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Geithner nod mocks the tenet that ‘character counts’ February 5, 2009

Posted by Daniel Downs in Barak Obama, Congress, morality, news, politics, taxes.
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Today, I want to share an excerpt from a recent editorial by Will Hall of the Baptist Press. Hall’s observations are pertinent to the crisis of our day. Our crisis is much more than a economic recession, bad political decision-making; it is a flaw in our national character, as Hall points out in what follows.

In “The Republic,” Plato shares a tale about the “Ring of Gyges” as a means to catalyze discussion about how men behave when not observed, and he uses this story to throw out the proposition in his “dialog” with Socrates that only fear of punishment prevents people from behaving unjustly.

The details of Timothy Geithner’s stealing from the government would seem to confirm this notion.

Please know when I describe Geithner’s failure to pay his taxes as “theft” I am not making a legal assertion but a moral observation. The facts speak for themselves: He stole from the U.S. Treasury.

Before serving as the president of the Federal Reserve Bank of New York just prior to becoming secretary of the U.S. Treasury, Geithner was an employee of the International Monetary Fund, a lending and financing organization which claims 185 member countries. Although it is based in Washington, D.C. the IRS treats it as a foreign embassy with regard to taxes. Consequently, the IMF does not withhold payroll taxes for Social Security and Medicare from its American employees’ paychecks. However, it pays those workers an amount equal to what an American employer would pay on behalf of its workers … and the IMF gives quarterly statements alerting its American employees to their U.S. tax liabilities.

While at the IMF, from 2001-2004, Geithner paid his state and federal taxes but he failed to pay about $34,000 in Social Security and Medicare taxes, pocketing the extra cash the IMF had paid him to help him cover this obligation. An IRS audit in 2006 caused him to cough up the overdue taxes for 2003 and 2004, but a 3-year statute of limitations kept the IRS from collecting what was due for 2001 and 2002, and Geithner chose not to do the right thing and pay up even though he was notified of his delinquency for the extra two years.

Simply put, he showed no character.

He finally made good for the remaining balance just days before he was named for the Treasury post — only after the Obama transition team learned about his failure.

Now he heads the very organization which has oversight of the IRS, and he has been appointed to a position which will play a critical role in responding to the economic crisis in our country, even though he has proved himself not worthy of the public’s trust.

Senator Robert Byrd, D.-W.Va., summed it up in a nutshell, “Had [Geithner] not been nominated for treasury secretary, it’s doubtful he would have ever paid those taxes,” and the venerable Democrat voted against Geithner’s nomination.

You can read the rest of Will Hall’s editorial by going to http://www.bpnews.net



1. Tom Awtry - February 10, 2009

I feel the stimulus package is in good hands with Timothy Geithner, Treasury Secretary and away from the former Secretary Paulson who basically ripped the American people off with his bad, unquestionable investments with our tax payer money.


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