This is an opinion column.
If there’s one thing we need more of in 2021, it’s privacy. Yet the Biden administration would like to strip us of a little more of that with a proposal that would require financial institutions to report transactions of $600 or more to the IRS.
I think I’ll pass, Joe.
IRS regulations already require your bank to report on you every time you move more than $10,000. But lowering that threshold down to $600 gets the government into every mid-level spending decision you ever make.
In this, as in all things–information is power.
Fortunately, Senator Tommy Tuberville is working to block this gross overreach by introducing the Protect the Financial Privacy Act. This legislation would prohibit the IRS from requiring financial institutions to report the financial transaction data of their customers in addition to what is already required by the Bank Secrecy Act.
It’s none of the IRS’s business if I buy a new rug for my living room, or book a flight to see my nephew on the west coast, or buy my daughter a special dress for a formal occasion. It’s none of their business if I give a friend in need a financial gift.
It’s none of their business if I buy a new lawn mower or contract with a local business to obtain some service I need.
Our freedom as Americans is grounded in privacy. The more we are forced to share with the government, the more power they have to leverage that information to deprive us of our dollars through future taxation or track our movements and participation in the marketplace. In a million different ways, privacy protects liberty.
Senatorial candidate Katie Britt has taken a strong stand against this proposal, as well, vowing to fight to keep our banking private if elected. Both she and Tuberville are keenly aware of the ramifications of this type of government intrusion and focused on raising enough sand in the public square to stop it.
We should all hope they are successful.
Dana Hall McCain writes about faith, culture, and public policy for AL.com. You can follow her on Twitter @dhmccain.
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