April 10, 2012
Shouldn’t the question be “Is it right; is it fair — for millionaires and billionaires to pay less taxes than someone earning less than $200,000 per year?!?”
Watching those darn “liberal news network” this morning, the Buffett Rule tax proposal is a major topic of reporting and discussion. That’s because President Obama is pushing it in his campaign speeches. All of the cable news networks, as well as ABC, NBC and CBS, are reporting on the issue. But if you want to know what’s actually being said, just stick with one, such as CNN; there’s not a penny’s worth of difference between them and the others as to what is being said or how it’s being framed.
Here’s the summarized scoop: In as much as 5 minutes (in some cases, more) of talk on the subject, less than 10 seconds is spent on the Buffett comment back in 2011 where he said he shouldn’t be paying less tax than his secretary. The remainder of the reporting/talk/gibberish is about how much good it will actually do to force millionaires and billionaires to pay the equivalent of ordinary workers. These reporters, anchors and guest are quick to point out that it will raise only $49 billion over ten years; which is quickly followed up with something to the effect that $49 billion isn’t going to make a dent in the debt or deficit.
So it won’t solve the deficit problem! So what? Is that a valid reason for them not to pay their fair share? Is that a reason for them to be taxed less than the vast majority of wage earners in this country?
Now understand that this is NOT about asking millionaires and billionaires to pay additional taxes as was once proposed; this is about them paying fewer taxes than millions of ordinary workers. BTW, it isn’t just Buffett’s secretary who’s paying less tax than Buffett; it’s everyone who works in the Buffett office.
No, it will NOT make much of a difference in the debt and / or deficit. But that is not the point; nor should anyone be trying to make that the point. It’s about fairness; it’s about right and wrong; it’s about asking ordinary people to sacrifice more of their income so the wealthy can keep more of theirs; it’s about special favors for the 1%.
CNN is asking viewers to comment via Facebook on their thoughts of the Buffett Rule. Their question is “is it necessary or is it a gimmick”. Not one damn word about whether it’s fair or the right thing to do regardless of the impact on the debt and deficit.
What will these “liberal” news organizations come up with next!
Oh! Another “BTW”: If your only defense of the wealthy not paying their fair share of taxes is Trickle-Down-Economics, you should immediately seek psychological help.
Never underestimate the difficulty of changing false beliefs [with] facts.
Economist Henry Rosovsky