I always enjoy reading Mr. Bob Stannard’s opinions on these pages. They are always well thought out and interesting.

Regarding the IRS and “tax cheats,” however, the whole story is not told.

First off, anyone who evades taxes illegally should suffer the full wrath of legal consequences. With that said, most of what is considered “tax cheating” is well within the lawful limits of the ridiculously complex tax code, which has been massaged by career politicians — yes, like the current president — to cater to special interests and campaign donations.

Much is made of statements by various pundits about the percentage paid by the wealthy in taxes. The truth is, the wealthy pay the same percentage on income as everyone else. They pay a much lower rate on capital gains from investment monies. This is “at-risk” money that is invested with absolutely no guarantee of return, and so the tax code encourages this activity with lower taxes on those returns. Everyone who has a retirement plan benefits from this activity.

Regarding the massive expansion of the IRS, there is another side of the coin. Anyone with a small business who has been the subject of an audit knows that they will be paying something. That’s why many small businesses set up obvious “finds” in case this happens. Why? Because if an auditor comes back to the office empty-handed, what is the justification for his job? Who wants to be that guy?

Why is it assumed that the government is doing the right thing for the benefit of the people, when it clearly is not. It seems obvious that it has a spending problem, not a revenue problem.

Robert Zeidler

Georgia, Vermont

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