Don’t be deceived by the encouraging words of President George W. Bush about his recently released economic growth package. To say the plan is “a very fair plan” that will provide “tax relief to working citizens … which creates more jobs,” is overly optimistic and just plain ignorant.
The plan brings “trickle-down economics” from the Reagan era to the forefront.
Unfortunately, the Reagan era was an economic goose egg, and there’s little reason to believe the logistics of economics have changed since 1985. Trickle-down economic packages do not directly target problem areas, such as public programs struggling to stay afloat or state programs in need.
The packages give most of the money to corporations and private citizens, hoping the money will eventually be used for consumption, but immediately helping the rich.
The biggest part of Bush’s plan is eliminating federal taxes on stock dividends that will cost the government $674 billion during the next 10 years.
The president also decreased the top tax rate by 3.6 percent, while only decreasing the lower tax brackets by 2 percent. An aid package and “re-employment accounts” will give $6 billion to financially troubled state governments, but $6 billion is miniscule relative to the cost of eliminating dividend taxes.
The Democrats have a plan that would give more money back to the states, which are cumulatively faced with a debt of $67 billion. California alone is paralyzed by more than half the $67 billion and could use more direct help from Bush.
But for now, it looks like Bush Inc. will reward the fat cats who got him elected and hope the facade flies successfully — at least until he gets through his 2004 re-election campaign.
University Wire — U. of California at Los Angeles