Friday, January 9, 2009

What Freedoms?

Sean Hannity begins each radio show with about 10 minutes of blather. Yesterday he announced that taxing the wealthy would cause everyone in the country, including the poor, to lose their freedom. Freedom is a big buzz-word for Hannity, so he never bothers to explain how the freedom is lost or which freedom he means. Apparently, he means that if the wealthy have to pay higher taxes, your freedom will be lost in the same way that letting gays marry will spoil the sanctity of your marriage, by osmosis, by magic, by telepathy, or something like that.

There are some freedoms the poor may want to lose by forcing the wealthy to pay their fair share of taxes.

1. The freedom to go without medical care.
2. The freedom to die because a cancer was not discovered soon enough to be operable (see freedom number 1.)
3. The freedom to remain unemployed, or underemployed, forever.
4. The freedom to live on a continually diminishing social security pension.
5. The freedom to stay put in your home because you cannot drive a car and there is inadequate public transportation.
6. The freedom to freeze in the winter because you can't afford to heat your home.
7. The freedom to watch the real purchasing power of your wages continue to decline.
8. The freedom to go bankrupt because an unforeseen illness transfers all of your wealth to the medical system.

I could go on, but the point is made. Hannity and his pals want us to believe that some intangible freedom or basic right will be lost if we tax the wealthy. The implication is simply false. We all pay taxes to support basic services that we all use. So if the wealthy pay taxes, they are in the same boat as everyone else, except they will hardly notice what they have to pay. For most of us, taxes hurt. Let's make sure the wealthy pay enough that their taxes hurt, too. That's a freedom I'm sure the 95% of us who aren't wealthy would like to share with Hannity's rich pals. Yet another of the many reasons why the Republican Party must go.

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