Why, Of Course! Fourth Amendment Fix for IRS Corruption

586px-SS_Heimwehr_Danzig.svg (1)Sir John Dalberg-Acton famously observed, “Power tends to corrupt, and absolute power corrupts absolutely.” No federal agency enjoys more power than the “absolute power” wielded by the Internal Revenue Service. It’s little wonder, then, that under this power-drunk Obama regime, the IRS has become “corrupted absolutely.” It’s become the hammer to this president’s favorite nail: political dissent.

The bureaucratic cat’s out of the bag, and the evidence is undeniable. The Obama IRS has been illegally targeting conservative, Christian and Jewish groups and individuals for political retaliation, intimidation and, ultimately, destruction. These revelations have spurred calls for criminal prosecution and even impeachment. Still, little has been said about how to prevent such Stalinist abuses of power in the future.

We’ve been over-thinking the problem. Sometimes complicated questions come with easy answers. I wish I could take credit for it, but while I was participating in a recent meeting in Washington, D.C., Judson Phillips, founder of Tea Party Nation, hit on the simple solution. “The Constitution is a great place to go in order to rein in the rampant and repeated abuses at the IRS,” he suggested. Namely, the Fourth Amendment, which guarantees the following:

The right of the people to be secure in their persons, houses, papers, and effects, against unreasonable searches and seizures, shall not be violated, and no Warrants shall issue, but upon probable cause, supported by Oath or affirmation, and particularly describing the place to be searched, and the persons or things to be seized.

No individual – and especially no federal agency – is above the law. Regrettably, and largely through both citizen and government acquiescence, the IRS has been brandishing arbitrary and extra-constitutional authority, unchecked, for well over a century.

Imagine if the Department of Homeland Security, the FBI, or the ATF suddenly began “searching” and “seizing” the “persons, houses, papers, and effects,” of millions of U.S. citizens every year without a warrant – without probable cause or even reasonable suspicion that any criminal or civil violation had occurred. People would be outraged, and for good reason. Such actions would rightly and universally be decried as unconstitutional. The lawsuits would fly, heads would roll and the courts would immediately shut down such “unreasonable searches and seizures.” This is exactly the kind of government tyranny our founders endeavored to thwart.

So why has the IRS been allowed to do just that – to violate, systemically and systematically, the Fourth Amendment? How is it that this one federal agency, with neither probable cause nor a warrant, is permitted to invade your privacy and confiscate your “houses, papers and effects” on a whim? How is it that if you fail to comply with their warrantless searches and seizures, they have the authority to ruin you financially and even throw you in prison?

About the author: Matt Barber

Matt Barber is founder and editor-in-chief of BarbWire.com and an attorney concentrating in constitutional law. In addition to his law degree, Matt holds a Master of Arts in Public Policy from Regent University. Matt is both an author and a popular columnist. He’s known for a unique writing style (an entertaining blend of thoughtful analysis and Swiftian satire, delivered with a rapier wit). Many newspapers and online publications run Matt’s columns, to include WND, TheBlaze, the Washington Times, TownHall and many more. Author of the book, “The Right Hook: From the Ring to the Culture War,” Matt is currently penning his first novel. In addition to frequent public speaking engagements, Matt has appeared as a cultural analyst on the Fox News Channel, MSNBC and CNN and is a regular guest on dozens of talk radio programs and networks including Michael Savage, the G. Gordon Liddy Show, Dennis Prager, the Michael Medved Show, the Janet Mefferd Show and others. Matt also co-hosts “Faith and Freedom” a daily legal and cultural issues talk radio program heard on about 90 stations across the country. Matt served twelve years in the Army National Guard, was a law enforcement officer for three years and a corporate fraud investigator for five years. Setting him apart from others in his various fields, Matt was an undefeated heavyweight professional boxer retiring in 2004. Prior to turning pro, he was a several time state and regional Golden Gloves champion, competing in the 1992 Western Olympic Trials and winning a Gold Medal in the 1993 Police and Fire World Games.

View all articles by Matt Barber

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