Tuesday, July 31, 2007

Jessie Speak

It doesn't seem so long ago that Jesse Jackson was in his heyday. He had no peer as a public speaker, including Bill Clinton. One of his favored speech tools was to contrast two facts to show us how as a nation we were failing to live up to our promise, mostly because of Reaganesque economic policies. It is with that kind of presentation in mind that I make the following observations.
Did you know that there is a special low tax bracket set up for people living on investment income? If you did know that, did you know that it also applies to people who manage investment funds? Some of the world's highest paid people are in this category, and I'm talking way beyond NBA or American Idol type cash. Their taxes are withheld at 15% even though they sometimes earn incomes that reach eight figures. No, there is no shortage of would-be money gurus, so it's not like we need to create more of them with tax incentives. Yes, they have higher expenses than most, but that's BECAUSE of their income, not because entering their preferred workplace costs so much more. No, the tax break is there because, well, because We the People gave it to them, meaning that Congress wrote it and the president agreed. No wonder there's a market for jewel-encrusted fountain pens and canine psychologists.
You might have noticed the fight in Congress over bringing health insurance to about six million of our poorer children through expansion of a program which already exists. The money involved ain't pocket change, but it's a fraction of the money we throw down the Iraqi rat hole. Providing basic care leads (and we know this through research) to medical savings down the road because of early treatment. About 90% of Americans favor this plan , including over 80% of REPUBLICANS. The president? He promises to veto it, claiming that it's too much, but probably thinking that first, he doesn't want to hand the Demos a victory, and second, because he's fearing that a success with children might embolden people to want to take health care out of the hands of his big business pals altogether. Thirdly, children don't vote, as compared to Medicare recipients with new benefits, who can't WAIT to vote.
So if I were the Reverend Jackson, I might put it this way, somewhere in mid-speech: "We hear the administration say that there's no money to get health insurance for poor children, but they have no problem giving tax breaks to the richest people on Wall Street." The Reverend may have put it better (and if you're reading, sir, you're welcome to use this stuff at no charge). I think I know what Ross Perot would say: "That's jes' sad."


Anonymous Jake said...

Very well written. Agreed 100%

7:42 AM  

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