Thursday, March 05, 2009

POOR LITTLE RICH BOY. Tigerhawk's anger at the proposed tax hike on people making more than $250,000 a year results in a remarkable video, in which he complains with frightening, quiet intensity that he and his rich friends "have worked harder and longer in their entire careers than most Americans understand and can even conceive." He himself has spent 100 hours in the office this week; "I wrote the notes for this video at three in the morning on a Sunday night, having been there all weekend."

If you can continue watching through your tears, you will see Tigerhawk explain that the rich "work harder than everyone else doing things that cannot be done by other people who have not earned the same skills because they did not expend the same effort" and "are both more productive with their time and more energetic than average people." And "they will never be romanticized by Hollywood... but they are far more important to the prosperity of the United States and a future worth living for than the people who are put on a pedestal" -- by which he presumably means folks who are not rich but are still admired; I wished he'd taken time to tell us who these wastrels are. Schoolteachers, perhaps.

Yet Tigerhawk claims he would happily pay higher taxes "if I felt that I was being respected for my contribution." Tigerhawk wants Obama to talk nicely to him and others of his superior kind, to say "we need our most productive citizens, as heavily taxed as they are, to pay more taxes," and to admit that they "produce more than most people." Perhaps, to show proper obeisance, Obama should also make some rich guy's birthday a federal holiday. My nominee would be Richard Fuld or John Thain.

Tigerhawk says that Barack Obama knows how deserving the rich are, because he and his wife "come from this class." But "like FDR, Barack Obama sees an enemy, and it is us." Or, to put it the old-fashioned way, he's a traitor to his class.

I miss the old days when, if a rich guy wanted his ass kissed, he'd pay someone to do it instead of haranguing strangers on YouTube.

UPDATE. Oh good -- rich people still have some ass-kissers on retainer. At The Corner, Lisa Schiffren picks up Tigerhawk's hymn to the moneyed supermen: "Their work ethic is prodigious, and, as Tigerhawk points out, in their spare time they sit on the boards of most of the complex charities and arts institutions that provide aid and pay for culture in America. No group of people contribute more to their community." Yet Obama panders instead to those inferior people who pick rich people's lettuce, build their cars, and wash their floors.

Those familiar with this kind of thing will not be surprised that Schiffren alludes to "going John Galt," and predicts that golf, "a time-intensive sport that the hard-working have eschewed for the past decade or two because it took too long -- will make a comeback." We'll all be sorry when our betters are pleasuring themselves on the links, instead of driving our economy -- with their superior salesmanship, marketing campaigns, and executive abilities -- to the great success it enjoys today.

I am not rich and my opinion is therefore valueless, but I have worked in public relations, and if this campaign is meant to win the approval of non-rich Americans I'd say it was ill-conceived. People liked the rich better when they were in screwball comedies. I would suggest the next time Tigerhawk speaks to the little people, he should try acting like Dudley Moore in Arthur. If he finds the drunkenness difficult to convey, he can just hold a big martini glass, sprinkle his tongue with cocaine, and, to achieve the necessary impression of unsteadiness, shoot the thing on his yacht during a storm.

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