Looking outside today I see two feet of snow blanketing my deck, my yard, and my cars -- but not the street in front of my house. Fortunately, hardworking middle-class workers were up at the wee hours of the night making the streets passable. With just a half hour of snow-blowing on my part, a safe trip to the store will be possible. Not to mention that in event of emergency the necessary personnel could get here without delay. I want to thank those workers who ventured out on a cold and blizzard-y night to keep us safe. It's at times like these I'm thrilled for this service -- paid for with my tax dollars.
There are those politicians that feel these hardworking people who came out in the middle of the night deserve a cut in pay, despite their extraordinary efforts. Even worse, they try to describe these workers as "the privileged class," just because they've earned a fair wage, a satisfying retirement, and the opportunity to provide their family with health care. Those politicians have been working for years to turn all of us against public workers. Let's not fall for it.
So, what kind of person would demonize such ordinary Americans? A person who has political motive to cut taxes for our wealthiest citizens, that's who.
Across the country there are politicians trying to cut the wages of everyday Americans. They are attempting to achieve this goal by demonizing middle class workers. And its not just limited to those who keep our roads clear and passable. Police officers and fire fighters, the people who keep us safe in our homes, are under attack as well. Even those responsible for keeping criminals away from the general population aren't safe from vicious attacks on their livelihood. In these hard economic times how does cutting the wages of middle class workers benefit the economy? It doesn't.
The idea here is to cut taxes for the wealthiest Americans and hope there is enough tax dollars left to clear your streets off after a snow storm; they hope there is enough left for our police officers to guard our streets and fire fighters to put out fires; they hope there is enough money to educate the next generation.
It's called trickle-down economics, that tired old theory that if you cut taxes for the wealthiest Americans, jobs will magically appear. If this were true, of course, we'd already have plenty of jobs, since the Bush era tax cuts have been in effect since the beginning of the great recession. Yet even now, as the stock market makes a comeback, businesses are still not hiring. Thirty years ago when Ronald Regan introduced us to trickle down, his own Vice President, George H. W. Bush, called this policy "voodoo economics".
What we need is not more trickle down. What we need is bottoms up, letting the money start at the bottom and flow upward. Let's pay that plow truck driver what he or she deserves. When that person spends the money at the hardware store and to provide food for his family, he (or she) brings money directly into the economy. Those businesses will suddenly need more workers, so jobs are created.
Trickle-down is just another name for the the rich get richer. Bottoms-up, however, helps all of us: the workers, the merchants, their families, and everyday Americans everywhere. Let's stick together and insist we pay everyday American workers the pay and benefits they deserve. That way we all win.