Drs. Ruth and Martin Hertzberg: Adult leadership lacking on the right
Morgan Liddick’s “On Your Right” column was very offensive as it frequently is. From the title to the last paragraph, it contains many errors. For starters the title: “Adult Leadership Lacking in DC” implies the Democrats are the ones who are children driving us off an economic precipice, but it was the Republican, Eric Cantor, who childishly stormed out of a meeting on raising the debt ceiling and reducing the deficit. Moreover, there is no analogy between the two out-of-control teenagers and the economic problems of the US. Our biggest problem is high unemployment but those on the right have proposed nothing to alleviate unemployment. They have only obstructed the Democrats’ efforts to create more jobs. The deficit is maybe our number two problem, but most people don’t understand its significance to the economy.
Failing to raise the debt ceiling may indeed cause us to drive over a precipice as we default on all our financial obligations; we would be “defaulting” on our debts, something the US has never done. It would cause a world-wide depression and further exacerbate our unemployment problem and our deficit. Nonetheless, Liddick and others on the right seem to be willing to take that step so their rich friends can fly in tax-subsidized corporate jets and escape paying their share of taxes on their huge profits and salaries.
Note that the bad, “no money down” mortgages that were a major factor in causing the current recession were caused mainly by the irresponsible deregulation policies of Bush and his Republican allies in Congress. The present tax code is certainly unfair, especially to the middle class and the poor. Liddick also propagates the standard Republican lie that “The bottom 47 percent of income earners pay no income taxes at all …” For 2011, the Social Security tax is 4.2 percent and the Medicare tax is 1.45 percent, so the poor wage earners are already paying more than the 5 percent he suggests as “fair.”
He talks about “the government … deciding on how much of ‘your money’ will be spent addressing the wants of others.” Of course he really means “his money” and it is the “needs” of others that are addressed and not their “wants.” The last time I looked at “his money,” – a dollar bill for example – neither his picture, nor mine, nor yours was on it. It is George Washington, our first president, and the bill was labeled “The United States of America”; namely, “the government,” and its value is backed by the “full faith and credit” of that government, which faith and credit Liddick and his rotten, Republican, reactionary friends are currently doing their best to sabotage. Look at that dollar bill: It is not “yours”: “render unto Caesar the things that are Caesar’s and unto God the things that are God’s” – the things that are God’s are compassion, understanding, and tangible help to address the needs of the poor and downtrodden of our nation.
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