I saw Tweet today that said Fox News was better at promoting Democratic ideas than Democrats were.
No only is this spot on, but it points out something quite insidious. We are, according to the FOX mentality, supposed to look at these items with horror. The FOX listing of the “Cradle to Grave” benefit ideas is intended to be derisive.
But really, what the hell is wrong with American citizens benefiting from the taxes we pay to fund the government? ABSOLUTELY NOTHING!
The idea of social welfare, so derided by insanely short-sighted business interests, is actually enshrined in the Preamble to our Constitution. Factually, it is one of the purposes of our government.
We the People of the United States, in Order to form a more perfect Union, establish Justice, insure domestic Tranquility, provide for the common defense, promote the general Welfare, and secure the Blessings of Liberty to ourselves and our Posterity, do ordain and establish this Constitution for the United States of America.
The antipathy among business leaders bent on influencing government so as to reduce its “interference” in their own affairs goes back to well before the administration of FDR. He signed into law the first social safety nets and limited child labor with the help of people like Frances Perkins, his Secretary of Labor and others, and brought the US out of the Great Depression.
I’m not a fan of high taxes any more than the next person, but at that time they were necessary to remake the entire country in the lead up and then prosecution of WW II. People had to get used to austerity because of the war. When it was over, there was an explosion of the middle class and it became the norm that one person holding down a job could support an entire household. That is something more and more rare today.
When Regan campaigned for the office he did so on the premise that people taking government benefits were somehow ripping off everyone else in the country. He and his campaign came up with the racist idea of the “welfare queen.” This of course ignored the fact that more tax money was spent on subsidies to oil companies, weapons and war than anything else, even after WW II—actually even more so now. Eisenhower’s parting warning about the military-industrial complex was truly prescient.
Fast forwarding to more recent times, we had the Trump tax cut fully repeating the Regan lie of “trickle down economics” pushing the government into more debt than ever before in its history. This was followed closely by Mitch McConnell blaming the new deficits on the social programs of Social Security and Medicare. He and his buddies like to call these “entitlements,” intending this to have a derisive meaning. However, these are programs directly funded by direct tax payments deducted directly from pay checks.
But this distinction is artificial. The rest of the budget ALSO comes from our paychecks. Medicare and Social Security are special “carve outs.”
As was pointed out in a recent article by Curt Strickland, a propagandist repeats a lie as frequently as possible in hopes that it will become a fact in peoples’ minds. This is what has been happening for decades with regard to social programs. The false idea is that it is “government money.” It is our money. We fund the government with our tax payments. We are correct in viewing ourselves as entitled to benefit from our own funds.
Republican and big business “leaders” would have us think otherwise. But this ignores another fact that is also glossed over: They work for us. The government is elected by us. Yes, Republicans want to change that, but in the end, it is still a fact. Business leaders also work for us. Where the hell do any of these folks think their revenue comes from? Customers, i.e., us.
So, let us just call bullshit on the propagandists that campaign to make us think we are not entitled to the benefits of our own work. We are. It is the intelligent business leader that realizes he can sell more goods to a customer base that has more money. The fact that this one datum alone seems to be unknown is staggering.
Those that view society as a zero-sum game, where a person only wins if another loses, should not be involved in government or business management. Those are the true welfare queens and leaches we must watch out for and avoid.