"I think not having the estate tax recognizes the people that are investing,” Grassley (R-Iowa) told the Des Moines Register, “as opposed to those that are just spending every darn penny they have, whether it’s on booze or women or movies.”I guess the thing that fascinates me about this quote is that "people" might be spending all their money on, among things they could be spending it on, women. I spend quite a bit of my money on a woman, to be sure--myself. I like a roof over my head and the odd bit of food and heat and electricity, indoor plumbing, oh, and when I'm feeling like a reckless splurge, I guess booze and Netflix. On what I make, I don't really worry about investing for anything but my retirement. As the old saying goes, you know, "You can't take it with you." And as I'm childfree, I'm not even all that concerned about my estate--my husband gets it if he survives me. Eh. (I'm in no immediate danger of leaving an estate that the taxman would be concerned with, and most Americans wouldn't be either if they knew what the rates are.)
The assumption that Grassley seems to be making, though, is that people who earn money (men) are spending money frivolously on women (and not, presumably, keeping a roof over the heads of their spouses and girl-children--I do not know if he includes education for said girl-children as frivolity but suspect it). This, for some reason, gives me an image of a cowboy flush with his monthly pay-packet, venturing to the local dancehall to get relaxed on the demon rum and letting himself be seduced by girls in shimmery dresses and deceptive corsets who are educated in the latest high-stepping routines from gay Paree. Maybe the darn fool wastes his nickels on the talking pictures and ice cream sodas for his doxy, even though she'll never make a proper home for him. And there the poor wastrel sits, beans on toast in a cold-water boarding house with barely the savings for a pine box and a thin granite slab when he shifts from his working man's estate to the Pearly Gates, when he could have been sinking his coins into shares in the local mining concern! And making something of himself!
Maybe I'm exaggerating. But I don't think it's by that much!