NYT buries lede … in the lede!

Mickey Kaus Columnist
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Where they least expect to find it! Here is the first paragraph of that allegedly exculpatory NYT story on the IRS’s Cincinnati office:

“During the summer of 2010, the dozen or so accountants and tax agents of Group 7822 of the Internal Revenue Service office in Cincinnati got a directive from their manager. A growing number of organizations identifying themselves as part of the Tea Party had begun applying for tax exemptions, the manager said, advising the workers to be on the lookout for them and other groups planning to get involved in elections.” [E.A.]

Maybe I’m missing something, but how does this squelch the scandal? An IRS “manager” told the lower level agents to give extra scrutiny to Tea Party groups. What more do you need? Smoking gun, hiding in plain sight. Who was this manager person, and did someone higher up direct him to give that “directive”? The NYT‘s piece proceeds to mostly ignore these questions. But wherever the chain of command stops–that’s where you can look for politicization, no?

The poor overworked “specialists” of Cincinnati may be off the hook. But their managers, and their managers’ managers, aren’t. The NYT‘s lead doesn’t need to be followed down into the cubicles. It needs to be followed up. …

Update:  Here’s a fairly prominent example of someone ignoring the implications of the NYT‘s first paragraph and instead citing the rest of the story’s depiction of an “overwhelmed IRS office in Cincinatti” to pooh pooh the potential scandal. …

Update 2: Doing the jobs the NYT won’t doAllahpundit looks for the “mystery” manager in the IG’s report. …

Mickey Kaus