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(Washington Post)   Today in "b-b-b-b-b-but we need government otherwise Somalia": Social Security is now seizing people's assets for 'overpayments' to their ancestors three, four, five decades ago - overpayments they prove were made using FARK YOU, CITIZEN as evidence   (washingtonpost.com ) divider line
    More: Asinine, social security, Treasury Department, assistant commissioner, officials told, greenbelts  
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2384 clicks; posted to Politics » on 11 Apr 2014 at 8:22 AM (2 years ago)   |   Favorite    |   share:  Share on Twitter share via Email Share on Facebook   more»



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2014-04-11 03:50:31 AM  
Looks like the genius who inserted the language authorizing this particular flavor of government vogonity:

1) is a Republican
2) but a moderate
3) and isn't in Congress any more
4) because the local populace voted to make him...a judge (facepalm.jpg)
 
2014-04-11 04:36:39 AM  
That is just awful. And it's been going on since 2011?! I can't find where the article might mention the genius who inserted the sentence into the farm bill.
 
2014-04-11 05:09:17 AM  
The Treasury Department

We have altered your refunds. Pray we do not alter them further.

images.politico.com

I like how they have a statue of Emperor Palpatine in front. Can't you just hear the music?
 
2014-04-11 05:29:20 AM  

pheed: That is just awful. And it's been going on since 2011?! I can't find where the article might mention the genius who inserted the sentence


Looks like the commenters did the reporter's job for him.
 
2014-04-11 06:16:45 AM  
"The taxpayer must prove that he 'is without fault, and [that] repayment of the overpayment would deprive the person of income needed for ordinary living expenses.'"

So there is due process, just a bit weighted in favor of the USA, USA, USA.
 
2014-04-11 06:30:34 AM  

doglover: We have altered your refunds. Pray we do not alter them further.

dev.solita.fi
 
2014-04-11 07:59:52 AM  
I am having trouble finding words for how insanely idiotic the first portion of submitter's headline is. I think it literally just gave me AIDS.
 
2014-04-11 08:05:17 AM  
The aggressive effort to collect old debts started three years ago - the result of a single sentence ... lifting the 10-year statute of limitations on old debts to Uncle Sam.

Isn't retroactive modification of an already-expired statute of limitations unconstitutional as an ex post facto law? I'm reasonably certain there is a Supreme Court case on this arising out of a criminal case in California.

...


And I'm glad I Googled before I posted that. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Stogner_v._California

The Supreme Court held that "a law enacted after expiration of a previously applicable limitations period violates the Ex Post Facto Clause when it is applied to revive a previously time-barred prosecution."
 
2014-04-11 08:18:29 AM  

kronicfeld: I am having trouble finding words for how insanely idiotic the first portion of submitter's headline is.


The point of it is this.

Todd Platts was the Republican congressman who inserted this bit of hot buttered idiocy into the farm bill back in '05. And this kind of weaselly legislative move is the  rule, not the exception. It took eight years for a major media outlet to notice what he'd done, and even when they did run an article the reporter couldn't be arsed to find the name of the congressman responsible. That job fell to readers. The problem isn't media bias, it's media incompetence.
 
2014-04-11 08:25:21 AM  

Gulper Eel: kronicfeld: I am having trouble finding words for how insanely idiotic the first portion of submitter's headline is.

The point of it is this.

Todd Platts was the Republican congressman who inserted this bit of hot buttered idiocy into the farm bill back in '05. And this kind of weaselly legislative move is the  rule, not the exception. It took eight years for a major media outlet to notice what he'd done, and even when they did run an article the reporter couldn't be arsed to find the name of the congressman responsible. That job fell to readers. The problem isn't media bias, it's media incompetence.


Those are all cogent observations, and I do not disagree. But the flaming retardery of the headline does not intersect at all with what you just said.
 
2014-04-11 08:26:24 AM  

kronicfeld: I am having trouble finding words for how insanely idiotic the first portion of submitter's headline is. I think it literally just gave me AIDS.


If the government ever does ANYTHING wrong or unjust that proves that we don't need government. Duh.

Note: The same logic does not apply to corporations, religions, or the super wealthy.
 
2014-04-11 08:29:12 AM  
When you starve the beast it gets hungry, starts looking for food.
 
2014-04-11 08:35:53 AM  

kronicfeld: Those are all cogent observations, and I do not disagree. But the flaming retardery of the headline does not intersect at all with what you just said.


Okay, my further point is that legislated stupidity like this just goes unexamined because of...I don't know, some misguided belief that to actually root this out will mean throwing the baby out with the bath water, and that the people who want to root out the waste are assumed to have nefarious reasons to be doing so, and therefore we have to take the bad with the good, gotta break a few eggs, etc.

