Tax the rich! Have fat cat CEOs made socialists of us all?


On Thursday, the House of Representatives passed a bill that would, effectively, nullify the $165 million in bonuses that insurance company AIG recently paid out. The bill, which was ratified by a vote of 328-93, imposes a tax rate of 90 percent on bonuses given to employees whose household income is more than $250,000 per year. The new rate would only apply to companies, like AIG, that have taken more than $5 billion in bailout funds.

The bill is the latest step in what has become a sort of populist chess game between conservatives and liberals. Last month, when Rick Santelli launched into his now-famous rant, many conservatives immediately branded him a populist hero, a Samuel Adams for the 21st century. Suddenly, populism was a good thing, a sign that one was in touch with the common people. As Santelli yelled at the President, it seemed like an uprising was in the air, and the Chicago Tea Party started to look like Woodstock, only with better tailors and a more refined class of people.