Pro-rich policies made the rest of us poorer
The national debt is $17.5 trillion. Although the deficit has been reduced more than 50 percent under President Obama, it's still $680 billion. Next year projected is $492 billion. What caused the debt? Under Presidents Reagan and Bushes we had: two unfunded wars; an unfunded prescription drug program; unwarranted tax cuts; the deregulation of Wall Street (precipitating the Great Recession), increased entitlements caused by the recession.
Where are we now?
The top 10 percent owns 77 percent of the wealth. The bottom 60 percent owns 2 percent of the wealth. Since 1970 the top 1 percent income has increased three-fold while the bottom 90 percent have had no increase (2008 dollars). Wealth and income disparity has regressed to the 1929 Depression values.
What could we do?
We could do the Ryan (Republican) budget and scrap the Affordable Care Act (Obamacare), cut Medicaid, cut SNAP (Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program), freeze Pell Grants for college tuition. and increase the debt by giving more tax reductions to the rich.
Thomas Piketty (Paris School of Economics), author of "Capital in the 21st Century," has studied Wage and Wealth Inequality throughout the world since the 1700s. He recommends another approach, a tax on wealth!
That is the right way.
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