Friday, March 16, 2012

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Tea Party Jew Targeted by IRS?

The Washington Examiner, by Justin Binik-Thomas:

thumbnailIn a 2009 commencement speech at Arizona State, president (Obama) joked about using the IRS as an enforcement agent for dissenters.    Little did I know that less than three years later the IRS would be asking groups about their association with . . . me (Justin Binik-Thomas).

The American Center for Law and Justice has reported that the IRS is targeting the nonprofit tax status of Tea Party and liberty groups across the nation. These conservative groups are now experiencing the targeted enforcement the President “joked” about…

Most of the questions (that the IRS asks them to answer to “prove” their tax exempt status) are pointed and obnoxious, but fairly standard by IRS standards: Explain fundraising, explain outreach, explain volunteers, explain your relationship with another group.

Some of the questions are baffling and don’t identify anything of redeeming social value, meaning they seem geared to utilize organizational resources instead of supporting or refuting a tax status.

Examples of these include requests to provide a hard copy printout of web pages, list all issues of importance to the group, and outline any training completed by or presented to the organization in question.

Still others are overreaching, such as whether officers serve on other organizations or have any plans to run for political office.  Vague!  What if the answer is “no” today and “yes” next year?  Would that result in an IRS sponsored election-day surprise or, perhaps, another query issued in the days leading to a primary or general election?

A recent IRS request of one of the liberty groups in the Cincinnati region moved into new and dangerous territory by asking about family members and specific individuals.  Well, one individual: Me.  The question asked:”Provide details regarding your relationship with Justin Binik-Thomas.”

It is a bit unusual, and frankly irrelevant, to ask about families.  Officers and employees have a certain duty and understanding when they sign on, but not so their families.  If a family member is mentioned, what happens to them or to their business?  Are they at risk or put on a watch list of sorts?  Will they be audited?

Why ask about me? … This IRS query is directed to a liberty group nearly 30 miles away in another city and another county.  I am neither a member nor a leader of their team, and I have never attended a meeting.

Does it relate to communications work I’ve done? Is it because I am Jewish Conservative?  Because I own a small business?

If it relates to my religion, it brings many additional concerns to the forefront.  Why being Jewish would matter is unclear, but it is one of the few things that distinguishes me from the many others working in this area (of conservative liberty groups).

Am I so successful in my roles so as to be a threat to this administration?  Am I so well known to be a valuable target?  Or am I a pawn in a witch-hunt in the pursuit of another group or individual?  How high does this go?

Why is the IRS targeting a conservative Jewish politically minded businessman in Ohio?  Actual IRS questionnaire sent to a Tea Party group, questioning about this man, here.

1 comment:

  1. They are going after all tea party members, asking invading questions, hundreds of them. They seek ammunition for purging. The govt can arrest anyone anytime they want and you have 'no' due process. They want to collect info to be used 'against' whoever they wish. Welcome to the MaCarthy era redux, only on reverse.


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