Friday, February 18, 2011

It's a hard rain is gonna fall ... is falling ... in Wisconsin

I think Wisconsin is much less about unions that it is about fair.

Why should one part of the American people pay to fix this economic/budget mess we all created while others are held harmless?

 I was once a public school teacher and when we were hit up for budget "give backs" it was hard for me because others in my community weren't giving back a thing to support the benefit they got from living in a broadly educated society.

My employers were the taxpayers of the school district.  While many of them (and I was one, too), were having a hard time economically many were doing very well.   It's still that way.

For these the capital gains tax preference remains--even when those capital gains end up as ordinary income and are not invested, when interest income in general is being taxed at a much lower rate than salaried income, when there is a ceiling on Social Security payments of many of them, while every nickle I ever made got taxed for that, while  benefits of all kinds shift the burden of funding government from corporate/dividend income and on to people like me who get a paycheck (and not much of paycheck, at that) and don't live off of bonus  money.

By the way, much of that corporate/dividend income is "earned" from US government contracts, including contracts given to American companies to provide "foreign aid."  Most "foreign aid" goes abroad in the form of American military hardware.  It goes to places like Egypt and Israel.  In other words, the US government buys arms from American corporations--increasing the stock value and the dividends of those American corporations--and ships the arms to "aid" people in other countries.

Foreign aid, then, is just a scheme to make American corporations and stock holders more money--funded by tax dollars. 

I don't think there will be a solution as long as some people just blame others for the problem and are unwilling to do a part to solve it.   If I am one who gets a haircut while others don't have to why should I support the "bargain?"

I am not jazzed about privatizing Social Security but if I am convinced that investments are safe from things like the dot-com and housing bubbles then I am willing to talk about that. Send Barney Frank and Elizabeth Warren around to tell me it's safe and I'll talk.   Imagine where we would be if the Bush attempt to privatize Social Security had passed just before what we are going through now.

If people see that everyone is getting a share of the suffering they will take their own suffering with a (more) mature attitude.  

Doesn't everyone live in this country and share in the benefits and the responsibilities?

We will solve this stalemate when we realize we live in a country so closely divided that no one is going to get enough power to force one side to pay the whole price while the other side goes on its merry way.

Even if some of us, even those among us who are Christians, sneer at the idea of "fairness" if we do not spread the hurt we are all going to go down scratching and clawing one another to pieces--like two cats, tied together, thrown over a clothes line.

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