Main menu

Pam Olson II

(originally launched into cyberspace on 01/23/2003)

Dear List Subscriber,

My previous message mentioned Pam Olson, and a bunch of you responded by
asking who Pam Olson is. Pam Olson is the current Assistant Secretary of
the Treasury for Tax Policy. While that title sounds fairly obscure, it's
actually the highest office at Treasury that has "hands-on" dealings with
the federal income tax regulations. Of all the government officials who
actually have a reason to understand the regulations, SHE is now at the top.

Here is the government page about the "Tax Policy" office:

And here is the page about Ms. Olson herself:

Shortly after she took office (after her predecessor unexpectedly and
inexplicably resigned... after someone pestered him about 861 for a year or
so), several HUNDRED people sent her letters asking her to answer a few
polite questions about how we should determine our taxable income. That
letter can be seen here:

Now, nearly three months later, as far as I can tell she didn't send anyone
any answers at all (not even bad ones). Keep in mind, she has immediate
access to ALL Treasury lawyers, and just about everyone else in the IRS or
the Treasury Department (she used to work for IRS Chief Counsel). If anyone
has the resources to answer the questions, it's her. So why the silence?
(You decide.)

Anyway, it's time to send the follow-up letter to Ms. Olson, to ask her YET
AGAIN to answer the questions. Here is the new letter:

Please note that this letter is written so that ANYONE can send it. It
doesn't matter whether you sent the first one; it doesn't matter if you know
anything about 861, or if you agree with it or not. Basically, there is
only ONE thing that matters: do you think the government should answer
polite, reasonable questions about what its own laws require? If so, then
by all means please send her the letter.

All you need to do is put in the date at the top of the letter, your name
and address at the bottom, and then print out three copies (or four if you
want to keep a hard copy for yourself). The main letter goes to Ms. Olson,
whose address is shown at the top of the letter, and copies should also be
sent to the two addresses shown at the bottom of the letter. (Note: Be sure
to include the third page--the six questions--with the letters.)

Also, if you do send the letter and want to be included on the list of those
who have sent it, please let me know your initials, the state you're in, and
the date the letter was sent, in this format:

"L.R. (PA) 1/22/03"

The whole endeavor should cost you about a buck in postage, and maybe ten
minutes to print the thing out. Can you think of any reason NOT to do it?
If you read the letter, you'll find it to be very polite and reasonable, and
I don't think anyone should be too embarassed or afraid to send it. (It
doesn't even say you AGREE with the issue; just that you think the questions
should be answered.) If you can't think of a reason not to, please put
together the letters and send them out now, while you're still thinking
about it. This WILL be worth it in the long run, even if she never answers.


Larken Rose
This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

(P.S. This is the last time we nicely ask Ms. Olson to answer. If she does
not respond this time, it will be time to turn up the heat. If she thinks
that this will just blow over, and that no one will notice that she isn't
doing her job, she is sadly mistaken. As one possibility, maybe she would
like to see a full-page ad in the Washington Times containing the above
letter to her.)

(P.P.S. For those of you who for whatever reason can't print out the letter
yourself, I'll soon post a way you can have them printed for you. And for
any who want to volunteer to print out copies for other people, please send
me an e-mail saying so.)