This post was originally published on Forbes Oct 28, 2015
Unless, like a sensible person, you have been shielding yourself from learning about developments in the interminable, never-ending IRS scandal, now on Day 902 by Tax Prof count, you are aware that impeachment articles against IRS Commissioner John Koskinen have been drawn up.
If you decide you want to do something, you may not get promoted and you may not get the good assignments and you certainly will not be a favorite of your superiors. But you won’t have to compromise yourself. You will be true to your friends and to yourself.
John Koskinen is 76 years old and is being threatened with losing his IRS job a couple of years early and "Oh the horror" of being ineligible for another government job. I'm betting that the impeachment threat is not scaring him at all and that he took the IRS job to do something, rather than be somebody. Koskinen could have come into the IRS and thrown as many people under the bus as possible in order to look good, but he made a different choice. He said in an interview.
I was telling somebody earlier , my experience in organizational turnarounds is that people are never the problem. It’s the structure, the leadership, the resources you’re given. This is the best workforce I’ve ever been associated with at the front end of a start-up, and it’s because there’s a mission.
A House of Representatives’ committee uncovered evidence supporting a pattern of corruption blatant even by the standards of the scandal-tarnished Grant administration.
The trail of evidence extended back to 1870. In that year, Belknap’s luxury-loving first wife assisted a wheeler-dealer named Caleb Marsh by getting her husband to select one of Marsh’s associates to operate the lucrative military trading post at Fort Sill in Indian territory. Marsh’s promise of generous kick-backs prompted Secretary Belknap to make the appointment. Over the next five years, the associate funneled thousands of dollars to Marsh, who provided Belknap regular quarterly payments totaling over $20,000.
A resolution has been introduced to impeach IRS Commissioner Koskinen. While his conduct in office has been awful, I hope they don’t really try to make it happen. It could backfire, and even if he were impeached, there will never be a conviction. I would rather they spend the time and energy reducing the powers of all IRS commissioners by reducing the power of the IRS through tax reform.