Juxtaposition Of The Day

March 1st, 2010at 06:57pm Posted by Eli

Today’s NYT Op-Ed page:

It is not unusual for members of Congress to arrange group rentals in Washington to share housing costs…. What is highly unusual, and unjustifiable, is the tax-exempt status as a religious institution enjoyed by a boarding house called the C Street Center that caters to conservative Christian lawmakers.

The $1.8 million townhouse came to public notice last year when three recent tenants — Senator John Ensign; Mark Sanford, the South Carolina governor and former congressman; and former Representative Charles Pickering Jr. — were embroiled in marital infidelity scandals. Mr. Pickering was accused by his estranged wife of entertaining a mistress at the house.

The center soon lost most of its city tax exemption, after District of Columbia officials decided it was a residence, not a church. And now a coalition of mainline Christian ministers is demanding that the Internal Revenue Service end the center’s federal tax exemption and its shield of nontransparency. The coalition is rightly concerned that the center is exploiting, and thereby cheapening, the constitutional protections guaranteed legitimate religious institutions.

The Week profile of Joseph Stack:

Why was Stack so furious at the IRS?
He was apparently busted in the 1980s for claiming his home was a church to avoid taxation — a protest scheme he says cost him “$40,000+” and “10 years of my life.”

Not that I’m trying to compare conservative Republicans to a crazy man who hated taxes so much that he flew his plane into an IRS building, of course.  That would be uncivil.

Entry Filed under: Corruption/Cronyism,Religion,Republicans,Wankers


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