Kansas Dept of Revenue Outsourcing is Self Immolating

by Allen Williams


In early July 2019 I received a notification from the Kansas Department of revenue that I had not paid my 2018 taxes amounting to $18.00!  Yes, you read that correctly as I owed no federal income taxes thanks to the Trump tax cut but the state of Kansas still manages to squeeze out revenue from its denizens despite zero liability on one’s federal return.

I had just 15 days to respond.  If I didn’t there was a list of options the agency could choose from including but not limited to:

·         File a tax warrant resulting in a lien on your assets

·         Levy your bank accounts

·         Garnish your wages

·         Seize your property including motor vehicles, boats and recreational vehicles

·         Suspend or revoke any liquor or dealer licenses you may hold

·         Refer your account to a private collection agency and a fee will be added to your account

Tax demand notification I received

So I phoned the agency to try and clear up the matter and as expected the system is fully automated.  I was immediately dumped into the queue with seven people ahead of me.  I continued holding until I was No 5 when suddenly a connection was made and I was on the line with someone from the revenue department who identified herself as Martha.

Before I could discuss the tax problem with Martha, I had to jump through a number of hoops to identify myself with name, address, telephone number, date of birth, SS number, etc.  It was unacceptable to give the agent my case number of 0101021941463 as I could be someone impersonating me trying to claim I paid the bill or to make arrangements to pay the delinquency.  Yes, these people really are that dense.

Tax bill due plus interest and penalties

Despite my having given this woman my check number, amount and the date that payment was made, Martha wanted a copy of the check with the department’s endorsement.  All that was really necessary was to do a system search for the check number and within minutes she would have been able to ascertain its disposition.  But that assumes these people are willing to assist taxpayers as well as the preexistence of adequate department infrastructure, e.g.: (1) the department is not understaffed  (2) Incompetence throughout the department is not a factor (3) a weaponized response via political referral  or previous encounter is not a factor.

I went to my bank with the same information I gave to Martha and in about ten minutes they discovered that KS revenue cashed my $18.00 check four days after I mailed my tax return on April 11th   but then failed to record it for whatever reason.  Obviously, the department of revenue has shorted its ability to monitor payments into the system and may not have had the means to verify my payment.  This is irresponsible. But given the dismal oversight in the department, the lack of vision and the stupid political decisions, I expect things to grow progressively worse in the future due to the state’s escalating debt. 

KS Dept of endorsement on my check dated 4/19/2019

I should note that the department t of revenue would easily have accepted a second check to settle my account but due to its outsourcing tax returns likely would have resulted in the same outcome.  The agency has little regard for the people it allegedly serves.

Kansas is a small state with a population of around 2,911,505 persons as of July 2918.  The state has a myriad of debt problems between funding public education and the Kansas Public Employees Retirement system (KPERS) and is desperate for money.

Kansas agency laid off dozens of employees last year. Now it wants them back   https://www.kansas.com/news/politics-government/article230757674.html#storylink=cpy

KDOR announced in May 2018 that it would eliminate 56 positions as part of a contract with CGI to provide professional services to operate, maintain, enhance and support the Department of Revenue’s tax systems… He said the state will own certain “deliverables” produced by CGI and reiterated that taxpayers won’t experience any disruptions.” Really? so what do you call the disruption I received from the Kansas Dept of Revenue.. an enhancement?  -  https://www.kansas.com/news/politics-government/article230757674.html

Despite increased computer technology the Kansas Department of Revenue is a poorly managed state agency. Contracting out services with increased liability for school lawsuits and public employees’ retirement obligations is a fool’s errand and has worsened the agency’s ability to perform.

Kansas is at the center of endless lawsuits over school funding and keeping the state employees retirement fund up to date  (https://business.ku.edu/sites/business.ku.edu/files/docs/pdfs/centers/bcae/TR%2017-0901--Underfunding%20KPERS%20%28Hall%29.pdf) such that there is little money for anything else. School funding in Kansas consumes over 51% of the state’s budget and taxpayers are on the hook for some 8 billion in unfunded actuarial liability for public employees.

