Sludge Report #54 – The Art Of Taking
In This Edition: Taking, Dubya Shows Us How It’s Done - And So Sludge Wonders
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Taking, Dubya Shows How It’s Done
Do the maths.
One per cent, 1%, of the United States of America’s population are to receive 40% of the benefit from US President George “Dubya” Bush’s USD$1.6 trillion tax cut plan.
1% of 280 million people is 2.8 million people, roughly three quarters of the population of New Zealand or Sydney.
George Dubya Bush’s tax cut plan will give these people, the richest people in the richest country in the world, an average USD$229,000 (NZD$571,000) each. That is half a million NZ Dollars each.
The remaining 99% of the population, or 277 million people, will receive an average $5776 each.
If hawkish elements in the Republican Party get their way then the tax cut could be increased to USD$2.3 trillion.
In which case the richest one in every 100 people will receive an average USD$329,000 each (NZD$822,000 each), and the other 99 an average $8259 each.
Now obviously these 1% of the population vote Republican, so it is easy to see how this tax cut can be sold to them.
But Sludge wonders about the other 99% of the population? Why is it that as far as Sludge can see the Republican’s are being allowed to promote this as a “tax cut for the ordinary working man”.
George Bush was pushed toward the White House by his father’s friends, and then Dubya’ed into power through the US Supreme Court, for one reason, and one reason only.
To push through this tax cut.
George Dubya Bush’s job – agenda - is to take from the poor and give to the rich.
That this is so is seen most clearly in the indecent haste with which the GOP have proceeded with this huge economic measure through the Congress.
The passage of a bill like this from proposal to legislation ought to take months, it has taken just a few days.
According to a Washington based Sludge correspondent the pace of the progression of the most recent Presidential tax proposal has been, quite simply, “breathtaking”.
It was so fast it caught the BBC’s Alastair Cooke by surprise last week. Less surprisingly Rupert Murdoch’s newspapers here in New Zealand have not been trying too hard to draw attention to this massive transfer of money to Rupert’s buddies.
And So Sludge Wonders
When our rulers start rushing things, especially dim rulers such as Dubya, then there is always a reason. Usually it is panic.
This time round the source of the panic is obvious.
Dubya and friends are worried they are about to prematurely lose control of the US Economy.
According to the script of the rich and powerful’s strategic planners and forecasters, the US economy wasn’t supposed to go into a tailspin until late 2001 at the earliest.
This would have allowed time to push through the tax cut plan before it’s fiscal wisdom was questioned by the facts. Namely a deteriorating economic environment, and Federal fiscal position.
That is, it makes little sense to cut taxes when you have a rising welfare bill and falling government revenues.
However things have not gone at all well for Dubya since his inauguration.
Really crappy weather has followed hotly on really crappy weather, seemingly throughout the USA. Indecision 2001, Foot and Mouth outbreaks, GE fear, yet more crappy weather and a new, united, and stroppy OPEC have changed the script.
The US recession is here already. And is deepening. Japan’s banking system is about to drop its interest rate to zero, on Monday. On the other side of the world the Foot and Mouth outbreak in Europe will quite possibly give rise to firstly a trade crisis, and possibly shortly thereafter with food shortage fears.
Back in Washington with one Senate member already dead, one nearly dead and the holder of the casting vote, Dick Cheney, with a seemingly worsening heart condition, Dubya and his friends are not surprisingly panicking.
Bulldozing this tax cut plan through the senate may in fact be a bit of a big ask. Especially if the Democrats finally remember how to do their math.