Tuesday, May 8, 2012

Class Warfare

I can't tell you how sick I am of Rs accusing Ds of waging class warfare.  It's untrue to the point of obscenity.

So let's go for it, let's unpack who is waging class warfare on whom.

Republicans in Congress and Republican Presidential Candidates have called for:

- Increasing Taxes on lower- and middle-income people (they euphemistically call it "broadening the base") by getting rid of/significantly decreasing the Earned Income Tax Credit and getting rid of the payroll tax cut.  All this while increasing tax cuts for the wealthy.

- Cutting Pell grants, making it ever harder to climb out of working class by educating yourself.  Allowing student loan interest rates to double.

- Substantially Increasing Medicare costs by privatizing the program - thereby significantly increasing costs on seniors as they get poorer - studies show that as Americans age and live longer, they outlive their retirement savings and end up increasingly relying on social security and Medicare, while their medical costs increase.  This is especially pronounced among women, who live longer and have been paid and saved less.

- Reducing employee benefits like retirement and health care for state and local workers - mostly lower-and middle-income teachers, police, fire fighters, sanitation workers. WI, MI, FL, TX, NJ, SC, ME, hey, what do these states have in common?  Republican governors, all but one of which (Chris Christie in NJ is the exception) were elected in 2010.

These are all I have time for because the toddler won't nap forever, but you get the idea.  Or here, let me give Paul Krugman a chance to talk:

The Princeton professor and Nobel Prize-winning economist, who is touring his new book End This Depression Now!, said Romney would be wedded to Ryan’s economic policy prescriptions which have become too entrenched on the right: Above all, massive tax cuts for the rich and draconian spending cuts on programs for the less fortunate, which Krugman argues will amount to an “upward distribution of income plan.”

“You’re never going to get people in the Republican Party accepting the idea that unemployment and food stamps insurance are expansionary,” he said. “That they are actually policies that are good for employment. They’re too wedded to the notion that the undeserving poor … are the cause of unemployment. So I think they’re basically incapable of doing what needs to be done to support this economy.”

This isn't new.  The same crap was happening all the way through the Bush Administration.  I put together the same darn talking points over and over again as the Republicans in charge of the House put forward budget after budget, tax proposal after tax proposal to stack the deck for the rich and against the lower- and middle-income people.  Don't believe me?  I'll do a separate post on it, but here are a few things to tide you over.  But the start and end of the factual progress has been that Republicans have been hard-core waging war against both poor and working class people for years.  YEARS.  And then when anybody has the audacity to call them on it, that person gets accused of waging class warfare.


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