IRS Going After Fewer Large Corporations

First things first, before anyone says it, I’m not a communist. I like capitalism. Believe it or not, if the system is working properly, I would kind of like big corporations too. They provide lots of jobs and products, and I guess you need some of both to have an economy.

I know there’s this kind of dreamland out there where EVERYTHING comes out of a mom and pop business, but to be honest, I kinda like mass produced stuff. Even food. I like mass produced food. I like McDonald’s cheeseburgers, and the frozen foods you get at Costco in huge bins that dwarf your refrigerator such that the only place you can store them is at the bottom of a lake. I also like my laptop, especially after growing out of the “build your own computer” phase.

I like making money, and much to my wife’s chagrin, I love spending money. I just wish we had more of it, but hey, that’s what capitalism’s all about, right? Mobility.

So I don’t outright hate big corporations, but I want them where I can see them because I trust them as far as I can throw them. I like big companies because they give me what I need at a price that I can afford, and they provide other people with jobs, but I distrust them because I can’t vote for their CEO, and if I decide to boycott them, there’s only a couple hundred million people that will probably take my place.

I just wanted to get this all out because I wanted everyone to have at least a basic understanding on how I view corporate America; not necessarily evil incarnate, but because their bottom line is profit, they aren’t exactly the most trustworthy entities that have ever existed either.

With all of this in mind, it bothers me a little to learn that the IRS is auditing under half of the major corporations it was auditing twenty years ago.

Um, yeah, this doesn’t really work for me. In their defense, the IRS has started targeting more high probability offenders, which is a good thing, but it’s fluffing up the numbers by going after small and medium sized businesses, which is kind of a bad thing.

You see, while I said that big business is something I want very tightly observed, I’m okay with the mom and pop businesses. They don’t scare me because while my picket sign probably won’t put a dent in Wal*Mart’s profit margins, I could probably get together a couple of friends and put the little organic grocer over in Portsmouth out of business with a pretty small picket line. (I wouldn’t do that, of course, the guy’s an old ship mate and friend.)

Not that the small businesses don’t need to have their fair share of scrutiny, they do, but there’s a difference between fair share, and padding numbers whilst the guys I really want the IRS to keep an eye on get to operate under reduced pressure.

That really doesn’t work well for me.

(edited by DrGail)

One Response to “IRS Going After Fewer Large Corporations”

  1. Mark says:

    While I have a huge problem if the IRS really is favoring big corporations, and I wouldn’t be surprised if they were, there may be some benign explanations for this (and believe me I’m loathe to give the IRS credit for anything):
    1. Audits overall are down- I think this is the case after some of the Clinton-era reforms, but I could be wrong.
    2. The SEC now handles a lot of the large corporation audits that were previously handled by the IRS. Especially after Sarbanes-Oxley, I suspect there is a lot of truth to this.
    3. Greater disclosure requirements by the SEC obviates the need for a good number of IRS audits since the data from the SEC filings closely approximates the data from an audit. I suspect this is also likely part of it.

    FWIW- for once, no one can even try to blame this on Reagan, since Reagan was just leaving office 20 years ago.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Connect with Facebook