Crybaby Billionaires Continue to Whine About Elizabeth Warren

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Leon Cooperman, the billionaire investor, hedge funder, and part-owner of America Media Inc., is very, very upset at Elizabeth Warren’s wealth tax, which would possibly make him only a multi-millionaire, or perhaps just a lesser billionaire. He’s been railing against her for weeks now—and after her campaign released an ad this week targeting Cooperman and his fellow billionaires, he’s making his very hurt feelings known.


“In my opinion she represents the worst in politicians, as she’s trying to demonize wealthy people, because there are more poor people than wealthy people,” Cooperman told CNBC. He added, “She’s disgraceful. She doesn’t know who the fuck she’s tweeting. I gave away more in the year than she has in her whole fucking lifetime.”

Cooperman’s pissed! And he’s not the only billionaire who feels that way. Facebook’s Mark Zuckerberg has said that it would “suck” if Warren became president, pointing to her plan to break up tech companies as an “existential” threat. JPMorgan Chase CEO Jamie Dimon has criticized Warren’s wealth tax, saying that she “uses some pretty harsh words” and “vilifies successful people.” Bill Gates, when asked recently about Warren, made what he characterized as a “joke:” “I’ve paid more than $10 billion in taxes. I’ve paid more than anyone in taxes,” Gates said. “But I’m glad to have. If I’d had to have paid $20 billion, it’s fine. But when you say I should pay $100 billion, OK, then I’m starting to do a little math about what I have left over.” How amusing, Bill!

The billionaires are so alarmed that Jeff Bezos made a call to Michael Bloomberg and asked him to run for president, a plea from one billionaire to another to save their people. But Cooperman in particular has made it his personal mission to whine about the idea of having some of his ill-gotten billions wrested away from him. Who can forget this indelible moment, when he choked up on live television when talking about how much he’s hurt by Warren’s plan to tax the ultra-rich? “I care,” he said, through tears.

Cooperman seems particularly affronted that Warren’s ad brings up the unfortunate fact that he was the subject of an insider trading complaint brought by the Securities and Exchange Commission. “As far as the accusations of insider trading, I won the case,” he told CNBC. Actually, Cooperman didn’t quite win the case brought against him, which he has in the past called “totally abusive”—in 2017, he settled with the SEC for a paltry $4.9 million, or about two percent of the amount of money he made that year alone, though as part of the settlement he didn’t have to admit any wrongdoing.

To Cooperman, Warren is “shitting” on the “fucking American dream,” as he put it in September. “What’s wrong with billionaires?” he asked plaintively.


You can watch Warren’s new ad below:

Senior reporter, Jezebel


The Ron Swanson of Westeros

Once again, it needs to be pointed out that in the real world, there is one and only one superpower: compound interest.

Again, a 2% wealth tax on a billion dollars is $20 million. If you have . . . let’s say 75% of that billion dollars invested prudently in a normal, average mutual fund, which draws a normal, average 6% interest per year, that’s $45 million just in interest each year, every year. And if you roll that back over, most present forms of tax won’t even touch it. Or if they do, they touch it at a favorable, capital-gains tax rate as opposed to ordinary, having-a-job-and-working income tax rate.

Warren is not going to break up anybody’s fortune, or punish anybody with that wealth tax. All she’s doing is three very good things: she’s blunting the rate at which those assets accumulate and are rolled back into the original investment, she’s using that money to invest in policies that help everyone, and she’s insisting that the very wealthy invest their money productively. Literally the only circumstance where a wealth tax might dent the principal of that billion dollars is if you’re hiding your billion dollars under rocks and not doing anything with it. Now there’s a cost to doing that, which is a good thing.