Sunday, September 16, 2012

Why We Need Higher Taxes On The Wealthy And Corporations

Top Tax Rates Match Closely With

Lowest Unemployment Rates

Compare the top tax rate in the first chart for any given year with the unemployment rate in the second chart for that year. This is rough, still a work in progress, but this information needs to be diseminated. This is PROOF that our economy was at it's stongest when we had high top tax rates.
Then throw in the statistics on income disparity between the labor class and the wealthy through the years, in the last chart. 
Taken together, these three charts show a clear path to ending this recession: Return to the higher marginal tax rates of the pre-Reagan years.  But that's only a beginning.  More must be done.  People must be put back to work in jobs that pay living wages.  People need incomes that are big enough to not only pay for their necessary living expenses, i.e., food, shelter, clothing, and health care, but also allow them money to spend on non-essentials.  You know, things like going out to dinner and a show, or buying gifts for the husband/wife and kids.  Why?  Because these things, taken as a whole, are the fuel that run a robust economy. 
Not more tax cuts for the rich.  They don't need them.  They still had plenty of income back with those higher tax rates. 
Not deregulating industry.  Regulation is needed to protect our environment and our health and safety.  More is needed, clearly, to keep greedy multinationals and their wealthy CEO's/CFO's and stockholders from shipping more of those jobs overseas in order to enhance their own incomes.
 And for sure, not outsourcing (off-shoring) our labor!  That last item has done more damage to the economy than any other single thing.

Annual average unemployment rate, civilian labor force 16 years and over (percent) Source:


 1948 3.8
1949 5.9
1950 5.3
1951 3.3
1952 3.0
1953 2.9
1954 5.5
1955 4.4
1956 4.1
1957 4.3
1958 6.8
1959 5.5
1960 5.5
1961 6.7
1962 5.5
1963 5.7
1964 5.2
1965 4.5
1966 3.8
1967 3.8
1968 3.6
1969 3.5
1970 4.9
1971 5.9
1972 5.6
1973 4.9
1974 5.6
1975 8.5
1976 7.7
1977 7.1
1978 6.1
1979 5.8
1980 7.1
1981 7.6
1982 9.7
1983 9.6
1984 7.5
1985 7.2
1986 7.0
1987 6.2
1988 5.5
1989 5.3
1990 5.6
1991 6.8
1992 7.5
1993 6.9
1994 6.1
1995 5.6
1996 5.4
1997 4.9
1998 4.5
1999 4.2
2000 4.0
2001 4.7
2002 5.8
2003 6.0
2004 5.5
2005 5.1
2006 4.6
2007 4.6
2008 5.8
2009 9.3
2010 9.6
2011 8.9

Saturday, September 1, 2012

The Possibilities of Mia Love

Let's talk a bit about Mia Love.  Yes, THAT Mia Love, the lovely New York-born daughter of Haitian immigrants now currently running for Congress from the State of Utah.  The same Mia Love who gave such an incredibly naive speech at the Republican National Convention.

Much of her speech made sense; at least the parts where she talked
about how her parents came from Haiti and built a life without
government assistance, pulling themselves up, as Supreme Court
Justice Clarence Thomas would say, "by their own bootstraps".  Never mind that Thomas benefited from the very same government programs, such as affirmative action, that he more-or-less regularly excoriates. 

Of course, Ms. Long didn't offer any evidence beyond her word, but
that's neither here nor there at this stage of the game.  The fact
of the matter is that she is apparently the only one of her generation in her family born and raised in these United States.  As such, she doesn't have a personal historical background as do the many black people living here descended from the slaves set free (on paper at least) by Abraham Lincolns' Emancipation Proclamation a hundred and fifty years ago.

She has no inherent or inbred comprehension of why the rules,
regulations and laws put into effect after the supposed end of legal
slavery are still necessary today.  And thus she, too, has jumped on
the Republican bandwagon of less regulation and rolling back the
very rules, regulations and laws that allow her to openly speak and
act as she does.  Remember, the Constitution originally counted
"negroes" as 3/5ths of a person under the control of their "owners"
and therefore ineligible to vote or to benefit from most of the
other benefits of the new nation.

However, if she should win her seat, it still opens a door to
the future.  Consider this.  She may be considered the "top token
negro" in the Republican Party at the present time, displacing such
luminaries as Colin Powell for example.  But it's clear that she was
given her spot at the convention as a means of detracting from the
clear racism endemic to the Republican Party as a whole, which is
evident from the tone of that party ever since Barack Obama won the election, and even before, while he was still running.

Yet and still, it opens the door, just a tiny bit, for more black
Americans to come out as Republicans, to be suckered into
supporting policies that don't benefit them or any other working
American but only those in the highest income brackets.  And by
opening that door even a fraction of an inch, if a sufficient number
of black Americans decide to join her, and bring with them their own historical perspective having been raised up in this country for
many generations and endured what has gone on regarding them since before its' founding, then the Republican Party will be forced to change. 

It will be changed, returning to a more moderate platform similar to what it embraced before the Nixon era.  Why and how?  Simply because it would be unable to keep the gains it makes in terms of minority membership if the far-right radical bigots maintain their
stranglehold on the party.  And that being so, those radicals will
be forever consigned to the fringes from whence they came.
I'm not suggesting th at this will happen in this upcoming election,
or even in the next Presidential election four years from now.  But
it will happen nonetheless, because if it doesn't, then the Republican Party will sooner or later be consigned to the dustbin of history.