Thursday, June 6, 2013

Enough Already . . . . Put This Unmercifully Beaten Dead Horse In The Grave Where it Belongs

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Okay - can we finally put an ignominious end to this raging nonsense over the wholly manufactured, bullshit IRS "scandal?":

An analysis of a list of groups approved for tax exempt status, released by the Internal Revenue Service in the wake of its admission to targeting conservative groups for heightened scrutiny, determined that of the groups approved, more than two-thirds were conservative.
The analysis, by Martin A. Sullivan of Tax Analysts, examined a list of 176 advocacy organizations that were ultimately approved for tax exempt status by the IRS during the period when the service admits to having targeted certain conservative groups with inappropriate criteria.
According to Sullivan's analysis, 122 of the groups were conservative, 48 were liberal or non-conservative and 6 remain of unidentified ideology.

So - from all of the applications submitted by advocacy groups and approved for 501(c)4 tax exempt status by the IRS, a full 66% of them were conservative organizations.  Kind of undermines the "BWaaaaahh!!  The mean ol' IRS is pickin' on us" self-pity parade doesn't it?

The Gadfly knows that some of his conservative acquaintances, due mostly in part to the slick little Sean Hannity earworm in their cranial cavities egging them on, are going to shriek at him, "Hey Gadflop!  Explain then why the IRS was targeting only conservative Tea Party type organizations for tax-exempt status review and not liberal groups? Huh?  Huh??  Huh???"

Get your facts straight -- in spite of the maniacal shrieking in your wingnut cranial cavity by your Hannity earworm, Liberal/Dem groups had their 501(c)4 applications targeted for review as well:

Were there more conservative groups than liberal groups singled out for IRS review?  Absolutely. Why?  For the very mathematically deduced reason that conservative organizations constituted 70% of all the applications for tax exempt status under the 501(c)4 statute.  So - taking this to it's logical conclusion (ahh yes - the word that strikes fear in the heart of all conservatives - logical!), of course the total number of conservative applications scrutinized is going to be more.  It is the exact same logic that accounts for more conservative groups being approved for 501(c)4 status (read the Huffington Post article linked above).  Why, can someone explain to The Gadfly, is that so hard to fucking comprehend?

The Gadfly is fully cognizant of the fact that many conservatives have a real difficult time separating truth from fiction and logic from idiocy - so he will re-review this process in a very analytical, step-by-step, judicious method with them - mostly so as not to overload their already seriously defective logical thought processes.

Before The Gadfly begins his lesson - let's establish the one immutable fact that should, to any reasonably thinking individual, put this whole partisan circus side-show into the proper perspective.  Here is the law, word for word, as it pertains to what exactly is supposed to constitute a 501(c)4 organization, thus qualifying said organization to be exempt from federal government taxation:

The Statute IRC 501(c)(4) provides for exemption of:
Civic leagues or organizations not organized for profit but operated
exclusively for the promotion of social welfare.
Local associations of employees, the membership of which is limited to the
employees of a designated person or persons in a particular municipality
and the net earnings of which are devoted exclusively to charitable,
educational, or recreational purposes.
The statutory terms disclose that IRC 501(c)(4) embraces two general
a. Social welfare organizations, and
b. Local associations of employees.

The Statute goes on to say:

Reg. 1. 501(c)(4)-1(a)(2)(i) provides that:
 [A]n organization is operated exclusively for the promotion of
social welfare if it is primarily engaged in promoting in some
way the common good and general welfare of the community

Obviously the language of both the statute and the regulations
comprehends a very broad category of organizations
. As stated in the
1981 CPE text, Chapter G, "Social Welfare: What Does It Mean? How
Much Private Benefit Is Permissible?"
Although the Service has been making an effort to refine
and clarify this area, IRC 501(c)(4) remains in some
degree a catch-all for presumptively beneficial non-profit
organizations that resist classification under the other
exempting provisions of the Code. Unfortunately, this
condition exists because "social welfare" is inherently an
abstruse concept that continues to defy precise definition.
The general concept, however, can be expressed as follows:
Organizations that promote social welfare should primarily
promote the common good and general welfare of the
people of the community as a whole.
An organization that primarily benefits a private group of
citizens cannot qualify for IRC 501(c)(4) exempt status.
In Erie Endowment v. United States, 316 F.2d 151, 156 (2d Cir.
1963), the court, in defining a civic organization, summed up the
matter by stating that "the organization must be a community
movement designed to accomplish community ends."

So basically - as the statute was written and as it presently exists as law - an organization that is requesting tax exempt status under the 501(c)4 statute, which is what the crux of this Tea Party/Patriot "scandal" is purportedly all about, should be involved in activities that promote the common good and general welfare of the people of the community as a whole, AND, be performing these activities in a manner that does not benefit a private group of citizens and especially so if those citizens are involved in raising money on behalf of or promoting a specific political party or candidate.

