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Category Archives: Fairness

The other 99%

Income Inequality

Over the last fifty years the top 1% of income earners took in about 12% of all incomes in this country. Now, the top take it 24% of all the income in this country. While the rich have been getting bonuses and golden parachutes the working class has been getting pick slips. Unions can agree to higher wages, Tea partiers can agree to higher wages, Conservatives that work for a living can agree to higher wages. This is an issue that unites us all.

The fact is when a few people control the income in this country that means that someone else looses their money. Because, there is only a certain amount of money in out economy. (i.e. Last year our GDP was 14.5 T) Why can the rich pay more in taxes to help the rest of the country. Why cant prosperous corporation give up subsidies to their private jets to help an American get a job? Why can’t the 2% of wealthiest income earners be patriotic and demand Congress to rise their tax rates? Why can’t oil companies give up billion in government money to plug the whole in the federal deficit? Why can we take away health-care from homeless individuals, and the poor and take away voting rights but give 700 billion to Wall Street? How come 5 million American won’t be able to vote in the 2012 elections, but multi-national corporations can donate unlimited amounts to political campaigns, but individuals can’t? Because of greed and corruption.

File:Personal Income by Race.png

This isn’t a Republican or Democratic issue. The 99% are loosing. The top 10% of income earners in this country control over 92% percent of the wealth. Leaving the rest of us with only 7% control. These are the facts. Every American worker should be fighting for higher wages, a fairer tax system, health benefits, weekends off, paid vacation, and fairness. The Occupy Wall Street rallies are getting the message across; the American public is fed up with income inequality, corporations and the rich cheating on taxes, and the corruption on Wall Street and in government.

financial-wealth-united-states

Herman Cain’s tax plan is what is called the 9-9-9 Plan. The only clear thing people are getting out of it is that it includes a 9% flat tax on every income, a 9% national sales tax on everything that is bought in a store, and a 9% flat tax on businesses. One must understand that currently the tax system is set up in three brackets; 15, 25, and 35% tax brackets; we don’t have a national sales tax, and the corporate tax rate is 35% which businesses rarely even pay. I have no idea how much this tax system would bring in, but according the Center for Economic Policy and Research it would bring in about half the current revenue to the federal government. Also, the sales tax would be added to the already high state and local consumption taxes. In Massachusetts the state’s sale tax is 6.25%, and with Herman Cain’s tax reform plan now on everything I’d buy in a store I’d be paying 15.25%. This would decrease the amount that people would spend buying; don’t we need people buying products right now?

State General
Tax
Total With Max
Local Surtax
Groceries Prepared Food Prescription Drug Non-prescription Drug Clothing
Alabama 4% 10%          
Alaska 0.0% 7%          
Arizona 6.6% 10.6%          
Arkansas 6% 9.25% 1.5%+        
California 7.25% 9.75%          
Colorado 2.9% 8.0%          
Connecticut 6.0% 6.35%          
Delaware 0.0% 0.0%          
District of Columbia 6.0% 6.0%   10.0%      
Florida 6% 7.5%   9% (max)      
Georgia 4% 8%          
Hawaii 4% 4.712%          
Idaho 6% 6%          
Illinois 6.25% 11.5% 1%   1% 1%  
Indiana 7% 9%   9% (max)      
Iowa[34] 6% 7%          
Kansas 6.3% 8.65%          
Kentucky 6% 6%          
Louisiana 4% 9%          
Maine 5% 5%   7%      
Maryland 6% 6%          
Massachusetts 6.25% 6.25%   7% (max)     > $175
Michigan 6% 6%          
Minnesota 6.875% 7.775%   9.75% (max)      
Mississippi 7% 9%          
Missouri 4.225% 9.241% 1.225%        
Montana 0.0% 3%          
Nebraska 5.5% 7%   9.5%
(Omaha)
     
Nevada 6.85% 8.1%          
New Hampshire 0.0% 0.0%   9%      
New Jersey 7% 7%          
New Mexico 5.125% 8.5625%          
New York 4% 8.875%          
North Carolina 4.75% 7.25% 2% 9.25% (max)      
North Dakota 5% 5%          
Ohio[35] 5.5% 7.75%          
Oklahoma 4.5% 8.5%          
Oregon 0.0% 5%          
Pennsylvania 6% 8%          
Puerto Rico 5.5% 7%          
Rhode Island 7% 7%   8%      
South Carolina 6% 9%   10.5%      
South Dakota 4% 6%          
Tennessee 7% 9.75% 5.5%        
Texas 6.25% 8.25%          
Utah 5.95% 8.35% 4%        
Vermont 6% 7%   10%      
Virginia 5% 5% 2.5% 5%+      
Washington 6.5% 9.5%   10% (max)      
West Virginia 6% 6% 3%        
Wisconsin 5% 5.6%          
Wyoming 4% 7%          
Color Explanation
  Exempt from general sales tax
  Subject to general sales tax
7% Taxed at a higher rate than the general rate
3% Taxed at a lower rate than the general rate
3%+ Some locations tax more
3% (max) Some locations tax less
> $50 Taxed purchases over $50 (otherwise exempt)
  No state-wide general sales tax

