A Bill for the Taxpayers19 March 2009
US lawmakers vote for bonus taxfrom the BBC
US lawmakers in the House of Representatives have voted in favour of a bill to levy a 90% tax on big bonuses from firms bailed out by taxpayers.
House Speaker Nancy Pelosi said:We want our money back and we want our money back now for the taxpayers.
President Barack Obama welcomed the result of the vote.
Okay, now Barack Obama is a lawyer, and at some point in her life Nancy Pelosi and all or virtually all of the Members of the House of Representatives have been exposed to Article I §8 of the United States Constitution, where it says
No bill of attainder or ex post facto Law shall be passed.But, here the House is passing a bill to effect an ex post facto tax, which if it becomes law will be struck-down by the Supreme Court as unconstitutional. It would be the taxpayers who paid for the hopeless defense of the unconstitutional law, just as they've paid for the time spent for the House to craft and pass this unconstitutional bill. There's no attempt here to protect the money of the taxpayers; there's just a lot of posturing by Congressmen and by the President at the expense of the taxpayers.
The best that ever could have been accomplished would have been to make a precondition of the bail-out money be that those who continued employment with these firms would agree to waive some level of compensation for the previous year. (There'd still be the issue that some recipients have left the employment of these firms, and that others might refuse to waive their compensation even though it would cost the firm the state funds, and some of those who refused might have contracts that precluded their dismissal for such refusal.)
It never so much as occurred to those who designed the bail-outs to attempt to impose even those sorts of preconditions, because they regard themselves and the executives of these firms as part of a same elite, for whose benefit the bail-outs are primarily designed.
In any case, the House of Representatives, with the blessings of the President, is consciously spending money for nothing but political gain.