2600 Magazine offers $10K for Trump's tax return

I not sure how that would be disclosed in IRS documents.

I doubt it, though. Russia’s interest in him stems from both causing chaos in the US and making it look weak.

It seems likely that anyone obtaining the document without Trump’s permission to release it might be committing an illegal invasion of privacy? Probably most publications don’t want to wade into that legal mess (though they’d probably be happy to publish the results once the returns are out there).

I’m guessing the people who have access to them are going to need a lot more than $10,000 to make it worth their while. And I don’t blame them, since jail is pretty much a foregone conclusion in that scenario, and Trump’s lawyers would be watching for any hidden assets to pop up in the hands of third cousins for decades.


I doubt it, though. Russia’s interest in him stems from both causing chaos in the US and making it look weak.

It’s not an either/or situation.

http://time.com/4433880/donald-trump-ties-to-russia/ (“russian investors” is of course a euphemism)

“Trump has sought and received funding from Russian investors for his business ventures, especially after most American banks stopped lending to him following his multiple bankruptcies.
What’s more, three of Trump’s top advisors all have extensive financial and business ties to Russian


I’ll buy that one, if only because it is pretty common for the crooked smart members of the 1% to not pay/under pay, get audited every year, and have to pay 0.5%/mo plus 3% interest on their unpaid taxes [1].

Paying something like 5% interest on your unpaid taxes is like free money, since the market returns 7-10% without having to lift a finger. When you owe tens of thousands, those few percentage points adds up.


CNN confirmed that he is not being audited for at least some of the years he claims he is, and that he will also refuse to release returns for years he was not under audit.


That’s a great question. The answer is that there’s a ton of stuff that could be immediately checked by the relevant parties–if they wanted to do it.

So if he released fake returns saying he gave the American Cancer Society a million dollars, and he didn’t, they could call bullshit immediately. Or if he received money as income that didn’t appear on faked returns, the person generating that income could flag that as well. So the thing he’d most want to fake from a first-day press release standpoint–has he given even 0.00001% of his money to charity–would be tricky at best. Likewise his effective rate would be difficult to fake in either direction, because it would have to come from data (I was paid $A by B, I donated $X to Y), and the more data you make up the more likely you are to get caught.

The really deep-dive stuff, that could eventually demonstrate how many of his hundred partnerships end up being linked to Putin’s bagmen, might be easier to fake, since any shady partners would have no incentive to speak up.



All good points.
I was talking about the difficulty of authenticating a leaked tax return. As in: someone actually takes up 2600 (or whoever…) on the offer. How does that tax return get authenticated?

Didn’t the IRS get hacked recently. As well as a dozen other government agencies… like the NSA?
And what would the technical crime be if an IRT Auditor ‘accidentally’ sent it somewhere useful? Obviously they would loose their job, but what law would be broken and what would the punishment be?

Christ, if you take the time to forge 15,000 believable documents, I say you earned the 10k.


Well yes, but isn’t that par for the course? Is a press that isn’t willing to use illegally acquired sources even worth having?

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Oh, I see. You mean, how does 2600 authenticate it? Probably they don’t. In fact, now that you mention it, I have no idea how that would work. (Except as a publicity/anti-Trump statement by 2600 et al, for which it serves the purpose the moment they ask regardless of whether anyone takes them up on it.)

From a purely forensic standpoint, you’d have zero confidence initially about anything that landed in your inbox, and very little way to improve that. Even if you convened a blue-ribbon panel of investigative journalists and tax attorneys, it might still be difficult to determine whether it was a fake, or whether it was an accurate return that Trump lied on.

And yeah, Trump could just scream FAAAAAAAAAAAAAAKE even if they weren’t.

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Publications willing to use those sources are commonplace, but I think they would probably expose themselves to more liability if they actually paid someone to commit a crime.


Well, it wouldn’t necessarily be obvious, like in a “FORM 883-A: Disclosure of Ties to Russian Oligarchs.” But remember that the one thing the great global hegemony is good at doing is tracking money, and where it impacts taxes, governments are very good at noticing.

So, what would “ties” to shady Russian billionaires mean? In Trump’s case, that they were loaning him money (or maybe bribing him, or loaning money with the anticipation that it would become a bribe by virtue of forgetting the loan later on). And for that money to be useful to Trump, and not just gathering dust in a Moscow vault, it’d have to enter into his financial bloodstream.

A direct loan from Ivan Badguyovich to a Trump business, or Trump himself, would show up in bright red letters. (You can’t sneak huge amounts of money into the system unless you’re also committing massive money laundering, which would be more trouble than it’s worth at Trump’s level. Think the “warehouse full of cash” situation from Breaking Bad–pretty accurate.) And maybe that shady-looking (but legal) loan is right there for all to see on Trump’s returns. That would be a reason he might not want to release them.

But maybe Mr. Badguyovich covers his tracks a bit, using shell companies and cutouts and all other manner of financial trickery. Even that starts looking awfully bad. Why are all these weird companies nobody’s ever heard of lining up to loan Trump money? Your eyes and mine might glaze over, but people who know this stuff would be screaming bloody murder about it.

tl;dr: even getting legally bought by incredibly skillful buyers is extremely difficult to hide… if people can look at your tax returns.


as 2600 is a hackers’ magazine I interpreted the offer as inofficial bug bounty program of the IRS


I know what 2600 is. And it certainly is a bounty (wikileaks has one too)
I was just adding more social hack ideas as well.

Also to add, I’m completely baffled as to why any of this hasn’t happened yet? Is trump’s network security that rock solid? Would you think his email password would be even hard to guess?
Or twitter password? Isn’t there a fired aide out there that would happen to know that?
The guy is an idiot, cant remember anything, how would he remember to change his password, and what it was if he did?

Edit: to add.

trump passwords:
… Go!

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You are frighteningly good at channeling Trump 2016.


Yeah, that one’s a bitch to figure out.

Off topic, but is today “Change Your Little Circle Picture Day?” I don’t wanna get left out.


“Are hush funds deducted from the total listed under ‘blood money’?”

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