It's Mao or Never for Tax Reform?

The Washington Post's Jeff Birnbaum devoted his K Street Confidential column today to liberal Senator Ron Wyden's (D-Ore.) call for a "FairFlat" tax. Birnbaum failed to tell his readers that Wyden's soak-the-rich plan for "reform" co-opts language from two conservative schools of thought on tax reform: the flat tax championed by Steve Forbes and the national sales "Fair Tax" advocated by Rep. John Linder (R-Ga.).

But as the MRC's Business & Media Institute director Dan Gainor also noticed, the Fox News contributor missed Wyden's unfortunate allusion to an infamous Marxist class warrior.

Post writer Jeffrey H. Birnbaum did his best to put a positive spin on the traditional liberal game, but he did enlighten readers about the origin of the plan through this Wyden quote: “This is the beginning of the long march.”


History buffs will recall that the term “long march” dates to 1934 and refers to the massive retreat by Communist forces in China led by Mao Zedong. According to a July 1, 2005, New York Times story, 80,000 Communist fighters fled the Nationalist forces and “One year and 5,000 miles later, after countless acts of extraordinary courage along the way, the 6,000 survivors of the Long March, led by Mao Zedong, limped into this dusty town in the arid yellow hills of northern Shaanxi Province.”

The event became part of the Mao myth as he went on remake China and murder tens of millions of Chinese as part of his “Cultural Revolution.”

Ken Shepherd
Ken Shepherd
Ken Shepherd is the Managing Editor for NewsBusters