Thorman Hulse

Union County Progressives/Democrats

The Republican Tax Plan is a wonderful, wonderful thing. It may, in fact, be the wonderfullest thing that ever happened to you. If, that is, you are already wonderfully, wonderfully rich. Or live in a “red” state like Kentucky (where Republican Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell lives). Unfortunately, most people in the 2nd Congressional District of Oregon (where you live) are not wonderfully rich. Also, Oregon (if not, perhaps, its 2nd Congressional District) is a “blue” state.

So, here’s how us blue-staters benefit from the pittance that won’t get deducted from our paychecks this year: We get to pay it back, over and over again, out of our other pocket.

According to an Atlantic Magazine article, the Joint Committee on Taxation estimates that the federal government will cost taxpayers in blue places like California, New York and Oregon almost $670 billion over the next 10 years by limiting the deductibility of state and local taxes and of mortgage interest.

“Robbing Peter to pay Paul” is what we used to call that when I was a boy. It was frowned upon. “Leads to bankruptcy. And worse,” said our wise old — conservative — elders, shaking their fingers at us. They weren’t wrong, either, our wise old elders. It does lead to bankruptcy. Maybe worse.

Whatever happened, by the way, to wise old elders? They obviously can’t belong to the Republican Party any more. The Republican Tax Plan vastly increases the national debt, for no particular reason — except to hand money by the carload to people who really don’t need it that much.

Now, theoretically, once those wealthy folks and corporations have all this extra cash, they will invest in new manufacturing plants and hire like crazy. Wages will rise! Jobs will come back to America! The stock market will go through the roof!

Uh-huh. Sure.

Once upon a time, Herbert Hoover tried this. Until the 1929 Crash and the Great Depression. Then he raised taxes … and the American people voted him out of office.

Ronald Reagan tried this in his first budget. Reagan’s great political talent was luck. It was his successor, George H.W. Bush (who’d actually called Reagan’s tax plan “voodoo economics”), who had to salvage a sinking budget by raising taxes … and the American people voted him out of office.

George W. Bush tried this … and the Great Recession followed… Do you sense a pattern here?

Take the stock market. Wall Street loves a “friendly” administration, especially because it doesn’t hardly regulate them at all. And the market goes up and up and up… Until it crashes. Like it did under Hoover.

Like it did under Eisenhower. Does anybody remember the “Eisenhower Recession”? My dad was out of work for a year.

Like it did under Reagan (like I said; Reagan was lucky, because nobody seems to remember that one).

Like it did under George W. Bush… Do you sense a pattern here?

The American people are, once again, getting taken for suckers.

The wise old elders of my old home town would not have been happy. In my mind’s eye, I can see them now. They’re shaking their fingers.