For the second time this month, MSNBC's Joe Scarborough has taken on the extreme liberal bias of Washington Post columnist E.J. Dionne.
On Thursday's "Morning Joe," after Mika Brzezinski read part of Dionne's pathetic "Why Conservatives Hate Warren Buffett," her co-host replied, "I like E.J., but he changes every couple of years depending on who’s in the White House" (video follows with transcript and commentary):
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MIKA BRZEZINSKI, CO-HOST: Okay, so time now for the must-read opinion pages. “Why Conservatives Hate Warren Buffett.” This is in the Washington Post by E.J. Dionne. And he writes in part this:
Maybe only a really, really rich guy can credibly make the case for why the wealthy should be asked to pay more in taxes. You can’t accuse a big capitalist of “class warfare.” That’s why the right wing despises Warren Buffett and is trying so hard to shut him up.
Militant conservatives are effective because they are absolutely shameless. Many of the same people who think the rich should be free to spend unlimited sums influencing our politics without having to disclose anything are now asking Buffett to make his tax returns public. I guess if you’re indifferent to consistency, you have a lot of freedom of action.
JOE SCARBOROUGH, HOST: Speaking of being indifferent to consistency, E.J. Dionne, go back and see his columns when George Bush was president and Barack Obama was president. There you will find one of the most inconsistent columnists. I like E.J., but he changes every couple of years depending on who’s in the White House.
But on this Warren Buffett, we don’t hate Warren Buffett. I like Warren Buffett. We’ve interviewed him. I love his story. He’s living in that same house since 1963.
BRZEZINSKI: He’s got a good message.
SCARBOROUGH: He was slow and steady as they go when the tech world was booming. He kept his head down, and he kept getting three, four percent. I like Warren Buffett a lot.
BRZEZINSKI: Ask Pat. Do they hate him?
SCARBOROUGH: I like him a lot. But I’ve been very critical of him because you will get millionaires and billionaires going on going, “Mr. President, I’ll pay more taxes.” Well, no, first of all, nobody’s stopping them from paying more taxes.
BRZEZINSKI: Please do.
SCARBOROUGH: And secondly, they have a fleet. And it’s fine, it’s their right. They have a fleet of lawyers and accountants and trust attorneys working around the clock to shelter their income so they don’t have to pay taxes, which is fine. That is your right as an American, but if you’re going to work and your people are going to work around the clock to not pay taxes, please, don’t come out at the same time going, “Hey, I, raise my taxes.” Knowing Pat Buchanan cynically, that even if they raise the top rate to 39.6 percent, Warren Buffett will still be paying eight percent tax, eighteen percent of his income in taxes, while people who make far, far, far less than him will be the ones stuck holding the tab.
PAT BUCHANAN: You know, it’s, I tend to think he’s a bit of a hot dog, Joe. You know, “I really want to pay more taxes. My secretary pays more than I do.” Why doesn’t he pay her taxes…
BRZEZINSKI: That’s what I was thinking.
BUCHANAN: …and why doesn’t he tell, I mean, himself, why doesn’t he pay at the rate he could pay? Pay at 35 percent.
SCARBOROUGH: I was going to say, Pat, just pay 35 percent.
SCARBOROUGH: If you think the Bush tax cuts are immoral and too low, then instead of paying eighteen percent of your taxes…
SCARBOROUGH: …pay 35 percent of your taxes.
Those interested should also read "Scarborough Smacks Down E.J. Dionne's GOP Obstruction Charge: Obama 'Owned Washington' for Two Years."