Well, it's better than "The dog ate my IRS return"

Do you need a really good excuse for avoiding paying taxes April 15--or anytime?  Well, do I have one for you.

Charles O'Byrne, key aide to Governor Paterson, owes more than $300,000 in back taxes from 2001-2005.

The attorney, Richard Kestenbaum:
O'Byrne also had "non-filer syndrome."

"Many times that syndrome causes them not to be able to file their tax returns," he said.

Any sympathetic IRS agent would certainly understand this and treat O'Byrne leniently after listening carefully to a psychologist's explanation of the problem. 


A review of mental-health sources found no reference to any such syndrome, though "failure-to-file syndrome" has occasionally been used as a legal defense against tax-evasion charges.  

Accountants though treat this problem much more seriously.

"Yes, it's quite common," one Manhattan accountant joked.

"A hundred percent of my clients suffer from this syndrome and it gets especially bad every year as April 15 approaches."

Paterson replaced reformist governor Elliott Spitzer who resigned after his numerous rendezvous with prostitutes became public.  O'Byrne is very friendly with various members of the Kennedy family, some of whom are helping him pay his tax bills. 

Oh, and by the way, since the article didn't mention this, O'Byrne, Paterson and the Kennedys are, like Obama, all Democrats, all committed to spreading the wealth around. 

Not theirs though.  Yours.