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Why Tax Cuts for the Rich Solve Nothing


#1

Why Tax Cuts for the Rich Solve Nothing

Joseph Stiglitz

Although America’s right-wing plutocrats may disagree about how to rank the country’s major problems – for example, inequality, slow growth, low productivity, opioid addiction, poor schools, and deteriorating infrastructure – the solution is always the same: lower taxes and deregulation, to “incentivize” investors and “free up” the economy. President Donald Trump is counting on this package to make America great again.


#2

We the People must be loud and clear in our communications,

“Any politician who votes to give tax breaks to any wealthy group including corporations, that are not equally given to every other individual or group, will be voted out of office in the very next election.”


#3

Taxes are the price of admission to civilization.


#4

A shame that the alternatives are so rare and so ignored by the media.


#5

Tax cuts for the gluttonously greedy grasping ghouls means bigger yachts, more cars/mansions/clothes/jets, bigger purses to carry the money and deeper vaults in their cronies’ banks to bury the ill-gotten gains. Meanwhile, these malcontents complain about the homeless, lazy “crazies” sleeping under bridges/highway overpasses, and city streets…“round 'em up and dump 'em somewhere so we, the people who matter, can shop/walk in peace.”


#6

Mr. Stiglitz, as usual, makes more sense than any other economist that I have read. Why he has not been tapped as some President’s chief economic adviser can only be explained by the fact that those who benefit most from the status quo would never allow it.


#7

That sums it up nicely!


#8

It should be remembered that though Reagan initiated the greatest tax cuts for the rich and corporations in history, they have been extended (and even expanded) by every President and Congress since, no matter which party was in power or which party was the majority. This is why Sanders’ ongoing refusal to quit the Duopoly renders his words to be hypocritical. Either he makes a clean break with this history or he continues it.


#9

Every time DC politicians cut taxes the wealthy pay they increase taxes that working class Murkins pay, thereby leaving workers with less money to spend which HURTS, not helps the economy. Many workers also take on more debt to make up for having less disposable income.


#10

We have a template from the 20th century as to how tax structure affects government investment in the commons and the distribution of wealth within the private sector. Pre-FDR and post-Reagan, taxes on extreme wealth and corporations vs the top rates between the 1930’s and 1980 correlate directly to income distribution. Look them up for yourselves. Post WWII, during the greatest economic boom in human history, tax rates on the rich never dipped below 50%, usually hovering in the 70’s and 80’s. Not so coincidentally, the middle class - bolstered by union membership and tariffs - thrived. A tiny percentage of citizens didn’t dominate the pie and average Americans had the expectation their economic standing was improving.

The theory of high rates on wealth was two-fold: The laws of diminishing returns would induce a re-investment in business rather than pay more taxes. And, more importantly, they would serve as a brake to an accumulation of resources that would lead to direct influence, if not control, of our government.

The reason Reagan has been canonized by the rich right is because he was able to convince the electorate that cutting taxes (supply side economics) would spur growth and spike tax receipts via massive growth. The old Laffer Curve. Problem was, savings by the upper class and corporations didn’t result in re-investment from the windfall. Thy either stuffed it in their back pockets, purchased stock buybacks or opened factories across the globe to break the back of labor. And of course, increased tax revenues - rosy scenario - never materialized and we’ve run huge deficits ever since. As TomJohnson1 posted, it’s been a bi-partisan heist.


#11

But we dont elect dictators, so there are 435 additional poeple who would need to make this “clean break with history.” And considering that, why don’t USAns become a bit less insular and see what is happening to the formerly comparably compromised British Labour Party under Corbyn’s leadership? Reforming an existing organization is always easier than starting a new one from zero.


#12

But . . .  but . . .  435 people only accounts for the House of Representatives — don’t forget our one hundred noble Senators, 99% of whom are just as corrupt as our “Representatives”.   OTOH, a lot could be accomp­lished if 75 Senators & 360 Representatives decided to pass some worthwhile legislation.  IIRC, 435 votes, properly distributed, is enough in both houses to over-ride any vetoes.

Return to Eisenhower-Era Pro$perity?   — Return to Eisenhower-Era Tax Rate$!!


#13

So Leftist, are you one of those pragmatist leftists who holds his nose and votes for the LOTEs?


#14

The British political system and the British Labour Party are incomparable to our Duopoly set-up. It’s like saying Canadian Medicare began in its provinces, but the governing system there is nothing like ours. While we do not elect dictators, we do elect representatives of the plutocrats, corporations and oligarchs who are dictators. The Dem wing of the Duopoly is irredeemable and has been since 1968.


#15

Tax all registered lobbyists 400% of their income from lobbying. All citizens who lobby for themselves, no charge.


#16

OK. I meant 535 then.


#17

How is it so different in the UK or Canada then? The physical organization of political parties are pretty much the same the world over - and have nothing to do with the totally separate issue of parliamentary processes. The “new” Labour party of Tony Blair was exactly like - if not even further to the right of - the US Democratic Party.

Like so many other strange contrary things about the USA - measurement units, political colors, abbreviation of dates and conventions of all sorts, the strangest is this conflation of political parties with government process. The two have nothing to do with each other.

Also, enough with the biolerplate cliche’s like “duopoly” - those are just words that are put out to shut down the brain and avoid the hard work of analysis and organizing.

Do you honestly think that you can organize a completely new political organization - desks, PC’s, office space, personnel, funding, budget, org. charts, membership lists, etc… from scratch, that can challenge the existing organizations in any kind or realistic time frame?

It is always easier take over a organization than organize outside of it - just look at that totally disorganized cluster-fuck of infighting and back-biting called the “Green Party USA” Almost 30 years of trying to get organized and still nothing to show for it.

Also, has anyone here on common dreams ever worked in an organizational setting? Bernie has, and Corbyn has. What have you all here been doing for a living?


#18

No, except for the recent election - I always voted for Nader of the Green candidate - I also worked for the Nader Campaign in 2000 and the Green Presidential campaigns until the last election. But I live in Pennsylvania, and this time, once the presidential candidates were picked, stopping Trump was paramount.

This last election convinced me that, due to the nature of US electoral politics, the Green Party or other new party formations are a dead end. Taking over the existing Democratic Party (we can even rename it at some point) is the only way forward.


#19

This is pretty good:


#20

Prof. Stiglitz is the best economist I can name that holds a “Nobel” prize in Economics. Prof. Michael Hudson (sans “Nobel”) of UMKC seems to have a better track record of revealing externalities, in my opinion. Nevertheless, Stiglitz would be a great choice to advise the administration, which is exactly why he won’t get the chance. Semper status quo…