The Abominable House and Senate Tax Cut Bills
by Stephen Lendman (stephenlendman.org – Home – Stephen Lendman)
It’s worse than you think. The final version following House and Senate reconciliation will show the full extent of harm done to ordinary Americans – so corporate predators and super-rich ones benefit hugely at their expense.
A congressional assault on Medicare, Medicaid and likely Social Security will follow to help defray part of cost.
Millions will lose health insurance. Ending the individual mandate assures higher premiums.
Most wealthy US households will pay no estate taxes. The estates of fewer than 0.1% of super-rich ones will pay it above a higher threshold level.
Trump and other other wealthy Americans will save millions of dollars in taxes by elimination of the alternative minimum tax (ATM).
Corporate predators will use their windfall for increased stock buybacks, along with financing mergers and acquisitions, not for jobs creation, minimally for other investments.
The measure will blow an additional $2 trillion hole in the deficit, in 10 years to top $30 trillion. Today it’s $20.6 trillion, or $63,000 for every US citizen, $170,000 for all taxpayers.
This year’s federal budget deficit exceeds $670 billion. Financing it will be more expensive if interest rates rise.
The nearly 500-page Senate bill wasn’t read by GOP senators voting for it, a flurry in last minute changes likely understood only by senators making and demanding them.
According to top Senate Dem. Finance Committee member Ron Wyden:
“The American people are going to be stunned when they see what’s really in this.”
The measure has nothing to do with economic growth or jobs creation. As offshoring continues, more jobs will be lost, ones remaining mostly rotten ones for ordinary Americans, needing two or more to get by.
Bipartisan Policy Center senior vice president Bill Hoagland explained “entitlement cuts are definitely” coming.
According to the Committee for a Responsible Federal Budget’s Maya MacGuineas, “Republicans have been telling themselves for years that they wanted to get into power so they could balance the budget, reduce the debt, cut spending and fix entitlements. They’ve just made it harder, not easier.”
Rubbing salt in an open wound, GOP hardliner Senator Chuck Grassley explained the misnamed Tax Cuts and Jobs Act is a payoff to corporate and high-net worth donors at the expense of ordinary Americans, saying:
People and entities that “invest” deserve congressional support, adding “not having the estate tax (and ATM) recognizes the people that are investing, as opposed to those that are just spending every darn penny they have, whether it’s on booze or women or movies.”
The average American spends all they have and can borrow through credit card and other debt, struggling to feed their families, pay rent, service mortgages, handle medical bills, heat homes, cover transportation costs, manage education expenses for children, and other costs of daily living.
Millions of households are one missed paycheck from homelessness, hunger and despair.
America has a higher percentage of working poor than any other industrialized country. It’s the only developed one without some form of universal healthcare.
Grassley and other GOP hardliners showed what side they’re on – thumbing their noses at constituent voters, supporting monied interests putting them in office, no one else.
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