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News-Sentinel.com Your Town. Your Voice.

Let's clean up the mess the fat cats have made

Copyright 2014 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.The Associated Press
Monday, January 02, 2017 05:01 am
I could just puke. In my 60 short years I have seen the most amazing things. Men went to the moon and modern computers were invented. Leaps and bounds in genetics were had. But what makes me sick is the way our governance has ruined the lives of millions of people here and abroad by legislating for income inequality. What a multifaceted screw job. I can remember many years ago when so many older persons were screwed royally by a combination of high inflation rates and high capital gains taxes. No one thought it was fair when a house built in the 1960s for, let’s say, $25,000 and then sold in the 1980s, but because of inflation was suddenly worth $125,000 (still the same house), would then they would have to pay thousands and thousands in capital gains tax. This leaving only enough to build or buy a home with half the intrinsic value of the one they were leaving. No one thought that was fair or equitable. So we drastically lowered the capital gains tax. Boy the Wall Street fat cats really loved that!

We are a capitalist country, with an original belief that income derived from capital was wealth created and appropriately should be taxed. This tax along with import taxes and “sin” taxes would be the source of funding for our government. No one would have thought that eventually our system would be paid for with stolen money, all of it, money stolen from people by taxes taken on the sale of their property.

Most people don’t realize that their personhood including their time and their labor is their property (from proprius, “one’s own”). The sale of labor should not be taxed as income, period.

These days income from capital is given a preferential treatment and the sale of labor is taxed to hell. Whiskey Tango Foxtrot (not the movie) what is going on?

Just the fat cats getting their way, I’d say.

The current economic structure allows for Wall Street to kill Main Street.

All it takes is to start a company, expand rapidly and have your share prices rise greatly based on an increase in market share. (Wall Street kills Main Street). Sustained dividends are not a consideration. People in the Wall Street game need only market share increase with matching share price increase, that’s why they seem to be the only ones that can get in on IPOs, I suppose.

Share price increase is income taxed lowly as capital gains, whereas your and my sale of labor is not. Once a company has saturated the land with their cookie cutter businesses and maxed out their market share the initial investors go elsewhere, to plunder again. Those damn 1 percenters don’t care about the poor slobs who think, “Hey I can finally get in on that company that been doing so well.”

What those not in the know don’t realize is that now that the market share increase is over, dividends are the only hope of having a good investment. Meanwhile the fat cats just open another company and take market share from the previously mentioned poor slobs.

To make things worse, the new guys come to town with a business plan that leans heavily on the use of cheap salaried labor. While the Main Streeters try to maintain the best standard of living they can for their employees, who earn in some cases twice the pay of their salaried counterparts.

There was a glimmer of hope for local business when the salary/overtime rule was going to be changed so that salaried employment was not a total screw job. But the fat cats got their way and these changes were not implemented. The creeps said that the change would hurt business. The truth is the change would have blown up the business plan of many of these Wall Street hooligans. The change would have been good for many locally owned small businesses, but who cares, certainly not the people we have elected to represent us. They have their fat pensions and benefits packages and only listen to the people that can contribute large sums of money to their campaigns.

I guess that when only a fraction of us vote, we deserve what we get.

There was also a lot of talk about education this election cycle, but no action. These days it takes more than a high school diploma to get a meaningful job. Two years of post-high school education should be considered essential and be offered without charge. Some one who wants to be a high-dollar lawyer, doctor, etc. should pony up for further education.

Another thing that gets me is the Affordable Care Act. What did it make affordable? Not one thing, I’d say. We are a wealthy country, and if we can interpret the General Welfare Clause to mean individual welfares then certainly we can implement single payer health care. This would give us the muscle to allow us to end the practice of prescription price-gouging by other fat cats. And we need to end the sham of not-for-profit medical care providers While I am thinking about all this stuff, why don’t we talk about immigration and the environment?

On immigration: I am against breaking up families and mass deportation. There should be a road to legal status for undocumented, well-behaved aliens who provide labor for jobs that citizens do not care to do. However my birthright of enfranchisement was earned by my forefathers, and should not be given to people who came here illegally.

The environment, come on, climate change has always been the main force behind the migration of peoples. And it is ridiculous to claim that humans are not part of that equation. Let’s get off our butts and end greenhouse gas.

Finally, I would like to say that I believe that economic disadvantage is the main thing keeping impoverished persons economically disadvantaged.

So, why don’t we all pull our heads out and vote, or run for office, and fix this mess. It’s hard to believe that over a period of 20 or more years we had to change from choosing between dumb and dumber to choosing between Hillary and Donald. Surely this downhill slide leads to Hades.

Phillip Beachy is a former primary candidate for U.S. House of Representatives. 

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