Some recent links from hither and yon:
- Do citizens of the United States have a presumptive right to travel elsewhere, or is that a privilege that the government may withhold at its whim? This has become a live question thanks to the newish law by which the State Department can revoke passports from (or deny passports to) people the IRS reports have significant unpaid taxes. Papers, Please! reviews the state of the law and the tenuous right to travel.
- Meanwhile, a record number of wealthy Americans relinquished their U.S. citizenship in 2020.
- Catalan restaurateurs, who protested for independence by redirecting their taxes from Spain to essential services in Catalonia for seven years, have been hit by a €300,000 fine by the Treasury agency in Madrid. They responded with receipts and an accounting of where the money went — including to local schools and hospitals — but the tax agency was unmoved. They plan to continue their fight and have started an on-line fundraiser to help pay their legal bills.
- The IRS is “pleading for patience” as it deals with the backlog of last year’s tax returns it hasn’t processed yet. I filed my return back in April or thereabouts and the IRS hasn’t processed it yet. I always file my tax returns on paper by hand so I’m not too surprised that mine ended up on the procrastination shelf.
- Plans to boost enforcement funding and enable more financial surveillance by the IRS were dropped from the big “infrastructure” bill that’s working its way through Congress. From what I hear there may be some attempt to resurrect these plans as part of the budget reconciliation process, so stay tuned.
- There’s a new edition of NWTRCC’s newsletter out.