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IRS Scandal is Fuel for Change | Shock Doctrine and the Rise of Disaster Capitalism

You see the news leaks occurring at a quicker pace over the IRS scandal.  Recent problems at the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) provide opportunity for a revamp of the agency and the tax code.

A lot of sense can be made for revamping the agency and its guidelines for taking action or inaction regarding the profiling of certain groups.  Though, I am not sure that this is a legit moment for changing the tax code itself.  From the viewpoint of those who subscribe to Milton Friedman’s tactical maneuvers during times of economic upheaval to change things up in the form of unpopular reforms, this may seem like another magic moment.

Don’t be fooled!  Even though there is a lot of constructive work that can be done in wringing out special interest preferences and deductions from the tax code for lower rates across the board things never seem to happen like that.

As Naomi Klein has documented in her book, The Shock Doctrine, these events provide ammunition for the rapid-fire corporate re-engineering of societies:

examples of “the shock doctrine”: using the public’s disorientation following massive collective shocks – wars, terrorist attacks, or natural disasters — to achieve control by imposing economic shock therapy.

When I see a headline on Fox News that screams, “Lawmakers look to IRS scandal for momentum on tax code overhaul,” it scares me.  Obama and Boehner had a deal on the table to simplify the tax code along with cutting spending.  Boehner and the GOP walked away.  That was before the last presidential election.

Does simplifying (wink, wink) the tax code mean making it easier for certain groups to gain access to the 501(3)c status?   So they don’t have to report who their contributors are?

The current tax code has been built and funded by special interests through their lobbying efforts.  That’s the part of the tax code I would like to see change.

What would you like to see change?  Let us know below in the comments.



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