Wednesday, June 5, 2013

End this scandal now!

Richard Epstein says, Piece of cake.  Simply eliminate the IRS's power to determine who gets approved to be a 501 (c)(4), by eliminating the entire program; equality under the law.  That still leaves the 501(c)(3)s--all 66,000 of them.  Epstein doesn't advocate eliminating them, but it's hard to see why not; if they're truly charitable--they give away their money--there won't be any profits to tax anyway.

The advantage is that this POWER over the citizens would disappear:
The dismal performance of the IRS is but a symptom of a much larger disease which has taken root in the charters of many of the major administrative agencies in the United States today: the permit power. Private individuals are not allowed to engage in certain activities or to claim certain benefits without the approval of some major government agency. The standards for approval are nebulous at best, which makes it hard for any outside reviewer to overturn the agency’s decision on a particular application.
That power also gives the agency discretion to drag out its review, since few individuals or groups are foolhardy enough to jump the gun and set up shop without obtaining the necessary approvals first. It takes literally a few minutes for a skilled government administrator to demand information that costs millions of dollars to collect and that can tie up a project for years. That delay becomes even longer for projects that need approval from multiple agencies at the federal or state level, or both.
The beauty of all of this (for the government) is that there is no effective legal remedy. Any lawsuit that protests the improper government delay only delays the matter more. Worse still, it also invites that agency (and other agencies with which it has good relations) to slow down the clock on any other applications that the same party brings to the table. 
Make the playing field level!

[From Newmark's Door]

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