As if the people who put this kind of thing  into our legislation didn't have nefarious reasons?

I could be wrong about the above. It's possible that Platts was simply reflecting the views of his damn fool constituents.
 
2014-04-11 08:38:47 AM  
www.troll.me
 
2014-04-11 08:39:34 AM  
I like subby's logic.   Government collecting debts from the wrong people?  That's proof we don't need government. Get in trouble with your boss for something that wasn't your fault?  That's proof we don't need employers. Parents grounded you for something one of your friends did?  Proof we don't need parents.
 
2014-04-11 08:39:46 AM  
WTF?

Since when has it been legal in the US to punish children for the crimes of their parents?
 
2014-04-11 08:39:55 AM  
Well that was rage inducing. Talk about corruption of blood.
 
2014-04-11 08:42:03 AM  
Is subby doing a Colbert or is he/she just dumb?
 
2014-04-11 08:42:32 AM  
Wow, the Somalia thing really has your guys asses chapped doesn't it?  There are creams for that.
 
2014-04-11 08:44:54 AM  

Gulper Eel: kronicfeld: Those are all cogent observations, and I do not disagree. But the flaming retardery of the headline does not intersect at all with what you just said.

Okay, my further point is that legislated stupidity like this just goes unexamined because of...I don't know, some misguided belief that to actually root this out will mean throwing the baby out with the bath water, and that the people who want to root out the waste are assumed to have nefarious reasons to be doing so, and therefore we have to take the bad with the good, gotta break a few eggs, etc.

As if the people who put this kind of thing  into our legislation didn't have nefarious reasons?

I could be wrong about the above. It's possible that Platts was simply reflecting the views of his damn fool constituents.


The thing is, there is always waste everywhere, in every system, always (unless you are, say, a hunter-gatherer who eats everything from every animal he kills.). Republicans for some reason seem to not be able to accept this fact, unless it's the military, in which case you can't look at waste at all because if you do you hate America.

Certainly we should look at ways to reduce waste and fraud. But to claim that we should SHUT DOWN ALL THE THINGS if a single penny is "mis-spent" is just stupid.
 
2014-04-11 08:44:58 AM  
Republican legislator creates stupid law so...vote Republican.

Yay, subby.
 
2014-04-11 08:44:58 AM  

Aldon: WTF?

Since when has it been legal in the US to punish children for the crimes of their parents?


could be worse, think of stolen ss benefits and who they'll nail for it
 
2014-04-11 08:46:41 AM  
Today in "b-b-b-b-b-but we need government otherwise Somalia".

Uh, subby?  I know you're joking but...
  When Grice was 4, back in 1960, her father died, leaving her mother with five children to raise. Until the kids turned 18, Sadie Grice got survivor benefits from Social Security to help feed and clothe them.

Social Security helped feed and clothe five children.  What exactly do you think the left means when we bring up Somalia?
 
2014-04-11 08:49:16 AM  

Caffeine Induced Diarrhea: Is subby doing a Colbert or is he/she just dumb?


He's very special. Not in a good way, in the "Olympics you're not supposed to laugh at" way.
 
2014-04-11 08:52:12 AM  
Time for me to go back & redo all of dad's tax returns.

I bet I can squeeze a few grand out of Uncle Sam.

Wait this works both ways right?
 
2014-04-11 08:52:27 AM  
Hey Obama! If there was ever a time for an executive order changing government policy, this is it.
 
2014-04-11 08:53:36 AM  

kronicfeld: I am having trouble finding words for how insanely idiotic the first portion of submitter's headline is. I think it literally just gave me AIDS.


It gave me feline AIDS.

TFA: ....the result of a single sentence tucked into the farm bill lifting the 10-year statute of limitations on old debts to Uncle Sam.

I'd bet dollars to donuts it was a Republican.

Also, even consumer collection agencies can't come after you after 7 years, ffs.
 
2014-04-11 08:53:54 AM  

Aldon: WTF?

Since when has it been legal in the US to punish children for the crimes of their parents?


It's not their parent's debts. The author doesn't know how survivor benefits work.

The mom receives the money on behalf of the child, but it is the child's money.

Also they don't start taking tax returns until they tried to collect it through other means first.

Why should the tax payer be responsible for improper payments. They person who received the benefit should have to pay it back. This isn't monopoly... You don't get to collect a bank error in your favor.
 
2014-04-11 08:54:14 AM  

Aldon: WTF?

Since when has it been legal in the US to punish children for the crimes of their parents?


It's not.  Good thing that is not what is happening here.
 
