Are you paying attention?
Great. We’ve just managed to vote in a bunch of Tea Party-backed talking heads. They keep talking tax cuts and reduced deficit spending, like they think that’s going to solve all of America’s financial woes.
I guess it doesn’t matter anyway. The guys who got voted out were completely ineffective. The government has been trying to run up the slope of a mudslide for the past two years — after the warmonger who was in office for eight years before that started the flow of “defense” spending that caused the mudslide in the first place.
Yes, I blame Bush and his government. They got us involved in two fucking wars. Wars we can’t win. Wars that cost a fortune — every single day. Wars that are killing and maiming our young people, warping their minds, and making us look like brutal colonialists to everyone else in the world.
It’s Viet Nam all over again — but worse.
When Bush took over (from Bill Clinton, in case you forgot), the U.S. had a record budget surplus. When he handed the reins to Obama, we had a record budget deficit. Looks like Junior Bush ran up the credit cards, huh? And who’s paying for it now? Taxpayers.
You want to know where the money is going? Take a look at the budget. The top six expenditures are going to:
- $738 billion – Defense spending
- $738 billion – Social Security
- $567 billion – Income Security (including unemployment, federal employee disability, and military retirement)
- $498 billion – Medicare
- $381 billion – Health
- $251 billion – Interest
Look at the numbers. Our total budget is $3.69 trillion dollars. 20% of that goes to defense spending. Another 33% goes to social welfare for the elderly. (Yes, I did say social welfare — isn’t that what social security and medicare are?) But what really kills me is that nearly 7% of our national budget goes to paying interest on accumulated debt. It’s the sixth highest expenditure! Remember those credit cards Junior Bush ran up?
Yet all the Republican Party and Tea Party people can chant is “lower taxes, lower taxes.” They somehow think that lowering taxes will create jobs and generate more income for the Federal government. My question: When you lower a rate, how does that bring in more money?
The Bush administration experimented with this years ago. They gave us all $300. I’m not sure what we were supposed to do with it, but I donated mine to the 9/11 Fund. Today, with 10% of Americans out of work and about the same percentage of Americans about to lose their homes, another $300 (or $600 or $1000) would likely go toward the mortgage or put food on the table. How is that going to create jobs?
Also, how is a tax cut going to help people who don’t have any income?
Worse yet, these supposed tax cutters are completely opposed to higher taxes for the wealthiest Americans — people with multiple homes and cars, people who send their kids to the best colleges, people who can afford health care, people who don’t need social security or medicare or unemployment. Somehow, the GOP and Tea Partiers equate these people with small business owners. Give them tax cuts and they’ll create more jobs. I call bullshit. The wealthiest Americans are not “small” business owners. They’re corporate executives and the upper management of investment firms, insurance companies, and banks. The same people the Bush administration bailed out before leaving Obama with the big credit card bills and expensive wars.
What the GOP and Tea Partiers fail to acknowledge is that the United States population has one of the lowest tax burdens in the world. Yes, we pay less taxes than most civilized nations.
When you pay less taxes, you have to accept less services. So what are we going to cut? Social Security and Medicare? It’s mostly that age bracket that voted in the supposed tax cutters, so I seriously doubt their services will be cut. We can’t cut defense spending with two wars on. We can’t cut interest spending because we don’t want the Chinese calling our debts due immediately. That leaves income security, health, education, veteran’s benefits, national parks, transportation. Do you really want to cut any of that?
For the record, I don’t mind paying more taxes if it means I get the services I need for a healthy and secure lifestyle. But I’ll be damned if I pay more taxes so big business can get tax breaks for sending jobs to China. Or so corporate executives earning $1 million + a year can buy another home or plane or boat.
Personally, I’m fed up with the whole thing. It’s all too clear to me that all parties want the same thing: to be in power so they can help their special interests. They say whatever they want to get in power. This year’s attack ads were completely out of control. The lies were outrageous.
And what do they want? The GOP want to help big business and the wealthy. The Dems want to help the poor and ecology. The Tea Partiers want to help themselves and their ultra-conservative, religious backers. No one seems to want to help all Americans. It’s us vs. them.
In the meantime, the taxpayers — who are paying the salaries and health care benefits for the morons we vote into office — are getting treated to an ineffective government unable to do the right thing for anyone.
The next two years should be interesting.