Tea Party Warrior: Report Medical Marijuana Clubs to the IRS and Get Rich

Categories: Marijuana
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Paul Chabot Wants YOU to Call the IRS on Pot Clubs
For Paul Chabot, the War on Drugs is personal indeed: Before he became a Navy man, a campus cop, and a former National Drug Control Policy staffer, he was in drug rehab for alcohol and marijuana addiction himself -- at the young age of 12, according to his online bio.

In his latest tactical maneuver in the marijuana war, however, San Bernardino County's Chabot is aiming not at the children or our lapsed morals -- he's going right for our checkbooks.

Californians -- and "every dad, mom and other citizen who has been affected by pot stores and drug legalization tactics" should become "IRS Pot Store Whistle-blowers," according to an e-mail Chabot sent Monday to the Coalition for a Drug Free California's e-mail list. The e-mail came under the subject line: "Call the IRS and you could earn millions!"

"By simply reporting a pot store to the IRS, average citizens who are fed up with these domestic marijuana cartels can now fill out a very simple form," wrote the proud Tea Partier. He added that, since California has "10,000 pot stores," the pickings are far from slim.

"If the IRS takes action and fines the pot store, the Whistle-blower, by law is entitled to a 30% cash award," he said.

There's a lot to chew on here, from a Tea Partier advocating big government and taxation, to a Ph.D.-holder overstating the number of pot clubs in California by a factor of 10. But all that, and the morals of reporting one's neighbors to higher authority as a common practice aside, there's a serious glitch in Chabot's scheme: It doesn't work.

While he mentions neither the dispensary, nor the wrinkle in the tax code by name, Chabot refers to Oakland's Harborside Health Center and its ongoing battle with the IRS. The short-version is that the dispensary wants to claim the cost of its goods -- in this case, medical marijuana -- as a business expense on its federal tax forms and thus not be subject to taxation (just as any other widget-seller would do). the cost of staff salaries, medical care, and other services.

The IRS cited section 280E of the tax code, in which sales of illegal drugs cannot be deducted as a business expense, when it slapped Harborside with a $2.4 million overdue tax bill. While several members of Congress have moved to ensure 280E is not used on medical marijuana dispensaries, this case is currently in the courts.

Meanwhile, Chabot wants you to ponder the opportunities 280E has for the unwashed masses. Just think what would happen if YOU were the Johnny Citizen who informed the feds of Harborside's misdeeds! "If this was a whistle-blower case, the whistle-blower would get 30% of the 2.4 million which is roughly $700,000 in your pocket," he wrote.

Or not at all. Even if a private citizen were to eventually succeed in collecting a payment from the IRS as a "thank you" for corraling a tax scofflaw -- which would be a feat in itself -- it would take much, much more than a phone call informing the taxman that a pot store exists to qualify for a whistle-blower reward, according to Henry Wykowski, a former U.S. attorney who headed the Northern District of California's efforts to prosecute tax evaders.

"If this is true, I should be on the phone every day, calling the IRS and reporting every small business up and down the street in the hopes that they audit them," Wykowski said. "[Chabot] misstates the basics of the [whistleblower] program.... You have to go to the IRS with credible information."

A whistleblower needs to present the IRS with actual information, such as ledgers, receipts, or other information that the IRS can use to instigate a successful investigation, Wykowski said. In other words, a phone call or a letter informing the IRS of the existence of a business -- a business that pays its taxes -- won't cut it. All the less so considering that these are businesses that file unchallenged tax returns -- it's the tax law itself that's at issue, not medical marijuana dispensaries' returns.

Chabot did not immediately respond to our multiple e-mails or telephone calls left Monday, but we'll let you know if we hear back.

There's also the issue of his faulty math. Prior to the federal government's months-long coordinated shutdown of state-legal medical marijuana dispensaries across California, there were roughly 1,000 dispensaries in operation, according to Kris Hermes, a spokesman for Americans for Safe Access. Figures provided by the Board of Equalization, which collects sales taxes from dispensaries, are similar -- so how Chabot arrived at the notion that there are 10,000 dispensaries "in California alone" is a mystery.

