Help me here. I need further education on taxes, government, and ethics. I was as interested as the average citizen in government after television and the computer were inntroduced to our way of life. My interest was fairly casual until the first election of George W. Bush, at which time I began to suspect that things were not right. This, in turn, led to true suspicion of Bush and the people around him with regard to their integrity and leadership. And now I not only loathe him and the men and women who support and defend him, I truly fear them and their power and the fact that they still have a whole year to totally destroy the earth and eveything on it. Sometimes I even get to the point of wondering if his wife and his evangelical bible-quoting base have actually convinced him that God wants him here to lead us to Armageddon. After all, I have seen and heard him say several times that God has chosen him for what he is doing now.
Kind of got carried away in that first paragraph. What I really want to talk about is the whole purpose of taxes. I always thought that taxes were our individual contributions to do those things as a group which we could not do individually, like building and repairing roads and bridges, protecting the environment, and caring for each other as human beings.
Silly me. During the past seven years, the American people have been consistently taught that we should resent taxes, especially if they help someone else. No compassion for those with less. If they couldn’t “make it” on their own, they don’t deserve to have help. (On the other hand, most of those of us of the upper classes never have to work all our lives because what we have was inherited wealth. (I am sort of one of those, because I live largely on an inheritance, even though I finally actually went to work in my forties.)
As for the teachings of the Christian religion, the emphasis in doing good deeds is first of all on what MY good deeds will do to pathe MY road to heaven, followed by my concern for the recipients of those deeds.
This blog is an extension of my previous blog entitled More Questions and Comments. A different form of economic order has occurred to me. (I will be bombarded with comments like “Oh my god, she’s really a SOCIALIST!” That is such a scary word, and I’ll bet most people have never even looked it up. I’m not even sure myself that it describes me, but it’s the closest I can come.)
So here is how I look at the problem and how to try to fix it: In the first place, Bush’s plan for giving one-time-and-that’s-all tax relief is exactly the opposite of what it should be. The idea is that the masses will spend it immediately and that will jump-start the economy by increasing the income of employers, which in turn will lead to more jobs, but most of those who needed the one-time boost with shortly be out of money again, and right back where they were before. In the meantime, the government saves money by cutting other aid to the most urgent needs of the nation, such as education, health, and infrastructure.
The ethical responsibility of the nation is to try to achieve as much equality among its citizens as possible by redistributing the nation’s wealth from the top down. The really rich do not need the vast incomes they possess, which is apparent in their lifestyles. And the needs of the poor, on all their levels, should be apparent to anyone who can look beyond himself. Therefore, I suggest that there should be a strong ceiling put on the amount of wealth that any one person can own, and increasingly thick floors should be constructed all the way down to the poorest among us until the distribution of wealth looks like a pyramid. You cannot expect those in need to spend money on goods that will help the economy if they do not make enough money to spend. Almost all people would rather spend money they earned rather than money they receive through charity. This would go a long way toward building self-respect among those who work the hardest at the least rewarding jobs, as well as recognition and acknowledgment by those who have so much.
If you want to call this Socialism, so be it. It is obvious that free trade is not working to the benefit of the masses. If Americans would look at the wider world, they would realize that Democracy, as it is perceived by most of us, is not defined by current reality. Choose another name for our country, if you wish, but let’s put some text to go with the title.
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