North Shaft, MN (LEAK) – A spokesman for the Internal Revenue Service announced today that Kris Kringle, popularly known as Santa Claus, will be "thoroughly and completely audited – and quite probably billed and fined for the sins of Christmas past."
The announcement came at the climax of the controversial IRS crackdown on such previously sacrosanct figures as the Easter Bunny, the Tooth Fairy, and the Little Red Hen. "The others were just small fry," said Jack Squeeze, the IRS's Chief Auditor, "but Kringle is the biggie and we're ready to go in for the kill."
Despite popular opposition to the IRS's "Round 'Em Up Program" (REUP), Squeeze said that there was plenty of Congressional support for REUP and that the Scrooge administration had given the go-ahead signal. "Kringle has lots of explaining to do," Squeeze said, "and he'd better come with plenty of lawyers and accountants or he's liable to spend next Christmas in the slammer. This man, acknowledged to be an American citizen, has for over a century now given away goods and services worth literally billions of dollars – enough to sink the national debt – but he's never filed a single tax return or made the slightest explanation of where his money comes from."
A spokesman for Kringle, who is vacationing in Canada, said the IRS could "go take a flying leap," and that Kringle and his vast philanthropic organization, the Claus Foundation, would not cooperate in any way with the audit. "Mr Kringle feels that the IRS has overstepped its bounds and that the Foundation has no obligation to answer their questions," said John Goodsugar, the spokesman. "And while Mr Kringle doesn't wish to be identified with the Tax Rebellion movement directly, he wants it known that it has his sympathy and that its Christmas stockings will be filled this year with goodies that might otherwise have gone to Jack Squeeze and his henchmen."
In a related story, public outrage continues to build over the firing of Bob Cratchett from his post with the IRS Records Department. Crachett, whose job it was to keep handwritten copies of key documents in case of computer failure, was fired late last week when his job was classified as one that could be filled by the new IRS Inhumanoid robots. A large angry mob has surrounded the IRS Fortress Building in Maryland, chanting "Crachett, Crachett, Crachett" and refusing to allow anyone in or out of the building.
President Scrooge, vacationing in Australia, was quoted as saying that he didn't give a damn about Crachett, Kringle, or the Kitchen Sink as long as he's left alone to enjoy himself at the taxpayers' expense. "Arrest them all and let the Supreme Court sort 'em out," Scrooge commented. "I'll be back next Spring when the weather's better and the filing date has passed."