Weekly Comments Archive
Archived Issue
Saturday, July 18, 2009
ISSUE #560
#560 July 18, 2009

Will makes jokes at Treasury’s expense

COLUMBUS: At a time when the government is ordering big companies to cut back on frivolous expenses, why along comes news that the Treasury Dept, that’s in charge of all this debt we’re racking up, wants to hire a Cartoonist. The whole idea is, to relieve their stress he is supposed to kinda make fun of the workers dealing with this Trillion dollar deficit, and get them to laugh at themselves. You know, to laugh even more than they are currently laughing at the taxpayers for taking on this humongous debt.

Well, a Senator got wind of it (and who knows more about frivolous spending than a Senator), and they canceled the plan. But there’s good news for these forlorn federal money changers. At no cost to the Treasury, every newspaper cartoonist in the country will draw something that’ll remind them to be happy they even have a job. And a few of us who aren’t cartoonists will toss in a humorous jab now and then to help lighten the mood.

Congress and Treasury Secretary Geithner didn’t much care for my plan last week to cover the uninsured. They came out with their own plan: to cover all your medical costs while you’re living, they take everything you’ve got left when you die. It’s kinda like the plan drawn up by a Treasury Secretary 74 years ago. (See below)

I can’t finish without writing about Walter Cronkite. I got to meet him a few years ago when he talked at an Ohio Broadcasters convention. I asked him if he knew he was born on the birthday of another legendary American, Will Rogers. He seemed surprised, but I’m guessing he knew and just temporarily forgot it. Mr. Cronkite may have died today at 92, but he won’t be forgotten, temporarily or otherwise.

Historic quotes by Will Rogers:

(The Secretary of the Treasury Morgenthau) “came out with a plan to put a bigger and better tax on these big estates: an inheritance tax. On an estate of say $10 million, why the government will take about 90 percent of it, giving the off-spring 10.  And on estates of a 100 million, 200 million, a billion, and like that, well, the government just takes all of that and notifies the heirs, ‘Your father died a pauper here today.  And he’s being buried by the Millionaires’ Emergency Burial Association.’
Now mind you, I don’t hold any great grief for a man that dies and leaves millions and hundreds of millions and billions.  I don’t mean that.  But I don’t believe Mr. Morgenthau’s plan will work, because he gives figures in there that shows what this new inheritance tax would bring in every year.  He says in 1936 we get so much, in 1938…  He give these figures to show what it will bring in every year, that is, as long as the Democrats stay in.
He seems to know just who’s going to die each year.  And how much they’re going to leave.  Now, brother, that’s planning, ain’t it, when you can figure out that!  Now suppose, for instance, he’s got scheduled to die J. P. Morgan.  He’s got him scheduled to die on a certain year.  And you can bet, if they can arrange it, they’ll have him die while the Democrats are in, so they can get the benefit of that estate anyhow, see? Now, according to plans, J. P. Morgan has got to die in order for Mr. Morgenthau to reach his quota for that year.  Now I think Mr. Morgan is a nice man and his patriotism might compare with some of the rest of us. But whether he’d be patriotic enough to want to die on this year’s schedule just to make Morgenthau’s budget balance, I’ve got my doubts. That’s asking a good deal of a man to just die right off just so I can balance my budget.  He might be rather unreasonable and not want to do it.  I say, old men is contrary.  And rich old men is awful contrary.  They’ve had their own way so long…
So in order for Mr. Morgenthau’s plan to work out, he’s got to bump these wealthy guys off, or something.  Well, now, the government’s doing everything else, you know, but there is a Humane Society.” Radio, April 28, 1935

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