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Sep 20, 2011

Fox News stirs for America's next class war

Barack Obama's plan to ask the wealthy to pay their fair share of tax has sent Fox News into DEFCON 1.

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As foreshadowed last week, President Barack Obama introduced the millionaires “Buffett tax” in his plan for the wealthy to pay a fair share of the almost $3 trillion budget shortfall. That sent Fox News into DEFCON 1.

All yesterday and today Fox News has been running the headline: “Is The White House Inciting Class Warfare?” Early morning anchor Steve Doocy introduced the topic today with: “The President is talking about raising taxes and … you know, effectively class warfare.” It continued all day until even Democrat guests were using the martial language. “He’s just declared war on the job creating class in America,” declared former Clinton advisor Dick Morris. When anchors and Democrat guests uses that kind of martial language, the network’s more shrill commentators have nowhere to go but Illuminati land.

With no natural disaster to divert attention, Fox News racked up a collection of claims that Obama simply resents wealth creators, wants to punish achievement, and destroy the business community to pander to his base: the 50% of lazy Americans who pay no tax at all.

One would probably expect that sort of over-the-top rhetoric from a political opponent set to run against the president in 2012. But it wasn’t. Those were the claims that originated on Fox News from network staff and paid contributors before any Republican presidential candidate joined in.

Before a single business owner could be interviewed came the claim that businesses would simply stop hiring people if capital gains was taxed at a higher rate. Growth would stop. US currency would collapse. It’s all over, man. Better go buy collectible gold coins to protect your wealth.

Warren Buffett’s claim was that no investor would stop investing just because their 15% capital gains rate was made equitable with marginal income rates of their employees, typically 35% to 40%.

Fox News anchor Gretchen Carlson responded by saying Buffett was trying to mislead Americans, insisting capital gains are not income, and therefore the comparison with his secretary’s taxable income is apples and oranges. It was accompanied by black and white footage of Obama, in campaign mode, saying “the last thing I want to do is raise taxes in a recession”.

Bill O’Reilly made the claim that capital gains are being taxed twice, first as income, and that taxation is strangling America: “If you tax achievement, some of the achievers will pack it in. I like my job but there comes a point that taxation becomes oppressive.”

If any of these claims are justified, their evidence was not aired.

White House officials were forced to respond on other networks and newspapers, meekly suggesting that if they can’t win the argument in Congress, then they’ll just have to win the argument with the American people in 2012.

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16 comments

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16 thoughts on “Fox News stirs for America’s next class war

  1. Bill Hilliger

    Sadly, but to a lesser extent the same sort of megaphone rhetoric is starting to surface here. The resources rent tax, carbon tax, the flood levy. Yes; Abbott, Bernardi, Mirrabella and some of the other childish wingnuts in the Liberal/National Coalition (no, not you Malcolm T) telling us we’ll all be ruined. Whole towns will dissapear doom and gloom everywhere – head for the hills. Some of the wealthy mining barons are helping to push that barrow too – to point out the more prominent: a plump woman from WA, a corpulent coal baron from Queeensland, and a WA man always dressed in a high visibility vest for photo oportunities. Combined net worth “Billions” we’re not sharing it either! These people too are chipping away and peddling same type of B.S to Australians – like the Murdoch “Fox News Network” is serving up to the people of the formerly most poweful nation on earth. Give it time, and we too will have a “Fox – we report you decide” news as a pay TV channel. Yes and at this rate there will be ultimate success for the wing-nuts to to bring racour and a divided Australia made up of the “lucky haves” and the “unlucky have nots”. After-all we love all things American! Mr Bernardi has just returned from the land of the free armed with the knowledge of “how to do it here in Aussie”, he will have plenty of helpers no doubt – I can think of a very loud mouthed and ugly broadcaster as well as a sinister columist whose parents came as boat people from the land of windmills.

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