Trump’s 2017 budget proposal made it clear that pretty much any program that protects public health, helps children and poor people, inspires creativity, or allows researchers to look for cures, was called ‘a waste of your money,’ by OMB Director Mick Mulvaney. But if you look beyond the spin, a very different picture emerges.
Republicans can and do put a price tag on human suffering. And no matter how much reducing it costs, it always seems to be too much.
No amount of spin can change the simple fact that Republican legislative schemes have a habit of pushing more wealth to the already wealthy. And it was part of the Republican agenda long before 45 took office.
Make-the-rich-richer schemes are broadly achieved through the elimination of regulations designed to protect consumers, the tax code, and federal budget priorities. All are sold to voters with misleading claims and sugar coated lies. They depend on the short memories of the electorate to succeed in the wake of campaign trails littered with broken promises of prosperity for all.
With each successive roll-back of the policies that pulled America out of the Great Depression, the divide between rich and poor swells the frustration of those on the losing end of what was once known as the American dream.
In the post-World War 2 era, America gave birth to a thriving middle class. It defined the nation and set an example for the world. However, it also set the stage for Ronald Reagan’s version of conservatism, which was at it’s core, a revolt against the civil rights and women’s rights movements of the 1960’s and 1970’s.
Economic charts show explosive growth in income inequality beginning in the 1980’s. What changed was the attitude of Reagan’s right-wing government toward America’s growing diversity, tax policies that benefited the rich, and increasing demonization of the poor. Economic fairness been on a downhill path ever since.
Lost in much of the budget-slashing rhetoric that serves as red meat for today’s Republican base is the human cost of cruel budget cuts. To argue that America would be a greater nation if the rich paid lower taxes is the greatest lie of all. That ‘trickle-down’ theory implies that the only way to end poverty and solve every other problem facing American society is for the government to divert more money to the rich. The mere concept of this ‘magical’ formula is absurd. But voters buy it, year after year.
Cutting off funding for Downton Abbey and Big Bird won’t make America ‘great.’ More truthful lawmakers will. In fact, a lot of America’s problems can be solved with money well spent. Nowhere among those problems is relieving the ‘suffering’ of America’s billionaires.
Fight for your rights by calling the Capitol switchboard at 202-224-3121.
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