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29 December, 2017

Dear Americans: get ready to say goodbye to what is left from your social state!


Since the Dark Ages of the Reagan administration that opened Pandora's box to unleash the destructive forces of neoliberalism and financial capitalism, the US social state has suffered multiple hits to the point that is barely alive in our days.

While working class wages remained almost flat for decades, the social state has been almost eliminated and the American families were being forced into a vicious circle of increased debt to cover even their basic needs.

The main cause of this ugly situation was always the continuous tax breaks in favor of the wealthy elite. Plutocracy was getting richer not only directly through tax cuts, but also by making business and speculation in economic areas that were traditionally provided publicly in previous decades: health, education, housing.

As people were fed up with the classic bipartisan politicians, fully aligned with the neoliberal establishment, Donald Trump came as an unpleasant gift for the elites to fulfill their goals, which, basically, are 'business as usual': more tax cuts, more for-profit wars, further deregulation in every level, total destruction of the social state.

Many argue that everyone will be benefited from the recent disastrous more-tax-cuts-for-the-plutocracy bill passed by Trump administration. In reality, Donnie and his wealthy friends tricked again the working class with a small piece of cheese in the bait. Except that the tax cuts are enormous for the elite compared to those for the working class, the total implications for the vast majority of the Americans will be more than serious.

Aaron Maté of the Real News speaks with William K. Black to uncover the ugly truth behind the bill:

As Maté says:

So, this corporate tax rate now is going down to 21%, and that's permanent. But yet, with these bonuses from say ATT and Comcast of a thousand dollars to their employees, those aren't recurring bonuses. They're a one-time bonus of one thousand dollars. So, the employees get one thousand dollars once. These companies get a massive cut to 21% for life.

Black continues:

It's actually of course worse than that. You're quite right in what you've said, except that two things have to be kept in mind.

One, these companies were going to do it anyway. They were going to raise wages for this small segment, for example, in Wells Fargo's case, because they had operational needs to do that anyway. So this has nothing to do with the Trump tax cut. It is pure theater.

And second, not only are the corporate tax cuts permanent, but if the logic is tax competition, the United States needs to cut its corporate tax rate to compete with Ireland and such. Well, what are Ireland and other nations going to do that are in competition with us if we slash our corporate tax rate? They're going to cut their corporate tax rate as well, and there are a number of countries already beginning that process.

And then, the logic is going to be, we need to make further cuts in our corporate tax rate, and of course this "logic" inexorably leads you to have zero corporate tax rate, which is what their real goal is. And by the way, they are open behind the scenes in terms of conservative economists that that's exactly what they want to produce.


Zero corporate tax rate equals definite death of the social state. Instead of going forward, the American society slips into another dark age of corporate Feudalism. That's why Bernie Sanders fought so fiercely against the latest tax bill. As Bernie states:

This is why the Koch brothers are spending so much money to see this legislation passed. Their family will benefit to the tune of some 30 billion dollars. So, spending a few hundred million dollars to elect people like Senator Cruz is pocket change if your family is gonna get 30 billion.

We had a young lady coming up here talking about the cost of college. I think it makes a lot more sense for us to make public colleges and universities tuition-free and lower student debt rather than give the Walton family up to 50 billion dollars in tax breaks.



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