 

 

 
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Posted by on October 7, 2011 in Fairness, Workers' Rights

 

The goals of the U.S. Socialist party

THE FREEDOM SOCIALIST PARTY IS a revolutionary, socialist feminist organization, dedicated to the replacement of capitalist rule by a genuine workers’ democracy that will guarantee full economic, social, political, and legal equality to women, people of color, gays, and all who are exploited, oppressed, and repelled by the profit system and its offshoot — imperialism.

FOR REVOLUTIONARY INTERNATIONALISM The working class is international and bound by global abuse. It must liberate itself through socialism. We support revolution on all fronts and seek to transform it into world socialism, which alone can defeat capitalism. We stress that global democratic struggles — for national liberation, for race and sex liberation — are inseparably bound up with workers’ struggles in every country, and can ultimately achieve victory only in conjunction with international socialist revolution.

FOR UNION DEMOCRACY The working class has the strategic power, numbers, need, and opportunity to effect a socialist transformation of society. But first the trade unions must be freed from the stranglehold of the class-collaborationist bureaucrats and from dependence on the twin political parties of big business. Internal union democracy, class struggle principles, independent political action in the form of an anti-capitalist Labor Party, and an end to internal racism, sexism, and heterosexism are on the order of the day.

FOR RACIAL/NATIONAL FREEDOM The struggles of oppressed minorities and immigrants against bigotry and intensified exploitation objectively challenge the basic core of the capitalist system. The resistance of people of color and immigrants, who suffer a dual oppression, spurs all other sectors of the working class to advanced political consciousness and militancy. We stand for immediate and unconditional economic, political, and social equality for Blacks, Chicanos, Asian Americans, Native Americans, and Puerto Ricans, and endorse the demand for self-determination by oppressed and indigenous nations the world over. We advocate the collaboration of organizations of people of color with the revolutionary movement as the most realistic and historically validated alternative to the dead ends of separatism or reformist integration. The revolution depends upon massive involvement and leadership by people of color.

FOR WOMEN’S LIBERATION We organize for the total emancipation of women on every level of life. The multiple afflictions of women — as an oppressed sex, workers, people of color, lesbians — propel them into militancy within every social movement, thereby laying the basis for unifying all the mass movements. Women, particularly workingclass women of color, are playing an increasingly vanguard role, thanks to the rise of the autonomous women’s movement and women’s caucuses within unions and all political parties.

FOR LESBIAN/GAY/BISEXUAL/TRANSGENDER EQUALITY The revolt of sexual minorities against sexual repression and sex-role stereotyping is a key ingredient of the fight for women’s equality and is equally revolutionary. Revolutionary socialism is the logical road for lesbian/gay/bisexual/transgender people who stand apart from the bourgeois nuclear family and who wish to end the long, bloody centuries of persecution and terror. Because of their special oppression, lesbians are a particularly militant component of all social movements.

FOR UNIVERSAL HUMAN RIGHTS Among the most hapless and vulnerable victims of capitalism are children, elders, the disabled, and prisoners — anyone who is not a profitable worker. We demand a world where all people have the inalienable right to security, care, love, and unhampered opportunity and growth.

FOR ENVIRONMENTAL SANITY The world’s natural riches must be used and safeguarded by the people, not by the corporations that exhaust resources for profit and destroy worker safety and health. Nuclear energy threatens to maim or annihilate future generations. Technology must be used wisely and humanely to preserve the earth and its creatures.

FOR A MASS WORKINGCLASS PARTY History has proven that only a thoroughly democratic and centralized vanguard party can lead the proletariat and its many allies to power. The FSP, a product of the living tradition of Marx, Engels, Lenin, and Trotsky, aspires to become a mass organization capable of providing direction for the coming revolution. Through independent growth, revolutionary regroupment, and other forms of fusion, we are confident of our eventual merger with the dynamic masses who will sweep every obstacle out of their path and ascend to the socialist future.

