Michael Bolton Serenades The IRS: You’re The Anus Of Our Country

Sir Michael Bolton reminds us all that without taxes, we can't pay the salary of Colorado National Parks procurement assistant Brian Reed.

Sir Michael Bolton reminds us all that without taxes, we can’t pay the salary of Colorado National Parks procurement assistant Brian Reed.

Since 2010, Congress has cut the budget for the IRS by around 20%, resulting in thousands of jobs being cut and millions of Americans unable to get much-needed help with their tax returns this year. This has had the effect of just making some people hate the IRS even more than they already did, but is this a case of kicking a man when he’s down?

On HBO’s Last Week Tonight, John Oliver tried to make the case that there are plenty of reasons to dislike the IRS, but that cutting the agency’s funding is only hurting taxpayers.

“Is it any wonder that everyone hates the IRS? Dealing with them is obligatory; it often functions badly and it combines two of the things we hate most in life — someone taking our money and math,” explains Oliver, before pointing out that two of the reasons so many people dislike the IRS — high taxes and a byzantine, constantly changing tax code — actually come from Congress and not the IRS.

“Blaming the IRS because you hate paying your taxes is a bit like slapping your checkout clerk because the price of eggs has gone up,” he says. “It’s not her fault; she’s just trying to help you get out of the store.”

The recent cuts in staff and resources for the IRS means there’s an increased chance of individuals and businesses failing to comply with their tax obligations, whether it’s through deliberate deception or from not having access to needed assistance.

IRS Commissioner John Koskinen recently testified before Congress that even a 1% decrease in tax compliance translates to a $30 billion annual loss in revenue for the government.

“I’m not saying the IRS is a likable organization, but not everything that’s important is likable,” says Oliver. “Think of our government as a body. The IRS is the anus. It’s nobody’s favorite part, but you need that thing working properly or everything goes to sh*t real quick.”

To drive the point home, he brought out Michael “I celebrate the guy’s entire catalog” Bolton to serenade the IRS with “a song of reluctant support for their appropriate funding” to the tune of his 1989 hit “How Am I Supposed to Live Without You?”

Here are some choice lyrics from the song:

“I guess you make people angry/ with the things you do and say/ ‘cause you make us give our money straight to you.

“But we need you real bad though it’s clear nobody really likes you/ you’re the anus of our country don’t you know?”

“You never miss your anus ’til it’s gone.”

“How are we supposed to live without you? We cut and cut your budgets ’til you bleed.

“How are we supposed to live without you? How will we pay for everything we need? Like Colorado National Parks procurement assistant Brian Reed.”

“How are we supposed to carry on… when the only way to practically collect revenue under our current governmental system pending a significant overhaul of the tax code which seems unlikely at best is gone?”

Want more consumer news? Visit our parent organization, Consumer Reports, for the latest on scams, recalls, and other consumer issues.