Just because you’ve excelled in your chosen career field doesn’t mean that you have a clue about economics.
And just because people claim that they are being self-sacrificing, doesn’t necessarily make it so. As President Obama struggles seeks support for his tax-and-spend “jobs bill,” an intriguing chorus of supporters has emerged, intertwining fact and fiction. Start with the “objective journalists” at The New York Times who have lent their support to the tax-hiking agenda.
The Times has twice characterized the President’s push for higher taxes as “asking the rich to pay more.” But here’s a fact: the I.R.S. doesn’t ask anyone to pay taxes – it mandates that taxes be paid. It requires it. The Times might ask a small business owner about this – especially one facing an IRS audit – and see if our government is requesting or demanding that people hand-over their money.
Next let’s look at Warren Buffett. The “Oracle of Omaha” is in a category all his own, and deserves respect for the ways in which he has amassed his personal wealth. He has achieved this by first and foremost serving his clients remarkably well, and in so doing he himself has prospered. This is the way it’s supposed to work, and Buffett has emulated the virtues of capitalism and free enterprise throughout his career.
Why Mr. Buffett has hitched himself to the President’s never-ending quest for higher taxes is a mystery. Yet despite the fact that President Obama has nick-named his latest tax hike plan the “Buffett rule” (reports last Friday indicated that maybe Mr. Buffett doesn’t like his name being used in this way and that maybe he doesn’t support the tax-hike scheme after all), Mr. Buffett has still found it necessary to respond to the President at times with a few facts of his own.
In August of 2009, Buffett began sounding the alarm about how staggering levels of government debt could hinder private wealth creation. And earlier this year Mr. Buffett publicly corrected some of the fiction that President Obama was propagating about how “millionaires and billionaires” duck out of their tax responsibilities by deducting the costs of their “corporate jets” from their tax bill.
The story is a bit different with former Google Executive Doug Edwards. Speaking at an Obama town hall event in the Silicon Valley recently, Mr. Edwards stepped up to the microphone during the “q and a” portion of the show and noted that “I am unemployed by choice,” and that he “worked for a small startup down the street here that did quite well (a reference to Google).” Then came Edwards’ question: “My question is – would you please raise my taxes?”
Austin Hill is an Author, Consultant, and Host of "Austin Hill's Big World of Small Business," a syndicated talk show about small business ownership and entrepreneurship. He is Co-Author of the new release "The Virtues Of Capitalism: A Moral Case For Free Markets." , Author of "White House Confidential: The Little Book Of Weird Presidential History," and a frequent guest host for Washington, DC's 105.9 WMAL Talk Radio.