American Priorities

American priorities: When an athlete not saluting a flag overshadows the Pentagon losing $6.5 Trillion

August 15, 2016

By: Bobby Casey, Managing Director GWP

American PrioritiesThe people of the United States were in an uproar over Gabby Douglas NOT putting her hand over her heart for the national anthem upon winning the gold. Of all the socialist policies we have here in the United States, we don’t socialize the sponsorship of Olympic athletes. We socialize the preparation for HOSTING it here, but not the athletes themselves. They are actually privately sponsored. This is not true for every country, but it is true for the US.

With that said, they don’t owe the United States anything. If anything, the United States and her indignant patriots should be thanking HER and her sponsors for the privilege of her talents representing this country on a global stage!

There is a comedian by the name of Felonious Munk who goes on these internet tears about people. One of the gripes he had was that Americans know about all the offensive things celebrities and politicians say, but don’t know why the price of gas is what it is, or why we are still in Afghanistan. His point was that Americans don’t have their priorities straight. It’s not to say that you can’t enjoy the Olympics while simultaneously being aware of serious world events. It’s when all of social media and news is flooded with people being offended over how people choose to express or not express themselves, while being totally ignorant or apathetic about the Pentagon losing $6.5 trillion.

So where is the outrage? Pentagon loses $6.5 trillion, and not a sound. It’s interesting because if you do a Google search for the Pentagon losing Millions/Billions/Trillions, you will find articles dating back as far as 2002. Back then, Retired Vice Admiral Jack Shanahan – who commanded the Navy’s 2nd Fleet the first time Donald Rumsfeld served as Defense Secretary, in 1976 – said of the Pentagon, “With good financial oversight we could find $48 billion in loose change in that building, without having to hit the taxpayers.” (Source: CBS)

This isn’t NEW. It’s as if they were testing the waters to see if America would care or just sit back and tolerate this sort of behavior. And when America isn’t busy cheering on tyranny, she is rolling over and placidly accepting it.

Did you know that the EPA has spent $9.2 MILLION PER YEAR on office furniture for the past decade? I’d be surprised if you did. All these reports are public record but our “free press” isn’t doing its job telling you about it. Instead you have tiny alternate news outlets filing FOIA petitions scrambling to get the word out about things that really matter.

Last week, we wrote about the economic tsunami mega sporting events like the Olympics can be for residents, especially in developing countries who are underprepared to shoulder that kind of activity. For the US, it might just be another shiny distraction. While people were getting their panties in a twist over Gabby Douglas NOT putting her hand over her heart in reverence to the “Great Empire”, Gabby Douglas among other American medalists will be getting robbed by that same oppressor.

That’s right. You bust your butt for over ten years, qualify for the privilege of competing in this event that comes around every four years, find your own sponsors, and have the audacity to win… and the IRS comes swooping in for a taste of the action. American’s for Tax Reform reports:

“The U.S. Olympic Committee recognizes its medalists with $25,000 for gold, $15,000 for silver, and $10,000 for bronze. But the IRS considers these amounts to be regular income, subject to taxation.

“A gold medalist from Team USA could end up facing a tax bill of $9,900 per gold medal, $5,940 per silver medal, and $3,960 per bronze medal.

“To be clear, these are the maximum possible tax amounts, and vary widely based on an individual’s tax circumstances and available deductions.”

So while Congress can’t even manage to create a budget, the Pentagon is losing trillions, and the EPA is blowing millions, the most important thing here is that these people who have demonstrated global excellence must pay into the largess notwithstanding the unscrupulous squandering of their government. And if they don’t show reverence at a ceremony honoring their wins, then they should be publicly shamed.

PRIORITIES! Where the hell are they?!

It doesn’t matter what their net worth is, or the amount of sponsorships they will likely receive upon their return. You don’t punish accomplishments. I know that Republicans and Democrats alike get upset over people keeping their money and spending it how they wish. Democrats naturally feel entitled to people’s earnings, full stop. With the exception of “the poor” (which is an arbitrary benchmark) everyone should pay in and be happy to do so.

Republicans, however, feel entitled to the money staying in the United States. They deride taxes and defend tax exemptions for churches and charities… but they don’t like it that “illegal immigrants” don’t pay into the system. They likewise don’t like it that many immigrants send their money to their home countries.

Given that, perhaps it’s that we have conflicting priorities rather than NO priorities at all? No. Americans don’t get a free pass for simply disagreeing on how to oppress one another. Despite America’s preposterous tax and regulation regimes, it still manages to be home to many excellent and talented individuals. If America wants those overachievers to continue to call her home, then she needs to back off.

American excellence exists, but it is portable. It can leave any time it wants. That’s why you have offshore accounts. That’s why you have corporate inversions. That’s why you have a rising number of expatriates and people renouncing citizenship year over year. Rather than shaming and robbing the productive and successful, the United States would do well to simply let them be. No need to sponsor or subsidize them… they are independently excellent. But no need to get in their way either.

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