I will be visiting Federal Tax Court in November. For the year 2004, the IRS decided that all the dependents that I listed should not count. Why? Who knows. The IRS has not seen fit to share their reasons.
So of course, I dreamed about my "closing arguments" which in best Hollywood fashion, would lead to the shocking embarassment of the Government Attorney. Well, this was my dream. I know in fact that the government attorney, as well as the judge know that the system is broken, and don't care. They know that they really want to get a nice fast settlement, or a conviction (or judgement) that doesn't look too bad on their records if against all odds I find a way to appeal. They will cheat as necessary to get it. The Government lawyer is probably the son in law of the Federal Tax Court Judge. I will probably be screwed to the tune of 10,000 dollars. There is no way around it, other than to pay 20,000 to a government certified lawyer, and have the appearance of being able to appeal.
It is interesting. The one place where the Government has the most control over the inmates is in prison. No pesky "rights", no need to give the serfs any freedom in return for a bit of productivity. Of course there is a book on how the Mexican Mafia has used the prison system as the basis for a nationwide system of intimidation. Government certified lawyers are a key link in this system bringing in drugs and information from the outside, and taking out orders to gang members and straphangers. The Government is completely unable to keep control of this limited artificial environment.
A close second to the violence of the Prison system is the Indian Reservation system, also under rather more than usual Government Control.
So based on these failures, some would have us turn our lives over to the Government.
My friend Marty got a letter from the Veterans Administration telling him he had an appointment with a doctor. Marty has to drive some 70 miles to get to his doctor's appointment. Included in the letter is a letter to another veteran who lives about 100 miles away, telling him of his appointment. This fellow has to drive 170 miles to his doctor's appointment.
It took Marty over 6 months after his operation before the VA decided that being slit from his guggle to his zatch (expression from "13 Clocks"!) meant that he was not capable of working, and hence "DISABLED".
Marty is supposed to get his dental care from the VA. Alas, the only VA dental service is in Sacramento, about 365 miles away.
So based on the model of VA as an efficient provider of health care services, some would have us turn all health care over to the Government.