Part 1: Interal Revenue Service in the United States
About the history of the Internal Revenue Service, how it came into being in the United States, how it audits the taxes of the American people.
Let's Audit the IRS
Each year the Internal Revenue Service audits some 2 1/2 million Americans. Through the use of computers and over 45,000 employees, the IRS seeks to find someone cheating on his income tax. Yet since the inception of the IRS in 1913, the IRS itself has never been audited. In 1921 a law was enacted by Congress to audit several government agencies including the IRS, but the IRS has steadfastly refused to be included. One wonders in this era of Watergate, and political and governmental upheaval, what freedom may be denied the American taxpayer by the IRS.
In 1912--on March 16 to be exact--Congress was discussing the impending bill to extend the "special excise tax now levied with respect to doing business by corporations to persons, and to provide revenue for the Government." Some of the Congress seriously debated the issue. Congressman Hull, who was for the measure, spoke of the then current system: "That system, unequal as it is indefensible, is the mightiest engine of oppression imposed upon an honest yeomanry since the feudal ages." He could well be speaking of the system today. He said further: "This system places a high premium on wealth and a severe penalty on poverty."
The major portion of the taxes in America comes from the person who is earning $3,000 to $25,000 a year. Regardless of what the IRS would like the public to believe, it has always been and always will be the small wage earner who bears the heaviest burden of taxation. The passing of the income tax law, which became the 16th Amendment to the Constitution, squeaked by close to Christmas when few congressmen were there to oppose its passage. Some of today's "tax rebels" still oppose the amendment on the grounds that Ohio, which signed the bill, was not at that time a legally recognized State. The charge is a valid one.
The bill's passage certainly was not the mandate of the people, as they would have voted it down. The final decision for such a bill lay not with the Congress but with the Supreme Court, thus taking away the possibility for removal of the bill. Judge Walter Clark, chief justice of the Supreme Court of North Carolina, spoke out in 1906 on the actions of the U.S. Supreme Court in making acts of Congress unconstitutional. "A more complete denial of popular control of this Government could not have been conceived than the placing of such unreviewable power in the hands of men not elected by the people and holding office for life......If 5 lawyers can negate the will of 100 million men, then the art of Government is reduced to the selection of those 5 lawyers."
With this rather strange legislation, the IRS was born. Unwanted, perhaps unneeded, and certainly undesired by the liberals as well as the conservatives, it came into being. The Church of Scientology's publication Freedom reported recently: "The IRS has nearly 70,000 employees and a budget in the vicinity of $1 billion. Approximately 2/3 of the IRS manpower (nearly half of the entire Treasury Dept.) and 3/4 of the IRS budget ($750 million) are poured into auditing, investigating, and policing the individual taxpayer, yet all this money and manpower yields only 3% of the total revenue collected by the IRS." In reviewing the IRS statistics, much does come to view of their heretofore secret operations. For every $50,000 that the small businessman earns, the IRS spends over 200 hours auditing his books. Yet for every $50,000 that the corporate giant earns, the IRS spends a scant 30 minutes auditing its books. Proportionately speaking, while the little businessman's books are scrutinized in every detail, the corporate giant's are given but a cursory glance.
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