What the ‘shared sac­ri­fice’ mes­sage is all about

The Washington Times Weekly - - Commentary - Bill O’Reilly

In th­ese very tough eco­nomic times, the left is call­ing for “shared sac­ri­fice,” which is code for soak­ing af­flu­ent folks as much as pos­si­ble. You may have heard some ra­dio ads paid for by the Ser­vice Em­ploy­ees In­ter­na­tional Union (SEIU) be­seech­ing Amer­i­cans to sup­port higher taxes on cor­po­ra­tions and the wealthy so we can all “share” the eco­nomic pain.

That mes­sage is in­cred­i­bly stupid. Higher taxes on cor­po­ra­tions will in­evitably lead to even more worker lay­offs. Also, the less money the af­flu­ent have, the less they will spend in places where ser­vice em­ploy­ees ac­tu­ally work — like ho­tels and re­sorts.

So there seems to be a ma­jor “duh” fac­tor in the sac­ri­fice call by the SEIU. But not if you know what’s re­ally go­ing on.

That union is a great sup­porter of far-left causes like open bor­ders, amnesty for il­le­gal aliens and gi­ant gov­ern­ment en­ti­tle­ment pro­grams. In ad­di­tion, the SEIU has taken the lead in at­tack­ing the nonunion Wal-Mart cor­po­ra­tion and call­ing for non­se­cret bal­lots in union vot­ing. The SEIU is a so­cial­ist out­fit right down the line. The union doesn’t just want you to share their sac­ri­fice, what­ever that may be; they want to take your fur­ni­ture.

One of the SEIU’s fa­vorite politi­cians is Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi. They love her. But th­ese days it doesn’t look like Mrs. Pelosi is do­ing much sac­ri­fic­ing. Ac­cord­ing to doc­u­ments ob­tained by the watch­dog group Ju­di­cial Watch through the Free­dom of In­for­ma­tion Act, Mrs. Pelosi is rack­ing up enor­mous mileage on Air Force Gulf­stream V jets, cost­ing the tax­pay­ers mil­lions.

My staff asked Pelosi spokesman Bren­dan Daly ex­actly how many Air Force jets she’s used since be­com­ing speaker in Jan­uary 2007. Daly said he didn’t have that in­for­ma­tion. Oh. It seems to me that with many Amer­i­cans get­ting ham­mered fi­nan­cially and tril­lions of dol­lars be­ing spent to counter the re­ces­sion, Speaker Pelosi might want to keep track of her tax­payer-funded trips. Am I wrong?

To be fair, Mrs. Pelosi is legally en­ti­tled to the perk. Af­ter 9/11, the gov­ern­ment de­cided that the speaker of the House, third in line for the pres­i­dency, should not fly com­mer­cial. OK. But does any­one think Mrs. Pelosi is not milk­ing this jet deal? Any­one?

If that’s shared sac­ri­fice, I would like to be­come the speaker’s friend. Af­ter all, she re­cently flew to Rome with an en­tourage. I as­sume it was aboard an Air Force jet, but I don’t know for sure be­cause even though I asked, Mrs. Pelosi won’t tell. (By the way, the Pope scolded Mrs. Pelosi over abor­tion dur­ing their meet­ing.)

Are you feel­ing the sac­ri­fice be­ing made by Mrs. Pelosi and many other politi­cians who are liv­ing large on the Hill? I’m not feel­ing it. But like the SEIU, I be­lieve that shar­ing is good. And with my tax rates go­ing up big time, I have no doubt I’ll soon be pay­ing more than my share.

Bill O’Reilly is a na­tion­ally syndicated colum­nist.

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