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Last night, Bill Maher concluded with a New Rule saying that Mitt Romney's giving to his own church should NOT count as charity and be tax deductible.

Now, I don't want to re-fight last Friday's show, or get into a pissing match with the Internet, but the usual suspects are bitching that I was wrong in saying that Romney's charitable giving doesn't count, because it all goes to his cult.  I'm sorry, I meant to say his ridiculous church.

....

In any event, it doesn't matter, and I'm very sorry if I called your horseshit bullshit.  The real issue is, when Mitt Romney gets a deduction for giving to charity, the rest of us taxpayers have to cover the loss.  Charitable deductions reduce the public coffers by about $60 billion dollars a year.  They take more out of our budget than enforcing the Buffett Rule would put back in.

....

Still, if Mitt Romney gave 10% of his income to the Red Cross or Doctors Without Borders, I would be the first to say, "Good robot!"  But he gives it to the Mormon church, which spent millions here in California in a political battle to make sure the only gay at the wedding is the priest who performs the ceremony.  (shocked audience applause)

And public dollars should not be subsidizing that. ....

And look, I'm not saying the Mormon church doesn't do some good things.  They provide food during famines, and wheelchairs for the lame.  But that's not their main concern, which is, like any business, growing the business, opening branches, selling more product, putting asses in tabernacles.  General Electric plants a tree now and then, it doesn't make them Johnny Appleseed.

Video and full transcript below the fold.



And finally, New Rule: Donating your money to help repair this kid's cleft palate, or to feed these hungry people?  That's charity.  Giving money so Bryce and Spencer can spend two years in Namibia spreading nonsense about celestial marriage and how Jesus is coming back to Missouri?  Not charity.  (wild audience applause)

Bryce, Spencer, if you really want to help the people of famine-ravaged Namibia, skip the tie and the book, and just let them eat you.

Now, I don't want to re-fight last Friday's show, or get into a pissing match with the Internet, but the usual suspects are bitching that I was wrong in saying that Romney's charitable giving doesn't count, because it all goes to his cult.  I'm sorry, I meant to say his ridiculous church.

But religion, cult, truth is there's no real definition of which is which.  It's more like, hehe, if the shoe fits.  I personally define a cult as any religion with fewer followers than Snooki has on Twitter.  Also, Mormonism is secretive.  And that's another trait I associate with cults.  Catholics own their crazy.  It's right on the table.  Mormons are more like Fight Club.  (audience applause)

In any event, it doesn't matter, and I'm very sorry if I called your horseshit bullshit.  The real issue is, when Mitt Romney gets a deduction for giving to charity, the rest of us taxpayers have to cover the loss.  Charitable deductions reduce the public coffers by about $60 billion dollars a year.  They take more out of our budget than enforcing the Buffett Rule would put back in.

So it is fair to ask what should constitute a charity.  Now the way it works when you're a Mormon is you give 10% of your income to your local... coven, or whatever it's called.  They send it to Salt Lake City, where it's counted by goblins and guarded by dragons... I'm sorry, that's Harry Potter.

Still, if Mitt Romney gave 10% of his income to the Red Cross or Doctors Without Borders, I would be the first to say, "Good robot!"  But he gives it to the Mormon church, which spent millions here in California in a political battle to make sure the only gay at the wedding is the priest who performs the ceremony.  (shocked audience applause)

And public dollars should not be subsidizing that.  And yet all last week, people came up to me and said, "But Bill, the Mormon church performs good deeds.  How can you say they're not a charity?"  To which I responded, "Get away from me, Donny and Marie!"

And look, I'm not saying the Mormon church doesn't do some good things.  They provide food during famines, and wheelchairs for the lame.  But that's not their main concern, which is, like any business, growing the business, opening branches, selling more product, putting asses in tabernacles.  General Electric plants a tree now and then, it doesn't make them Johnny Appleseed.

Real charities only care about the charity.  This is the Hollywood Sunset Free Clinic, which provides health care to poor children.

From an architectural standpoint, not much to look at.  This is the Mormon temple in San Diego.

Either that, or Superman's Fortress of Solitude.  (audience applause)

Someone has to explain to me why Mitt Romney gets a tax write-off for giving money to the people who already own this.  A good rule of thumb for telling the good charities from the fakes?  Real charities don't have castles!!

This is Disney Hall, where the L.A. symphony performs.  Lots of people give money to symphonies, and they get tax deductions for that.  But they shouldn't!  Because again, it's a fucking castle!!  And because unlike food and water, access to Mozart is not a basic human necessity.  (audience applause)

You like the ballet?  Go to the ballet.  Write a big check supporting it.  But unless Swan Lake needs to be drained to keep orphans from getting malaria, don't ask the rest of us to support your hobby.

Originally posted to BruinKid on Sat May 05, 2012 at 05:03 AM PDT.

Also republished by Electronic America: Progressives Film, music & Arts Group.

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