November 12, 2012

Today, the Feds could have received a check for just over 18 million dollars [Darleen Click]

Yesterday, husband and I paid $9 each to go see the new Bond film, Skyfall. Wonderful film, a great time had by all in the theater.

This morning I read where Skyfall’s debut this weekend in America grossed $90 million (including Thursdays receipts).

Now as much as I enjoyed the film, movies are candy. They are sodas with empty calories. In Bloomberg parlance, we really should restrict ourselves when it comes to passive entertainment. So in this time of economic woes second only to The Great Depression, isn’t it time to stop the Hollywood Tax Cut?

The last time America was this deep in debt was the end of World War II. One of the ways we paid the debt down was through a 20 percent tax on the gross receipts of movie theaters. (That’s right — gross, not net.) That tax was repealed in the 1950s — I guess we could call that the “Hollywood tax cut,” since we’re still talking about the “Bush tax cut” in 2012. To secure that repeal, Hollywood launched a major PR campaign about how taxes kill jobs and hurt prosperity. We haven’t heard that kind of talk from them since.

But, hey, by that time, we were bringing the debt under control. Now, we’re facing debt levels similar to those we faced after World War II, and it seems entirely appropriate to respond with similar measures. Of course, technological change means we’d need to update the 20 percent tax to apply not only to movie theaters, but to DVD sales, movie downloads, pay-per-view and the like.

Really, the illiberals are all dishonestly pontificating about “Obama’s mandate” to raise taxes on those making $250K and above — a direct bead on small businesses that already is resulting in layoffs, hiring-freezes and reduction of worker hours. Yet some of the most expensive real estate in the nation is filled with people who are movie or sports “stars.”

Isn’t time that conservatives start ripping a page from Alinksy and making the illiberals live up to their own words?

So if Boehner and his team are going to put some tax increases on the table, perhaps by eliminating deductions more than raising rates, they should learn from past mistakes a drive a truly hard bargain. Make the spending cuts immediate, not a load of cold porridge about $X of cuts happening over ten years, eight of which will never come. The opening bid should be small revenue increases for big fiscal restraint, something on the scale of giving Obama his silly “Buffett Rule” millionaire surtax in exchange for a balanced budget.

And let’s hope the Speaker and the rest of the Republican negotiators are smart enough to propose revenue increases that will hurt liberals the most. Start by taxing the ever-loving crap out of Hollywood. I’ve suggested this before, and the esteemed Instapundit, Glenn Reynolds, was on the same wavelength last August when he suggested bringing back the 20 percent excise tax on motion picture gross revenue from the 1950s. […]

As Reynolds noted, one side effect of such proposals is that it causes far-Left Hollywood types to suddenly begin babbling about the depressing effects of high tax rates upon economic growth, as though they had been suddenly possessed by the ghost of Milton Friedman. That’s fun even if the tax proposals end up getting defeated. Especially now that we have YouTube to disseminate and immortalize their panicked bursts of “trickle-down economic” wisdom.

The internet has been full of “advice” from illiberals that GOP must change to be relevant. That we cannot stand on principle anymore.

Ok, then, let’s start with them. Let’s put the taxing crosshairs on Movie/Sports Industrial Complex and see how “patriotic” they really are.

Posted by Darleen @ 9:05am

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Comments (17)

  1. – Commiewood carries the Democrats water dutifly, so theres no surprise that somehow the 1% that reside there would get a cpmplete pass. Of course Madonna paints “Obama” across her saggy old ass. The reasons for all the BS progressive cheerleading is strickly business, and always has been.

    – Nothing the Left does is honest.

  2. This would probably kill the cute movie theater down the street from me. That theater exists because they get movies that are at the end of their rental cycle, and only charge $3 to get in.

    Still, killing businesses is what this administration is all about, so I guess we can expect it.

  3. Do it for the social justice.

  4. Yes, Hollywood should pay its “fair share” of taxes. They also need to drastically reduce their carbon footprint (for movie production AND in their personal lives). Probably should be required to keep jobs in the US, too. Let’s go Alinsky and demand that they live up to their own rules.

    Yeah, I would hate to put the squeeze on movie-related businesses, such as our local independent theaters, but the industry has become a massive propaganda organization pumping out more movies that I dislike than like. And by paying reduced taxes we guarantee they have enough dough to give very generously to Dems.

  5. When I read the title of this article, I thought it was going to be about the Keystone Pipeline but that probably would have made the government a lot more that 18 million.

    Ya know, I’m starting to think this thing isn’t really about money (not sure which is more appropriate a /s or one of these ;)

  6. cranky-d

    The gross receipt tax is a bad idea. But so is $250K one that will just smoke small businesses.

    Time to smack big blue Entertainment where it will hurt them first.

  7. It would be interesting for someone to float the idea of a “user fee” on abortions. Anyone care to guess what the reaction would be?

  8. “. . . a “user fee” on abortions.”

    What, kinda like the Red Chinese making their executed prisoner’s estate pay for the bullets? Hmmm . . . . . so figured out a way to commercialize the body parts?

  9. sdferr: I think you’re missing the point, somewhat. Floating the idea of taxes on the left’s pet issues would force them to justify their outrage over the tax. It’s just an extension of the logic of the Hollywood tax breaks, turned on its head.

  10. I took your meaning well enough, yet thought of squeezing blood from a turnip. Apologies.

  11. sdferr: No harm, no foul. Although I think that an exhaustive search for pet issues to tax might provide an aggregate dollar figure that might be surprising. However, there is an argument that raising more revenue is not the answer…

  12. That theater exists because they get movies that are at the end of their rental cycle, and only charge $3 to get in.

    That theater exists because they sell popcorn with real butter on it. Which isn’t to say that the butter tax won’t be jacked up.

  13. I do not buy their popcorn. However, that’s the only place I go to see movies any more.

  14. I’m sorry, I can’t get aboard calling for more taxings. Too much like throwing the poop back at the monkeys.

    We all know taxes just get passed on to the consumer, even (maybe especially) ones in Hollywood.

    Is same reason I don’t advocate dropping the mortgage deduction, even though I don’t own a home. As soon as you look at the revenue side, you’ve taken your eyes off the problem.

    There needs to be a constitutional amendment requiring (as a criminal matter) government balance the budget, including a debt reduction provision that must move toward real time balance (freezing government spending by eliminating automatic adjustments for inflation would be a healthy start).

    Naturally, none of that will happen. Taxes will be raised on Hollywood(though I’m sure they’ll clean up in the carbon credits market). Along with everywhere else they can squeeze dough from the soft supple teats of the public, through business passing the cost on to them.


  15. Just saw Skyfall myself this evening.

    Terrific film. Best Bond flick in 17 years.

  16. That theater exists because they sell popcorn with real butter on it.

    I would like to hear more about this theater.