This morning I read Robert Reich’s piece titled “Fools or Knaves” that details the Trump administration machination to pass their tax cut scam. They intend to do so even though all the experts know it will decimate the middle-class in a few years, explode the debt, and cause the onset of interest rate hikes.
Reich starts his article with an essential truth about truth and those who corrupt it.
One of the most dangerous consequences of this awful period in American life is the denigration of the truth, and of institutions and people who tell it.
There are two kinds of liars – fools and knaves. Fools lie because they don’t know the truth. Knaves lie because they intend to mislead.
I will be honest; I had to look up the word “knaves” as it was absent from my vocabulary. Reich went on to point out that all prestigious nonpartisan organizations who studied the Trump tax cut scam say it would raise taxes on those making $75,000 or less a few years after its inception. But the lower taxes for business and the wealthy remain. In other words, the Trump tax cut scam is genuinely a tax cut scam.
Mnuchin continues to insist that the legislation puts a higher tax burden on people earning more than $1 million a year, and reduce taxes on everyone else. “I can tell you that virtually everybody in the middle class will get a tax cut, and will get a significant tax cut,” Mnuchin says repeatedly.
But the prestigious Tax Policy Center concludes that by 2025, almost all of the benefits of both bills will have gone to the richest 1 percent, while upper-middle-class payers will pay higher taxes and those at the lower levels will receive only modest benefits.
So then why is Trump and Mnuchin content to be knaves.
Apparently, Mnuchin will say anything to retain his power and influence in the Trump administration. He knows he’ll never have anything close to this power again. Mnuchin probably figures: So what if he lies about the true consequences of the tax bills? Trump lies about them, too. So does the Speaker of the House, Paul Ryan, and the Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell.
He probably assumes most of the public will never know he lied. Even those who know will soon forget. In this era of Trumpian big lies, there are no consequences for lying. But history may not be kind to Steve Mnuchin.
Over the last century, authoritarian and fascist regimes have intentionally and systematically denigrated the truth. The knaves who helped them are remembered in ignominy.
Americans must not allow the passage of the Trump tax cut scam. We allow the knaves to fool us at our own peril. While history, in the long run, will judge Trump and his evil cast in ignominy, living through a rebuilding process from the disaster of its passage would be left to us all as we suffer in the process.