In an interview with Bill Hemmer on Fox and Friends today, Bill O’Reilly warned the Tea Party, “If you’re looked upon by Americans as being extremists like the far left is, you’re going to evaporate too. You’ve got to be reasonable here.”
Is it just me or does O’Reilly only get his panties in a wad when the right side of the aisle is uncompromising? When it’s pointed out to O’Reilly that the left is just as uncompromising on their principles, O’Reilly says: “People know that already,” and he says it with a degree of impatience that suggests that he’s bored with people pointing that fact out.
O’Reilly has an advantage on most people in that he’s been in the news business for most of his life. He has probably seen the worst of the worst when it comes to bias, uncompromising liberal partisanship on a daily basis in the newsrooms he’s worked in throughout the years. He probably believes that most people listen to talk radio and know well the biases liberals attempt to shove down our throats on a daily basis, and he wants his show to be different. Well, I live in the real world, and I don’t have a show, and I can tell you there are still plenty of people who know nothing of a leftist bias in the media and partisanship on the hill. There are still plenty of people that think that Democrats are wonderful people, and Republicans are partisans.
The point of this interview with Bill Hemmer was to talk about O’Reilly’s ideas for raising the debt ceiling. Bill’s plan had the unenviable position of being praised by President Obama.
“A balanced deficit deal that includes some new revenues isn’t just a Democratic position,” Obama wrote. “It’s a position that has been taken by everyone from Warren Buffett to Bill O’Reilly.”
O’Reilly did not dispute the president’s words specifically when he appeared on “America’s Newsroom” with Bill Hemmer this morning. “It’s not accurate in the sense that I’m advocating any tax rate hikes, and he (Obama) didn’t say that,” he told Hemmer.
O’Reilly said he wants to see a 1 percent national sales tax introduced and income tax loopholes plugged at the same time that federal income tax rates are brought down.
“People would wind up with more money in their pockets,” he said. “The government would get more money because they would be taxing people more efficiently.
“The underground economy in this country is a $1 trillion concern and that’s cash off the books — illegal alien payments, that kind of thing. If you lower the income tax rates and put in a national sales tax of 1 percent or so, your debt goes away.”
O’Reilly presumably said the latter to appeal to those he chastises by bringing up the national sales tax. He’s right that there is a ton of money being made in the ‘underground’, or untaxed, economy, and it’s perfectly reasonable to suggest that if you lower tax rates and put in a national sales tax of 1 percent or so, your debt goes away.
There’s one HUGE caveat that national sales tax proponents Linder and Boortz spotted right away in their push for a national sales tax, and that is that we would have to do away with the federal income tax. I’m sure O’Reilly would judge that to be farfetched and uncompromising. Perhaps this is why he chastises us.
It’s crucial to the national sales tax plan proposed by Neal Boortz and John Linder that the repeal of the 16th Amendment take place. The 16th Amendment authorizes Congress to tax income. If you don’t repeal that Amendment every Democrat and his dog would be for the national sales tax. They shot themselves in the foot between ’08 and ’10 with their out of control spending, and they would welcome an additional tax in the manner a drowning victim would a life preserver. It’s the reason Linder and Boortz said you need to repeal the 16th Amendment FIRST, before enacting the national sales tax. Those of us who favor the national sales tax say that it should be used as an ‘either or’ proposition in the face of the current federal income tax. It’s not an ‘and’ position that we take. Democrats would welcome the ‘and’ and Boortz and Linder already thought of that.
O’Reilly did say that he wanted the income tax lowered to pave the way for the national sales tax, but as well all know once a tax is on the books…Especially, if the Democrats seize control of all three branches. Does anyone really think that they would remove the “emergency” national sales tax when the “emergency of the moment” is over, and they decide to raise federal income taxes? Technically speaking we are always in an emergency in the economy. Even when the economy was flying high in the middle of the W. Bush presidency, and we had 4.5% unemployment, Democrats in Congress, the Senate, and the media warned we were on the threshold of a recession. Nobel Prize winning economist Paul Krugman has been predicting an economic downturn (RECESSION!!, a DEPRESSION!!!) since W. Bush took office.
To be fair, O’Reilly talks about the left “killing themselves” by wanting a western European-style welfare state. But he said the tea party hasn’t got it right, either, and needs to slow down. “I warned the tea party last night ‘If you’re looked upon by Americans as being extremists like the far left is, you’re going to evaporate too. You’ve got to be reasonable here.’”
I can’t lay a claim to being smarter than O’Reilly and George Will when they level such warnings to the Tea Party about being unreasonable, and I understand that the federal government is a massive boat that takes time to turn, but we’ve grown tired of the ways of Washington. We’re grown weary of legislation that promises to cut but expands forever more. We’ve seen these short term expansions to quell the emergency of the moment grow the federal government for generations, because “this emergency is different.” It’s a nation of 300 million people. There will be economic disasters for the rest of our lives. There will be natural disasters, wars, poverty, health care incidents and on and on. It’s a nation of 300 million people. (320 million if you count the illegal immigrants.) Why do we always have to grow government to take care of every disaster, emergency, Armageddon of the moment? Because this is a degree of disaster that you don’t understand, so you need to be more understanding and reasonable and take a hard look at what is happening and allow for compromise. Well, it may sound unreasonable, but Tea Party members are saying that they’ve simply had enough of the emergencies of the moments and the solution that is being proposed “just this one time”.