 
 

The goals of the current Republican presidential field

GOP Debates Word Cloud

https://donate.barackobama.com/page/contribute/o2012-gop-debates-what-theyve-said?source=ImageHQB

I think the Republicans have made it pretty clear what their goals are. They don’t want to improve the economy. They don’t care about reducing taxes for the middle class. They don’t care about strengthening Medicare, Medicaid, or Social security. Their goals are to empower the corporations and the very wealthy to take over America. They want an America with a boom and bust economy. They want a country where seniors will have to pay 7,000 more a years in health-care premiums, so they can give massive tax breaks to the wealthy and multi-national corporations. These stupid people are taking over our country. They are limiting people’s right to vote; not allowing people to terminate their pregnancy even if the women could die giving birth to the child. Our country is being taken over by radical Republicans who are spreading their religious based ideologue across the country. Their single goals are to make the corporations bigger and more profitable; even if it means taxing the poor more, or taking benfits away from the middle class. There is a war against the middle class and poor right now we must fight! The income gap between the rich and poor has never been larger.

Corporations have a strangle on our political system. They have lobbied and succeeded in paying almost no taxes through adding their own loopholes to the tax system. They have deunionized their workers. They’re denying benefits to their workers. Profits are held to a higher importance than the American worker. We must bring back the days of Unions and FDR’s trust busting. We need to go back to the days when one income could pay the bills, buy a car, and send a child to a good college. Todays even with two incomes many families can’t afford these fundamentals. We must bring middle class incomes up, just as fast as the rich’s income is shooting up. We must fight for universal health-care. REPUBLICANS ARE THE PARTY OF THE CORPORATIONS MORE THAN EVER IN HISTORY, AND WE MUST STOP THEIR RADICAL AGENDA.

 

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Trade, Taxes, and Banking: The screwed up trading system

Trade

We can’t keep letting American based corporations send American jobs over seas. We must repeal the NAFTA. We must bring the jobs home. If you’re an American corporation you will employ Americans.

These three trade deals would send more jobs over seas call your represenatives and tell them to say no to sending more jobs overseas!

  • Step 1: Get informed about the Korea trade deal
  • Step 2: View instructions for calling to your Representative in Congress below.
  • Step 3: Visit our Trade Vote Tracker to report your Representative’s position and view other activists’ comments on their Representative’s stance on the trade deals

Take Action! Contact your representative today!

Dial (202) 224-3121 to reach the Capitol switchboard. If you are not sure who is your Representative, tell the operator you want to talk to “your House member” and give your zip code. They will connect you – and then follow the script below.

When the office answers, ask for the “Trade L.A.” (legislative assistant). If he or she does not answer, leave a message AND call back and ask for the Chief of Staff – if he or she does not answer, leave a message there also.

“I am from [your town] and I’m calling to urge Representative _____ to oppose the three NAFTA-style trade deals with Korea, Colombia and Panama that Bush signed and Obama is now pushing. The Korea deal is projected to increase our trade deficit and cost many more American jobs. How can we even consider trade deals with unionist murder capital Colombia and tax haven Panama. Our country cannot stand any more job-killing, NAFTA-style trade deals. Is Rep. X for offshoring of American jobs? Does he/she oppose all three of these trade deals? Will he/she vote no to help stop these three job killers? Please keep the American people in mind and start creating real American jobs. Thank you for your time.”

Then, ask to be informed in writing of the Representative’s position.

Let us know what the office said by leaving a brief comment here – even if they don’t yet have a written position, let us know exactly what they said. When you get a written response, please share that also. Your reports will help target undecided Members of Congress and prevent this devastating deal from being passed.

If your Rep’s stance is anything but firmly against the trade deals, please keep calling to keep the pressure on!

http://www.citizen.org/Page.aspx?pid=4732

Trade

How this came about is that one of the chiefs here at MSNBC asked me, “Dylan, how can America create jobs? Should we shrink government? Should we cut spending? Should we increase spending?

The answer — maybe all of the the above — maybe none of the above, because at this point, it’s the wrong question!

To create real jobs, a country must have more money coming in than going out. But we have the exact opposite, with much more money going out that we have coming in!  Until we reverse that trillion-dollar trend, it is mathematically impossible to create sustainable jobs.

There are three main components that the government controls that determine the flow of money: Trade, Taxes, and Banking. I’ll be covering all three.

Let’s begin with Trade. If you look at the math of the so-called free trade agreements such as NAFTA from the Clinton Administration, they put our country at a disadvantage and force american CEO’s to do business that rewards their bottom line, and hurts the rest of us.

All the deals are aimed at making it easier and more profitable to export jobs, send money overseas and keep the cash offshore rather than invest it here at home. I want to use the firm Caterpillar as an example to

They now make a lot of heavy equipment in China.  If they made it here like they used to, it would face a 25% tax from Chinese Government to import, but if they make it in China – NO TAX.

