Hailed by the LA Times as “sharing some budget pain”, President Obama recently announced that is is taking a 5% pay cut, adding up to about a $20,000 tax “savings”. From LA Times:
Sharing a bit of budget pain, President Barack Obama will return 5% of his salary to the Treasury in a show of solidarity with federal workers smarting from government-wide spending cuts.
Obama’s decision grew out of a desire to share in the sacrifice that government employees are making, a White Houseofficial said Wednesday. Hundreds of thousands of workers could be forced to take unpaid leave — known as furloughs — if Congress does not reach an agreement soon to undo the cuts.
The president is demonstrating that he will be paying a price, too, as the White House warns of dire economic consequences from the $85 billion in cuts — called asequester — that started to hit federal programs last month after Congress failed to stop them. In the weeks since, the administration has faced repeated questions about how the White House itself will be affected. The cancellation of White House tours in particular has drawn mixed reactions.
Where’s a budding libertarian writer to begin?
The idea that Obama is feeling “budget pain” by taking a pay cut from $400,000 to $380,000. That still leaves him firmly entrenched in the “jet flying super wealthy” category which, according to PrezBo himself, is at $250,000/year. Of course, the President doesn’t have to buy his own jet, instead he gets to fly wherever he wants on Air Force one and enjoy lavish vacations at taxpayers expense. Earlier this year, approximately $3 million was spent flying the President back to Washington, DC from Hawaii where he was on vacation to sign a bill, and then fly him back to continue his vacation!
No, Obama’s paycut isn’t nearly as impressive as the salary Ron Paul proposed during his Presidential campaign of $39,336, the salary of the average American worker at the time.
Of course, even Ron Paul’s proposal is $39,336 more than one man should be paid to “wear the ring” and wield the power of Presidential ruler.
The fact is that all tax money is coerced from the populace by the threat of violence. And is the President returning his $20,000 to that populace? Of course not. He is returning it to the U.S. Treasury.
To act like this is a sacrifice of any sort is laughable. This is akin if the leader of a gang which runs a local neighborhood and constantly mugs people who live there at gunpoint, announcing to the neighborhood not that the gang was leaving and that the harassment of the people will end, but rather that he as leader would take some of that stolen money that he had been keeping to himself and put it back towards other gang activities. I’m sure the neighborhood would breathe a huge sigh of relief!
This is pure politics as usual.