DMI Blog

Maureen Lane

An Un-American Budget Reconciliation

American society is becomming increasingly stratified on economic lines, much like the societies people came to America to escape from. More and more the key to personal economic security is education. Yet, less than 30% of Americans have a college degree and less money will be comming from the government to help people get one.

Robert H. Frank, Cornell University Economics professor, writes in the New York Times today, "Sometimes, a Tax cut for the Wealthy Can Hurt the Wealthy." Prof. Frank notes that health, safety and economic issues affect the rich as well in good and bad economic times. Reduced government spending translates to a reduction in services and safety for all of us. It is clear, maintaining tax cuts to high-end earners, in part, is driving recent federal budget debacles.

Last week, in time for their Thanksgiving vacation, the House passed a hideous budget bill. Deep Medicaid and food stamp cuts passed in the dark of night will hurt people. Pell and other financial aid will not be funded to meet the needs of students. Immigrants and families needing income supports will be the hardest hit but the societal damage will reverberate for years.

The Congress needs to hear from people who are living through their bad policy choices. A stratified America is not the American dream. As the fine satirical newspaper, The Onion kids, policy makers cannot just hope things turn out for the best. They have to take some actions to make the best happen. Here at Welfare Rights initiative (WRI), we are taking action.

When Congress comes home for Thanksgiving they will be hearing from some less than thankful college students. WRI students are gathering letters and planning visits to Representatives all over the area to let them know what these budget choices mean for America.

To quote former US Supreme Court Justice Louis Brandeis "We can either have democracy in this country or we can have great wealth concentrated in the hands of few. But we can't have both."

Maureen Lane: Author Bio | Other Posts
Posted at 4:31 PM, Nov 24, 2005 in Economy | Employment | Fiscal Responsibility | Labor | Middle-class squeeze | Progressive Agenda | Social Security | Welfare
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