It is important to get the problem right. As
as it is about the money, you play into the arguments of Republicans
and their wrong-headed compulsion to austerity.
The Budget should reflect people's
wishes, but it
does not. It's more in line with the wealthy
funders who increasingly
influence Congress direction.
When Republicans were in power, Vice President Cheney famously
said deficits didn't matter. Since the Clinton economy was good, we
were headed for surpluses. But then we embarked on two wars without
paying for them, the Bush tax cuts exceeded the cost of those two wars,
drug legislation gave huge breaks to pharma, after 9/11 we created a
bloated homeland security bureaucracy, the economy went into a downward
spiral, and maybe worst of all, we experienced huge climate disasters,
sure to increase in the future.
Even though money is not a good measure of our well being, Republicans
are using it for extortion. We are not dealing with real challenges.
Our dysfunctional institutions do not deal with slowly developing
threats: peak oil; glacier melt; droughts; rising sea levels; violent
storms; overpopulation; and income inequality. We are headed for
resource wars, food shortages, violent unrest, mass migrations, and the
likely mother of all market crashes, climate collapse.
Many species are going extinct, next could be us.
Republicans are largely to blame. They will do one thing for us though, they will be sure we are well armed.
Change tax policy:
- Why is it
that unearned income is taxed at a much lower rate than wage income
from hard work ? Tax unearned
income instead of payroll taxes.
Eliminate Payroll taxes to put more money into the hands of lower
income people and improve demand. Without sufficient demand, business
financial transactions taxes on high-speed
trading, a Tobin Tax, and others to reduce speculation and its associated
- Considering the dire warnings
of climate scientists, we
need to rapidly reduce use
of fossil fuels. Impose a carbon tax.
- Raise the inheritance tax so that we don't get an aristocracy.
- A stiff graduated income tax would damp down income
inequality. We had a
marginal tax rate of over 90% under Ike, and the economy did well.
- Stop corporate welfare. The
fossil fuel industry should not
Reduce Government expenses
- Slim down our worlds largest military.
If there is
justification for international war, then there should be international
- Pre-emptive war is a crime. Stop
- Solve problems with diplomacy, not the military. Live up to
agreements. Since we are faced with global problems, quit
building the nuclear arsenal. Live up to the
NPT (Non Proliferation
- Stop spending money on star wars.
MIT experts don't think
it will ever work.
- Shut down
the NSA and other black
operations that have demonstrated the
corrosiveness of secrecy in government: Surveillance, like unjustified
secrecy, threatens freedom, civil liberties, journalism, privacy
rights, and can only lead to totalitarianism.
- Shut down
secret prisons, stop renditions, recognize torture
for the crime that
it is, and bring some transparency to government activities.
- Close the
“School of the Americas”. The US has a shabby history of supporting
dictatorships in much of the world. Start supporting democracy instead
of corporate interests.
- Wind down
the empire. The economy is no longer healthy
enough to support it.
- Fix our
crumbling infrastructure. Put the unemployed to work fixing it while
interest rates are still low.
- We should
have high speed Internet as good as South
Korea's. To do that there
should be fiber to the curb. Private entities, like a combined Comcast
and Time/Warner, will not do it, and anyway it should be public
infrastructure not subject to Corporate policies. Continuing business
as usual, corporations will slowly eat away at net neutrality.
and encourage the use of Free Software.
It is crowd-sourced, open, and
therefor more trustworthy. It is essential for the integrity of voting
- Most of
our problems with healthcare are directly
attributable to private
entities like pharma and the insurance
companies. We pay twice as much
as any other country for healthcare. Single payer would be best. There
would be massive savings if we had a system comparable to other
- The US is
number one in incarcerations. Surely there is money to be saved by
reducing the prison population. It would be
cost effective to stop the
“War on Drugs”. Our black
agencies have a
history of actually running
drugs. They are out of control.
- The fix
is in now that the Supreme Court
consistently sides with Corporations
and against the public interest. Campaign finance law is the foundation
of all other law and it can only function if Citizen's United is
overturned. There need to be more judges on the Supreme Court, it
should be held to the same ethical standards as are the lower courts,