Some are starting to figure out the connection between our failed trust in the IRS and the trainwreck known as Obamacare. The first big investment the federal government made in heathcare reform was for the IRS to spend (invest?) nearly a billion and hire thousands of new IRS agents to scrutinize further those of us that they believe need more scrutinizing. http://www.breitbart.com/Big-Government/2012/07/07/ObamaCare-Irs-Agents
Byron York today: http://washingtonexaminer.com/byron-york-irs-scandal-raises-fears-about-enforcing-obamacare/article/2529589
What's happened heightens fears about how the IRS will handle taxpayer information and wield its power when it enforces Obamacare starting next year."
The IRS is critical to Obamacare. The structure created by the Affordable Care Act requires the government to know about both the health care coverage (or lack of it) and the financial resources of every American. The IRS, which already knows the latter, was the only agency with the reach to do the job.
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A look at the text of the health care law reveals that much of it consists of amending the Internal Revenue Code to give the IRS more power. When Obamacare goes fully into effect in January, every American will have to prove to the IRS that he or she has "qualifying" health coverage, meaning coverage with a list of features approved by Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius. That will be done by submitting a document to the IRS, something like a W-2, to confirm coverage.
The IRS will also decide who is, and who is not, eligible for Obamacare's subsidies. The law authorizes the IRS to share confidential taxpayer information with the Department of Health and Human Services for the purpose of determining those subsidies. And since subsidies don't just apply to a relatively small number of the nation's poorest citizens -- under the law, they can go to a family of four with a household income of nearly $90,000 -- they will affect a huge segment of the population.
In addition, the IRS will keep track of even the smallest changes in Americans' financial condition. Did you get a raise recently? You'll need to notify the IRS; it might affect your subsidy status. Have your hours been reduced at work? Notify the IRS. Change jobs? Same.
Last August, IRS official Nina Olson testified before Congress on the changes Obamacare will bring to Americans' dealings with the nation's tax collector. "Do you believe that most Americans are going to update the IRS or state exchanges when they change jobs, get married, move states, whatever?" Michigan Republican Rep. Tim Walberg asked Olson.
"I think it's going to be a very great learning curve," Olson answered. If Americans don't keep the IRS up to date on their financial status, they might incur penalties, which the IRS will collect by withholding income tax refunds. "I think it will be a surprise to taxpayers if they don't update their information,"
A larger government always creates more openings for abuse, as Americans will learn when the IRS starts auditing their health care in addition to their 1040 next year.
"ObamaCare is "the most extensive social benefit program the IRS has been asked to implement in recent history." This March the IRS Inspector General reiterated that ObamaCare's 47 major changes to the revenue code "represent the largest set of tax law changes the IRS has had to implement in more than 20 years." Thus the IRS is playing Thelma to the Health and Human Service Department's Louise. The tax agency has requested funding for 1,954 full-time equivalent employees for its Affordable Care Act office in 2014."
"Instead of going after tax cheats, these bureaucrats will write and enforce tax regulations for parts of the economy in which they have no core competence. For example, do ski instructors or public school teachers count as seasonal workers? How long is a "full time" work week? Is it 40 hours, or 30?"
"...the IRS and HHS are now building the largest personal information database the government has ever attempted. Known as the Federal Data Services Hub, the project is taking the IRS's own records (for income and employment status) and centralizing them with information from Social Security (identity), Homeland Security (citizenship), Justice (criminal history), HHS (enrollment in entitlement programs and certain medical claims data) and state governments (residency)."http://online.wsj.com/article/SB10001424127887324715704578481461934680982.html?mod=WSJ_Opinion_LEADTop
What could possibly go wrong?
Newt Gingrich: "Why would you trust the bureaucracy with your health if you can't trust the bureaucracy with your politics?"