- The Washington Times - Thursday, April 19, 2001

Lifestyles of the rich
"Rob Long, a contributing editor and a Hollywood producer, has a theory as to why movie stars, for example, tend to be so liberal. e says that movie stars never see the taxes they pay. These guys have so many managers, consultants, agents, therapists, and — in the case of Alec Baldwin people to make sure they dont take a bath with the TV, that the line items for taxes just seem like another monthly fee.
"Hence they feel no obstructions, literally, to paying for nanny-state government programs because they already have constructed their own little nanny-states all around them. They are pampered and protected 'talent and so these king-babies dont see any problem with the whole world living like they do
"The other folks who dont care much about taxes are the mega rich. This is something the Left is incapable of accepting; the super-rich arent necessarily conservatives. Warren Buffett and Bill Gates and all those guys dont care if taxes are high. Corporate taxes and regulations get passed on to the consumer and amount to a barrier to entry for smaller firms. Personal income taxes are easily avoided when you can afford to pay millions to lawyers who can prove you arent worth a dime."
— Jonah Goldberg, writing on "The Taxman Stinketh, " Monday in National Review Online at www.nationalreview.com

Sneaker culture
"The late grunge singer Kurt Cobain wore them like a habit
"Former college basketball star Lou Pucillo wore them, as did the entire North Carolina State University Wolfpack during their three-year NCAA championship reign from 1952-1954.
"'Them means Converse 'Chuck Taylor All-Star sneakers, an American icon in canvas and rubber.
"But now the original version of the shoes are about to achieve a more dubious distinction: extinction from American closets.
"Two weeks ago, the last American plant making the footwear shut its doors here in Lumberton, N.C. While the sneakers will still be manufactured overseas, none of them will again carry the little patch on the heel that says 'Made in U.S.A.
"Whats happened to this once-proud mill amid the undulating hills of North Carolina tells a tale of sneaker economics and one towns attempt to survive the onslaught of globalization.
"Lumberton residents have seen some 6,500 factory jobs disappear since 1996
"For many, watching a factory like the Chuck Taylor plant move its jobs overseas is the first time the implications of a global economy hit home. 'Its a powerful example of how free trade can actually affect American culture, says Sanjay Mongia, an analyst with the Economic Strategy Institute in Washington."
— Patrik Jonsson, writing on "One towns tale of sneaker economics, " in Tuesdays Christian Science Monitor

Golden age gone
"When George Pataki swept to victory over Mario Cuomo in 1994, it seemed the dawn of a golden age for New Yorks Republican party. For the first time in a quarter century, the GOP controlled the governors mansion, the attorney generals office, and the mayoralty of the Empire States biggest city. Rudy Giuliani was putting a Republican stamp on Gotham with an aggressive agenda of crime control and fiscal restraint
"Today, the New York Republican party and its agenda are in tatters, and party leaders are on the run. Since 1995, the GOP has lost a U.S. Senate seat, three U.S. congressional districts, the attorney generalship of the state, two seats in the state Senate, two seats in the state Assembly, and control of the once unassailably Republican Westchester and Nassau County legislatures."
— Steven Malanga, writing on "New Yorks Republican Crack-Up," in the spring issue of City Journal

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