Somebody got to Phil Mickelson.
After completing Sunday's Humana Challenge in La Quinta, Mickelson was quoted as saying he might move, or even consider retirement, because of increased taxes he said had pushed his tax rate to "62, 63%."But suddenly...
"It's been an interesting off-season," Mickelson, a lifelong San Diego-area resident, said. "And I'm going to have to make some drastic changes."
Several golfers, including Tiger Woods, have moved to Florida because it has no state income tax.
"I'm like many Americans who are trying to understand the new tax laws," Mickelson's statement read in part. "I certainly don't have a definitive plan at this time, but like everyone else I want to make decisions that are best for my future and my family. Finances and taxes are a personal matter and I should not have made my opinions on them public. I apologize to those I have upset or insulted and assure you I intend to not let it happen again."So let's get this straight. A beloved law-abiding free American who brings joy to millions and seems never to have bothered anyone evidently forgot that he lives in Obamerica. He's done well for himself but he should remember that he didn't build that. How dare he "upset" and "insult" people by so selfishly expressing concern that his government stands ready to confiscate, err, tax away, 63% of his income.
Read that again: 63 percent of one American's income.
Here's what Phil Mickelson should have said:
America continues to amaze me. I still marvel that people pay me so much money for hitting a little white ball around a golf course. It's not that I don't work hard at my craft. I do. I take nothing for granted and work my tail off every day to get better, just like millions of Americans do at their crafts. And it's not like I didn't take risks. When so many people told me I should get a 'real' job, I held fast to my dream, no matter how unlikely it was, just like so many entrepreneurs in America have done who have made our lives immeasurably better. And yet I still marvel at it all.
But maybe it's not so hard to understand. I earned $60 million dollars last year and not a single one of those dollars did I steal from anyone. Not a single one of those dollars did I weasel out of a corrupt system because I bribed -- I mean, contributed to -- some politician to pass a law that favors me. Not a single one of those dollars did I simply tax away from someone because I could.
Every single dollar that came my way was voluntarily given to to me. And people are not idiots. They don't just give away their hard-earned dollars for nothing. Every dollar they gave me was in return for something that was worth more to them than a dollar, or they wouldn't have given it up. Like I said, I marvel at the opportunities in America. Who would have thought so many people would find so much joy in watching a guy hit a ball with stick? But they do and so I will do my best to do everything I can to be worthy of them. Isn't that the American way?
It breaks my heart that America is abandoning the American way of keeping government small so that individuals can become as big as their dreams. And it breaks my heart that my home state, the state I love, is chasing away so many hard-working people and wonderful businesses with their outrageously high taxes. It's nothing less than a tragedy that the fastest growing population in America is former Californians and the fastest growing industry is former California businesses.
What's worse, unless we change our ways, unless we stop all of America from adopting the failing California Blue model, I fear we will no longer be talking about former Californians so much as former Americans.