Aug 26, 2011
By FRANCIS X. BECKER
Now that the debate — for the moment — has ended and the debt ceiling has been raised, the spin begins on the part of the Democrat Party and the President, as he starts his campaign for re-election. Likely forgotten now, is the fact that the Democrats controlled the White House and both houses of Congress since President Obama was elected, until this past November. However, according to them and the media, it is the Republicans who are to blame for the problems facing our nation today and for not compromising on the practical solutions (tax and spend more) “they” offered in the debt ceiling debate.
One of the constant talking points we hear is that the wealthiest Americans and business owners in our country should pay more of their “fair share” in taxes. Statistics indicate that 50 percent of the people in this country pay no federal income taxes at all. Statistics also indicate that the top 15 percent bear 50 percent of the tax burden. The time has come for all of us as Americans to realize that the problem in our country at every level of government is not that we don’t tax our citizens enough, but that spending beyond our means has to stop.
The Democrats and media have worked hard to demonize (some calling them terrorists) the Tea Party claiming that they were the hidden power in Washington preventing the Republicans from being reasonable and compromising (“folding”) with the Democrats in the debt ceiling debate. First, the Tea Party is not a political party in the sense that they choose and run candidates. In fact the Tea Party is an idea, a movement, a belief system that when our founding fathers wrote the Constitution it was an enduring document that would guide our nation and its people in how to govern itself. The primary tenet being that the Federal Government would be limited in its powers over the people and states.
The Tea Party is not just Republicans but also Democrats, as well. In fact, it is all of these and many others and mostly individuals who were never involved before in the political process other than being registered to vote. They are everyday people. They are teachers, moms, seniors, small business owners and people of every economic class who came alive — got off their couches at home or put aside their hobbies — because they felt the need to take action. They did so because they saw a country that had abandoned the principles in which it had been founded and in which they strongly firmly believed. And they became involved with great urgency because they saw their government spending their future into oblivion and that of their children, included.
If there were ever a grass roots movement, people with the same passion as the earliest patriots, it is the people (“we the people”) of the Tea Party. Of course, the media and the Democrats have to disparage them, because they are the enemy to their profligate taxing and spending. All they were doing during the debt ceiling debate was making those Republicans it supported, and some Democrats too, keep the promises they made when elected. They wanted to be sure the Republicans did not fold as they have so often in the past. The key promise Republicans made was to stop the out of control spending bankrupting our nation. How unusual, that one should expect a politician to keep his/her promises. So, it is the Tea Party, according to the Democrats and the media that are the obstacle to compromise which to them means to keep spending and piling on more debt.
Recently, Congresswoman McCarthy wrote in a letter widely distributed in local newspapers that “Republicans in Washington are so dedicated to preserving tax breaks for the most profitable corporations and the wealthiest handful of Americans that they are willing to slash Social Security benefits in order to pay for those special interests.” It is hard for me to believe that anyone could write such nonsense let alone a Congresswoman of the House of Representatives, and the one who represents you and me. She adds, “I will continue to fight, as I did during the recent debt ceiling debate, to protect the most vulnerable Americans…to put people before special interests.” I wonder if she was referring to the special interests who contribute tens of thousands of dollars to her campaign? What is disingenuous and lacks intellectual honesty is that there is no chance current Social Security benefits for anyone will ever be cut by either party to those who are already retired. So Mrs. McCarthy is “tilting at windmills” (attacking imaginary enemies) on this. However, those in both political parties and almost all economists agree that there must be some change in the benefit structure for future retirees if the Social Security and Medicare systems are to remain solvent. I would also like to remind Mrs. McCarthy, as she fights the “special interests” in Washington, that it is she who, as a Member of Congress, added more than $2 trillion in additional debt to our country’s crumbling finances in just the last two years alone.
So, to the Democrats in Washington who want more taxes, the wealthiest 15 percent already pay 50 percent of the tax burden. I suggest that even if you were to tax those 15 percent 100 percent of their income, it still would not provide enough money to resolve the trillion dollar deficits facing this country now every year. The deficit for 2010 was 1.17 trillion. The deficit for 2011 is projected to be 1.5 trillion. Let me ask you then, who is the problem, the Tea Party or Congresswoman McCarthy and those like her unwilling to be leaders and take responsibility in solving the problems facing our nation (many of which they have created)? It is why, the Republicans and a handful of Democrats, at the urging of the Tea Party, would not agree to any debt ceiling agreement that included higher taxes but only a solution that addressed the crises of out of control spending? No tilting at windmills in that.
Filed Under: Francis Becker
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