Kansas currently features a per capita debt higher than the US average.“Overall, the State had used debt sparingly in prior decades and was previously considered a low debt state. Now we are a moderate debt state with Moody’s Net Tax Supported Debt of $1,575 per capita. The US average is $1,473…”-  https://www.kdfa.org/sites/default/files/uploaded_files/2017%20Debt%20Study%20Rev%200.pdf The media buffoons think that when a state’s per capita debt is higher than the US average, it’s a moderate debt state.

A commission consisting of four lawyers and four non lawyers selects the state’s Supreme Court justices who inure the school’s right to sue the state legislature. It’s a ‘win-win’ for special interests like Alan Rupe and associates who have made a career out of suing the state legislature over school funding.

Look for future difficulties in this haphazard agency chiefly due to good old boy politics and the state’s failure to get the Kansas Supreme court out of dictating school funding.


Federal Judge Tells Dems to Hit the Breaks

by Shane Ormond


A federal judge has ruled that Dem lawmakers don’t have the authority to sue Trump for declaring a national emergency (and not so subtly told them to stop crying to the courts about every little thing Trump does).

In the last few months, the Dems have been successfully leveraging the power of the courts to impede Trump, further investigations into his finances, and avoid ever having to speak to their Republican counterparts.

However, they hit their first major stumbling block yesterday, as a Trump appointed judge ruled they could not sue the president over a plan to divert $6.1 billion from the military to build his border wall.

The Dems argued that the lawsuit should be allowed on the grounds that 1) they had exhausted every other option. And 2) the emergency order violated the Constitution Appropriations Clause, which grants Congress authority over the allocation of federal funds.

Judge Trevor McFadden disagreed, writing that “while the Constitution bestows upon members of the House many powers, it does not grant them standing to (drag) the executive branch into court claiming a dilution of Congress’s legislative authority.”

He went on to say that a “lawsuit is not a last resort for the House,” pointing to “several political arrows in its quiver to counter perceived threats to its sphere of power.”

McFadden puts his finger on the key problem with modern American ultra-partisan politics here. There is no actual “politics” anymore.  No discussion. No deals. No compromises. None of the wheeling and dealing essential to making a two-party system work.

Instead, we have a bunch of idiots smashing their heads off each other and trying to circumvent the process with loopholes and legislative back alleys.

And all that gets us is a bunch of bumped noggins and a lot of very angry, frustrated, and exhausted people.

Even this decision doesn’t get actually get anyone anywhere. The funds for the wall have already been blocked by an Obama-appointed judge in California in a completely separate lawsuit.




The Kansas Supreme Court an Enemy of the People

by Allen Williams


Once again the Kansas Supreme court ‘Wizards of OZ’ defy logic with the latest ruling that personal autonomy guarantees the right to abortion.  It equally infers that I needn’t pay tribute to the Kansas Dept of Revenue.

The Kansas Supreme Court has ruled from  the “Declaration of Independence that recognized that certain rights predated the country.  The Declaration's "natural, inalienable rights," the Court said, included "personal autonomy" and therefore abortion.  Those 'unalienable  rights' come from God, they are not grandfathered in from some ancient culture predating America.

The so-called logic the court is trying to pawn off is: “Ancestors of Native Americans hunted elephants in Kansas 13,000 years ago. That’s thousands of years before Columbus arrived in 1492, thousands before the Vikings landed in Newfoundland.  And so it’s thousands of years before the Declaration of Independence to which my resounding ‘So What?’ is exclaimed.

This hare brained ruling is an effrontery to anyone who possesses the slightest semblance of intelligence except for the Kansas legislature who collectively lacks the sense to pour a well known liquid out of a boot.  It is the folly of this useless assembly that has allowed a band of robed oligarchs to enslave the citizens of this state with their pedagogical nonsense.

