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Saturday, Mar. 25, 2017

Not that you asked

Posted Thursday, February 23, 2017, at 10:44 AM

I don't know what the weather is like in the domain of Satan, but a good guess would be that it is snowing, and getting colder. I base that assumption on the fact that this week, Arkansas' Junior Senator, Tom Cotton, said something that I totally agree with. I had always assumed that that particular region in our universe would freeze over before Sen. Cotton and I ever agreed on anything.

We both agree that the current tax plan in the U.S. House of Representatives is a bad deal, especially for people in the lower income brackets. Under the plan, married couples with a combined income of $18,650 or less would see their income tax rise from 10 percent to 12 percent. At the same time, married couples with a combined income of $470,700 or more would see their tax rate drop from 39.6 percent to 33 percent. Income taxes on corporations would drop from 35 percent to 20 percent.

Another "jewel" of this plan is a border tax on all goods imported into the U.S. from everywhere, including Mexico. If that were to happen, American taxpayers would be paying for Trump's wall, not once, but twice. The first time would be when the government takes the money out of the Treasury to pay for the wall up front. The second time would be when we pay that border tax on goods from Mexico, and other countries.

Cotton's opposition to the tax plan may be mostly based on opposition to the border tax. Walmart, along with just about every other retailer, is against the tax because it would raise prices but not profits. Interestingly, most American manufacturers are for the tax because it will raise the cost of products from overseas that they compete with.

I agree with Cotton and Walmart in opposing any border tax, but I dislike the income tax plan even more. It's pure Republican ideology. That is to cut taxes to the bare minimum on businesses and the wealthy in the belief that they will use their added wealth to create jobs for the rest of us because they care about their fellow man so much. Then you tax all of those working people at ever higher rates because otherwise they would selfishly spend their money for luxuries like food and shelter.

This is exactly what people mean when they say that when working people vote Republican, they are voting against themselves. Republicans get elected by saying the things these folks want to hear. They're going to bring all of our factory jobs back from Mexico and China, but they never say how they will do it. They're going to round up all of the Muslims and Mexicans, put them in a space shuttle, and blast them into space. They're against abortion and programs to feed those babies born in poverty. They're against gay marriage because it's, you know, icky. They are for a bathroom police force to check your ID before letting you pee. Conservative, hard-working folks just love to hear them talk.

Then when they get into office, it's a whole different story. They try to cut taxes on businesses and the wealthy, while giving working people either no tax cuts or tax raises to pay for those other cuts. They were against the minimum wage and have voted against every attempt to raise it. They want to turn Medicare into a voucher system and make Social Security voluntary. They hate the Farm Bill. Now they even want to take money away from public schools to give it to parents to put their kids in private schools.

I'll bet that most of the people who voted for Trump in November, and Cotton two years ago, don't agree with that Republican agenda, but that's just what they voted for. They were just so desperate for change of any kind that they were willing to vote in a man for President, that most of them didn't think had the temperament for the job.

Seeing as how I'm a part of the media, and the President has declared us as an enemy of the country, I may be writing this from Guantanamo next week. Then again, the President may get fed up and quit. I can hope, can't I?

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John Boxley
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