Sure, Pat Sajak hosts Wheel of Fortune, but he's also an American who cares about things in America that matter to Americans (unlike Alex Trebek, who is Canadian, and thus only cares about getting the Nordiques back). After heroically addressing race relations (important, but complicated) earlier this summer, Sajak is using his Ricochet blog to address the greatest on-going threat to America's fiscal security: payroll taxes. Sajak suggests they're worse than Bankruptcy and Lose a Turn combined. Not because of the cost--it's the principle of the thing he doesn't like. Explains Sajak:
You earn money, but you never see it. You never touch it. You never earn interest on it. And you certainly never spend it. It goes directly to the government, and, while making the payment a little more “painless”, it feeds the notion that the money belonged to the government in the first place. Salaries become more theoretical than real, and the amount withheld becomes factored into your thinking. In other words, your take-home pay, for all practical purposes, becomes your salary...Imagine, however, having to sit down once a week or once a month and write checks to the state and federal governments. There would be several immediate benefits. First, workers would have a greater sense of how much of their money is being spent, and they would almost certainly keep a closer eye on what their leaders were doing with these funds. Second, government would be forced overnight into having to be more accountable to taxpayers. No longer could officials hide behind withholding and pretend the money was theirs to begin with. And third, the money could be invested and spent in the private sector before having to be sent to the state capital or to Washington.
And yet he still won't let the free market dictate the price of a vowel.
This article is from the archive of our partner The Wire.
We want to hear what you think about this article. Submit a letter to the editor or write to firstname.lastname@example.org.