In his Sunday column for The Examiner, Prof. Glenn Reynolds, aka Instapundit, asks a pertinent question, “Why should Democrats be the only ones to enjoy the fun of taxing people they dislike?” Then he proposes taxes that would clarify the thinking of Hollywood on the effect of taxes on prosperity:
Were I a Republican senator or representative, I would be agitating to repeal the “Eisenhower tax cut” on the movie industry and restore the excise tax. I think I would also look at imposing similar taxes on sales of DVDs, pay-per-view movies, CDs, downloadable music, and related products.
I’d also look at the tax and accounting treatment of these industries to see if they were taking advantage of any special “loopholes” that could be closed as a means of reducing “tax expenditures.” (Answer: Yes, they are.)
America, after all, is facing the largest national debt in relation to GDP that it has faced since the end of World War II, so a return to the measures deemed necessary then is surely justifiable now.
The president’s own rhetoric about revenues certainly suggests so. Perhaps the bill could be named the “Greatest Generation Tax Fairness Act” in recognition of its history.
Should legislation of this sort be passed — or even credibly threatened — I think we can expect to see Hollywood rediscover the dangers posed by “job killing tax increases,” just as pro-tax-increase Warren Buffet changed his tune once his own corporate-jet business was threatened.
And, given the entertainment industries’ role as the Democrats’ campaign finance ATM, it seems likely that the president might soon reconsider his rhetoric as well.
Prof. Reynolds also proposes a surtax on the incomes of political appointees and members of Congress who cash in on their political influence after leaving office. I urge you to read the whole thing and memorize his proposals to use in any conversation with a Leftist who complains about people and industries who ought to be taxed in the service of social justice because they are too rich. In fact, I think Prof. Reynolds doesn’t go far enough. Since Al Gore became a billionaire within 10 years after finishing his term as vice president and his failed run for president, and former president Bill Clinton and his wife, Hillary, also quickly made a fortune after he finished his second term, they obviously have more than enough money and ought to be taxed more, so I think this proposal should be extended to the president and vice president as well, starting with Obama and Biden so they can show us how it’s done.