Op-ed did not use the facts

Guest editorial

Much has been said about the new federal tax plan. Most of it hyperbole, lacking in facts.The most recent was an op-ed by Star Parker.

For example, she cites Bernie Sanders, whom she calls the “most famous socialist” as saying this is a massive attack on the middle class and a boon for corporations. She then agrees with our most famous socialist, but then basically says, so what? Where do these people work? She feels by favoring corporation, jobs will magically appear. Again, using opinion rather than facts. The fact is that corporations have little to no plans to add more jobs. In a recent meeting with the Secretary of Commerce, only three CEOs planned on adding new jobs. The rest plan on buying back stock to raise the cost of shares, hence making their stockholders richer. By the way, not one corporation can make money without workers, yet the pay disparity between the average worker and CEOs has grown. From CEOs making 16 times the average worker in the 60’s to over 50 times today.

Ms Parker goes on to say the countries that have a better ease of doing business index, the more prosperous they are. However, Ireland has the lowest tax rate for corporations, but is far from prosperous, with an unemployment rate in excess of 10 percent.

Ms. Parker statement “contrary to what Sanders thinks, what’s good for business is good for the working families they employ” is opinion, not fact. In fact, it’s the opposite. The annual pay for the average worker has risen at a the slowest rate in the last 30 years, while, as I stated earlier, the rate of the CEOs pay has outpaced the average workers pay by 5 fold. So, contrary to what Ms. Parker thinks, what’s good for businesses is not necessarily good for working families. The trickle down theory did not work with Reagan, so why would it work now?

Her example of eight years of the Obama administration having only a 1.6 percent economic growth while Trump has had a 3 percent is misleading. Obama inherited only the second depression ever in the U.S. Handed to him by the Republican Party. Also economist say a 3.5 percent economic growth is unsustainable, leading to a higher deficit.

Her use of John Cochrane figures is also disingenuous. Many factors have to be included which she does not mention. If China and India has such low scores, why do we send our jobs to India, China, and Mexico? She is hoisted by her own petard by using those numbers. If the United Sates has such a high score, then why do we need to give corporations such a huge and permanent tax break at all, as she claims in the beginning of her op-ed?

The reason the salaries are lower in those countries has more to do with cost of living and oppression. Our living standard is helped by unions which do not exist in the countries mentioned by Ms. Parker.

Ms. Parker goes on to say that the corporate tax cut will spur faster economic growth by keeping businesses in the U.S. Again, an opinion, not fact. Companies will send jobs where it’s cheaper, then pay less tax to boot.

Then the worst of her statements. “Let’s stop with the nonsense about the tax bill favoring businesses and the wealthy over working Americans.” If that is true, Ms. Parker here are some questions:

Tell me why there is a provision to give tax breaks to real estate LLCs? Why is there a tax deduction for those owning golf courses? Why is the tax reduction permanent for corporations, but not the average worker. In fact, after eight years, 90 percent of the average workers will pay more in taxes than now. Why did the Republicans raise the inheritance tax from 11 million? Who, exactly, did that help? Why will the people earning between $308,000 to $733,000 get the biggest break? Why does the middle class get a 1.6 percent savings while the richest 1/10th of 1percent will receive 2.7 percent savings, according to the non-partisan Tax Center? Also after 2025, when all the tax provisions are set to expire, only high-income people will get a meaningful tax cut. Why is there a provision for Congress to come after welfare, medicare and social security if the deficit goes too high, due to these tax cuts, but nothing about going after corporations or lowering military spending. Again, the Republicans are protecting their benefactors, the rich, by sticking it to the little guy under the pretense of a temporary tax cut.

While I’m not against a tax cut for corporations. I am against the unfairness of this tax plan.

While I agree envy does not make a country great, prosperity does. I just think we will get prosperity by helping the average worker, not by catering to the rich and big business. That hasn’t worked in the past and will not work now.

If you want to keep corporations in this country, try a law that requires the upper management of a company to live in the country where their corporation is registered. That should do the trick.

John Swartz lives in St. Johnsville


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