The More Things Change, The More They Don't

Nor' east Thinkin'

It's what happens when profit and politics are more important than people

Published on: December 3, 2010

 

Last night, a farmer from New York (state) e-mailed me that before the mid-term elections, Senator Charles Schumer called for an investigation into why farmers get such a small share of retail milk prices. And he sent a New York Times clip headlined "Vegetable dealers take 1,400%", while cabbage growers get a penny a head and East Coast vegetable markets were glutted with supply.

That clipping was published July 17, 1920. But both the milk and vegetable pricing issues are on-going dilemmas of our capitalistic marketplace. They continue until they're checked and brought back into balance.

 

Uncle Sam must be checked and balanced, too

The very same thing happens in public policy and politics. November's election was the first real effort by American voters to stem uncontrolled growth of government, regulation and the cost thereof.

The people won the first battle. But, if you've watched much news in recent days, you already know the war is far from over.

Too many still in Congress and the Obama Administration don't see that their actions and fiscal irresponsibility are pushing America ever closer to the brink of disaster. They still don't understand that those who are able must sacrifice for the good of the whole – themselves as well.

Take, for instance, this week's debates centered around whether to continue tax cuts for all or to let them expire for the wealthy. Those opposed to letting income tax cuts to the wealthy expire shout "class warfare!" They claim it would have disastrous impact on Wall Street.

Yet, if we leave capital gains and business income taxes alone, and focus on personal income taxes, it would generate $700 billion in tax revenues, by some estimates. That would far offset the $18 billion necessary to extend unemployment benefits. It would also tell America's businesses that you can retain your profits and use them to grow.

Removing the income cap on paying into Social Security would quickly turn that program around. And it would immediately establish confidence for future generations.

That's the easy part – well sort of. The Obama Administration must also reign in its regulators and put a moratorium on forcing costs down to state and local levels.

That would do more to bring jobs back to America than anything. Having 20% of the nation's workforce unemployed is already a disaster.

Can it be done? Certainly, but not without departing from old ways. Now that's the kind of change America can stand behind!

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