Taxes

Taxpayers Are Morons, Says Journalist

You want to pay less in taxes? No soup for you

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if we don't throw money into the hole, who will build the roads?
The Onion

Esquire's Charles Pierce strikes again, calling taxpayers a "dumb rampaging beast." Does he call them that because they willingly pay into a system that spends more and more on policies they often disagree with? Nope. It's because they have the audacity, in what's often called a democracy, to demand a lower tax burden. The statement from the "veteran journalist" came in a blog post supporting the Chicago Teachers Union strike. Pierce reminds those who criticize the teachers' strike for being inconvenient that, duh, that's the reason people strike. That show of solidarity, though, does not extend to taxpayers, largely also workers! As is fashionable these days, he skewers Grover Norquist's "lunatic" no tax hikes pledge as well as California's ballot initiative-driven restrictions on taxation and spending, blaming them for California being "largely ungovernable." Expecting  what might be called, in the collective, a "dumb rampaging beast," in, say, Sacramento or Washington, to abide by the wishes of voters (politicians sign Norquist's pledge, obviously, because its good electoral politics for them) and restrict their urge to more taxation, apparently, is a ridiculous notion for taxpayers to have. Don't these taxpayers realize supporting less taxes is inconvenient?

This chart by economist Veronique de Rugy, which Nick Gillespie called "terrifying," shows the growth of federal spending since the Carter administration, and is adjusted for both inflation and population growth:

just the spending side
Mercatus Center

The last time Washington took a sober look at taxation, spending and debt was the Grace Commission, nearly two generations ago, which reported that "all individual income tax revenues are gone before one nickel is spent on the services which taxpayers expect from their Government," in 1984, when the federal debt stood at $1.6 trillion, and more than doubled under Ronald Reagan's terms in office, while since then its grown to top $16 trillion.

Washington's tax apologists spend their time pushing things like the "Buffett rule," which would collect enough revenue to fund 11 hours of the federal government's operations in a year.

Neither party in Washington is serious about spending cuts when both parties mean "spending cuts" to mean reductions in the rate of increase in spending, and one party does all it can to make even that definition of a spending cut seem draconian and nightmarish, while taxpayers trying to reduce their burden, and doing it, aghast, "collectively," is, according to Pierce, "dumb". Collective action is not for taxpayers, and how dare they question throwing more money into the money hole anyway?

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  1. Pierce is living proof that journalists are incapable of shame or embarrassment. Every year he gets a little bit crazier, little bit more stupid and a little bit nastier. But he is never fired or deprived of an outlet. You would think he would embarrass the publications he writes for.

    1. Pierce isn’t a journalist. He’s a limp-wristed hack that’s determined to make society pay for him being picked on in high school.

      1. Is that the reason for his jock strap sniffing on Grantland?

        1. Pretty much–guys like him are the equivalent of modern-day courtiers. They absolutely hate jocks and others like them, but never drop any chance to kiss their ass and tell them how wonderful they are when the jocks deign to notice their existence in anything resembling non-negative terms.

          I guarantee you that deep down, Pierce is still bitter because the jocks always got laid while he was perpetually stuck in the “friend zone.”

    2. Charles P. Pierce should be locked in a cage with Paul Krugman. I’m thinking we could leave them a week’s worth of water each, and promise to open the cage in 2 weeks. Then televise the whole thing.

    3. I defy you to show Pierce getting crazier, more stupid, or nastier. He reached the limit at least 5 years ago.

    4. I think even paying any attention to a crazy cunt like Charles Pierce does a disservice to rational discussion.

  2. “all individual income tax revenues are gone before one nickel is spent on the services which taxpayers expect from their Government”

    Than print MORE money. DUH!

    1. Journalist Pierce delivers a rapier-sharp rant on how the America of “Franklin and Edison, Fulton and Ford” has devolved into America “the Uninformed,” where citizens hostile to science are exchanging “fact for fiction…….

      Hey! This sounds like a job for the Illinois chapter of the NEA!

  3. I LOVE the money fires!

  4. Veronique de RUGY.

    De RUGY.