Now - let us dissect this a bit further shall we?

The question may be asked dear reader - why would any group then, conservative or liberal, wish to have this coveted 501(c)4 tax status bestowed upon their organization?  Simply this:  the statue allows that these groups can raise unlimited amounts of money and are not required to publicly disclose where and from whom that money comes from.  Get it?  Secrecy -- it's like gold in the wretched world of American politics.

The Gadfly would ask the question - on the heels of Barack Hussein Obama's election to the Presidency, which undoubtedly was the catalyst for the sudden appearance and proliferation of the Tea Party and a myriad of other groups hijacking the word 'Patriot' for political purposes, along with the insidious Citizen's United decision by the SCOTUS that opened the floodgates to even more murky money in politics - is it really that much of a stretch of the imagination to think that the government agency tasked with ensuring compliance with tax law might want to take a closer look at the sudden, tremendous influx of tax exemption requests under the 501(c)4 statute from groups that had the names 'Tea Party' and 'Patriot' in their organization names? Are you fucking kidding?

Ultimately - just think about how stupid this conversation has become.  It is universally acknowledged, even by most sane Republicans, that groups who are engaged in active politicking on behalf of any political party or individual political candidates can, in no rational manner, be classified as a "community movement designed to accomplish community ends."

Get this shit -- a group created by and run by Karl Rove called Crossroads GPS applied for and received tax exempt status under the 501(c)4 statute.  The Gadfly will state this bluntly for anyone not within earshot -- Karl Fucking Rove is not, never has been, and never, ever, FUCKING EVER will be a community activist engaged in the noble endeavor of operating a "community movement designed to accomplish community ends."

Keep in mind also that the Tea Party has their own goddamn caucus in Congress for fuck sake! They are actively running political candidates as Tea Party candidates!  Why the fuck wouldn't the IRS scrutinize groups having the words 'Tea Party' in their name who are requesting special tax status?  The Gadfly would wholly expect the IRS to be skeptical of groups requesting tax exempt status who had the words 'Liberal' or "Democratic" in their names, and would certainly hope that the IRS rejected those requests if there was even a hint of partisan political activity in their dealings.

Be all that as it may - the ugly truth is that this country's campaign finance laws are a fucking corrupt, incomprehensible, unfair mess - as is our tax infrastructure.  Is it any grand wonder then that we have all of these right and left organizations, under the guise of promoting "community welfare", doing their self-serving political business on the taxpayer dime?  The Gadfly would say that the simplest solution is to just fucking get rid of all of these tax exempt loopholes altogether - in one fell swoop.  Then legislate a single unambiguous law which decrees that any group involved in any type of activity whatsoever on behalf of any political party or candidate pays a flat rate tax, no exceptions, on that activity -- period. PERIOD! Additionally -- every single goddamn one of these organizations should be mandated to account for how they spent every dollar, which political party and candidate(s) benefited, and provide an accurate yearly public domain listing of every single one of their individual and corporate donors so that every American can see who's money is having the greatest amount of influence in our political system.

But The Gadfly, and he suspects most of you dear readers would likely agree, knows that such a Sysyphean and dire undertaking is not going to come to pass in this country - unlikely in our life times anyhow.  So face it and accept it - our government, and by proxy our country, is corrupt.  Our political and corporate infrastructures are corrupt.  The people who are supposed to be ferreting out the truth and keeping we the people informed, our media, is hopelessly corrupt.  All of these entities feed endlessly off each other like maggots on a pile of cow dung.  But nobody wants to talk about it or do anything really meaningful about it. That would take courage, and integrity and hard work.  It is much effortless to just jump up and down, stamp your little feet, and bitch and moan about inconsequential bullshit like this IRS deal. Here's The Gadfly's rudimentary take on all of this tiresome crap -- the right wingers, whining like stuck pigs, were caught red-handed trying to slurp up a bit more than their share of taxpayer slop, and by their own actions then have outright invited ridicule such as the kind The Gadfly is heaping upon them this very moment in regard to this phony scandal. They deserve no sympathy - none - nada!

In summation - if the Tea Party crybabies (and The Gadfly was wondering btw - since when did these loser Teabaggers become such pouty, whiny little pussies anyhow?) were truly, and sincerely interested in setting things straight, in the public interest, with the IRS and in the government, they would be focusing on the much bigger picture of this anchored institutional corruption instead of the actions of a few overworked, dead-end-job hating civil servants, who basically when tasked with the additional duty of overseeing campaign finance law on top of their normal duties, were in essence tasked with shoveling shit out of the pig farm barnyard with a soup spoon.

Hey Right Wingers -- go find a real scandal with real world consequences to real world people to get overwrought about and maybe, just maybe, The Gadfly might lay off of the mockery of you assholes a bit.


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