2014-04-11 08:55:13 AM  

amiable: Wow, the Somalia thing really has your guys asses chapped doesn't it?  There are creams for that.


They use it as spank-lube for the anti-GOP threads
 
2014-04-11 08:55:42 AM  
I'm sure the GOP lead house will get on this immediately and have the law changed by this weekend.
 
2014-04-11 08:58:30 AM  
I thought we were mad at Obama for selectively enforcing laws. Now we're mad at him for enforcing the law as written? Oi vey!
 
2014-04-11 08:58:52 AM  
These sorts of reasons are why I tell my clients to contact the Treasury Offset Program a week before we file to ensure that they don't have any outstanding debt that can be garnished.

In reality, everyone should do the same if they are expecting a refund.
 
2014-04-11 09:01:05 AM  

zeroman987: Aldon: WTF?

Since when has it been legal in the US to punish children for the crimes of their parents?

It's not their parent's debts. The author doesn't know how survivor benefits work.

The mom receives the money on behalf of the child, but it is the child's money.

Also they don't start taking tax returns until they tried to collect it through other means first.

Why should the tax payer be responsible for improper payments. They person who received the benefit should have to pay it back. This isn't monopoly... You don't get to collect a bank error in your favor.


That may or may not be the case, but that's far too long to allow the debt to go uncollected. There's a statute of limitations on most debts, why not this?
 
2014-04-11 09:02:56 AM  
My biggest issue is not the offset of refunds for old public debts, it is the haphazard manner in which they attempt to collect. Start with the oldest sibling and work your way down until the debt is paid? That's unconscionable. Either rely on records to determine the overpayment, or let it go.

This is basically the SSA and Treasury saying that the believe the debt is owed, but they have no proof and no determination as to who owes it, but they will be taking money from you anyway. This crap would not fly with a civilian debt collector, so why are we permitting our government to do the very thing that they passed laws to prevent in the private sector?
 
2014-04-11 09:03:12 AM  
cpatrendlines.com

trinketsandtees.com
 
2014-04-11 09:03:52 AM  

LavenderWolf: There's a statute of limitations on most debts, why not this?


There used to be, then a fine upstanding Republican removed the statute by inserting a line into the 2005 farm bill. Presumably to raise revenue without actually raising taxes.
 
2014-04-11 09:07:17 AM  

offmymeds: [cpatrendlines.com image 325x325]

[trinketsandtees.com image 638x421]


The IRS is not taking anyone's money. The Treasury Offset Program that garnishes refunds or other monies owed by the US government to private citizens, is run by the Treasury's DMS (Debt Management Service). Just because they are part of the Treasury does not make them part of the IRS.

Did you believe that the Secret Service was a part of the IRS before the DHS came into being?
 
2014-04-11 09:10:53 AM  

eiger: kronicfeld: I am having trouble finding words for how insanely idiotic the first portion of submitter's headline is. I think it literally just gave me AIDS.

If the government ever does ANYTHING wrong or unjust that proves that we don't need government. Duh.

Note: The same logic does not apply to corporations, religions Christianity or Judaism, or the super wealthy.


FTFY.
 
2014-04-11 09:11:27 AM  
I praised you yesterday for finally getting your own meme with Somalia, but you're way overdoing it.  You've got two memes in the first sentence, and the first meme is over two years old.

Come on, guys.  You're not just letting me down.  You're letting yourselves down.  Don't you see?
 
2014-04-11 09:11:52 AM  
Look, the people aren't what's important here. It's about what the government needs. They can't give rich people the money of other rich people, idiots!
 
2014-04-11 09:13:36 AM  

amiable: Wow, the Somalia thing really has your guys asses chapped doesn't it?  There are creams for that.


I am so glad I started using the Sonalia meme years back. I've got to tell you, if you think it chaps then on the intarwebs, you should see it in real life. They really lose their shiat, scrunch their faces, eyes get beady, they start blathering incoherently.

Just pure comedy gold.
 
2014-04-11 09:18:42 AM  
I suppose there could be an argument made that if the IRS was not aware of the death of the debtor that they lacked the ability to collect from the estate. However, there should be a pretty stringent statute of limitations on this kind of thing and there absolutely has to be due process. Just claiming a debt and taking the money is unacceptable.
 
2014-04-11 09:21:22 AM  

HotWingConspiracy: When you starve the beast it gets hungry, starts looking for food.


Oh, and it's gonna get better. This will get dismissed as crackpottery, but if you don't think the gov't will start simply seizing private liquid assets when SS and other welfare checks start bouncing (and they will), you're fooling yourself.

