Tag Archives: Tiger Woods

Won’t Someone Think Of The Ballplayers?

Because of the OC Register, I hate being alive.  I hope they’re happy.

In a column from last week that would have escaped me if Jesse from Pandagon hadn’t seen it, Hank Adler decides that the best way to attack Barack Obama’s spending plan is to remind everyone what professional athletes will lose out of the deal.

It was fortunate for Tiger that his most-recent U.S. Open win occurred in 2008. Under twin tax proposals from Obama to 1) remove the “cap” from Social Security taxes for individuals earning over $250,000, a plateau Tiger has long since surpassed in 2008, and 2) eliminate the “Bush” tax cuts, thereby raising the top marginal federal income tax rate to 39.6 percent, Tiger’s taxes on his winner’s check would have increased to approximately $776,000, a boost of almost $190,000. Instead of Tiger keeping 57 percent of his earnings and the government taking 43 percent, under the twin Obama tax proposals, Tiger’s federal and California taxes would have amounted to 57 percent of his winnings, leaving Tiger with just 43 percent.

I know when California families are deciding between air conditioning or meat, when they muse about using a rickshaw to get to work because gas is as out of reach as gold, they are actually upset because they know Tiger Woods is being deprived of $190,000 out of the eleventy billion in his bank account.  What, his new baby has to get silver-plated starter clubs now instead of the expected gold?  Can you look yourself in the eye and say that doesn’t eat you up inside?

Adler continues:

Prefer baseball to golf?

The New York Yankees have a 2008 payroll of approximately $208 million. Under the twin Obama tax proposals, the 24 Yankee players would be hit with an aggregate increase in federal income taxes of just over $22 million, with slugger Alex Rodriguez single-handedly getting dunned with $2.6 million in additional federal taxes.

The owner of the Yankees would owe an additional $7.5 million of federal taxes. Ticket prices would need to be increased by about $65 million so that the owner and players could have the same after-tax income as before. The increase in ticket prices would amount to an average $16 per ticket. Given that the least-expensive ticket in Yankee Stadium currently is $14, this would more than double the cost of a seat in the bleachers.

Adler hit upon the two most sympathetic characters in all of sports, maybe all of Christendom, to single out as martyrs: Alex Rodriguez and George Steinbrenner.  Incidentally, with the Yanks 7 1/2 games out of first, I don’t think anyone’s going to feel too bad about them losing money.  Then there’s the part where Steinbrenner is entitled to his after-tax earnings and simply must fleece the hardworking fans, because the Yankees have no other revenue streams to speak of.

You can go on to dispute Adler by mentioning the top-level tax rate in 1960 (it was 90%), the tax rates under Clinton which Obama would restore and how that affected business (the largest peacetime expansion in history), etc., etc.  But someone with the insight to use the plight of enormously wealthy ballplayers to rally the middle-class public to his cause isn’t really worth the time.  Only the mockery.