The leak of thousands of American tax records — including those of some of our richest citizens — should alarm anyone who cares about the rule of law and a right to privacy.
The unknown person or organization who leaked the documents may have been a “state actor,” according to ProPublica, the left-wing news outlet that published the information. That explanation was almost certainly designed to throw us off the trail. The far more likely scenario is that an IRS employee with direct access to the records compiled the information and then went venue shopping. They looked for a news outlet that cares more about the Democrats’ political agenda of raising taxes on those who don’t “pay their fair share” than about the law or the rights of individuals.
The left was positively gleeful about the leak, believing that the rubes in flyover country would now get behind the Biden tax increases after seeing how little many of the richest among us pay the IRS.
The ProPublica story was a moralizing snoozefest, thousands of words (and the threat of more installments) to explain that the U.S. tax code allows deductions for loan interest, charitable giving and business expenses, and that the nation’s elite actually use these deductions. Also, ProPublica informs us that people don’t pay tax on capital gains until they realize capital gains. The nation’s liberal and social media nonetheless spent the week dutifully pretending the story was a blockbuster exposé breaking the news that the wealthy don’t pay their “fair” share, while Democrats renewed calls for higher taxes.
This is a case of the permanent bureaucracy assisting the elected president because they agree with him ideologically. IRS officials can deny their involvement from here to kingdom come and not convince anyone that they don’t agree with their employee purloining private and secret tax information.
After all, the lawbreaking serves a “higher purpose,” doesn’t it?
Think of Lois Lerner, the IRS functionary who for several years managed to deprive conservative nonprofits of their free-speech rights. Think of the Federal Bureau of Investigation’s Peter Strzok and Lisa Page, who vowed in secret texts to “stop” Donald Trump and nearly did so with their hoax of a Russia-collusion investigation. Think of the anonymous “whistleblower” and the likes of Lt. Col. Alexander Vindman, at the center of the nonscandal over Mr. Trump’s call to the Ukrainian president. Think of the 1,000 preening State Department employees who signed a cable protesting Mr. Trump’s travel ban. Think of special counsel Robert Mueller’s team of career Justice Department prosecutors, Hillary Clinton boosters all, who spent years laboring to nail former national security adviser Mike Flynn to the wall.
Liberals strutting around proclaiming their horror at the violation of the rule of law on January 6 didn’t complain when any of the above incidents occurred. In fact, the criminals were praised as “heroes” for “standing up” to power. But liberal ideology gives permission to condemn violations of the law in some instances, and cheer it in others. As long as the criminal activity serves a larger agenda, the transgressor can be defended.
This most recent Trump contretemps over subpoenas of media organizations didn’t happen in a vacuum.
The career bureaucrat’s tool of choice has become the leak. A congressional look at Mr. Trump’s first 18 weeks in office found 125 leaks—nearly one a day. The Trump administration referred a record number of classified leaks for criminal investigation, at least 334 in all, according to documents obtained by the Intercept. But even with Mr. Trump gone, anonymous “officials” continue to leak news designed to harm Republicans. They’ve leaked details of confidential federal investigations into Rudy Giuliani, Republican lawyer Victoria Toensing and Postmaster General Louis DeJoy, a GOP donor; tittle-tattle about private bipartisan conversations; internal documents about the Trump years; and now the private tax data of Americans. Nobody has leaked one of Mr. Biden’s private conversations with a foreign leader—something that happened to Mr. Trump so often it was almost routine.
Somehow, all that gets lost in the shuffle of political combat and the left gets away with it.
The only way to deal with it is to get revenge legally—the good old-fashioned American way.
Beat the pants off them in the next election and use the newfound power to expose the corruption. Otherwise, we may as well post the death notice for the republic and the rule of law.