The court’s opinion that certain’ rights ‘predate the country’ means what?  It means that child sacrifice was practiced well before the nation was formed and that this exercise predates the constitution. But interestingly enough the court made no reference to the Declaration’s unalienable ‘right to life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness.  The principle justification for this malfeasant decision seems to be that ‘life’ is not the desire of the court but rather thinning of the North American population is of far greater importance than the antiquated notion of life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness.

This clown court doesn’t even bother to construct a viable legal rationale to support the decision but resorts to the alchemy of political obeisance to the eugenics coalition.  It is the greatest stretch of reason that has masqueraded as a legal decision since Dred Scott claimed Negroes were a separate class of persons and couldn’t be citizens.

It’s clear that Kansas is ruled by a junta of robed thugs whose gavel is for hire. It is an enemy of the people and precisely the kind of autocratic system you might expect from a cabal of lawyers who select the state’s judges as they earn their livelihood off the misfortunes of others.


Judicial nominee faces Senate scrutiny over Knights of Columbus membership

by Ed Condon


Washington D.C., Dec 21, 2018 / 02:00 pm (CNA).- A judicial nominee faced questions from Senators this month about whether membership in the Knights of Columbus might impede his ability to judge federal cases fairly. The Knights of Columbus say that no candidate for public office should have to defend his membership in a Catholic service organization.

Senators Mazie Hirono (D-HI) and Kamala Harris (D-CA) raised concerns about membership in the Knights of Columbus while the Senate Judiciary Committee reviewed the candidacy of Brian C. Buescher, an Omaha-based lawyer nominated by President Trump to sit on the United States District Court for the District of Nebraska.

Senators also asked whether belonging to the Catholic charitable organization could prevent judges from hearing cases “fairly and impartially.”

In written questions sent to Buescher by committee members Dec. 5, Sen. Hirono stated that “the Knights of Columbus has taken a number of extreme positions. For example, it was reportedly one of the top contributors to California’s Proposition 8 campaign to ban same-sex marriage.”

Hirono then asked Buescher if he would quit the group if he was confirmed “to avoid any appearance of bias.”

“The Knights of Columbus does not have the authority to take personal political positions on behalf of all of its approximately two million members,” Buescher responded.

“If confirmed, I will apply all provisions of the Code of Conduct for United States Judges regarding recusal and disqualification,” he said.

Kathleen Blomquist, spokesperson for the Knights of Columbus, told CNA that the senators’ questions echoed the kind of anti-Catholicism seen in previous generations of American history.

“Our country’s sad history of anti-Catholic bigotry contributed to the founding of the Knights of Columbus, and we are proud of the many Catholics who overcame this hurdle to contribute so greatly to our country,” Blomquist told CNA

“We were extremely disappointed to see that one’s commitment to Catholic principles through membership in the Knights of Columbus—a charitable organization that adheres to and promotes Catholic teachings—would be viewed as a disqualifier from public service in this day and age.”

President Trump nominated Buescher to serve on the U.S. District Court on Nov. 3. The Senate Judiciary Committee held a hearing on Buescher’s nomination Nov. 28, sending written questions to him on Dec. 5. 

The Knights of Columbus is active in 17 countries worldwide. In 2017, members carried out more than 75 million hours of volunteer work and raised more than $185 million for charitable purposes. Successive popes, including Pope Francis, have praisied the group for their charitable work and the manner in which they articulate Catholic faith and values.

In her questions to the nominee, Sen. Harris described the Knights as “an all-male society” and asked if Buescher was aware that the Knights of Columbus “opposed a woman’s right to choose” and were against “marriage equality” when he joined.

Responding to the senator’s questions, Buescher confirmed that he has been a member of the Knights since he was 18 years old, noting that his membership “has involved participation in charitable and community events in local Catholic parishes.”

“I do not recall if I was aware whether the Knights of Columbus had taken a position on the abortion issue when I joined at the age of 18,” he wrote in response.

