Wednesday, February 22, 2012

Chris Christie Tells Warren Buffett to “Just Write a Check and Shut up”

Sometimes I agree with Chris Christie and sometimes I don’t.

This is one of the times that I most definitely do.

As a guest on CNN’s Piers Morgan, the controversial and outspoken New Jersey governor was asked the same tired questions Republicans are always blasted with concerning the rich paying their “fair share” of taxes. And just as predictably, Warren Buffett’s name came up during that exchange, as it has so many times in the past year or so.

As Morgan colorfully (and yet still tiredly) put it, “Warren Buffett keeps screaming to be taxed more.” And he’s right: The billionaire has been busy yapping on and on and on about the subject, pointing out how his secretary gets taxed more than he does, all the while conveniently forgetting to mention a few things…

Number 1: If he’s so concerned about his secretary’s finances, why doesn’t he give her a big fat raise? He can certainly afford it!

Number 2: Warren Buffett doesn’t make an actual income in the traditional sense of the word. All of his profits are made from his investments, which are funded with money he originally made more conventionally and therefore paid higher taxes on.

And Christie pointed out a third inconsistency with Buffett’s obnoxious yammering…

Number 3: “He should just write a check and shut up. Really. And just contribute. I’m tired of hearing about it. If he wants to give the government more money, he’s got the ability to write a check. Go ahead and write it.”

A very good argument, which begs the question: Why hasn’t Buffett done just that?

Short of Hollywood fiction plots involving dark, secret societies or alien possessions, there are really only three theories to reach.

Either he’s too stupid to have thought of Christie’s proposition all on his own, he’s secretly sliding money to the feds, or he’s a big fat hypocrite.

The first idea is highly doubtful considering Buffett’s business acumen, and the second nearly as unlikely since there’s no obvious political or personal gain from doing so.

That leaves the third possibility that Warren Buffett says one thing and does another, just like Christie implied. And add in the billionaire’s power and Democratic political affiliations, and that conclusion becomes even more crystal clear.

Not that Christie’s dare to put up or shut up – or put up and shut up – will do anything of course. Expect to hear Buffett talking the same tired points as ever going forward.

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