Tax farming!

Via a couple of places like Obsidian Wings, I found a NY times article that mentions President’s Bush newest “so old its new” idea.
If you owe back taxes to the federal government, the next call asking you to pay may come not from an Internal Revenue Service officer, but from a private debt collector.
Within two weeks, the I.R.S. will turn over data on 12,500 taxpayers — each of whom owes $25,000 or less in back taxes — to three collection agencies. Larger debtors will continue to be pursued by I.R.S. officers.
The move, an initiative of the Bush administration, represents the first step in a broader plan to outsource the collection of smaller tax debts to private companies over time. Although I.R.S. officials acknowledge that this will be much more expensive than doing it internally, they say that Congress has forced their hand by refusing to let them hire more revenue officers, who could pull in a lot of easy-to-collect money.

The Roman Republic and Empire were past masters of this, among other entities throughout history. Its called Tax Farming.
Its a system which is overripe for abuse.
Clinton wanted to build a bridge to the 21st century. George Bush, with monarchial ideas about the limits of presidential powers, torture, and things like this, seems to want to build a bridge to the 17th.