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IRS to revoke 362,000 passports from US citizens

美国国内税务局将撤销362000名美国公民的护照

【日期】2018年7月16日

About two and a half years ago, I told you about a particularly nasty piece of legislation that President Obama quietly signed into law towards the end of his administration.

大约两年半之前,我说过奥巴马总统在即将卸任的时候悄悄签署通过了一项法律,这条法律令人作呕。

They called it the “FAST Act”, which stood for Fixing America’s Surface Transportation.

他们称之为“FAST 法案”(Fixing America's Surface Transportation Act ),目的为修护美国地面运输。

Yet despite $300 billion earmarked for infrastructure repairs, they didn’t manage to fix very much of America’s surface transportation.

尽管砸了3000亿美元专门用作技术设施维修,但他们并没有设法解决美国地面运输问题。

The legislation did, however, have two major effects:

然而,这个立法确实有两个作用:

1)The FAST Act authorized the US government to plunder excess capital from the Federal Reserve… which is about as stupid as thing as anyone could possibly do.

FAST法案授权美国政府从美联储搜刮多余资本……任谁这么做都挺混账的。

The Federal Reserve is America’s central bank; they control the value and fate of the US dollar… which is still the most dominant currency in the world.

美联储是美国的中央银行;他们控制着美元,这个世界上最重要货币的价值命运……



This is one of the reasons why, to this day, the Federal Reserve is borderline insolvent… which hardly inspires confidence.

这就是美联储近段时间濒于破产的原因之一,这几乎没激发出什么信心。

Now, I could go on for quite some time about what an idiotic idea this was.

现在,我还要继续感慨,这个想法多愚蠢啊。

But believe it or not, there was an even worse section of the FAST Act– one they only started implementing recently:

但是不管你信不信,FAST法案还有个更加恶劣的地方-马上要开始实施了。

2) Section 32101 of the FAST Act required the US State Department to revoke or deny the passport of any taxpayer that the IRS deems to have “seriously delinquent tax debt.”

FAST法案第32101条要求美国国务院撤销或拒绝美国国税局认为“严重拖欠税款”的纳税人的护照。

They define seriously delinquent tax debt as owing $50,000 or more.

欠款50000美元及以上被定义为严重欠税。

Well, it took them a couple of years, but the IRS has finally started enforcing this law.

他们花了几年时间,但美国国内税务局终于开始执行这项法律了。



Earlier this month the IRS acknowledged that they had sent at least 362,000 names to the State Department to start revoking or denying passports.

本月初,美国国内税务总局承认,他们已经向政府递交了至少362000份撤销回绝名单。

And that’s just the beginning.

这仅仅是开始。

The IRS is sending these names out ‘in batches’, so there will be many more to follow. They hope to be finished by the end of the year.

国税局正在“分批”发送名单,后面会持续跟进。他们打算年底完成这项任务。

Now, there are so many things wrong with this.

现有,这件事有很多问题。

For starters, it’s pretty clear there’s no due process here. It’s purely an administrative matter. Which means there’s limited oversight.

首先,很明显没有经过正当程序。这纯粹是行政事务。这意味着监督受限。

Your name could accidentally end up on some list because the IRS couldn’t keep its own records straight. Or there was a problem with the data integrity. Or someone simply mismatched one John Smith for another.

因为国税局无法保证记录的正确性,因此你的名字会突然出现在一些名单上。或者数据出现偏差。或者把两个约翰·史密斯弄混了。

The IRS literally has billions of records being managed by antiquated technology that’s prone to data breaches.

美国国内税务局确实有数十亿的记录因过失管理机制而导致泄露。

The idea that they could come up with a list of hundreds of thousands of people without making a single mistake is just farcical.

让他们给成百上千个没犯过什么错误的人列个清单,简直可笑。

But, again, there are few real checks and balances. You end up on a list… at which point you’re arguing with an entirely different agency about why your passport has been revoked. It’s a bureaucratic nightmare.

但是,同样的,没有什么真正的制衡。你在那份名单上,还要和一个完全无关的机构争辩为什么护照被吊销了。简直是官僚主义的噩梦。

The larger point, though, is what this really means about citizenship.

不过,更重要的是,护照代表着公民身份。

Think about it– a passport is the most common document to evidence an individual’s citizenship.

想想看,护照上证明个人公民身份最普通的证件。

And… poof… they can take it away from you with the click of a button.

而他们现在轻而易举的就能把你的护照抢走。



Likewise, the enforcement of the FAST Act shows that you’re not even really a citizen. You’re just renting your citizenship from the government.

同样,强制执行FAST法案意味着你甚至都不是个公民。你仅仅是从政府那里租用公民身份。

And if they believe (in their sole discretion) that you owe them income tax, they’ll take it away from you.

而且如果他们相信(由他们自行决定)你欠下个人所得税,他们就会把你的收入从你身边抢走。