PRESIDENT TRUMP’S TAX RETURNS—AN UNNECESSARY SOAP OPERA
For many years the American people have been assured that the increasing amounts of personal information collected on their tax returns was confidential. After all, data on a person’s income and spending is about as personal and private as you can get. We were further assured that our personal data would be used only to ensure that everyone was paying the correct amount of income tax.
RIGHT—AND IF YOU BELIEVE…..
They even assured us that leaking our federal income tax return was a serious violation of federal law that would be severely punished. Here is the law:
26 U.S. Code § 6103 - Confidentiality and disclosure of returns and return information
Returns and return information shall be confidential, and except as authorized by this title—
(1) no officer or employee of the United States,
(2) no officer or employee of any State, any local law enforcement agency receiving information under subsection (i)(1)(C) or (7)(A), any local child support enforcement agency, or any local agency administering a program listed in subsection (l)(7)(D) who has or had access to returns or return information under this section or section 6104(c), and
no other person (or officer or employee thereof) who has or had access to returns or return information under subsection (c), subsection (e)(1)(D)(iii), paragraph (10), (13), (14), or (15) of subsection (k), paragraph (6), (10), (12), (13) (other than subparagraphs (D)(v) and (D)(vi) thereof), (16), (19), (20), or (21) of subsection (l), paragraph (2) or (4)(B) of subsection (m), or subsection (n),
shall disclose any return or return information obtained by him in any manner in connection with his service as such an officer or an employee or otherwise or under the provisions of this section. For purposes of this subsection, the term “officer or employee” includes a former officer or employee.
(f)Disclosure to Committees of Congress
(1)Committee on Ways and Means, Committee on Finance, and Joint Committee on Taxation
Upon written request from the chairman of the Committee on Ways and Means of the House of Representatives, the chairman of the Committee on Finance of the Senate, or the chairman of the Joint Committee on Taxation, the Secretary shall furnish such committee with any return or return information specified in such request, except that any return or return information which can be associated with, or otherwise identify, directly or indirectly, a particular taxpayer shall be furnished to such committee only when sitting in closed executive session unless such taxpayer otherwise consents in writing to such disclosure.
Any violation shall be a felony punishable upon conviction by a fine in any amount not exceeding $5,000, or imprisonment of not more than 5 years, or both, together with the costs of prosecution, and if such offense is committed by any officer or employee of the United States, he shall, in addition to any other punishment, be dismissed from office or discharged from employment upon conviction for such offense.
THE SOAP OPERA
Part of the drama surrounding the release of President Trump’s tax returns is that, since Richard Nixon voluntarily released copies of his federal income tax returns, there have only been two presidents who did not voluntarily release their tax returns—Gerald Ford and Donald Trump.
President Trump elected to exercise his legal right not to release copies of his income tax returns. This brought the inevitable question from his political foes—WHY? WHAT IS HE HIDING?
Since the Democrats became the majority party in the U. S. House in 2019, they have sought to obtain copies of President Trump’s federal tax returns.
After a good bit of legal back and forth, the Supreme Court recently decided to let the ruling from the US Court of Appeals stand. That ruling orders the Treasury Department to provide six years worth of the former President’s tax returns to the House Ways and Means Committee.
In his request for Trump’s tax returns, committee chairman Richard Neal maintained that the committee legitimately needed the documents in order to assist the committee in performing its oversight role to ensure that the IRS is operating properly and that federal officials are complying with the law.
If the former President’s tax returns are indeed handed over to the committee, almost no one believes that they will remain confidential for long as federal law requires. It’s a virtual certainty that they will be leaked to the media and will be available for all of us to review online in very short order.
It’s also virtually certain that even if the leaker is identified he/she will not be prosecuted even though leaking tax return information is a clear violation of federal law. After all, nothing has happened to the person or persons responsible for leaking tax return data on wealthy Americans to ProPublica. In that case, it’s been well over a year and authorities still haven’t even gotten around to figuring out who did it. Chances are good that they’re really not looking very hard.
Sometimes it seems that the Ruling Class and their minions in D.C. are treating us like the Roman emperors treated the citizens of Rome. They created more and more elaborate entertainment spectacles to keep the citizens busy with things that drew their attention away from how corrupt their rulers were.
Is there anyone in the country who believes the Trump tax returns will show something other than a very small amount of income tax paid? Remember that wealthy people like Mr. Trump have legions of $2,000 per hour tax consultants working to find every legal way available to reduce their tax liability.
Is there anyone in the country who doesn’t know that the wealthy take advantage of those legal opportunities to pay far less tax, as a percentage of their income, than the rest of us?
The elephant in the room is that this type of drama is one of the primary reasons that the Ruling Class and their minions in Congress fight so hard to keep the income/payroll tax system in place.
They know that from an economic perspective, the FAIRtax is a much better way to fund the government than the income tax.
However, the Ruling Class and their minions in D.C. also know that when the FAIRtax is enacted:
- They will no longer be able to sell tax favors to the highest bidders.
- They will no longer be able to stir up animosity between different groups of income earners.
- They will no longer be able to use the IRS as a weapon against their political opponents.
- They will no longer be able to control people’s behavior be offering tax breaks for favored behavior and tax penalties for going against them.
- They will no longer be able to increase income taxes on groups with whom they disagree.
- They will no longer be able to obtain more and more private information about each and every one of us.
The FAIRtax will allow us to TAKE BACK CONTROL.
The income/payroll tax system is broken and no longer working—we can’t repair it but we can replace it with the FAIRTAX!
Join us and TAKE BACK CONTROL OF OUR COUNTRY AND OUR LIVES—NOT WITH BULLETS BUT WITH THE ELIMINATION OF ONE OF THE BIGGEST THREATS TO OUR LIBERTY AND ECONOMIC PROSPERITY—THE INCOME/PAYROLL TAX.
We all should remember Edmund Burke’s warning that applies to our efforts to TAKE BACK CONTROL,
“Nobody made a greater mistake than he who did nothing because he could do only a little.”
We should also remember this quote from George Orwell's 1984, which, if we do nothing, may foretell your and your children's future:
“If you want a picture of the future, imagine a boot stamping on a human face—forever.”
WHAT CAN EACH OF US DO?
We can write letters and make calls to our elected representatives and attend Zoom town hall meetings demanding that if they really want to allow Americans to “TAKE BACK CONTROL”, the first step is to eliminate the income/payroll tax system and enact the FAIRTAX!
TAKE BACK CONTROL! Help us PASS THE FAIRTAX!
The IRS will be gone and we will pay our taxes when we make purchases.
WE and not the Ruling Class and their minions in D.C. will decide how much federal tax we pay!
WE will know how much tax we and everyone else are really paying because taxes will no longer be hidden from us. It will be clearly shown on every retail receipt.
If you have friends who don’t know about the FAIRtax, send them to FAIRtax.org. Have them watch the white boards under “How It Works” and, if they agree, ask them to please join us.
Then contact your Members of Congress and the President and demand that Congress pass -the FAIRtax—the only fair tax.
Is it hopeless? When confronted with a seemingly impossible problem, remember the statement attributed to the author George Bernard Shaw who wrote, You see things; and you say “Why?” But I dream things that never were; and I say “Why not?”
Isn’t it time for us to ask, “Why not?”
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