    1. So, you’re saying she isn’t from there?

  5. I should’ve known the headline wasn’t about taxpayers being dumb about paying too much.

    Yesterday, I made a joke about National Journalism (Nationaljournalismus Amerikaner Arbeiterpartei or Najos) being a good idea for American journalists. They could openly espouse their national leadership principle and adopt many of the tools of the former Nazi movement, focusing on journalistic, rather than racial, purity (as evidenced by a journalism degree and leftwing credentials).

    Now I’m wondering if the joke is on me.

    1. In Soviet Russia, joke plays YOU!

    2. The joke is always on us, dude.

      1. I’d like a new joke at least.

        1. MY DOG HAS NO NOSE

          1. How does it smell?

            1. BARACK HUSSEIN OBAMA

              1. I just realized that it should be the editor principle, not the leader principle. Maybe that explains why no one merely writes here, for instance. Everyone is an editor.

          2. Not military grade, you fool!

  6. The depressing lack of politicians hanging from lampposts supports his basic premise.

  7. I’d like a new joke at least.

    Meet the new joke, same as

    Oh, fuck it.

  8. Come on Ed. Everyone knows “roadz” is spelled with a z.

  9. “That’s not my dog.”

  10. The fucking comments:

    Michael Green ? Top Commenter ? Columbia University
    To approach this from another direction, “taxpayers” have, with help from politicians–including some who should know better–have made government the enemy, so, naturally, teachers, working for the government, become the enemy. Let’s see these idiots drive entirely on privately built roads for a while.

    I agree, let’s give private roads a shot.

    Paul Morgan ? Top Commenter ? Bothell, Washington
    Plus and also too, if you don’t seem to mind what Romney makes skirting his taxes, then you shouldn’t give a good Gd-damn what teachers make. They’re taking a lot less from the public treasury than he is. So some public middle-income people make a little more than you. Do you not think those salaries have a lifting effect on yours? We know one thing for sure, Romney’s “salary” has NO impact on yours. Trickle, trickle…

    “Plus and also too?” Jesus fucking Christ, these idiots make it really tempting to vote for Romney, just because of the absurdly stupid shit they choose to criticize him for.

    1. Let’s see these idiots drive entirely on privately built roads for a while.

      LOL–that’s pretty rich coming from a guy posting at a private Ivy League school.

    2. Also

      They’re taking a lot less from the public treasury than he is.

      WHAT??? THE FUCK.

    3. “So some public middle-income people make a little more than you. Do you not think those salaries have a lifting effect on yours? We know one thing for sure, Romney’s “salary” has NO impact on yours.”

      I like how you’re supposed to be selfish when voting but collectivist or principled when you act in the private market. Exactly the opposite of reality.

  11. Esquire’s Charles Pierce strikes again, calling taxpayers a “dumb rampaging beast.”

    “How dare they want to keep more of their money?”

    Ok, sure, Pierce’s derision of taxpayers derives from his arrogance and smugness, not so much from some profound and reasoned analysis; but there is a point to this issue, in that taxpayers expect certain “services” (like free money, free children’s prisons – er, schools, free medical care) yet not pay for them. In that sense, refering to taxpayers as “dumb rampaging beast” is not entirely off the mark…

    1. This isn’t true. You’re confusing two groups of people. The group that wants the free shit isn’t the same group that pays the taxes.

  12. So, he admits that “public service” unions see the public as their adversaries. The taxpayers are the evil monocle-polishing Fat Cats in this little drama.

    They just don’t feel the need to pretend any more, do they?

  13. When you’re getting nothing (or actually, results that run counter to what you want) for the money they’re stealing, you’d be dumb to not demand that they take less (or none at all).

    And who pays in voluntarily? Most of our taxes are taken out of our paychecks by our employers. If we voluntarily send in more, it’s to avoid audits and prosecution and fines and interest that would end up making us pay even more.

    1. My fellow Earthicans, we enjoy so much freedom it’s almost sickening. We’re free to choose which hand our sex-monitoring chip is implanted in. And if we don’t want to pay our taxes, why, we’re free to spend a weekend with the Pain Monster.

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