The report “The Militarization of Federal Bureaucracy – Updated Statistics Through March 31, 2023” can be accessed with a click here:
The article starts with sources, then breaks into these statements:
BREAKING: NEWLY UPDATED NUMBERS THROUGH MARCH 31, 2023
BIG SPEND: Since 2006, 103 rank and file agencies outside of DOD spent $3.7 billion on guns, ammunition, and military-style equipment (inflation adjusted to CPI). 27 of those agencies are traditional law enforcement under the Department of Justice (DOJ) and the Department of Homeland Security (DHS).
However, 76 agencies are push-pushing, regulatory agencies, i.e. Environment Protection Agency (EPA), Social Security Administration (SSA), Veterans Affairs (VA), Internal Revenue Service (IRS), and Health and Human Services (HHS).
HEADCOUNT OF FEDERAL AGENTS: There are now more federal agents with arrest and firearm authority (200,000) than U.S. Marines (186,000).
I grew up with respect for Marines – even if the Marine Corps is outnumbered by armed EPA, IRS, Social Security and HHS agents, I don’t figure that head to head it would be a fair match. On the other hand, there is the question about why in the hell a health and human services employee needs to be armed and have arrest authority.
UPDATED CASE STUDY: INTERNAL REVENUE SERVICE (IRS) current through March 31, 2023
IRS BY THE NUMBERS: Since 2006, spent $35.2 million on guns, ammunition, and military-style equipment (CPI adjusted). The years 2020 and 2021 were peak years at the IRS for purchasing weaponry and gear. Just since the pandemic started, the IRS has purchased $10 million in weaponry and gear. (See chart below.)
Special agents at IRS: nearly 2,100 special agents. Recently, the IRS chief testified that they are adding 600 new positions (20,000 new hires with 3% ratio of special agents). Based on headcount, the IRS ranks in the equivalent of the top 50 largest of 12,261 police departments across the country.
Not to stress the obvious, but the IRS folks probably feel unloved and have a psychological need to be armed. I would love to have that budget to spend on shooting toys – can you imagine how I would be treated at Sportsmen or Cabelas when I walked in?
“INTERESTING IRS PURCHASES (SINCE 2020):
- $2.3 million on duty ammunition
- $1.2 million on ballistic shields, plus another $1.3 million on ‘various other gear for criminal investigation agents” – very non-transparent description
- $474,000 on Smith & Wesson rifles
- $467,000 on duty tactical lighting
- $463,000 on Baretta1301 tactical shotguns
- $354,000 on tactical gear bags
- 267,000 on ballistic helmets
- $243,000 on body armor vests”
My guess is those S&W rifles are AR-15 platforms, and that someone misspelled Beretta. Still, 2.3 million spent on ammunition suggests that the IRS is taking marksmanship seriously.
This 2018 report to Congress, at GAO-19-175, FEDERAL LAW ENFORCEMENT: Purchases and Inventory Controls of Firearms, Ammunition, and Tactical Equipment, covers federal law enforcement purchases and inventory controls of firearms, ammunition and tactical equipment. It is interesting, at the least.