Harris raised a statement from Supreme Knight Carl A. Anderson, who said that abortion constituted “the killing of the innocent on a massive scale” and asked Buescher if he agreed with Anderson.

Buescher said he was not responsible for drafting statements or policies made by the Knights and that, as a federal judge, he would consider himself bound by judicial precedent regarding abortion.

“I did not draft this language. If confirmed, I would be bound by precedent of the United States Supreme Court and the Eighth Circuit Court of Appeals and would not be guided by statements made by others,” Buescher told the senator.

Blomquist told CNA that asking a judicial nominee to defend his membership of a major Catholic charitable organization is disturbing.

“We believe that membership in the Knights of Columbus, which helps everyday men put their Catholic faith into action, is worthy of commendation and not something a nominee for public office should be asked to defend," she said.

In 2014, Buescher ran as a candidate in the Republican primary election for Nebraska attorney general. During that campaign he described himself as “avidly pro-life” and said that opposition to abortion was part of his “moral fabric.”

Senator Cory Booker (D-NJ) noted the nominee’s previously outspoken opposition to abortion and asked “why should a litigant in your courtroom expect to get a fair hearing from an impartial judge in a case involving abortion rights?”

Buescher responded that “as a candidate for Nebraska Attorney General in 2014, I did what candidates for any major state or federal office do, which is to take political positions on a variety of issues of the day.” 

“However, there is a difference between taking political positions as a candidate for elective office and serving as a federal judge. I believe a judge’s role and obligation is to apply the law without regard to any personal beliefs regarding the law,” Buescher wrote.

“If confirmed, I will faithfully apply all United States Supreme Court and Eighth Circuit Court of Appeals precedent on all issues, including Roe v. Wade."

Buescher also fielded questions from senators about Trump administration policy on Title X funding for clinics providing abortions and referrals, as well as on the application of anti-discrimination law to questions related to gender identity or sexual orientation.

The nominee underscored that, as a judge, it was not for him to advance personal or political opinions but to make fair and impartial rulings based on the law and judicial precedent. 

If confirmed by the Senate, Buescher will fill the vacancy left by Judge Laurie Smith Camp, who assumed senior status - a kind of judicial semi-retirement - on Dec. 1.

This story has been updated.






Hillary Caught Making Claim About Kavanaugh That Was Already Proven False by Fact-Checkers


by Randy DeSoto

Former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton doubled down Wednesday on a claim Sen. Kamala Harris made regarding Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh’s views on birth control that multiple fact-checkers have already determined to be false.

“I want to be sure we’re all clear about something that Brett Kavanaugh said in his confirmation hearings last week. He referred to birth-control pills as ‘abortion-inducing drugs,'” Clinton tweeted. “That set off a lot of alarm bells for me, and it should for you, too.”

“Kavanaugh didn’t use that term because he misunderstands the basic science of birth control—the fact that birth control prevents fertilization of eggs in the first place. He used that term because it’s a dog whistle to the extreme right,” she added.

Hillary Clinton‏Verified account @HillaryClinton Sep 12

I want to be sure we're all clear about something that Brett Kavanaugh said in his confirmation hearings last week. He referred to birth-control pills as "abortion-inducing drugs." That set off a lot of alarm bells for me, and it should for you, too.

20,281 replies 41,031 retweets 137,358 likes

Kavanaugh didn't use that term because he misunderstands the basic science of birth control—the fact that birth control prevents fertilization of eggs in the first place. He used that term because it's a dog whistle to the extreme right.

6:14 AM - 12 Sep 2018


The Washington Post awarded Harris with four Pinocchios for sharing a selectively edited video about Kavanaugh while arguing that he is “going after” birth control.

The California Democrat tweeted footage of an exchange Kavanaugh had with Republican Sen. Ted Cruz of Texas during the judge’s confirmation hearing last week before the Senate Judiciary Committee.

