Team Kimberlin Post of the Day


Here’s a Yours Truly, Johnny Atsign episode that first ran six years ago today. It shows how costly the failure to think through the possible consequences of a lie can be.

* * * * *

Johnny Atsign Logo 2ANNOUNCER: From Westminster, it’s time for—

SOUND: Skype rings once.

JOHNNY: Johnny Atsign.

RULE FIVE GIRL: (Telephone Filter) Hello, Johnny.

JOHNNY: Well, hello.

RULE FIVE GIRL: (Telephone Filter) Johnny, The Grouch is at it again.

JOHNNY: What now?

RULE FIVE GIRL: (Telephone Filter) He says he’s suing a whole bunch of bloggers for defamation.

JOHNNY: Uh, huh.

RULE FIVE GIRL: (Telephone Filter) And he’s filing for pauper status.

JOHNNY: Really? I didn’t know he was that poor.

MUSIC: Theme up and under.

ANNOUNCER: The Lickspittle Broadcasting System presents W. J. J. Hoge in the transcribed adventures of the man with the action-packed Twitter account, America’s fabulous free-lance Internet investigator …

JOHNNY: Yours Truly, Johnny Asign!

MUSIC: Theme up to music out.

JOHNNY: The following is partial extract of the tweets sent and received during my investigation of Short-Fused Dud Matter.

JOHNNY TWEETS: (SYNTH VOICE) Hey, @BeanCounter, how poor do you have to be to be a pauper in federal court?

BEANCOUNTER TWEETS: (SYNTH VOICE) @JohnnyAtsign Below the federal poverty line.

JOHNNY: The Grouch had filed a lawsuit in federal court accusing a group of bloggers of defaming him. He claimed that he couldn’t afford the $400 filing fee and asked the court to allow him to proceed in forma pauperis—in the manner of a pauper. He had to file a financial statement as part of that application. I sent a copy of his application and a copy of his 2013 Form 1040A that he had published online to my accountant. After giving him a day to look the documents over, I stopped by to see what he’d found.

BEANCOUNTER: Hey, Johnny. Come on it. I guess you’re here about that tax return and the in forma pauperis application.

JOHNNY: Yeah. What did you find?

BEANCOUNTER: First of all, didn’t you say this guy had published a bunch of books?

JOHNNY: They’re not exactly best sellers.

BEANCOUNER: OK, but if he’d even sold one it should have generated some income. Nothing’s reported on the 1040A.

JOHNNY: He says he donates it all to charity.

BEANCOUNTER: It doesn’t matter. He’s supposed to report it. Then it’s either covered by taking the standard deduction or by an itemized deduction. No, unless he didn’t sell any books last year, he’s underreporting his income.

JOHNNY: Why am I not shocked?

BEANCOUNTER: OK. Look at this line on the court form. He says his monthly income is about 2400 bucks. That’s just under 29,000 a year.

JOHNNY: Uh, huh.

BEANCOUNTER: Now, look at lines 12a and 14a on his IRS form. They add up to just over 41,000.

JOHNNY: Hold it. No one overstates his income to the IRS.

BEANCOUNTER: I certainly never advise my clients to do so.

JOHNNY: So you’re saying that either he overstated his income to the IRS or he didn’t tell the truth to the court? Couldn’t some of the income on the 1040A be his wife’s?

BEANCOUNTER: Could be, but he’s supposed to divulge her income to the court. Look at the spouse column on the court form.

JOHNNY: All zeros.

BEANCOUNTER: This guy’s got some explaining to do.

ANNOUNCER: Are you a loyal supporter of Team Lickspittle? While there’s a lot of neat stuff to spend your money on at The Hogewash Store, sometimes you have to buy something useful. When that happens, feel free to hit the Tip Jar.

SOUND: Skype rings once.

JOHNNY: Johnny Atsign.

RULE FIVE GIRL: (Telephone Filter) Hi, Johnny.

JOHNNY: Well, hello.

RULE FIVE GIRL: (Telephone Filter) The Grouch says that he’s dropping his suit.

JOHNNY: That’s probably a wise thing for him to do.

RULE FIVE GIRL: (Telephone Filter) Yeah. His complaint doesn’t really hold together. It’s just so much of his usual bull.

JOHNNY: Girl, you don’t know the half of it.

RULE FIVE GIRL: (Telephone Filter) What do you mean?

JOHNNY: (Fading out.) Let me simply say that his paperwork was even more screwed up than you imagine.

JOHNNY TWEETS: (SYNTH VOICE) @TheGrouch Did you pass Arithmetic in the 5th grade?

MUSIC: Theme up and under

ANNOUNCER: Now, here’s our star to tell you about next week’s intriguing episode of our story.

JOHNNY: Next week? Slow and steady may not have won the race yet. But it’s pulling farther ahead. Join us, won’t you?

Yours Truly, Johnny Atsign!

MUSIC: Swell theme and under

ANNOUNCER: Yours Truly, Johnny Atsign, starring W. J. J. Hoge, is transcribed in Westminster. Be sure to join us next Monday, same time and URL, for the next exciting episode of Yours Truly, Johnny Atsign.

MUSIC: Theme up to music out.

ANNOUNCER: Johnny Atsign is a work of fiction. If anyone thinks it’s about him, he should read Proverbs 28:1.

This is LBS, the Lickspittle Broadcasting System.

* * * * *

Math is hard.

So is Reality.

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