"We're concerned that people like Chabot would act with such venom and disdain against the state's most vulnerable -- our sick," Hermes said. "Where are the patients who cannot grow medical marijuana themselves, or find someone skilled to grow it for them supposed to safely and legally obtain it?"

This use of big government to eradicate otherwise legal businesses would also put Chabot at odds with at least one other California politician who identifies with the Tea Party: San Francisco's own John Dennis, whose small government bent leans libertarian.

"It's such a cynical thing," Wykowski added. "'Snitch off your neighbors, and get a reward?' Fascism, I think it's called."

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48 comments
bong422
bong422

Someone notify The Onion and let them know one of their writers has escaped. He appears to be armed and should be considered extremely dangerous. You should be able to distract him with a small shiny object until the nice men in white jackets arrive from the psych ward.

Oweejay
Oweejay

What a scumbag!!!!  Where are all these "Drug Warriors" when it comes to drugs that are already legal and cause exponentially more harm than all the illegal ones combined?!!?!?!!?  Happily attending Happy-hour to chase down their Xanax I would imagine.....

dragosdydy
dragosdydy

I was a drug addict too! But now i have a new life, thanks to some tips that me and my friend realised everyone can do to start a new life and let the weed and other stuff behind. Just follow http://quitmarijuana.nightwin.... and get a new life!

Jah know
Jah know

Someone get a gang of thugs and go after people like Chabot! We need to eliminate and lock up crazy people like him!

Jesper Kristensen
Jesper Kristensen

So ... REAL cartels in Mexico + drug warrior mindset = civil war with 40,000 or more dead, while dispensaries in California that are NOT cartels by any definition  = relief, dignity and care for our citizens who have become ill. Is there even a contest? And Chabot wants to dismantle the US system?

I wonder if Chabot got his drugs from such pot dispensaries to sustain his habit as a very young man, and whether it was the criminalization that really got him the help he needed when he was at his most vulnerable?

There are of course a select few who happens to get a lucky break after being arrested, and a few of those just come out feeling more dignified after the arrest, aggressive interrogation, body cavity searches and releated humiliations that leave most with serious mental health issues that are much worse than anything the drug could have done by itself.

Going with the empirical data from Portugal, where all drugs were decriminalized in 2001, many more actually got into rehab and the debut age has moved upwards, and lives were saved. Check out the findings in Glenn Greenwald's report from the Cato Institute, a real libertarian think tank that's not just a moralistic, conservative, holier-than-thou Big Government wolf in Tea Party clothes.

Mitchell McAleer
Mitchell McAleer

Call Chabot's office and let him know you think he's a douchebag, and a retard for wanting to hand legal California medical marijuana business back to the mexican mafia. :

Phone(909) 457- 4120 office

Email

info@paulchabot.com

joeyrockx
joeyrockx

The title should have been more fitting, something like "when an idiot speaks"...

niemo99
niemo99

"Justice is what we deserve! Mercy...is in not getting it."

Meaning that every cocksure DrugWarrior defecator of holier-than-thou wisdom who hypocritically thinks they have the moral horsepower to wield the Sword of Justice, should hope that after drug prohibition ends there might not be some kind of Truth and Reconciliation Committee afterward to determine what punishments should be meted out to those who thought they were in the right in destroying their neighbor's lives under 'color of law'. When that sword finally changes hands, may they feel it's razor-sharp edge.

Unlike last time (alcohol Prohibition), with scores of millions of people who've been harmed vastly more by the laws he so favors than the drugs themselves, such a committee will see no end of potential cases, as it must be made very clear to government that in the future the people will no longer tolerate any such inroads upon their freedoms such as drug prohibition has caused.

