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January 25, 2013 5:03 PM Guests At Phil Mickelson’s Pity Party

By Ed Kilgore

Golfer Phil Mickelson isn’t getting a lot of public sympathy for the pity party he publicly threw for himself about the marginal tax rates he will have to face in California should he choose to refuse the services of tax accountants and investment advisors. One of the few gazillionaires who can personally relate to Phil’s dire situation, Tiger Woods, allowed as how he moved from California to get lower tax rates, too, which would be relevant if anyone were talking about imprisoning Mickelson in the Golden State. Of course wealthy people can and will follow the states’ “race to the bottom” and go to where the taxes they don’t pay are insufficient to support the services they don’t need. So what?

Well, it seems Phil may be a stand-in for a larger group of Americans who have been cowed into silence, or so says one of them, whose name you can probably guess from the writing style:

[Mickelson’s] complaint came as kind of a relief. It was politically incorrect. It was based on actual numbers and facts and not grounded in abstractions, as most of our public pronouncements are. And it was unusual: Most people in his position are clever enough not to sound aggrieved.
Conservatives and Republicans feel a bit under siege these days because their views are not officially in style. But The Cringe is not the way to deal with it. If you take a stand, take a stand and take the blows. Many people would think paying more than half your salary in city, state, county and federal taxes is unjust. Mr. Mickelson is not alone.

Not at all, in the blessed community of the privileged and clueless.

Ed Kilgore is a contributing writer to the Washington Monthly. He is managing editor for The Democratic Strategist and a senior fellow at the Progressive Policy Institute. Find him on Twitter: @ed_kilgore.

Comments

  • bigtuna on January 25, 2013 5:25 PM:

    Then move to Wyoming and stfu.

  • martin on January 25, 2013 5:30 PM:

    The Pegster has a strange definition of "based on actual numbers and facts".

    And, gawd, can the rich and white work just a little harder at letting us know how oppressed they are?

    We really need Lee Travino back.

  • Gandalf on January 25, 2013 5:40 PM:

    Condsidering Phil is scheduled to make around 60mill this year I've said it befor and I'll say it again. It must truly be vexing to him to (if 63% tax rate is what he'll pay which he won't unless he has only one brain cell) have to make ends meet on a mere miserable 22.2 million dollars this year.

  • Peter C on January 25, 2013 5:45 PM:

    Unjust??? The legal minimum wage in Bangladesh is $798.00 PER YEAR!

  • mwbugg on January 25, 2013 5:56 PM:

    If Phil would renounce his citizenship, we'd probably do better in the Ryder Cup.

  • c u n d gulag on January 25, 2013 6:10 PM:

    Nooners needs an intervention.

    If they gave her a Breath-a-lyzer test before every column she handed in, or TV appearance, we'd never hear from her, because her column would be cancelled - or see her again, because Foster Brooks's drunk-act died shortly after he did!

  • c u n d gulag on January 25, 2013 6:13 PM:

    WaMo,
    You folks need some new IT people, badly!

    Please don't let me find out that you folks outsourced those jobs internationally!

  • R on January 25, 2013 6:38 PM:

    Can anyone name me a conservative commentator who is not innumerate? Noonan, Brooks, Douthat, and all of the Fox bunch have displayed levels of ignorance that would embarrass them if they had any clue. Oooh -- Mr. Mickelson used numbers, and even percentages! Ergo everything he said must have been true! So stand up for unvarnished greed, Mr. Mickelson, and take the blows! You are not alone -- lots of people (including aforementioned commentators) get paid a lot to be mediocre at meaningless jobs.

  • Joe Friday on January 25, 2013 6:56 PM:

    Looney Noonan:

    "[Mickelson's] complaint came as kind of a relief. It was politically incorrect. It was based on actual numbers and facts and not grounded in abstractions"

    NO, it was NOT based on "actual numbers and facts", as he was ignorantly adding-up tax BRACKETS, which nobody pays.

    "Many people would think paying more than half your salary in city, state, county and federal taxes is unjust."

    Except NOBODY in this country pays half their income in "city, state, county and federal taxes".

    "Mr. Mickelson is not alone."

    Too true. He, Looney Noonan, and a great deal of other ignorant Americans falsely believe the same nonsense.

  • howard on January 25, 2013 7:19 PM:

    here's what these clowns truly don't get: we don't care if they go galt.

    as i said previously about phil mickelson, i had little interest in golf but i do now: i want phil mickelson to lose every tournament he enters. badly.

    but in the meantime, if he doesn't like his after-tax income, let him quit altogether. life will go on if phil mickelson doesn't play golf any more, just as it will go of if various corporate execs, high finance chieftans, and hedge fund managers all quit. there are replacements available, including replacements who don't hold pity parties at their staggering multi-million dollar after-tax income enters their bank account.

    really: just quit phil, and all the other overpaid but cowed .1 percenters....

  • biggerbox on January 25, 2013 9:39 PM:

    Mickelson could quit now and never play another game of golf in his life and he'd still have dozens of times more money than most Americans have.

    Even if he DID pay half his income of taxes, which he doesn't, he'd be taking home more money than almost everyone in the world.

    Nooners can try to make him some kind of folk hero, but, well, Peggy Noonan. 'Nuff said.

  • beejeez on January 25, 2013 10:30 PM:

    Please don't go Galt, Phil! Where would we find someone else to play golf for money?

  • MuddyLee on January 26, 2013 8:23 AM:

    If all the numbers were REALLY analyzed, along with the tax laws and regulations related to business expenses and depreciation and how many "Phil corporations" there are, I bet we would find out that there are plenty of nice breaks/tax subsidies for professional golf, both players and sponsors. It would not surprise me if the major golf courses were treated tax-wise as "republican wildlife refuges". And somebody needs to publicize who Phil's corporate sponsors are - I would like to add them to the list of anti-health insurance pizza makers and Trump-loving department stores that I currently boycott.

  • Matt on January 26, 2013 1:44 PM:

    I'm having a hard time choosing between these two:

    >If Phil would renounce his citizenship, we'd probably do better in the Ryder Cup.

    >Please don't go Galt, Phil! Where would we find someone else to play golf for money?

  • mrs j on January 26, 2013 1:53 PM:

    Phil's a Republican.
    Of course.

  • warren terrah on January 27, 2013 4:24 PM:

    As a kid, Phil practiced his golf at city golf courses in San Diego. As in paid for and maintained by the City of San Diego. Now the selfish dumbass doesn't want to pay so that other kids may do the same thing. Of course, the dumbass also is not paying anywhere close to even fifty percent. My guess is he gets paid in stock from his sponsors, most of which he doesn't cash in so he's not even paying capital gains. Wouldn't be surprised if it goes to trusts for his kids. Not a whole lot different than what Mittman did with his trusts. Phil probably makes enough in his winnings for his living expenses. Here's another mofo who needs to be dumped in the middle of Somalia and told to survive off his own wits.