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Letters to the Editor-Oct. 27
President Obama promised hope and change. Hope and change is still unrealized but in progress. Unfortunately, it is impossible that 30 years of policies that inherently undermined the American middle class can be turned around in 20 months.
It took over a decade to get out of the Great Depression, and not until extreme stimulus spending effected by World War II were we able to get out and use that stimulative springboard of government spending to prop the private sector to create an unprecedented employment boon.
While we claim to fight wars on freedom, terrorists, taxes and many other issues that hardly qualify as wars, we forget to fight that war that afflicts 97 percent of Americans. Class warfare is being waged against more than 295 million Americans. If there is a war worth fighting now, this is the war.
Americans are justifiably angry. They are angry because of a jobless recovery. They are angry because of an overwhelming budget deficit whose effects they do not quite understand. They are angry because of unfettered increases in health care costs.
Supposedly this anger was instrumental in the formation of the tea party grassroots movement. While this may be partially true, the tea party comprises the amalgamation of three distinct factions. There is the Conservative/quasi-Libertarian faction that simply wants small government. There is a super wealthy/corporatist faction that finances the movement and serves as chief purveyor of misinformation to maintain the status quo. And finally there is the racist militant faction that wants to take the country back given their disdain that Americans would elect a black president.
The latter faction, while physically dangerous, is inconsequential for America’s future success, as the vast majority of Americans are good people.
Of major consequence is what the wealthy/corporatist faction is doing to corrupt the body politic of the country. They have used corporate and personal wealth to perfectly orchestrate a plausible alternate reality. In this alternate reality, irrespective of past experience, economics and mathematics, keeping low taxes specifically on the wealthy (wealthy disproportionately owns most of the income and wealth and as such pay most of the taxes) will somehow generate enough economic activity to increase the absolute value of taxes while reducing the budget deficit.
They even got an economist, Arthur Laffer, to create a silly curve known as the Laffer Curve to prove this alternate state of reality. The Reagan vs. Bush 1/Clinton economic policies disproved the lie though the Right continues to disregard reality.
While exploring your support for maintaining tax cuts for both the middle class as well as the wealthy, consider that on average the middle class’ top tax rate is 35 percent while the wealthy is 15 percent because income from work is progressively taxed at a higher rate than investment income. While exploring your support for ever-more reduction in corporate regulations, note that said policies have led to the outsourcing of a large percentage of our manufacturing jobs among others. While the wealthy benefit from the cheap labor of said outsourcing, the middle class continues its decline.
While being told that repealing the tax cuts on the wealthy would cost jobs, do remember that 10 years of that tax rate created no net jobs while more proportional tax rates created the largest expansion in American history in the ‘90s. The reason is mathematical. The wealthy’s marginal propensity to consume is much less than the average middle class American. In other words, the middle class will spend more of their disposable income, thus creating more economic activity than the wealthy who already can spend as they please and will not necessarily invest that excess in creating jobs in America. It is impossible that the wealthy can be considered overtaxed when middle class income has fallen 5 percent in the last decade while the wealthy has continued to grow. The same applies to wealth in worst proportions as well.
It is understandable that in our busy lives researching for truthful information is neither at the top of our list or something we want to do given the perceived view that our media is providing us legitimate information. The media must balance its interest between its corporate advertisers and its listeners. As such, the listener will always be at a disadvantage.
Knowing that, it is incumbent upon the middle class to do their own independent research from a myriad of reputable, unbiased sources. Inasmuch as the Internet makes this an easier task, care must be taken to cross reference for valid information. It is that concept I used in putting my book together where all pertinent data is cross referenced. In these times there is no reason to be ignorant of the issues.
Remember, when you go into that booth, it is only you, your God and your conscience. People must forget about their prejudices, forget about their fears. People must make the right choice for themselves, their family and the country.