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Tax Humor: The Audit

  • Written by Gary Adamson, CPA

mug robert mckenzie

They’re the 1% no one aspires to join: the small percentage of taxpayers who get audited by the IRS.

There is no such thing as a free lunch, if you're the Internal Revenue Service. The IRS is considering whether the free meals doled out to employees at tech companies and other Silicon Valley firms hungry for talent are a fringe benefit that should be taxed. Chris Roberts, NBC Bay AREA, 4-8-13

The IRS has learned the Willie Sutton Principle: When it comes to revenues, go to where the money is. New data from the IRS shows that tax filers with taxable incomes of $1 million or more were audited nearly 12 times more often than the population as a whole.  Robert Frank, CNBC, 4-4-13

Discussing IRS Asserted right to read your emails:

However, folks were outraged today to find out that the IRS, as part of the government, might use that authority to in fact read your email. The obvious gut reaction to such a digital prostate examination is the context of an audit. No one likes those. TNW.com, 4-10-13

"... the key question is: can we define 'income' in a fair and reasonably straightforward manner? Unfortunately we have not yet succeeded in doing so".  -Shirley Peterson, former IRS Commissioner, April 1993

Fully half of Americans would rather be mugged by street criminals than audited by the IRS, according to a recent survey reported in Harper’s magazine. We assume the other half have never been audited. (Survey source: Harper’s, April 1998)

The shorter the time to April 15, the longer the face of the taxpayer. -Unknown

No man’s property is safe while Congress is in session. -Mark Twain

A man was floating along in a balloon and had lost his bearings. Finally he spotted a man standing on a hilltop and shouted out: “Where am I.” The man on the hilltop responded: “You are in a balloon about 75 feet up.” The man in the balloon responded: “You must be a tax lawyer because what you told me is totally accurate and totally useless.” The tax lawyer on the hilltop responded: “You must be a tax accountant. You don’t know where you are or where you are going and now you are blaming the tax lawyer.”

The local bar was so sure that its bartender was the strongest man around that they offered a standing $1000 bet. The bartender would squeeze a lemon until all the juice ran into a glass, and hand the lemon to a patron. Anyone who could squeeze one more drop of juice out would win the money.

Many people had tried over time: weightlifters, strongmen, Olympians, but no one could do it. One day a scrawny little man came into the bar wearing thick glasses and a polyester suit, and said in a tiny squeaky voice “I’d like to try the bet.”  After the laughter had died down, the bartender said OK, grabbed a lemon, and squeezed away. Then he handed the wrinkled remains of the rind to the little man.

But the crowd’s laughter turned to total silence as the man clenched his fist around the lemon and six drops fell into the glass. As the crowd cheered, the bartender paid the $1000, and asked the little man, “What do you do for a living? Are you a lumberjack, a weightlifter, what?” The man replied, “I’m an IRS Agent.”

A man had fallen between the rails in a subway station. People were all crowding around trying to get him out before the train ran him over. They were all shouting.

“Give me your hand!” but the man would not reach up. A man elbowed his way through the crowd and leaned over the man. “Friend,” he asked, “what is your profession?” “I am a Revenue officer,” gasped the man. “In that case,” said the first man, “take my hand!”  The man immediately grasped the other man’s hand and was hauled to safety. He turned to the amazed bystanders and declared, “Never ask a tax man to GIVE you anything, you fools!”

I become confused when I hear the word "Service" used as follows:

- Internal Revenue 'Service'

- US Postal 'Service'

- Telephone 'Service'

- Cable TV 'Service'

- Civil 'Service'

- Federal, State, City, & public 'Service'

- Customer 'Service'

This is NOT what I thought 'Service' meant. But today, I overheard two farmers talking, and one of them said he had hired a bull to 'Service' a few cows. BAM!!! It all came into focus. Now I understand what all those agencies and companies are doing to us. You are now as enlightened as I.

Jonnelle Marte. MarketWatch.com, 4-10-13

Courtesy of Sharon Kreider, CPA

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