The Republican Party is still insisting that the middle-class has a clear pathway to success. They claim that hard work will lift you up from poverty and move you into the middle-class. Once there, more hard work will lift you even higher and allow you to be successful and become rich.
They are not telling you the truth. As a matter of fact, they have done everything in their power to make sure that the middle-class goes away, and we end up with the very rich and the very poor. That is precisely why they haven’t voted on a “jobs creating” bill in over six years. They don’t want you to have a way to get to the top.
Their policies are despicable at best. They are all in favor of letting student rates soar, making it impossible for less than the wealthy to attend college. They are all in favor of cutting taxes on the wealthy while slashing social safety nets like Medicaid, Medicare, Social Security, Welfare and Food Stamps. They are against raising the minimum wage. In fact, they would rather eliminate the minimum wage all together. They are against equal pay for equal work regardless of sex.
So, on Saturday, when the White House announced that the President will be seeking a tax increase on the very wealthy in order to help pay for a middle-class tax cut, and possibly make community college tuition free, the Republicans had a fit. Marco Rubio said: “Raising taxes on people that are successful is not going to make people that are struggling more successful. … It would also be counter-productive.”
Remember, Republicans always say that increasing taxes on the wealthy will cost jobs. They have always been wrong on this matter, but they keep trumpeting the lie. That is what “It would also be counter-productive” represents. It is a veiled threat that jobs will be lost.
He also said: “I’m all for reforming our higher education system. In the 21st century, to have the skills you need for a middle-class job, you need higher education of some form or fashion. It may not be a four-year degree. The problem is he just wants to pour that additional money into the broken, existing system.” The only thing that is broken in the existing system, is that the average person cannot afford to attend these schools.
The wages for the middle-class has stagnated for the last forty years! The middle-class struggles did not start with the last great recession in 2008. They have been struggling for years beginning with Nixon who went after the unions. Once “right-to-work” laws were passed in several states, wages stagnated. Since companies did not have to bargain with their workers anymore for raises, they all but dried up.
Today, it is becoming more and more difficult to find meaningful work. Especially if you are looking for full-time employment. Just take a look at job sites. The vast majority of jobs available are at or just above minimum wage. They are also “part-time” jobs. It seems that companies would rather fill up on part-time employees rather than full-time. Of course that is because it just about eliminates overtime and thus cuts wages. It is also nearly impossible to move from a part-time job to “moving up to the middle-class through hard work” as Republicans say.
So, when Rep. Jason Chaffetz, R-UT says:“We’re not just one good tax increase away from prosperity in this nation,” he’s right. We are several pay raises for everyone except the top 1% from prosperity in this nation.
In all honesty, the economy is getting better. Confidence is beginning to rise quickly. The real problem is that the middle-class and the working-poor are still working for wages that were set in the 1970s. While the top 1 percent reap all of the rewards of the new upswing in the economy. Remember, demand drives an economy, not supply. If people are not making enough money to create demand, there can be no prosperity.
The President rightly pointed out that the tax rates he is asking for are no higher than they were under St. Reagan. But, Republicans don’t want the 1 percent to be taxed at all. They are still calling for a “flat tax” code. They claim that is the fairest way to tax. Unfortunately, all of the flat taxes they have introduced will cut the top 1 percent’s taxes by tens of thousands of dollars while the taxes for the middle-class and working-poor will increase by thousands of dollars.
Lowering the taxes on the wealthy and raising taxes on the rest of us is their idea of a “fair” tax code. Remember, the Koch Brothers, Mitt Romney, Karl Rove, et.al., all pay a smaller percentage of their income to taxes than their Personal Assistants do. Would you please explain to me how that is “fair?”
The time for a wreath laying at the grave of the middle-class is getting closer. When Nixon laid the wreath at the grave of the unions, the middle-class went on life-support. Ever since then, the Republicans have been trying to pull the plug on that life-support. Republicans believe they are the American Aristocracy. You can’t laud it over a middle-class that is thriving, so you have to get rid of it.
If anyone tells you the Feudal System is dead, just take a look at Republican Policies and you will discover it is alive and kicking in America.