Tuesday, September 20, 2011. 12:35 PM
Giddy Barack Obama supporter and decliningly productive Phillies shortstop Jimmy Rollins, batting under .270 (and with an on-base percentage under .350) for the third straight year, recently spoke to Philadelphia magazine about why people, including those who pay his salary, should be eager to support Obama’s recent call for a $1.5 trillion tax increase.
Rollins eagerly supported Obama in 2008, when he taped robo-calls for Obama and appeared at a South Philadelphia get-out-the-vote-hope-change-or-whatever rally for the anti-Israel then-Senator who now occupies the White House.
In an interview in the not-yet-out October issue of Philadelphia magazine, Rollins regurgitated a currently vogue leftist-Big-Media-spoon-fed talking point: “Warren Buffet pays less taxes percentage-wise than his secretary, you catch that?” Rollins, apparently not appreciating the difference between income and capital-gains taxation, asked “How can that be?”.
As pointed out yesterday (not in reference to Rollins) by Glenn Beck during his three-hour radio show: “… you can always send a check [to the IRS] and pay whatever rate you want. You want to pay more? You can do that. You know, buy off your rich-white-man guilt if you want, that’s fine. You’ll find the address at irs.gov. We’ll look for the check.”
As far as known (the Philadelphia magazine article has not yet come out) to Philadelphia Jewish Culture Examiner, the Philadelphia magazine reporter did not follow up by asking Rollins whether he had indeed written an additional check to the IRS.
A point along those lines was made by Philadelphia attorney Jeffrey Nydick. According to Nydick: “Rollins echoes the new-Buffett stupidity. Numerous lying liberals are now heard to say ‘I’d be happy to pay more in taxes.’ In fact, they are paying their accountants to see to it that they pay as little in taxes as the law allows.”
Nydick continued: “If they want to walk the walk, not just mimic other brain-dead liberals, they should simply pay more money in taxes. As everyone knows, there is nothing stopping you from just throwing in a couple million extra with your tax return. But none of them (including the dishonest Buffett) will do it.”
In the interview, Rollins says: “I’m blessed to pay a lot in taxes … I have friends and relatives that go day-to-day. Every American deserves to feel secure at the end of their life. So, if it’s going to lift two families up, go ‘head, tax me more, I can handle it. Best I know, everyone’s going to die. No one’s taking money to the afterlife.”
As far as known, the reporter did not follow up by asking whether “go ’head, tax me more, I can handle it” applies to his current salary to an extent that would “lift” more than a mere “two families” up.
Apparently, the reporter also did not ask Rollins why he has not utilized his salary, currently $8.5 million per year (10th-highest on the Phillies), to create various businesses which might employ some of those aforementioned relatives, or, for that matter, others, so that they might too be able to be “blessed” enough to pay more taxes.
Related to the capital-gains tax vs. income distinction apparenly overlooked by Rollins, Beck’s co-host Pat Gray said, during yesterday’s radio show: “They’re using Warren Buffett and his desire to pay more taxes, and his lie that he pays less income tax than his secretary. … It’s not income tax. He pays capital gains, while she pays income. If you’re talking about raising capital gains [taxes], and you shouldn’t do it, that’s one thing. But, if you’re talking about raising the rate for highest income earners, then that’s a whole different proposition.”
There were other additional quite-relevant topics that apparently were not brought up by the Philadelphia magazine reporter:
– the extent to which Rollins appreciates the past largesse of Pennsylvania taxpayers in paying his salary not only by buying tickets, merchandise, etc., but also by footing much of the bill for the construction of Citizens Bank Park.
– how the massive increase in the federal deficit under Obama affects the ability of “every American … to feel secure at the end of their life.” (This unprecedented deficit of course is larger than it would be if aw-shucks-regularly-guy demagogue Buffett had actually paid, as pointed out by Beck’s online news site The Blaze, back taxes he currently owes for each year since 2002.)
– whether it saddened Rollins that residents of his hometown of Alameda, California have a tendency to be net consumers rather than “blessed” net providers of tax revenue.
– why Rollins did not in the past ease up on his team-dissension-increasing kvetching that he should be batting first in the lineup (despite the fact that Shane Victorino is a clearly superior leadoff hitter) or work harder in the past to improve his walks to strikeouts ratio (an unfortunate 55 to 57 during 2011). Doing that would of course have improved his marketability and expected earning/taxpaying potential for his post-2011 career, after his contract with the Phillies runs out and he brings his services elsewhere (presumably to sparse crowds on an uncompetitive team in Pittsburgh, Kansas City, near-where-he-grew-up Oakland, Miami or Queens).
Numerous Phillies fans and other locals commented on Rollins’s boilerplate 12-year-old’s-mentality hopeandchangey point:
According to Chicago-based Phillies fan Mark Norcini: “The issue of the graduated tax system not being executed as designed is the issue at hand here. I think that has been overlooked. As a middle-class earner with minimal loopholes, and as a conservative individual, I agree those making more than me should at least be effectively paying the same rate I am.”
Noricini continued: “And I believe that rate should be lower for all of us at the top, and higher for those at the bottom (i.e. more than zero percent). Jimmy’s sentiment seems to be more along the lines of the rich having an obligation to take care of others via the taxing force of government. I reject this premise as immoral.”
Paul Singer of Philadelphia, who works in finance, asked: “What is Rollins’s qualification to offer his expertise on the appropriate levels of taxation for the economy?”
Singer added: “How is it any different today than when Caesar threw sporting events to appease the masses? Then, taxpayers were extorted to build temples to those guys. Let me ask Rollins this: if extra taxes on him are good, why is a 100% tax on his income not better?”
Singer also asked: “Which Bible condones stealing against the rich in the name of the poor? The Communist Manifesto, that’s the one, the one that killed hundreds of millions in the name of ‘the greater good.‘ Jimmy Rollins better stick to telling me how to field a ground ball or hit a 100-mph fast ball. Other than that, as they say in text, STFU.”
According to Lance Silver of South Jersey: “Jimmy Rollins plays baseball, and why doesn’t he use a plastic bat? Because it doesn’t hit baseballs. The Buffett tax is like a plastic bat. Looks right but doesn’t feel right. Nor does it work.”
Norman Sumner said: “In my opinion, neither Warren nor Jimmy are addressing the issue which they think that they are; i.e., the inequity of the tax code and the absurd ‘loopholes’ permitted by special laws. … Don’t just ‘soak the rich’ (one of which I will never be!).”
In response to Rollins’s Warren-Buffett-is-letting-himself-be-used-and-we’re-thus-not-supposed-to-challenge-it comments, Nnamdi Iheakaram of South Orange, New Jersey cited something called “The Buffett Rule” regarding “how to maintain your billionaire status in a bad economy.” That “Buffett Rule” involves the following:
– Meet with a politician
– Claim that you are paying low taxes but don’t write a check for the difference
– Support a $450 billion government bailout
– Invest $5 billion in the biggest (but broke) bank in the country
– Fire 30,000 workers, thereby reducing the bank’s liability and increasing the value of your investment
– Make demands for the infusion of part of the $450 billion
– When the bank receives the cash infusion, sell your interest in the bank and stick it to the masses.
One area elected politician expressed a concern probably not limited to the Republican and Independent component, not even limited to the taxpaying component, among Phillies fans. According to Pennsylvania State Representative Curt Schroder (Republican, 155th District – Chester County), “Jimmy should concern himself more with raising the team batting average and on-base percentage going into the playoffs lest they otherwise fade in the first round!”
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