Yup. I said it. Tax the hell out of ’em.
I am hearing a lot of people on the Republican side shouting “Socialism!” in response to Barack Obama’s plan to raise taxes on the wealthy and cut taxes on the middle class, as if Socialism, in and of itself, is an evil thing. A little bit more socialism would do a lot of good for this country.
A little more redistribution of wealth from those who make a lot of money should go into the system to help support those, like teachers, who do very important things for not anywhere near enough money. A little more redistribution of wealth could go a long way in repairing the crumbling infrastructure of this country, and to put aside funding to help repair damage from the natural disasters that will keep coming. A little more redistribution of wealth could help create jobs we really need and support research and development in state educational institutions that can create still more jobs.
The dirty secret of “trickle down” is this: when you cut taxes on the wealthy, they don’t use that money to go down to Ma & Pa’s Hardware and buy more widgets because they already have plenty of widgets. They don’t buy more groceries because they can already afford to buy as many groceries as they need. They don’t eat out more because they can already eat out all they want. They don’t really do much with that money that helps your average American citizen or small business owner; they invest that money to make themselves more money, and they don’t, as a rule, invest it in Ma & Pa’s Hardware.
The idea that this is somehow encouraging people to “drink from the government trough” or “suckle from the government nipple” seems to overlook the fact that the government is the people. Or at least it should be. It does not do our country good for the gap between rich and barely making it to become super-ultra-rich and not making it, but that is what has happened in my lifetime.
When I hear complaints about how Gen X and Gen Y are supposedly lazy or unmotivated, my initial reaction is to ask, “Why should they be motivated? What’s left for them? Where is their American Dream?” In order to be motivated, there has to be a dream, a goal, something desirable that is somehow attainable.
When you start out working for peanuts and after ten or twenty years (and a good college education, lots of experience, and plenty of overtime), those peanuts are still not quite enough to feed you and pay your rent, you start to wonder why you bothered buying into a system that rewards the ones who don’t need rewarding.
Now, I’m sure there are a lot of wealthy individuals out there who would cry, “Not fair! I make all this money, and I should be able to do what I want with it!” Well, it’s about time to start supporting, in a tangible way, that system that allowed you to “pull yourself up by your boot straps” and become the success you are.
I’m also tired of hearing people living on very little defend the so-called “conservatives” and their agendas because of some idea about how it’s patriotic to be poor if the alternative is this terrible thing called “socialism.” We have implemented plenty of socialist programs in our country to help those who need it, and calling them “socialist” does not make them any better or worse than simply calling them “help.”
And for those who would accuse me of inciting class warfare–absolutely. Absolutely I am. Because the right has been conducting an insidious class war for years–pretending they are the party of the working class, of “average Americans” with “family values” and then waging a war of attrition on their own base of support for years!
Those “average Americans” and working people and military families who have been hoodwinked into believing that the right represents their values and their interests should turn around and bite the hand that has been feeding them lies and little else.