IRS

Earlier this week, I noted that it was odd for conservatives to be lamenting that the IRS scandal had been allowed to slip away, when in fact they had won this whole round. There had been a huge explosion in coverage in May when the revelations first appeared, nearly all of it making them out to be evidence of a grand Nixonian conspiracy to silence grass-root conservative groups. This explosion in coverage inevitably took its toll on the Obama administration—Obama’s personal approval ratings on characteristics like trust and honesty dropped sharply—and on the IRS, which has not only seen its own standing drop in the polls, but which has seen no shortage of employees disciplined or tarred. Meanwhile, the story has faded from the headlines exactly over the time period when more and more evidence was emerging that the conspiracy wasn’t nearly as grand as first believed—in fact, that there was no conspiracy at all. That is, it has helped conservatives that the media turned away when it did—after the damage had already been done.

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If, like me, you are in that curious band of Americans who still faithfully read Peggy Noonan’s column, you know that she was back at it this past weekend with her latest idee fixe: the IRS scandal. It was her eighth column on that subject in less than three months. The week prior, she had written one hollering about a new “bombshell” revelation that turned out, on closer inspection, to be two months old.

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Born in the ***

Ever since Edward Snowden plugged his thumb drive into the USB port of global consciousness, I've been monitoring myself and others for signs of incipient paranoia. I detected a few almost immediately. While emailing with another journalist about the case of Michael Hastings, the reporter who died in a fiery L.A.

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Why Obama Should Embrace the IRS Scandal

... and pray Max Baucus helps him

It’s finally time to reform the corporate tax code.

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When news broke last month that the IRS had targeted for extra scrutiny conservative groups applying for 501(c)(4) tax-exempt status, politicians wasted no time in jumping on it. “These actions by the IRS are an outrageous abuse of power and a breach of the public’s trust,” said one. “The actions of the IRS are unacceptable and un-American,” said another. “There’s no excuse for ideological discrimination in our system,” said a third.

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Appointing an IRS Independent Counsel Is a Terrible, Terrible Idea

It's probably bad for Obama, probably bad for his enemies, and certainly bad for America

It's probably bad for Obama, probably bad for his enemies, and certainly bad for America

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Hunger Games

The conservative plan to starve government has paid off with the IRS scandal

The conservative plan to starve government has paid off with the IRS scandal.

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What Did Republicans Know, And When Did They Know It?

The real reason conservatives should be outraged: Their party didn't politicize it sooner.

The real reason conservatives should be outraged: Their party didn't politicize it sooner.

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Just the Facts for J. Russell George

The "low key" IRS watchdog explains the limits of his job

The "low key" IRS watchdog explains the limits of his job.

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