...Unless that is you are among the richest 2% of Americans. You know, our political landscape has grown beyond conservative and liberal. It is now between rich and poor. I've been saying it for years now. It doesn't matter if your views are conservative or if they are liberal. The question is what tax bracket do you fall under? And my point is proven most recently by "Representative" Paul Ryan of Wisconsin and his budget bill. It really makes you wonder who he's representing. Well, let me tell you.
First, he's proposing to cut taxes for the richest 2% of Americans from 35% to 25%. Man, I'll bet all those billionaires really need all that extra money right now. They might just go out and create an extra job or two...just like they did during the Bush years...oh wait, that's right, they didn't. They shipped jobs overseas and gave themselves massive pay raises. Oh but his budget gets even better. Guess who gets to pay for those tax cuts for the rich? We do: the elderly, the poor, and the middle class, in the form of tax increases, cuts to and ultimately elimination of Medicaid and Medicare. Yeah, ol' Representative Ryan wants to give our elderly a nice voucher they can take to the private health insurance industry where they can purchase health insurance...at greatly increased rates. So let me get this straight. We're going to take a very popular Medicare program away from our seniors, which they absolutely don't want, and make them pay more for their health insurance, which they absolutely can't afford as it is, and make our millionaire friends in the for-profit health insurance industry even richer than they already are. I suppose we'll be hearing of their year-end bonuses pretty soon.
Let's see, what else, oh yeah, Ryan's 2012 budget gives subsidies to the oil industry. Is that in addition to the subsidies they already get? The oil industry is raking in record billions of dollars in profits each quarter and most Americans are struggling to buy the gas they need to get back and forth to work each day. So our friends in the oil industry are padding their pockets with even more millions to add to their billions.
But guess who gets to share in the sacrifice of Ryan's budget? Our kids! That's right, Ryan's budget cuts funding significantly for public education. Are our schools not crowded enough? Are our teachers working with too many supplies? Oh, it must be their terribly high salaries. No wonder our education is lagging far behind other countries. They are also cutting Pell Grants for millions of deserving college students. Republicans are more interested in corporate profits than in our kids' ability to compete in the global market against kids whose superior educations have prepared them.
This is only the tip of the iceberg. This bill is 1000+ pages and just came out a few days ago and we're just beginning to understand it. These are just a few bullet points. In nursing school, my classmates and I were taught critical thinking skills. We were taught to take objective data and subjective data and use these to try and determine what was going on with a patient. Our nation is sick. There is a multiple system dysfunction. It's not just Republicans to blame, or Democrats. But based on the data I have observed and the policies that have gone forth from the mouths and pens of Republicans in the last three decades I say this, it will be a cold day in hell before I vote for another Republican.
30 years of GOP policies of deregulation, tax cuts for the ultra rich and largest corporations, and tax increases on the poor and middle class have nearly bankrupted our nation. Republicans would have you believe it's the unions, the firemen, policemen, the teachers and nurses who are bankrupting our cities, counties, and states. Are we so quick to forget that it was the corporate giants like Citigroup, Bank of America, and AIG that nearly drove our economy into ground through their greedy and unregulated practices? And do we remember what then happened? We, the middle class tax payers, paid a $700 billion bailout to these companies to keep them from going bankrupt because they were "too big to fail". Then what happened? The CEOs of these companies enjoyed some of the biggest bonuses they've ever received. Why shouldn't they? After all, they had just pulled the biggest scam in history. They took our money, lost it in excessively risky practices, and then took our money again. It was ingenious.
But enough of that. That's not the real issue. The real problem is that people continue to vote for these same Republican idiots over and over again. Why would they knowingly do that? Well, obviously, they're not knowingly doing that. I live in the South and a majority of the people here vote for Republicans, if for no other reason, for the social conservative aspects of the party, such as being against abortion, homosexual marriage, etc. And, being raised in the South, I grew up with the same ideals. The difference is, as I grew up, I also wanted to know what else the GOP stood for, and I learned quickly that it wasn't for the middle class or the poor. I get so easily frustrated because I see these so called "Christian" politicians who want to raise taxes and healthcare costs on the poor, middle class, and elderly and cut taxes substantially for the extremely rich. Jesus said the rich should sell their possessions and give what they have to the poor. Republican policies run opposite the teachings of Jesus. The point is, it's all smoke and mirrors. Republican politicians keep their voters voting for them by talking about the social issues that the people want to hear about. "We're going to defund Planned Parenthood." (Which, by the way, uses federal money for such things as cancer screenings, general healthcare screenings and vaccinations, as well as sexual health, contraception, and planning pregnancy, but NOT abortion). Yes, they talk about social issues, but all the while, they are working in Congress for their buddies in the healthcare insurance industry, the oil industry, Wall Street, or whoever filled their pockets during campaign season, millionaires and billionaires, the top 2%. Those are the constituents the Republicans are working for. It's not for me, it's not for you. It's not about conservative or liberal, it's about rich or poor.