COMMENTARY | If the Republican Party wants to step away from the idea that they’re simply a political party primarily made up of rich old white guys bent on perpetuating a more-or-less plutocratic social and political system, they might want to take a second look at the whitewashing House Speaker John Boehner, R-Ohio, splattered all over his party’s idea of a revised tax code and budget.
As reported by the nonpartisan Center on Budget and Policy Priorities , the so-called “balanced” budget would create a $6 trillion dollar hole in the country’s revenues over the next decade without any way to fill it back up. At the same time, the budget still calls for an increase in taxes on income earners making below $200,000 per year would see an increase in taxes on average of $3,000 per annum beginning in 2014.
Adding insult to injury, the proposed budget would see the top tax rate dropped to 25 percent, which would, according to the Citizens for Tax Justice , average out to about $200,000 per taxpaying millionaire — and that’s if all the loopholes and questionable exemptions are closed (none of which are specifically cited in the budget proposal).
The so-called “balanced” budget Boehner touted earlier in the week (distracting voters and viewers from the real issues by standing beside a 7-foot-tall Red Tape Tower symbolic of Obamacare rules and regulations) is nothing short of a whitewashing of a national debt-increasing, deficit-guaranteeing budget that in no way meets the “fairness” rhetoric with which Boehner and his fellow Republicans (including serial liar Rep. Paul Ryan, who concocted the make-the-rich-richer budget) describe it.
Where is it fair that families and/or households making less than $200,000 per year should have to pay more while millionaires get tax breaks equal to or exceeding their entire yearly pay in tax breaks? Sure, the rich pay a disproportionate amount of taxes, but they also take in a disproportionate amount of the nation’s income. That income, it should be pointed out, is somewhat determined by an economy disproportionately driven by the buying power of those few hundred millions of people that belong to households that make less than $200,000 per year. So why decrease the buying power of those who really drive the economy?
Simply put: It’s another way to protect the rich, to make certain that the wealthy get to keep their income while the burden of running the government falls to the dying middle class and the lower income echelons.
And the reasoning behind this type of lying by omission or political doublespeak is fairly obvious. Congress is made up predominantly of millionaires, so it is in the politicians’ own best interest to pass legislation whereby they protect their own financial assets and those of their wealthiest campaign donors (read: those that provide for perpetuating their stay in office). That the Republican Party is so firmly entrenched in supporting what makes the rich richer is a reflection of an entrepreneurial chasing of the American Dream mentality that has gone to an extreme.
It is an extreme recognized by most Americans. Republicans and conservatives that agree with it support it. So do the greedy and the self-righteous I-made-it-on-my-own-merits wealthy. Democrats and liberals and conscientious conservatives who believe that there is nothing fair in a wealth distribution curve in the world’s richest nation, where the top 1 percent of the nation’s income earners control 40 percent of its wealth (the bottom 80 percent control on 7 percent of the nation’s wealth), do not.
So when Republicans like Ryan and Boehner start talking about “fairness” in taxing but conveniently skip over the fact that they will hypocritically increase the nation’s deficit spending and debt (something they continue to vow not to do) and that their proposals increase taxes on the poorest while alleviating the burden on those who can actually afford more “fairness,” try not listening to the words that are coming out of their mouths, but looking at the words that they’ve committed to print.
It’s all in the details.
And if Republicans really want to get rid of the “party of the rich” stigma, they need to stop being so representative of protecting the wealthy and bleeding the poor in their efforts to be more “fair.”