What the ‘shared sacrifice’ message is all about
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.