THChemist
THChemist

PhD?  HA, Chabot has an EdD, which can be bought, i.e. NO: publications, reviews, or defense......An EdD is a "doctorate" for dummies.....

rsteeb
rsteeb

Difficult to avoid Godwin's Law in describing this putz.  Get a clue, Chabot.  Cannabis prohibition is a doomed anachronistic atrocity.

Aaron Foster
Aaron Foster

Anyone recall the Hitler Youths?  I know that sounds extreme, but it was the first thing that came to mind.  It doesn't make me think of a neighborhood watch.  Support for Marijuana prohibition supports the very people Paul Chabot would want in jail (the gangs and drug cartels).  A legalized MJ industry ultimately takes away 60% of the profits from Drug Cartels, brings legal jobs and farming to the United States, and provides a legal, safe, regulated supply for a substance that has a demand that isn't going away.  

If you want to see how vile and disgusting the start of Marijuana prohibition was, read the following http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/H...  The really bad stuff comes about 1/2 way through the section I've referenced. 

Travis Miller
Travis Miller

Hey Chabot you know what would be great? If you licked my butt hole. "Snaps"

Danny Hoardern
Danny Hoardern

The picture says it all.   Paul obviously loves his gun and wants more opportunities to use it against anyone - including pot smokers.  This is extremely selfish and ignores any medical benefits.  This gives away some clue as why police enjoy prohibition - it gives them something to do.

20 million Americans have been arrested for pot.  We the people demand politicians divert policing from pot related crimes to more serious crimes (such as rape, violence, etc.) and introduce more patrols to prevent these crimes from happening in the first place.

The unstoppable tide of support for legalization will ensure that individuals like Paul go the way of the dinosaur.

SPENCER SPAGGIARI
SPENCER SPAGGIARI

drug addict? bud is no drug this guys full of shit and shuda never been allowed to wear that uniform and these local cartels is a stereotype americas trying to crack down on rather then these mexican cartels that use our homeland for cultivation operations to fund real drug operations cocaine, heroin, and meth this guy and america can fuck off secure our borders and get off the struggling americans who only smoke and grow for medical purposes, rather than profile us in the emerald triangle as cartels. if the feds wouldn't get so much money from the real cartels they'd make it a priority and let us deal with the stress by sparking a joint or two. idiots like this are nothing short of j.edgar hoover power hungry sons of bitchs looking to abuse their power for their own personal reasons.

Boomer Shannon
Boomer Shannon

Tisk tisk tisk... Shame on Chabot!

I have had the pleasure of meeting Paul Chabot on multiple occasions, from Tea party rallies in parking lots, to MMJ hearings at county supervisors meetings. He is a very nice guy until you ask him about the issues, immigration, marriage rights, the relationship between a patient and a doctor are all places we should welcome the guys with a badge and gun if you were to ask him. FAR from the limited governmet stance he pontificates for; to approach a conservative issue in terms of public safety, and to turn around a propose that we use violence to solve it? That IS NOT my limited government.That IS NOT my compassion.

May Paul Chabot fall into the worlds largest vat of medicated brownie mix; so the world may be a safer place!

Thinking Clearly
Thinking Clearly

This is the same type of logic used in all police states. Common sense has gone out the window.

Time for this storm trooper to retire before you or someone else's grandparents end up on his most wanted list.

Steve
Steve

Dear Mr. Chabot, please see each and every comment below (and later, above) in order to put the full measure of your sick mind in perspective.

MeMyselfandI
MeMyselfandI

I see a lot of bradley manning in his smile... Another scumbag traitor.

Sean
Sean

This guy is not a Tea Partier.  Please don't ever refer to him as such again. The Tea Party wants a return to the fundamentals of the Constitution. Considering Thomas Jefferson was against Prohibition of any kind, it would be like saying David Koresh and Jim Jones were good Christians.

Kevin Vincent
Kevin Vincent

Oh, my! Look at the BIG MAN with his BIG GUN! Fucking douchebag.

