You may recall one of the most effective organizations supporting the re-election of George W. Bush was Billionaires for Bush!
The billionaires trailed Bush and Cheney around the country, with signs like “It’s a Class War and We’re Winning” and “Widen the Income Gap.” The billionaires liked to say they paid for eight years of Bush, and so throwing him out after four years was a rip-off.
I was thinking about Billionaires for Bush when I saw a roundup of news coverage from around the country of protests Saturday against extending tax cuts for the top two percent.
They weren’t giant demonstrations, but you had 25, 50, 100 people in dozens of venues. In Colorado, there were about 25 folks in Grand Junction and about 50 people in front of Fava’s restaurant in Aurora.
Whether this impresses you or not, you’d agree that what you do not see are the top two percent in the streets, with signs like, “More Tax Cuts for Millionaires Now!” “What’s Good for the Top 2% Is Good For YOU,” “Keep On Tricklin'”, “Another Yacht, for the Good of the People,” or “Why Own Just One House When You Can Have Five?”
The fact that you don’t see those folks demonstrating at all adds news value to the protests by the folks like Fair Share Colorado and Protect Your Care, who were among the organizers of the protest in Aurora. Yet, Saturday’s demonstration got zero news coverage in Denver, as far as I can tell.
Reporters should not only cover events like the one in Aurora but also point out that the super rich aren’t in the streets over this. What’s up with them? Too busy? Embarrassed to put their faces out there?
I’m serious. The Denver Post ran a piece on its Spot Blog yesterday about 50 business leaders who signed a letter to Colorado’s congressional delegation asking them to solve the fiscal-cliff problem. They didn’t even take a position on extending the Bush tax cuts for the super rich. Overall it was a mushy letter, its impact derived from the compiled signatures of wealthy, powerful elites, who call for resolution and compromise. With only vague platitudes, agreeing with overall public sentiment, the letter is more appropriate for a story on the Society Page.
Yet, the Post found the letter more newsworthy than 50 folks actually standing in Aurora, who called on Rep. Mike Coffman, specifically, to prioritize the “middle class over millionaires,” and to end tax cuts for the top 2 percent of income earners.
“Representative Coffman should not hold out for tax cuts for the richest among us,” said Aurora real estate agent Jeanne May, an Aurora real estate agent and member of Colorado Fair Share. “He needs to vote for middle class tax cuts for people like me not tax breaks for millionaires who don’t need them.”
So Jeanne May has thrown down the gauntlet to super rich out there–and reporters. Will there be a response? When will we see the luxury street protests, or somehow, the faces of the top two percent?
Where are those Billionaires for Bush now?
Small business owners, veterans, and others ask Rep. Mike Coffman to end tax cuts to two percent of income earners.