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Sports, Taxes

The Real Losers In The Phil Mickelson Debate

For those who are not aware, professional golfer and fan favorite Phil Mickelson was lambasted last week for daring to mention he might leave his native California because of the high tax rates.  While being interviewed at one of the Tour’s events, he commented on recent developments that required him to back out of the potential ownership group looking to purchase the San Diego Padres.  In so doing, he has been quoted as saying:

Professional Golfer and California Native Phil Mickelson

Professional Golfer and California Native Phil Mickelson

“If you add up all the federal and you look at the disability and the unemployment and the Social Security and the state, my tax rate is 62, 63 percent.  So I’ve got to make some decisions on what I’m going to do.”

I’d say that is the assessment of a pretty shrewd businessman.  While I understand it does not sound great for a millionaire like Phil Mickelson to complain about his high taxes and that sponsors are not real keen on their representatives making political statements, every word he said was true – AND – everyone knows it.  There are no surprises here.

The real losers in this process are the public.  People like Phil Mickelson are employers.  How many people does the San Diego Padres organization employ directly?  How many others that don’t work for the club directly have a job because the team is in town?  This is just one example of the many businesses people like Phil Mickelson own and operate.  At some point, people need to understand that the folks who have money are not going to consent to being pillaged to fund the handouts everyone else wants forever.  The breaking point is different for everyone, but each person has one. 

So what happens next?  Phil Mickelson and countless others being asked to pay over 60 cents of every dollar they own to some governmental entity are going to leave California and go somewhere else …quietly.  And the state will sink further into insolvency and everyone will wonder what happened.  The same thing will happen in countless other states and our country at large as the progressive tax system and welfare state continues without real reform that reflects reality.

People may not want to hear it, but Phil Mickelson was right.  And his conclusion was rational.  His only offense was daring to say it out loud.  So in addition to losing jobs in California, the people suffer for not having heard the truth.

Need proof?  Just ask Phil’s biggest career rival Tiger Woods.  When asked about Phil’s comments he admitted he left California in 1996 for exactly the reason Phil gave.


About Josh Quinter

I am a politcally active private practice attorney in Suburban Philadelphia.


One thought on “The Real Losers In The Phil Mickelson Debate

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