Inb4 "that's so totally illegal it'll never happen"; when has that EVER stopped them before? To paraphrase Mallory Archer, "Even if it IS illegal, they'll just act like it is, they're the government."It'll be something like

"To offset shortfalls in budgeting (and to delay the collapse of American society) we're introducing a tax that appropriates 25% of a pool of cash in any account if that account has $10,000 or more in it. It's not like anyone ever needs that much cash lying around anyway, it's probably a front for drug runners. Also, this law went into effect last night, your money is already gone. Have fun suing us."
 
2014-04-11 09:22:40 AM  

BrotherThaddeus: I suppose there could be an argument made that if the IRS was not aware of the death of the debtor


Impossible. IRS and SSA are in contact on a daily basis about the death of taxpayers.

BrotherThaddeus: However, there should be a pretty stringent statute of limitations on this kind of thing


There was, until a single line of legislation undid it all.

BrotherThaddeus: Just claiming a debt and taking the money is unacceptable.


And the government will severely punish a civilian debt collector for employing this practice, yet they are happy to employ it themselves.
 
2014-04-11 09:23:03 AM  

MBrady: So what. Call up 0bama [*chug*] and have him tell the Treasury department not to enforce that part of the law. Marijuana is Federally illegal, and 0bama [*chug*] has instructed the ATF (?) to not enforce the law.


If you think B. Hussein Osama is a tyrant for telling the DEA to lighten up on the War on Civil Liberties Drugs, you might be a wingnut.  And where the hell are states' rights when the War on Civil Liberties Drugs is concerned?


0bama [*chug*] has told INS to relax seizure of ILLEGALs. So what's the problem?


No, he hasn't.  He has told the ICE to give priority to deporting convicted felons.  But somehow deporting murderers and thieves ahead of day laborers is disrespectful of the law.
 
2014-04-11 09:24:10 AM  

grinding_journalist: HotWingConspiracy: When you starve the beast it gets hungry, starts looking for food.

Oh, and it's gonna get better. This will get dismissed as crackpottery, but if you don't think the gov't will start simply seizing private liquid assets when SS and other welfare checks start bouncing (and they will), you're fooling yourself.

Inb4 "that's so totally illegal it'll never happen"; when has that EVER stopped them before? To paraphrase Mallory Archer, "Even if it IS illegal, they'll just act like it is, they're the government."It'll be something like

"To offset shortfalls in budgeting (and to delay the collapse of American society) we're introducing a tax that appropriates 25% of a pool of cash in any account if that account has $10,000 or more in it. It's not like anyone ever needs that much cash lying around anyway, it's probably a front for drug runners. Also, this law went into effect last night, your money is already gone. Have fun suing us."


$10,000 is where you draw the line? Cutthroat
 
2014-04-11 09:27:36 AM  
Even the mere suggestion of slightly decreasing the rate of increase of government growth mean instant Somalia.  This is common knowledge.
 
2014-04-11 09:28:37 AM  
The Federal Trade Commission, https://www.consumer.ftc.gov/articles/0081-debts-and-deceased-relative s" data-xslt="_http">on its Web site, advises Americans that "family members typically are not obligated to pay the debts of a deceased relative from their own assets." But Social Security officials say that if children indirectly received assistance from public dollars paid to a parent, the children's money can be taken, no matter how long ago any overpayment occurred

It does not bother me that they lifted the statute of limitations on debt collecting.  What gets me is the govt... or at least the IRS and SS has taken the stance that if they can reasonably argue you recieved an indirect benefit, they can reach across a closed estate and after the children.  To heck with that noise.
 
2014-04-11 09:28:43 AM  

grinding_journalist: HotWingConspiracy: When you starve the beast it gets hungry, starts looking for food.

Oh, and it's gonna get better. This will get dismissed as crackpottery, but if you don't think the gov't will start simply seizing private liquid assets when SS and other welfare checks start bouncing (and they will), you're fooling yourself.

Inb4 "that's so totally illegal it'll never happen"; when has that EVER stopped them before? To paraphrase Mallory Archer, "Even if it IS illegal, they'll just act like it is, they're the government."It'll be something like

"To offset shortfalls in budgeting (and to delay the collapse of American society) we're introducing a tax that appropriates 25% of a pool of cash in any account if that account has $10,000 or more in it. It's not like anyone ever needs that much cash lying around anyway, it's probably a front for drug runners. Also, this law went into effect last night, your money is already gone. Have fun suing us."


Or the Reaganite anti-tax fanatics either get out of power or actually become fiscally responsible and, God forbid, raise taxes to a reasonable rate. Particularly on the highest income brackets.
 
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