There is a very, very, very standard letter that the IRS sends out when one of our taxpayers clears Criminal Investigations. It basically says something along the lines of an old song by Fear (a punk band prevalent in L. A. when I was in law school): “I don’t care about you . . . .” (If you know the song you know the rest of the line, and if you don’t, go to YouTube and turn down the volume for some NSFW lyrics).

Non-literary translation: the standard letter says “You have cleared Criminal Investigations and your next stop is a rigorous audit, but we reserve the right to chase you with the Hounds of Hell if you don’t fully cooperate.” But in my experience they haven’t chosen to pound any of our clients into oblivion. Yet.

Yes it will shock you but I was a punk rocker in law school at UCLA. So sue me. πŸ™‚

But I digress. Back to the very standard letter. I’m italicizing this next part because The Point of This Post is hidden amongst a large amount of verbal debris. Sorry about the debris. It’s Monday.

Today we got this standard letter for a client. Inside a pink 9 x 12 envelope with a hand-written address on it (our law firm’s address). Which was inside a white slightly larger envelope with a hand-written address on it (our law firm’s address). Which was sent to us by Expensive. United. Parcel. Service.

Yes. Your IRS is spending your tax dollars on UPS (that’s the brown truck, not the sleet/snow dudes).

Contrast this with earlier letters we got. They were inside a #11 envelope. Which had a stamp on it. And was delivered by the sleet/snow/appointed rounds people.

Heavy sigh.

Criminal Investigations is apparently supposed to have all of these cases completely processed and out of their offices by the end of February.

Editorial Comment

(Tee hee, as if this whole blog ain’t one giant editorial comment!)

I’ve said it before, and I’ll say it again. The Head Honcho People in Washington DC need to learn how to ask the question “And if I do that, what happens next?” Cause/effect, people.

  1. You aren’t ever going to get another Bradley Birkenfeld.
  2. You’re likely to have massive, deliberate noncompliance from U.S. taxpayers with still-undisclosed bank accounts, especially U.S. citizens living abroad, living ordinary lives, and paying heavy taxes where they live.

Or, dear Government, to put it in Monty Python-esque terms, “What is your quest?” Answer that wrong and you will be catapulted into a new dimension. πŸ™‚ [Caution: YouTube].

Because Monty Python is appropriate for all situations.


The Postal Service (yes, your U.S. government sleet/snow people) brought us the same letter (“Congratulations, you have earned your voluntary disclosure diploma from Criminal Investigations!”) for a different client. In a #11 envelope. With $0.44 of postage on it. No “envelope inside an envelope inside an envelope” trick.

Go figure.