The IRS is being systematically gutted and it’s benefiting the rich and powerful as explained by Paul Kiel, Jesse Eisinger, and Propublica.
The result is a bureaucracy on life support and tens of billions in lost government revenue. ProPublica estimates a toll of at least $18 billion every year, but the true cost could easily run tens of billions of dollars higher.
Corporations and the wealthy are the biggest beneficiaries of the IRS’s decay. Most Americans’ interaction with the IRS is largely automated. But it takes specialized, well-trained personnel to audit a business or a billionaire or to unravel a tax scheme
For the country’s largest corporations, the danger of being hit with a billion-dollar tax bill has greatly diminished. For the rich, who research shows evade taxes the most, the IRS has become less and less of a force to be feared.
Koskinen told the Senate, “I don’t know any organization in my 20 years of experience in the private sector that has said, ‘I think I’ll take my revenue operation and starve it for funds.’”
“This is a great time for not being compliant with paying taxes,” says Richard Schickel, a former IRS collection agent who now counsels taxpayers. “I have 11 clients who owe more than $1 million who are not being worked at all.”
[the new IRS commissioner, Charles Rettig], a tax lawyer with decades of experience defending wealthy clients against the IRS, has been publicly noncommittal so far.
Once again the fox is guarding the hen house.