I.R.S. Expects a “Miserable” Tax Season

Some news in brief from here and there:

  • The IRS Commissioner and the National Taxpayer Advocate are each predicting that the upcoming federal income tax filing season will be especially challenging for the agency. Indeed they’re throwing around adjectives like “miserable,” “worst,” and “unacceptable” and they haven’t even really gotten started yet.

    Among the factors making this year particularly bad are the launch of Obamacare’s tax credits (and penalties), hostility from Congress, and uncertainty in tax law because Congress has yet to decide which expiring tax laws it will retroactively extend at the last minute.

    Good luck getting help from the agency over the phone if you get confused. They’re expecting to be able to answer only about half of the calls they get, after an average on-hold time of over a half-hour, and even then will only be able to answer the most elementary tax questions.

    All of this is bound to increase taxpayer frustration and anger towards the tax-collecting bureaucracy, as well as making it a more unpleasant place to work.
  • A fellow named Valentin from Chicheboville decided to protest the enormity of his taxes by paying them with an enormous check — a piece of cardboard two-meters long.
  • You may have heard of mass protests in Mexico over the government’s collusion in massacres of student demonstrators there recently. The protesters have admirably started burning government buildings including the statehouse in Guerrero and the headquarters of the Institutional Revolutionary Party. A side-note of interest here is that some businesses in Acapulco, Guerrero, have launched a tax strike to protest the government’s failure to protect the tourist trade from the losses caused by demonstrators!
  • The government of Greece keeps adding to the Greek tax burden, and more Greeks keep reaching their last straw. , another 851,201 Greeks were added to the delinquency lists, raising the total from 2,451,909 to 3,303,110 — about 30% of the population of Greece. The government is using a variety of carrots and sticks to try to bring these numbers down.
  • l’intraprendente takes a look at the fizzling of the Northern League’s anticipated tax strike.