to uncover all the chicanery, waste, and fraud that is buried.

    .................................................. .................
    Bingo ! We need to over-haul a lot of government agencies. Trouble is while we are looking at one there are a 100 others getting fat on our dollars. Of course it is much worse than that !!!!!!!!
    charly

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  9. #9
    Senior Member duckheads's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Gerry Clinchy View Post
    I have not seen a "list" of the groups affected by this practice. We do know of the woman who testified at the Congressional hearing; and we also know that one Congressman had received more than one complaint about the practice.

    I don't necessarily disagree with you about the rules for tax exempt status ... the big issue is whether the IRS, or any agency, should be discriminatory based on political views. It goes beyond just this one issue of the 501 groups. It extends to the targeting of IRS audits against individuals as well. Worse yet, it shows some coordination between IRS and other agencies like EPA, as one example.

    If we viewed this in a bi-partisan fashion the threat to the 1st amendment would be clear. The problem is that the offending political power (this time it happens to be Ds), were not going to reveal the dirt on themselves (I think we can agree that those willing to use the IRS as a bludgeon, have no conscience.) In fact, some people at the IRS had investigated this problem prior to the IG and never have revealed their official reports on it. It is very possible that one could easily reverse the D and R letters in any of the events at a different point in time.

    The other issue that this brings to the surface is that government has, indeed, grown too big for the citizens to uncover all the chicanery, waste, and fraud that is buried.

    This is just one symptom of a much larger problem with the power of big govenment.

    Some WH video tapes have just been released that show a WH meeting about a proposed "Council on Women and Girls" that was supposed to be closed to the press. Yet Carney's wife was present representing ABC, and her marital relationship to Carney was never mentioned. Both the POTUS and FLOTUS participated in the "conference", as well as Jarrett. The IRS Chief, Kelly, was also part of this meeting. http://spectator.org/archives/2013/0...e-house-tapes2

    In this tape, ironically, the IRS's union's chief describes how govt agencies operate:

    Does this explain the $70 million in IRS bonuses that are going to take place in spite of sequestration? This would not seem to gel with the IRS position that some rogue agents in Cincinnati were acting without upstream supervision & approval.




    Yes, this is a "right wing" publication, but the information is on tape for those who would wish to look at it themselves.
    Very well said Gerry and I totally agree with you. I appreciate the thoughtfulness of your posts. Wish I had the time and typing abilities to put forth my thoughts fully as you do.. BRAVO!!!
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    Quote Originally Posted by duckheads View Post
    Very well said Gerry and I totally agree with you. I appreciate the thoughtfulness of your posts. Wish I had the time and typing abilities to put forth my thoughts fully as you do.. BRAVO!!!
    Ditto ! ..............................
    charly

    There ought to be one day -- just one -- when there is open season on Congressmen.
    ~Will Rogers~

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