Tax the Poor!

One of the things that originally made Rush Limbaugh notorious back in the day was his proposal to tax the poor. The idea being that if you want to discourage something, like cigarette smoking, you tax it. Well, why not a poverty tax?

The Swiftian satire wasn’t appreciated when Rush did it, but now look what New York City is doing:

The Bloomberg administration has quietly begun charging rent to homeless families who live in publicly run shelters but have income from jobs.
The new policy is based on a 1997 state law that was not enforced until last week, when shelter operators across the city began requiring residents to pay a certain portion of their income. The amount varies based on factors that include family size and what shelter is being used, but should not exceed 50 percent of a family’s income, a state official said.
Vanessa Dacosta, who earns $8.40 an hour as a cashier at Sbarro, received a notice under her door several weeks ago informing her that she had to give $336 of her approximately $800 per month in wages to the Clinton Family Inn, a shelter in Hell’s Kitchen where she has lived since March.
“It’s not right,” said Ms. Dacosta, a single mother of a 2-year-old who said she spends nearly $100 a week on child care. “I pay my baby sitter, I buy diapers, and I’m trying to save money so I can get out of here. I don’t want to be in the shelter forever.”

(Via Memeorandum.) Hey, Vanessa, why don’t you explain this problem to the father of your child? It’s like Ann Coulter says in Guilty: Nobody is allowed to criticize single mothers. Single mothers have a right to screw around, have babies out of wedlock and stick taxpayers with the bill.

Say this for the gays, at least they’re not trying to bill me for their lifestyle. Beware the hobo menace!

UPDATE: Welcome, Instapundit readers! It’s Mother’s Day and Rule 5 Sunday, plus we’re also trying to learn the lessons of Dijon Gate and commemorating the fifth anniversary of same-sex Harvard marriage, so please have a look around. And if you feel the overwhelming urge to hit the tip jar, don’t fight the feeling!

UPDATE II: The Rhetorican:

You know an economic system whose central conceit is to promote equality by transferring wealth from the have-more’s to the have-not’s has failed when it seeks to transfer wealth from the poor to government.

Ditto! BTW, just in case Rush Limbaugh should happen to read this: I am The Other McCain for a reason, so please don’t hate me because of Crazy Cousin John. Or, as I sometimes feel obliged to point out: Don’t Blame Me, I Voted For Bob Barr!

Just to clarify this distinction, check out these articles I wrote for The American Spectator:

So please don’t confuse me with my distant kinsman, Rush. I’m a lot more like that Dittohead taxi driver Wally Onakoya. I’m a bona fide right-wing extremist. (And if you need an extra hand editing your monthly newsletter, I can provide excellent references. Get in touch. They tell me Palm Beach is lovely this time of year.)

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