The Estate Tax (which was given an Orwellian rename by the Republicans as the “Death Tax”) does and will not hurt you — unless it is abolished.
The Estate Tax affects only 3/10 of 1% of the richest Americans. We’re not even talking about the wealthy here, we’re talking about the OBSCENELY wealthy here.
To put this in context, if the Republicans get what they want, it would mean $30 BILLION in tax cuts for the Walton family (who own Walmart) alone.
So they barely pay their workers a living wage and abuse them in a hundred other ways, drive multiple small businesses out of the marketplace which are major drivers of economic growth in the country, and the Republicans in the Senate and an all-too compliant President Obama, want to rewards them for all that by giving them a tax cut that is more than the gross national product of some of the nations of the world.
For anyone to look at that and NOT think that is radically out of balance, is simply insane.
The Estate Tax, ironically, originated with a Republican, Teddy Roosevelt. But then, he was an old school, classic Republican, not an insane self-absorbed, corporate whore like Mitch “Meltface” McConnell, the current “leader” of the Republicans in the Senate.
If this tax for people who DON’T need it gets abolished, it will mean an instant $1 TRILLION dollar INCREASE to the federal budget deficit.
And the next step for the corporate Republicans (and the DINOs who enable them) after that, will be to try to balance that deficit on the backs of the poor and the middle class, by slashing EVERYTHING, from Social Security (this bill already weakens that vital and successful national program to protect our elderly from abject poverty) to school lunches for your kids, to desperately needed infrastructure improvements so we can remain competitive in the broader economy. They’ve already been making the rounds of talk shows suggesting a “national sales tax” on top of your state sales taxes, an exceedingly regressive tax that would disproportionally hurt the most vulnerable people in the society.
So basically, this pissed Senator Bernie Sanders off.
The Democratic Socialist Independent-minded Senator from Vermont then took to the floor on Friday to actually DO what the Republican Senators only threaten to do, and filibuster this rampant stupidity in a whopping 9-hour speech — a heckuva task for a 69 year-old man.
But this is what “Mr Smith Goes to Washington” looks like in REAL life. When someone is honest and caring enough to actually fight for YOU.
Perhaps we should appreciate that, and back more men like him. Just a suggestion.
And ironically, despite what the mainstream corporate media would have you believe, most Americans DO appreciate such a thing, in fact, they are actually HUNGRY for that kind of leadership.
So much so, that they actually crashed the Congressional video server on Friday, trying to watch him online, when the corporate media hacks wouldn’t show them enough of Bernie’s filibuster.
Here is an excerpt from this awesome speech:
Just that excerpt got 400,000 on the Moxnews Youtube channel.
Here is the FULL TEXT of the historic filibuster.
I also found interesting that Bernie also basically planted a boot right into the Federal Reserve’s backside in this speech. Here are a few quotes of those key bullet points:
- What we now know is the extent of the bailout for the large financial corporations. Goldman Sachs received nearly $600 billion. Morgan Stanley received nearly $2 trillion. Citigroup received $1.8 trillion. Bear Stearns received nearly $1 trillion. And Merrill Lynch received some $1.5 trillion in short-term loans from the Fed.
- But I think what is most surprising for the American people is not just the bailout of Wall Street — the Federal Reserve was also bailing out Toyota and Mitsubishi, two Japanese carmakers, by purchasing nearly $5 billion worth of their commercial paper from November 5, 2008, through January 30, 2009.
- I think the American people would be shocked to learn that the Fed extended over $380 billion to the Central Bank of Japan to bail out banks in that country.
- I think the American people are interested to know that the Fed bailed out the Korea Development Bank, the wholly owned, state-owned Bank of South Korea, by purchasing over $2 billion of its commercial paper.
- The Fed also extended over $40 billion for the Central Bank of South Korea so that it had enough money to bail out its own banks.
- The Fed bailed out the state-owned Bank of Bavaria–not Pennsylvania, not California, but Bavaria–by purchasing over $2.2 billion of its commercial paper.
- I think the American people would find it incomprehensible that the Fed chose to bail out the Arab Banking Corporation based in Bahrain by providing them with over $23 billion in loans with an interest rate as low as one-quarter of 1 percent. So small businessmen all over America: Maybe you have to run to Bahrain and work with the Arab Banking Corporation there to get some pretty good loans. But it would be nice if maybe the Fed would start to pay attention to banks in this country.
- Furthermore, the Fed extended over $9.6 billion to the Central Bank of Mexico.
- What is interesting about all of this is that we had a very vigorous debate here in the Senate and in the House over the $700 billion TARP program. Every person in America could turn on C-SPAN and hear that debate. It was all pretty public. But what took place at the Fed, which, in fact, amounted to a larger bailout, was done behind closed doors. Over $3 trillion was lent with zero transparency.
- I think the question the American people are asking as they read about what the Fed did during the financial crisis is whether the Fed has now become the central bank of the world without any debate on the floor of the Senate or the Congress and without the knowledge of the American people. I think that is wrong. So I hope, out of this effort in bringing disclosure and transparency to the Fed, that one of the things that will come will be more transparency at the Fed.
- My office intends to investigate whether these secret Fed loans, in some cases, turned out to be direct corporate welfare to big banks that may have used those loans not to reinvest in the economy but, rather, to lend back to the Federal Government at a higher rate of interest by purchasing Treasury securities.
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