David Simon has never had much patience for the vultures in any economic system he’s examined (with the possible exception of Omar, the roguish robber of drug dealers in The Wire), and he’s positively appalled by the idea that Mitt Romney’s declaration that he’s never paid less than thirteen percent of his income in taxes constitutes an appropriate defense of Romney’s approach to his finances and his fiscal obligations to his government and fellow citizens:
Am I supposed to congratulate this man? Thank him for his good citizenship? Compliment him for being clever enough to arm himself with enough tax lawyers so that he could legally minimize his obligations?
Thirteen percent. The last time I paid taxes at that rate, I believe I might still have been in college. If not, it was my first couple years as a newspaper reporter. Since then, the paychecks have been just fine, thanks, and I don’t see any reason not to pay at the rate appropriate to my earnings, given that I’m writing the check to the same government that provided the economic environment that allowed for such incomes.
Simon may be impatient with Obama, particularly on issues of the drug war and mass incarceration, but if he decides that the present commander in chief is preferable to a guy whose attitudes indicate that, as Simon puts it, “This republic is just about over, isn’t it?” I imagine the Obama administration wouldn’t say no if Simon wanted to shoot some ads for the campaign. Treme comes back in September, and Simon might have some free time once it’s in the can. Just a thought.