Pitts: What was the IRS thinking?

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May 20, 2013

Excerpt: Well, this is a fine mess.

After years of moaning about various “conspiracies” against them, conservative activists finally have a real (i.e., not manufactured by Fox or inflated by Limbaugh) piece of evidence to take before the court of public opinion.

Meaning, of course, last week’s revelation that the Internal Revenue Service has been giving extra scrutiny to groups with the words “tea party” or “patriot” in their names. Extra scrutiny from the IRS is about as welcome as extra scrutiny from the proctologist, so one can hardly blame conservative groups for complaining, as they’ve done since last year.

Unfortunately, those complaints got no traction until Friday, when the IRS admitted the practice. Lois Lerner, director of the IRS division in charge of tax exemption, was speaking at an American Bar Association conference in response to a question about whether the conservative groups had been singled out. She admitted they were.

These groups reportedly amounted to about a quarter of the 300 organizations flagged for review between 2010 and 2012, but according to Lerner, there was no political intent. Rather, she says, the words became a shortcut used by employees to help them sort through the explosion of groups seeking tax exemption under the Internal Revenue Code. The relevant Code section, 501 (c) (4), requires that any exempt group be working to promote “social welfare” and that political action not constitute its “primary activity.” The groups the IRS flagged were not necessarily denied exemption, but were subjected to extensive questioning and required to produce membership lists and donor information.

Tuesday, the Justice Department launched an investigation. Two congressional committees are also looking into the matter. Every taxpayer not employed by the Obama administration should welcome the news.

Under the most charitable interpretation of the facts, this unit of the IRS used god-awful judgment. Under the least charitable, it engaged in ideological harassment inimical to and violative of, the First Amendment.

Comments

Contango

"You guys are OBSESSED with the President."

Seems like the network Sunday news shows had a similar obsession.

Bob Schieffer destroying the Obama sock puppet was fun:

http://newsbusters.org/blogs/noe...

2cents
Contango

Watched it yesterday and enjoyed every minute of it.

Would love to see her put her pointed questions to Mr. Obama or his cronies.

In order to swallow all of the Campaigner-in-Chief's continuous line of bull crap, it's necessary to suspend all rational and critical thinking.

Obviously, the lib teachers in public schools did a good job of dumbing down their students over the yrs.

H*ll, most of 'em can't spell or don't even think to use Spellcheck before they post. "ingnorance"? LOL

coasterfan

Actually, you have it backwards. Teachers impart knowledge to their students, and I think most would say that the party that dumbs things down is the Republican Party. From opposing evolution, global warming and basically being anti-science and anti-education in general, the GOP has earned that reputation. And as long as you keep giving the microphone to under-educated and intolerant people like Palin and Bachmann, the party will continue to alienate people who value education and good old' smarts.

Contango

@ coasterfan:

Hit a nerve huh?

Keep spewing out the "ingnorance."

I'd be willing to bet that an analysis of student drop-out rates between conservative and liberal communities would help to prove the liberal teacher dumbing-down premise.

"The most important intellectual ability man has yet developed–the art and science of asking questions–is not taught in school!"

- Neil Postman

So true.

4shizzle

-deertracker
LOL!
Maybe take up bowling.

AEversole

This is super funny....... I agree that I wish there was a unbiased media network with no ties or affiliations with any political parties. There isaleft side and a right side to every issue and a truth that lies in the middle. It is our job to figure that out I guess

Maggdi

What ties and affiliations might you be referring to Mr Sole? Although I am aware that at least three major News Agency's have close relatives that work right in that thar White House. How coincidental, don't ya think?

doc5798a

I loved it, the IRS might just leave me alone now. Are the Teabaggers apolitical.

Hmmm...

If you want to corrupt someone, just give them power!

luvblues2

A text conversation between my brother and I.:
Bro: Had a dream that a clown was kicking my ass because of a possessed rodeo clown belt buckle he was wearing. The whole dream was spent trying to find a way to snag the buckle. When I finally de-buckled him I beat him like a red headed step child. I suddenly feel the need to go clown bashing. I have to stop watching supernatural before going to bed.

Me:I hate clowns. Want to go hunting, brother? Ever watch that episode of Bones where the dude shot the freakin' clown head on the ice cream truck? I fell on the floor....really, i did...it was that funny..

Bro: I'm in. Where's the nearest circus? Saw that episode and it was funny.

Me: The nearest circus with the most clowns is in Washington DC. We're gonna need some things...

Bro: Ha! We're going to need LOTS of things.

This was after all the scandals uncovered, "so far".

Contango

Remember: IRS employees are unionized.

Do union members tend to be liberal and vote Democrat?

"AmSpec Scoop: Obama 'Met With Anti-Tea Party IRS Union Chief the Day Before Agency Targeted Tea Party'":

Read more: http://newsbusters.org/blogs/tom...

pepenik99

There are too many self appointed religious nuts; calling themselves pastors, who sign onto their garage -type churches just to be granted tax exempt. I think every organiaztion should pay taxes...good for the IRS to chase them down..........

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