Saturday, May 14, 2011

can we say, "dent in national debt"?

According to the calculations of my union, the UAW -- admittedly, not an impartial source -- if the 400 richest U.S. taxpayers paid the same tax rate on their investment income, which is where most of their money comes from, as they're supposed to pay on their earned income, that would generate $18 billion in revenue.  Needless-to-say, they don't: the top tax rate on income is 35%, but the top rate on capital gains is 15%.  The UAW notes that 15% is what a working couple earning $50,000 pays.

Thursday, May 5, 2011

Ding dong, the wicked witch has been brought to justice?

     Yes, I understand about how the corruption of language goes hand-in-hand with the corruption of thought, but can we please stop saying that bin Laden was "brought to justice."  He was killed.  The planet's better off without him, to my way of thinking, and in an eye-for-an-eye, he-hit-me-first equation, he got what he deserved and probably expected.  But when those SEALs stormed the compound and opened fire, I doubt that bringing anyone to justice was high up on their list of goals  (Not that I can think of any way that justice could have been served, given the real politik of the situation. A trial would have been a mockery of justice too.)
     Puts me in mind of the scene in westerns, where the last two guys standing face off in a shoot out and spend a good five minutes discussing who did what to whom before offing one another, and I'm thinking, why are you waiting for him to reach for his gun first?  Shoot him already!  The SEALs coming in with guns ablaze is more like a Rambo flick (Why do I have the feeling I'm not the only one who sees this in cinematic terms?).  The New York Times quotes a former SEAL as saying, "There's only two ways to go in these operations -- zero or hero."  Okay, makes sense, but it's a long yellow brick road from justice.
      Or, as a friend points out, when someone dies, instead of saying someone came to Jesus, we can now say, he was brought to justice.