A fellow attorney sent me the NY Times article about the recent Tax Law passed by Congress, pretending to be an inflation reduction bill and asked for my opinion:
There are several truths that seem to be obfuscated in all of the political rhetoric:
1. The professional level of the IRS (Revenue Agents and Revenue Officers) has been decimated in the last decade by retirements and people leaving;
2. The computer system of the IRS is extremely outdated and will cost billions to overhaul;
3. The Laptops and Equipment for use by Revenue Agents and Revenue Officers is so outdated it is laughable. Most cannot send emails and still resort to faxing even long documents;
4. The IRS has continued to focus on small businesses and self-employed. The cost of legal and accounting representation for these businesses and professionals is very high. This opportunity cost to the small businesses and professionals is not considered in the real cost of taxation;
5. Congress has spent the last 3 ½ decades making the 1986 Tax Code more and more complicated. President Regan and Speaker O’Neil sat down, agreed to simplify the tax law, and had both sides of the aisle in Congress do it. What has happened?
6. 87,000 new Revenue Officers and Revenue Agents means more collections and audits. This will allow the IRS to begin to restaff. This is also called “The Tax Lawyers and Accountants Full Employment Act.”
7. Once again, I doubt most of Congress read, let alone understands, the language of the laws they are passing. I would love to see a requirement that before a Member of the House or Senate could vote on a bill (yes or no) they would have to pass a basic test on its contents with a 70% or “C’ grade. They cannot do it now. Would you be happy if your children came home from school with straight “C’s” for grades?
Let’s get real!
August 19, 2022