Linda "Greed Is Good" McMahon

Linda McMahon — Connecticut’s shallow, coarse, vain, manipulative, self-centered wanna-buy-myself-a-Senate-seat-to-lower-my-taxes Republican nominee for U.S. Senate — is as unlikable and phony in person as she appears from afar. Why is she running for the U.S. Senate? To help people? No, she wants:

to slash or freeze a slate of corporate taxes, while also abolishing the estate tax and the gift tax and creating a series of new deductions for capital expenditures. Businesses will create jobs, McMahon says, when the government stops taking so much of their money away and wasting it on so-called public investments.

The estate tax — which, before its repeal, did not touch estates worth less than $3,500,000! — is about as good a tax as you can find. If you’ve got to tax someone, taxing rich dead people is a good place to start. Even many billionaires, like Warren Buffett, give their children almost nothing because they believe children who inherit millions are handicapped by their inherited wealth. Pretending that eliminating the estate tax has anything to do with improving America is a shameless lie.

Anyhow, what made the article worth reading skimming was this sad story that illustrates how far America has fallen:

I was discussing the mood in [Connecticut] recently with Tom D’Amore, a former state Republican chairman who has long since bolted the party, when suddenly he told me a story about his father, an Electrolux vacuum salesman who smoked more than a pack a day for most of his life. “One day, it must have been in the 1960s sometime, he just quit,” D’Amore told me. “Cold turkey. I said to him, ‘Dad, why did you suddenly decide to stop smoking?’ And I’ll never forget it. He pointed a finger at me… and he said: ‘The surgeon general of the United States says smoking can kill you. And they wouldn’t lie about a thing like that.’”

“I mean, can you imagine anyone saying that now?” D’Amore asked me. “In that generation, government really displayed by its actions that it was a force for good.” He leaned back in his chair and shook his head.

“Nobody here thinks that way anymore.”

Posted by James on Thursday, September 23, 2010