Cruz asked Kavanaugh about his dissent in the 2014 Priests for Life case before the Washington, D.C. Circuit Court of Appeals involving the Affordable Care Act’s contraception mandate.

The nominee answered by recounting the plaintiff priests’ position in the case regarding filling out a Department of Health and Human Services form to obtain a waiver from the contraception mandate, which, if accepted by HHS, required health insurance providers to offer the coverage free of charge to those who were interested.

Kavanaugh told Cruz, “They said filling out the form would make them complicit in the provision of the abortion-inducing drugs that they were, as a religious matter, objecting to.”

Harris’s video omitted Kavanaugh saying, “they said,” making it appear that he was offering a statement about his views on the matter, and even birth control more broadly.

Harris wrote of the exchange in a tweet on Friday.

Kamala Harris‏Verified account @SenKamalaHarris

Kavanaugh chooses his words very carefully, and this is a dog whistle for going after birth control. He was nominated for the purpose of taking away a woman’s constitutionally protected right to make her own health care decisions. Make no mistake - this is about punishing women.

11:45 AM - 7 Sep 2018
8,538 replies 15,061 retweets 

Here is Kavanaugh's full answer. There's no question that he uncritically used the term "abortion-inducing drugs," which is a dog whistle term used by extreme anti-choice groups to describe birth control.

Kavanaugh explained to Cruz that the reason he dissented in the case was based on the Supreme Court’s Burwell v. Hobby Lobby Stores decision, which found business owners have the right not to provide contraception coverage to employees if it runs contrary to their sincerely held religious beliefs.

It should be noted that Hobby Lobby’s owners did not object to providing birth control coverage, which they were in fact doing, but did object to providing contraceptives they believe cause abortions, including “morning-after pills” and two types of intrauterine devices.

There are 16 other FDA-approved contraception methods that the company did not object to, as they prevent the egg from being fertilized in the first place.

However, the four methods of contraception at issue in the case “may have the effect of preventing an already fertilized egg from developing any further by inhibiting its attachment to the uterus.” Thus, the concern was that by providing these abortifacients, they would be facilitating abortion.

After receiving significant criticism for her misleading tweet, Harris included Kavanaugh’s comments in context in a subsequent post, but argued, “There’s no question that he uncritically used the term ‘abortion-inducing drugs,’ which is a dog whistle term used by extreme anti-choice groups to describe birth control.”

The Washington Post was not buying the senator’s explanation.

“Harris’s decision to snip those crucial words (‘they said’) from her first post on the video is certainly troubling,” wrote Post fact-checker Glenn Kessler.

Regarding her follow up tweet, he added, “But there was no acknowledgment by Harris that the original tweet was misleading.”

Kessler concluded, “She earns Four Pinocchios — and her fellow Democrats should drop this talking point.”

Politifact also found Harris’ Twitter post in error.

“In Harris’ tweet, Kavanaugh appears to define contraception as abortion-inducing. But the video failed to include a crucial qualifier: ‘They said,’” Politifact reported.

“In fact, he was citing the definition of the religious group Priests for Life. He has not expressed his personal view,” the fact-checker added. “We rate this statement False.”


David French‏Verified account @DavidAFrench

David French Retweeted Hillary Clinton

Hillary Clinton comes barreling back into the conversation with a timely reminder that she’s one of the more prolific liars in modern American politics.

David French added,

Hillary ClintonVerified account @HillaryClinton
I want to be sure we're all clear about something that Brett Kavanaugh said in his confirmation hearings last week. He referred to birth-control pills as "abortion-inducing
drugs." That set off a lot of alarm bells for me, and it should for you, too.
Show this thread
7:18 AM - 12 Sep 2018
175 replies 652 retweets 2,373 likes

National Review’s David French chastised Clinton for grabbing onto Harris’ claim against Kavanaugh, which she should have known to be false.

He tweeted, “Hillary Clinton comes barreling back into the conversation with a timely reminder that she’s one of the more prolific liars in modern American politics.”