Moskal: Congressional tax plans won’t help economy or the middle class | VailDaily.com

Moskal: Congressional tax plans won’t help economy or the middle class

Editor’s note: Find a cited version of this letter at http://www.vaildaily.com.

Quoting Rep. Suzan DelBene (D-Washington), “As a former CEO, I know what makes our economy strong are the foundational things that have always made this country great: skilled workers, innovative ideas, a stable business climate, modern infrastructure and a world-class university system that helps turn cutting-edge research into successful businesses — not indiscriminate corporate tax cuts.”

History proves that America’s economy boomed after FDR increased taxes on the wealthy and established programs that helped the poor, elderly, middle class and returning war veterans. FDR’s programs gave federal jobs to build a first-class infrastructure, finances to strengthen university systems and funding allowing many to attend college. America’s middle class grew to the largest percent in U.S history.

The world envied us, mid-’40s to mid-’80s. The last 20-plus years, China been replicating the United States, especially the educational system of the mid-’40s to ’60s. China has a booming economy and a large, educated middle class.

Republican tax reform is being rushed through Congress at historical record speed during the busy holiday season, with no time for the public to analyze it, and does what Reagan and Bush II cuts did: a stock market crash in 1989 (Reagan), and the Great Recession starting in the fall of 2007 (Bush II).

This tax reform does the opposite of FDR’s programs and the goal of helping hard-working Americans, elderly, sick, children and the poor. Some of what is known in the bills affecting the next 10 years: $1.5 trillion addition to debt (not including increased debt interest rate); elimination of deductions for medical expenses, hitting hard older workers and retirees.

It limits or eliminates deductions for mortgage interest and property taxes, reduces aid for school lunch programs, Meals on Wheels, etc. It may discourage charity giving due to shift in filing taxes. Most people will initially see a lower tax bill in 2019 to support 2018 mid-term elections. Thereafter, some income groups, particularly those making $20,000 to $50,000, will see tax increases in future years.

It eliminates the teacher deduction for school items purchases for poor students, effectively raising teachers’ taxes by $2 billion.

The ballooning federal deficit will result in pressure to cut Social Security and Medicare benefits. Few corporations have said they may hire more people, and the rest said savings will go to executive salaries and stock buy-back.

These cuts plus others were made to give the wealthiest 1 percent, especially top one-tenth of 1 percent, and corporations a huge tax break. Today, the top 1 percent owns more than the bottom 90 percent. It’s estimated that the Trump family will save $1 billion in taxes.

This tax plan is another gamble, like Reagan and Bush II’s, that the economy will grow faster (0.5 percent to 1 percent) than it has since Obama helped turn around the economy in 2010, even though technology and innovation have continued to eliminate workers. The real job creators are the consumers. Without demand, sales decline.

Cheryl Moskal

Lakewood and Vail