10.01.2008 0

Pluck the Beam

  • On: 10/15/2008 16:17:02
  • In: Taxes

  • Hypocrisy is always ugly. And, it’s especially so when those exercising it are operating from a position of strength, while lording it over those who can’t effectively fight back.

    Enter the push by several major newspapers publishing in Virginia to get the state legislature to pass a tax increase for transportation. The tax, if passed, will help drive up the cost of gasoline to new record highs. And it will further tap the already depleted resources of every cash-strapped citizen of the state. For those on limited, or fixed, incomes, it could be nothing short of ruinous.

    So, here’s a better idea – and we invite newspapers like the Washington Post to borrow liberally from this paragraph: Instead of calling for an increase in the taxes of those who can afford them least, how about closing the tax loophole for some of those who can afford them most. To wit: daily newspapers.

    That’s right, through a special tax exemption, newspapers published in Virginia pay no taxes on their massive advertising revenues. According to their political handmaidens, this has something to do with newspapers serving the “public good.”

    Well, ministers often serve the public good – and their income isn’t tax exempt. Doctors treat people – and they pay plenty of taxes. Bloggers today often do much more good than many newspapers – and they are forced to pay taxes on every ad they run. Politicians … well we had better quit while we’re ahead.

    The bottom line is: newspaper should pay taxes on their advertising. And, in fact, to be intellectually honest, those calling for an increase in gas taxes should editorially call for their own tax exemption to be lifted.

    Several thousand years ago, a very wise man advised those around him, “Don’t criticize the speck in your neighbor’s eye until you have plucked the beam from your own.

    Washington Post, et. al. please note: Forget the speck, pluck the beam.


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