And by the way, Chinese imports to America are taxed at 2.5%.  Now Caterpillar gets a giant discount on equipement build and sold in China.  Jim Owens, the Chief of Caterpillar, his job is to make money for his company and shareholders.  If you or I ran Caterpillar, we’d either export jobs and money to China to make the bottom line, or be fired.

Maybe if our government had the courage to level the playing field, the Jim Owens’s of the world would say “Let’s make it in America.”

But until then, it’s bye bye jobs and bye bye cash, in favor of highly profitable, rigged trade agreements for the profit of a few.  We must level that playing field if we’re going to create jobs in America.

http://www.dylanratigan.com/2011/08/03/job-wanted-jobs-ending-rigged-trade/

 
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Posted by on August 11, 2011 in Economy, Fairness, Taxes

 

What the “Super Congress must do; for Progressives

1. Create an economy that creates atleast 300,00+ jobs per month.

2. Create and economy with a minimum 4% increase in GDP growth rate.

3. Allow all Bush tax cuts to end.

4. Means test Medicare, and Social Security.

5. Add a 4.5% surtax on individuals making above 250,000 to help pay for entitlement programs.

6. Increase the negotiating power of the federal government on healthcare.

7. End too big to fail, and trust bust too big to fail corporations.

8. Add a tax on risky financial tools; such as derivatives and credit default swaps.

9. Enact a public option.

10. End the corporate loopholes that allow some businesses to pay nothing in taxes.

10. Put in place a cap-and-trade programs that forces the private sector to innovate.

11. Enact the Congressional Reform Act of 2011.

12. Force corporations to bring back foreign profits, and use those profits to fund the rebuilding of America.

13. Reform the financial institutions that brought as to where we are today.

14. End NAFTA, and bring the jobs home to America.

15. Repeal of the Citizens United case.

16. Enact malpractice reform.

17. End the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan.

 
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Posted by on August 11, 2011 in Budgets, Debt, Fairness, Health Care, Investments, Taxes

 

Why the Wisconsin election hurt

Unions are the pride to true Progressives. Unions are what have made the American worker great. The Wisconsin people had the chance to tell the Republican what they thought of their attack on Unions. What did the Wisconsin people say? Let’s give those good GOP Republicans another chance; this is insanity. Why would any American worker vote for a Republican; it’s like a chicken voting for Cornel Sanders. We have to stop this attack on Unions. Teachers, firefighters, EMT, and police officers need collective bargaining. This destruction of America. Worker need a voice, and that voice is being destroyed by massive multi-national corporations and their counter-part the grand GOP. The Wisconsin elections were hopefully sending a message to stop Scott Walker from his anti-worker agenda, but Republicans still won these elections. One must remember that there is still a slim majority in the WI Senate, 17 Republicans, and 16 Democrats. This fight started in Wisconsin, but there will be national implication. Other states are considering, and have passed similar Union busting laws. The only place were Unions are still strong are the public sector, and if these Unions are dissolved businesses and corporate America will have won their battle. This has been the Republicans goal from the beginning to destroy the American worker while boosting corporate profits; allowing the business to thrive, but diminishing the freedom and income of the American people. Progressives need to fight on this issue. We can’t let the corporations keep busting up Union it simply can’t happen!

 
 

Verizon strike is a good thing

Hear it yet? Verizon workers are striking because they have not yet reached a deal to extend their contract. This is a good power to have protesting companies trying to deny their workers right to health care, a retirement fund, and higher wages. These workers need to fight for their rights. Democrats should use this opportunity to show the power of Unions, and the strength they have given to the middle class for almost 100 years. Progressives should take this chance for unitization of the country. Everyone who wants to should be able to associate with other workers to collectively bargain with their employer whether it is the federal government, a small business, or a multi-national corporation. The right to fair working standards should be a fundamental right of workers. This Verizon strike hopefully will be union news maker of “Wisconsin” and this hopefully will really wake people up about why Unions are what built the middle class, and the American dream. We must fight to bring back the American dream, and fight the massive greed of our unpatriotic corporations. The Progressives can win this battle!

The Communications Workers of America and the International Brotherhood of Electrical Worker, the union of Verizon workers, has been working with the Verizon Company to negotiate an agreement since June. These unions represent nearly 45,000 Verizon communication workers. The two sides have failed to reach consensus on health care costs, pensions, and work rules. 91% of the communication workers’ union were in favor of the strike. Verizon has seemed unwilling to budge of their position for union concessions.

 
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Posted by on August 7, 2011 in Economy, Fairness, Workers' Rights