What Congress should spend more on, and what Congress should spend less on

Congress should be investing in the future by supporting public education and higher education.  A good public education is one of the foundation stones of our democracy.  An educated public was a value upheld by our founding fathers.  We need to bolster education at every level if we are to continue to be an innovative and productive society.  We should uphold this value of education by investing in resources to make it possible through financial support of public schools and through more affordable education at the vocational, college, university, and graduate levels.  We can and should place a renewed interest on more generous Pell grants, support tuition through tax deductions, have lower interest rates for higher education loans, and offer people incentives to go to school rather than step closer to making it more prohibitively expensive.

The principle behind a progressive income tax is to have relatively equal pain for all taxpayers.  Those who have the highest income feel much less pain with a flat tax or lowered tax brackets because lower income earners have a much higher percentage of their income go to living expenses than those who are wealthy.  Higher income earners have much more disposable income after living expenses are covered.  Equalizing the pain, rather than equalizing the percentage, is a way of making taxation more fair.

The tax cuts that have been adopted that so extravagantly reward the wealthiest, destabilizes that sense of shared pain.  It goes even further by giving fewer breaks and raising the costs of lower and middle income earners.  This is inherently unfair to those who have less.

We should be spending much less money on tax cuts for the wealthiest, especially when this will increase the national debt.  Large tax cuts for corporations when profits are high and unemployment is low will not create new jobs.  It will create windfalls for those corporations, which will likely spend it on stock buy backs, dividends for stock holders, and bonuses for executives.  We should not be going into further debt to provide expensive and lavish cuts to the wealthiest and to large corporations.  We need to reclaim a sense of shared responsibility for our country, recalling the wisdom that tells us, ”To those whom much is given, much is required.”

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