Outraged by tax reform bill

To the editor:

Every time I hear congressional leaders and others claim that this tax reform bill is for “the American people,” I cringe because what comes after is nothing but a con job, demonstrating just how gullible they think most of us are. And why shouldn’t they, if most of us are too busy, confused or disgusted with the daily spectacles coming out of Washington to tell them to stop patronizing us with lofty promises of “more money in our pockets,” rather than being honest that this is for the benefit of corporate stockholders; that “trickle down” has never created new jobs; that the estate tax merely creates more wealth for the already wealthy; that its long-term intention is to force cuts to social programs that truly help those of us not fortunate enough to make more than $40,000 per year (even with two jobs!); that millions of people will now lose health insurance altogether; and that millions of “middle class” Americans who will lose medical expense deductions?

This fiasco will add an incomprehensible trillions to our national debt. Most of us spend much of our adult lives trying to get out of debt, for the simple reason that debt costs more money and makes us vulnerable to some other entity that can legally call in that debt at any time. Are the collective “we” so near-sighted that all we can see is the vague promise of an immediate few hundred dollars in our pockets this year rather than the long-term wealth shift and national debt crisis this bill — according to the nonpartisan Congressional Budget Office — will likely perpetrate? Why on earth are we selling even more of our future debt to Saudi Arabia and China, or voluntarily giving the mega-wealthy even more millions for their offshore accounts, or playing into a long-term strategy to cut even more social programs that really help people or government regulations that truly protect consumers? Most of us know in our heart of hearts that money talks, and this tax bill — aside from a few scraps allegedly being thrown to “the American people” for public relations — is for the benefit of the mega-rich political donors who are really calling the shots.

If you are as skeptical and untrusting of this ungrounded Congress as I am, then please take five minutes to visit the websites (below) of six senators who, for their own reasons, might be swayed to vote against this ramrodded tax reform bill: Susan Collins (R-Maine), Lisa Murkowski (R-Alaska), John McCain (R-Arizona), Jeff Flake (R-Arizona), Ron Johnson (R-Wisconsin) and Bob Corker (R-Tennessee). Most of us don’t have millions to buy votes, but millions of us have opinions … and five minutes is all it takes nowadays to let these people know what a few more “American people” really think:







John Patrick O’Neill

Saranac Lake