Tahlequah Daily Press

Columns

April 16, 2014

Wild West pits U.S. government against “We the people”

TAHLEQUAH — Unless one has been living under a rock over the past week, one couldn’t have missed the recent standoff in Nevada between a rancher and the U.S. government. It’s only one incident in many that has the government of the people pitted against the people.

Internal Revenue Service, that tax-collecting agency of the federal government that reached into the pockets of the people yesterday and took its share of the people’s hard-earned money, backed down from its most recent attempt to make even the dead pay what’s owed.

The IRS had rolled out a proposal that would make the children of older, deceased parents pay any debt owed to the IRS. Yup, they were fixin’ to make the children of deceased parents pay up, or else….

“The Treasury Department has intercepted $1.9 billion in tax refunds already this year — $75 million of that on debts delinquent for more than 10 years,” said Jeffrey Schramek, assistant commissioner of the department’s debt management service.

“The aggressive effort to collect old debts started three years ago — the result of a single sentence tucked into the farm bill lifting the 10-year statute of limitations on old debts to Uncle Sam,” according to the Washington Post.

So, let’s get this straight. The federal government has a bone to pick with a rancher in Nevada for non-payment of leased land that is controlled by the Bureau of Land Management. Cliven Bundy’s family had been grazing cattle on this rangeland since the 1880s. Bundy’s family had always leased the grazing rights from the state of Nevada.

Confrontation was raised to a fevered pitch when federal authorities moved in with guns drawn and rounded up Bundy’s cattle. It wasn’t until folks from all over the country rallied to defend Bundy that the federal jack-booted thugs backed down.

Don’t for one minute think that it’s over. Just ask Sen. Harry Reid, D-Nev., who stood with the thugs trying to run the Bundy cattle off of rangeland.

Keep an eye on the fed’s next move. When all of the cameras are no longer rolling and the folks who stood with Bundy are back home, that’s when the feds will “put Bundy in his place.”

Meanwhile, if the Social Security Administration decides to go after the kids of deceased taxpayers, they will. There’s nothing anyone can do to stop this governmental behemoth.

One simple question everyone should be asking themselves amid all of this governmental hostility: When did the government declare war on its citizens?

khansen@tahlequahdailypress.com

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