"No Bill of Attainder or ex post facto Law will be passed." Article I, Section 9, Para 3, U.S. Constitution
This afternoon the House of Representatives passed a bill imposing a 90% excise tax on income in excess of $250000 for employees of firms receiving in excess of $5 billion in TARP funds. First to note, I have no dogs in this hunt. What House just did was pass a Bill of Attainder (a law singling out an individual or group for punishment without trial) on an ex post facto basis. A twofer violation of the Constitution.
My question is: where are the civil libertarians? What if Congress passed a law taxing the excess incomes of college professors who work at an institution that received federal money? There would howls of protest from civil libertarians. Trust me, this a big deal civil liberties issue. Today the Wall Street bonus babies, tomorrow who knows. Our forebears fought and won a revolution over this issue!!