Dave K
Dave K

Tying his name to the Tea Party is making him a mammoth sized hypocrite of the worst kind. 

Duncan20903
Duncan20903

Paul Chabot being dishonest? Wow, like that's unexpected.

Andrew Glazier
Andrew Glazier

Teap party want's smaller government and less regulation and taxation. This guy is not an activist, he is a fascist prick.

malcolmkyle
malcolmkyle

Paul Chabot, you are an unashamed supporter of the longest, most costly, and most futile war in American history. The prejudices and fears that you exhibit bear scant relation to reality. As a self-appointed hypocritical moralist you have aligned yourself with terrorists, criminals and all the other scum of the earth - such as political demagogues, corrupt government agencies, fear-mongering, soulless media moguls, and all other forces of ignorance and arrogance.

How is it even possible that you fail to understand that prohibition - just like it's counter-part in the 1920s - has created massive amounts of destruction to all aspects of our society?

How can you not desire a saner policy, one that's based on facts rather than reefer madness?

And how dare you refuse to help undo the massive amount of damage caused by this dangerous and failed policy?

Chabot, your beloved Prohibition has finally run it's course. The lives and livelihoods of tens of millions of Americans have been destroyed or severely disrupted, and what was once a shining beacon of liberty and prosperity has become a toxic, repressive, smoldering heap of hypocrisy and a gross affront to fundamental human decency.

Do you honestly believe that the rest of us are willing to sacrifice even more of our precious hard-earned tax dollars and civil liberties on this pointless exercise of whacking ourselves with ever-bigger and more-repressive prohibition hammers while drug use and availability keeps going up, not down, and while we all plunge deeper into Loserville?

Timothy
Timothy

Perhaps his issue isn't with drugs so much as it is his ability to moderate the level of stupidity in his life. I'm sure he would have loved life under the KGB. Maybe he should think some additionally therapy the ability to be tolerant of those who think different isn't such a bad thing. He is more of a douche bag than a tea baggerI think.

Q_1984and666A_1776
Q_1984and666A_1776

Ron Paul started the Tea-party, Ron Paul wants to END THE WAR ON PEOPLE WHO USE SOME DRUGS. Chabot is a TEA-BAGGER, anyone who wants smaller government except when it comes to drugs is a BRAINWASHED WHORE FOR THE SYSTEM.

Diane Goldstein
Diane Goldstein

Chabot is as misguided as the Drug Czar and fed's are. If he was alive in the 1300's he would have been an inquisitor. It is zealots like this that are a danger both to our communities, but to public safety as well. I am sorry that he was a drug addict at 13, maybe that has more to do with his parents, then with cannabis.

Bill Lopez
Bill Lopez

this is why we need California initiative to regulate marijuana like wine,to take the power away from the storm troopers and there leaders,over 62% of California support decriminalization of marijuana,how some one like this can remain in power just shows how bad things have come

David
David

 Well said!

MrEricSir
MrEricSir

Deregulation and regressive taxation is the first step toward corporate fascism.

Dave Carroll
Dave Carroll

No it isn't. Bailouts and regulatory agents that can knock out big business' competitors are the ingredients for what you call corporate fascism which is what we have now. Deregulation and low taxes are the makings for free market capitalism, the system which has benefited the common person to the greatest extent ever in human history.

MrEricSir
MrEricSir

That's the most ignorant statement I've heard all day. Seriously, study history before making such an obviously idiotic assertion.

MrEricSir
MrEricSir

 Thanks for proving my point for me.

MrEricSir
MrEricSir

So your name is intended to be ironic, I take it?  Or are you just trolling?

MrEricSir
MrEricSir

Right, because being against corporate fascism is a "diatribe."  Good thinking there, you must be VERY smart.

Duncan20903
Duncan20903

About as much as whacko diatribes advocating progressive taxation and government micromanagement of our lives.

MrEricSir
MrEricSir

 And what does that have to do with any of this?

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