The Commons is a weblog for concerned citizens of southeast Iowa and their friends around the world. It was created to encourage grassroots networking and to share information and ideas which have either been suppressed or drowned out in the mainstream media.

"But if the cause be not good, the king himself hath a heavy reckoning to make, when all those legs and arms and heads, chopped off in battle, shall join together at the latter day and cry all 'We died at such a place;' some swearing, some crying for a surgeon, some upon their wives left poor behind them, some upon the debts they owe, some upon their children rawly left. I am afeard there are few die well that die in a battle; for how can they charitably dispose of any thing, when blood is their argument? Now, if these men do not die well, it will be a black matter for the king that led them to it; whom to disobey were against all proportion of subjection." (Henry V, Act V, Scene 4)

Friday, October 01, 2004

Elliott Denniston Letter 10/1/04

Rich Man's President

Dear Editor,

We all admire people who stand for principle and don't put their economic interests first. However, it might help voters this fall to know to what degree the Bush administration works against them and favors only the very rich.

The federal surplus when President Bush came to office was $5.6 trillion, while now the federal deficit under the Bush administration is $2.3 trillion(Congressional Budget Office). A huge factor contributing to this deficit were the Bush tax proposals; under these the average tax break for the top 1% of earners was $96,634, whereas the average tax break for the bottom 60% of earners was $350 (Citizens for Tax Justice.) (Yes,I have proofread these numbers!) To see how much richer the very rich have become, "Business Week" points out that in 2003 CEOs "earned" an average of 300 times as much as their workers, compared to 42 times as much in 1982.

At the same time 1.2 million jobs have been lost since Bush took office, the greatest sustained job loss since the Great Depression (Bureau of Labor
Statistics).

The Education President's No Child Left Behind Act was passed in 2001; to date, it has been underfunded by $26.4 billion (U.S. Department of Education)! As for health care, since Bush took office 3.8 million people have become uninsured (the U.S. Census Bureau) and family health care premiums have risen by more than $2700 a year. No one likes taxes, but what should we think of tax laws that turn so much money over to the very rich that they reduce the amount left for education and health care, and create debts that we all will have to pay on for many years!

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