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Shut Up And Eat Your Dog Food!

Years ago, I ran across the most fascinating turn of phrase -- "eat your own dog food." It was in the context of the development of Windows NT, and it referred to the point where the developers had to actually start using the operating system so they could properly appreciate the end-user's experience.

I was reminded of that when I saw this video:

Yup, that's the head of the IRS stating that he doesn't do his own taxes. He relies on a tax preparer, because the Tax Code's too complicated.

Wouldn't it be fun if there was a law that demanded that the top officials at the IRS prepare their own taxes? Along with the president, vice-president, and members of Congress?

These are the people charged with shaping and enforcing the tax code. If they're doing their jobs correctly, then doing their own taxes themselves (with maybe some software -- but Tim Geithner should not be allowed anywhere near TurboTax, which I have used for about a decade) shouldn't be that difficult. They shouldn't need the assistance of private individuals and companies to walk them through it.

Especially private tax preparers who are apparently so inept, the government is considering a nationalized registration and competency testing for tax preparers. This is the same IRS who, if you ask for help, will give you the wrong answer at least 20% of the time -- and you are on the hook if you follow their bad advice.

So the head of the IRS thinks the tax code is too complicated? I suspect that Chris Dodd, Charlie Rangel, Tim Geithner, Ron Kirk, Hilda Solis, Tom Daschle, and Nancy Killefer would agree.


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Comments (11)

It's Congress that puts the... (Below threshold)
jpe:

It's Congress that puts the code together. The IRS's role is limited to putting the forms together and crafting rules where Congress has told it to.

To be fair (not that that's... (Below threshold)

To be fair (not that that's any fun), but most of the people you describe have very tricky taxes: home residences in states, but long term residences for work in D.C., offices and workers that work for them in multiple states / taxing districts. While some of the complexity is simply the federal tax code, a lot of it is the state / local and the fact that they have to file in many jurisdictions.

And wouldn't it be a hoot i... (Below threshold)
VagaBond:

And wouldn't it be a hoot if we had to actually write a check for our payroll taxes every payday instead of it taken out before we ever see it?

Democrats don't worry about... (Below threshold)
GarandFan:

Democrats don't worry about taxes. You don't worry about what you DON'T PAY. The code is convulted (wait until Barry, Nancy and Harry are through with the Health Care REFORM) because of a need to obtain a desired end....without letting certain groups know that they're being screwed in order to benefit others.

And wouldn't it be... (Below threshold)
And wouldn't it be a hoot if we had to actually write a check for our payroll taxes every payday instead of it taken out before we ever see it?

I used to think that this one small change would bring about the single greatest tax revolt in history. Now I believe it would only cause people to cry out to bring automatic withholding back.

And wouldn't i... (Below threshold)
And wouldn't it be a hoot if we had to actually write a check for our payroll taxes every payday instead of it taken out before we ever see it?

I used to think that this one small change would bring about the single greatest tax revolt in history. Now I believe it would only cause people to cry out to bring automatic withholding back.

That is only half the solution. The other have is to move tax day from April 15th to the Monday before election day.

Along with having all the p... (Below threshold)
astonerii:

Along with having all the people From President to Congressmen doing their own taxes, they automatically got audited every year by an outside independent group.

Arrogant DemoRats don't pay... (Below threshold)
Madalyn:

Arrogant DemoRats don't pay taxes. Just ask them. Even if they did, they would lie on the forms. Standard practice for Dems.
Madalyn

I'm a (non-practicing) CPA,... (Below threshold)
bobdog:

I'm a (non-practicing) CPA, which means I'm licensed to argue your case before the tax court.

I use a tax attorney, and have for years.

I figure if I can't physically lift the tax code, I probably shouldn't prepare my own returns.

And I probably shouldn't take on the tax court for you.

The IRS the INFERNAL ROBBER... (Below threshold)
Flu-Bird:

The IRS the INFERNAL ROBBERY SERVICE

Along with having all... (Below threshold)
John S:

Along with having all the people From President to Congressmen doing their own taxes, they automatically got audited every year by an outside independent group.

And they also be required to pay triple penalties when the f**k it up.





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