by Glen Wallace
We need a strong central government imposing regulations to protect the common man from the tyranny of the wealthy. While, as a leftie progressive, I’m willing to admit that some regulations are onerous and unnecessary, I never seem to hear from a right wingnut regressive admitting that some regulations are helpful and needed to protect the worker, the consumer and the environment from harm or exploitation at the hands of a ruthless businessman. It seems like the free market set want to create a social political environment where we return to the days of company towns where the residents are considered to have freedom because they aren’t physically restrained from leaving — never mind that the company town is in the middle of nowhere and none of the residents own a car or have a dime to their name that could be used to move out.
Sure, let’s remove the income tax and put in its place a federal property tax on the wealthy that covers not just real estate but any and all assets held by the top one tenth of one percent.
Good regulations are proactive whereas, any competitive marketplace without any regulation, is, at best, reactive in dealing with problems. I say ‘at best’ because some business can go on harming customers, the environment or workers for years or decades before, or if ever, they get punished in the marketplace for their actions.
The Democratic Party could gain their biggest strength by undermining or outright removing the biggest rallying points for the political right wing. Democrats could start by eliminating income tax for most, if not all, the 99 percent. The loss of revenue could be compensated for by increasing the income tax on the top of the top one percent. Additionally, there are a great number of other sources of potential revenue the could, and should be tapped — high frequency trading machine tax, VAT tax, where resource extraction on Federal lands is a given, the transaction should be designed with a fiduciary responsibility towards the owners of that land — the citizens of the U.S. Additionally, the power over the ability to create money needs to be returned entirely to the people and taken away from the private Federal Reserve Banking system. I’m not saying “end the Fed”. If they want to continue as a industry association where banks can voluntarily join, that’s fine. But monetary policy should be set by the US Treasury. While supporters and representatives may claim that the Fed is audited and nothing untoward has been found, I would counter that there still could be something untoward going on with the Fed and its relationship to the American people it is supposed to be looking out for. While the Fed may have only one set of accounting books, it may have two sets of strategy books. That is, it may have a public strategy that complies with the Congressional mandate it is supposed to follow, it may have a private strategy that it instead follows that is directed at aiding the Fed’s shareholders at the expense of the American people. For, instance, had Fed insiders known early in the 2000’s where the housing crisis was heading they could have made some strategic shorts, thus benefiting from the Fed’s strategy to blow up the housing bubble. Then when the bubble burst, Fed insiders could have had inside knowledge of the QE program and how it would be used to boost commodities and the stock market for which the insiders could take a long position ahead of the rise.
But regardless, Democrats need to look at what is motivating the populist base of the Republican party that leads them to vote the way they have. And then have an answer that might just persuade them to switch sides. Remember, most of those Republican voters are not rich. Hired disinfo agents may try to fire up that middle to lower class Republican base by complaining about wealth redistribution. But I find it hard to believe that base will get worked up into much of a lather when hearing about how some sherry swilling, tailored suit wearing, manicured male with soft hands that never have seen a callous in its life, with a sixty thousand dollar Patek Philippe watch sitting just above those soft hands, has to fork over more in taxes — especially when that would mean those working class Republicans get to avoid paying income tax altogether.
Additionally, where regulations are concerned, show how good regulations protect the consumer, the environment and the worker from unscrupulous business owners and how a strong government acts as a measure against such businesses. Without a strong government there is a power mismatch between the little guy and the tycoon. But where there is unnecessary, onerous regulations, Democrats should work hard being seen to end such bad regulations while continuing to strengthen, tweak, enhance old good regulations while enacting good new regulations