Should we be upset if the IRS has been "gutted"?

Budget cuts at the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) have stretched the agency’s resources thin, limiting the audits it’s able to perform, and costing the government billions of dollars every year, according to a new investigation from ProPublica that should make any libertarian smile.

On Tuesday, the investigative journalism outlet, in partnership with The Atlantic, released a deep dive into the troubles at the IRS, finding that the taxman has seen his budget shrink by some $2 billion since 2010, with the number of auditors falling by about a third, and the rate of audits declining by 42 percent.

“The result is a bureaucracy on life support and tens of billions in lost government revenue,” reads the story, which estimates that the U.S. Treasury is losing out on about $18 billion a year thanks to scaled back enforcement.

If you believe that paying taxes is a moral obligation, and anything less than 100 percent compliance is unacceptable, the story is likely to be shocking. If you don’t, it’s hard to get worked up about much of anything in the article.