Tea Party Derangement Syndrome

Unless you have been living under a rock for the past six months it is clear that the ‘Tea Party’ supported candidates are garnering significant support from the frustrated Republican right as well as the media. While it has yet to be seen exactly how many actual voters will support these people come November they have successfully managed to shift the public debate surrounding this election to an argument about how Government is bad, taxes are worse and cutting both will somehow fix the predicament we find ourselves in.

The problem with this argument is that, well, it is simply untrue. No one has been able to forward a reasonable explanation (that did not originate on Reagan Administration letterhead) as to how cutting taxes and shrinking Government will have anything other than the already proven disatrous impact it has wreaked on our nation, her citizens and it’s economy. Unfortunately GOP propaganda is good (how could it not be with FoxNews at it’s center) and as a result this argument has been able to move right past the thinking part of people’s brains into the “dammit I’m mad” portion and thus far carry the day.

As a result, the efforts of many level headed people trying to forward ideas that will indeed have a positive impact on our situation are being flatly ignored or more typically shouted down by the frothing angry mob that is the American Right. For example, President Obama and the Democrats in Congress recently attempted to float the idea of a marginal increase in taxes – 3.6% to be exact – on income earned in excess of $250,000. Sadly, as soon as this idea was uttered it was attacked as class warfare by the GOP and echoed willingly by our corporate media both of whom make up a significant portion of the group that might actually have to pony up were it to be enacted.

Makes sense I guess coming from those guys but why would anyone other than that crowd and their peers be opposed to this idea?

I think Robert Reich said it best on Bill Maher last week when he said, and I paraphrase, that most Americans believe that one day they will be the rich. That’s right, this knee-jerk opposition to such an American idea – the idea that everyone should pay their fair share and that there should be no Royal or Noble class who is above the rest of us – is due to the fact that people think maybe, one day, they will be rich too and then they would not stand to have their hard earned fictional riches taken away to pay for social leaches like the “unknowable” Liberals running our nation today.

Guess what America, I hate to burst your bubble but this is not gonna happen.

Now I know what you are going to say. This is the American dream! You can’t tell Americans to stuff their dreams into a sack and drown them into a river (or bathtub). What kind of Commie are you Mike?

I guess I am the kind of Commie that doesn’t want to see the United States of America turn into a third world nation. I am the kind of Liberal that thinks we need to make decisions about our future based on reality not some drummed up Republican wet dream. I am the kind of American who thinks it time you stop listening to these frothing idiots and pay attention to reality.

Earlier today I was reading the blog of one of my favorite Sci-Fi writers John Scalzi and he nailed this problem right on the head.

?There is another answer as well, which can be paired with the above or stand on its own, and it’s that there’s a certain sort of person who believes that all taxation (or all taxation outside of one or two very specific things of which they approve) is theft. Naturally that sort of person will fly to the defense of any who bleat about their taxes being too high, even if in point of fact, the wealthy in the US are currently being taxed at historically low rates (“but they’re still too high!”).

I really don’t know what you do about the “taxes is theft” crowd, except possibly enter a gambling pool regarding just how long after their no-tax utopia comes true that their generally white, generally entitled, generally soft and pudgy ass is turned into thin strips of Objectivist Jerky by the sort of pitiless sociopath who is actually prepped and ready to live in the world that logically follows these people’s fondest desires. Sorry, guys. I know you all thought you were going to be one of those paying a nickel for your cigarettes in Galt Gulch. That’ll be a fine last thought for you as the starving remnants of the society of takers closes in with their flensing tools.

Yep, if you have bought into this Right wing propaganda so blindly that you simply can not see it for the Ponzi Scheme that it is then I am not sure what to tell you.

For everyone else I have a suggestion. Take stock of your situation. Are you really rich? Does your household earn in excess of $250,000? If you are reading my blog it is likely it does not. Let me give you something to think about. Based on the Census Bureau’s latest statistics on household income (2007) they break down household earnings into seven groups.

  1. Under $25,000
  2. $25,000 – $49,000
  3. $50,000 – $74,999
  4. $75,000 – $99,999
  5. $100,000 – $149,999
  6. $150,000 – $199,999
  7. $200,000 or more

Feel free to peruse the numbers yourself, they are enlightening, but for the sake of this post I decided to take positions 1-6 and total them and compare them to position 7. Here is the result.

That’s right of the total 264,797,000 only 2% or 4.5 million earned over $200,000. Unfortunately they don’t have the number for those earning over $250,000 in that report but you can imagine that the fraction would be even smaller. So, in fact you are not affected by this increase in anything but a positive way as it will not come out of your income. Please think about this before you spout off about the horrors of class warfare and the Socialist agenda of the President.

You are being played.

UPDATE: It would appear that the Republican hucksters waiting to take the reigns of our government as soon as you pull the lever for them are hoping you are not expecting them to actually do anything once they win.

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