Just a phone call from the Internal Revenue Service is enough to generate anxiety in a person. And when the IRS call includes threats of prison and large fines, the anxiety can quickly turn to fear.
You have probably seen the many articles in Orlando news media and national outlets about a scam in which people pretend to be IRS agents. They issue loud threats and can sometimes wring Social Security numbers and credit card information from unsuspecting taxpayers. The widespread success of the scam demonstrates the fear Americans have of the agency.