Monthly Archives: September 2011

AlterNet: How ‘Small Government’ Conservatives Raise Your Taxes Through Stealthy Back-Door Fees

From drivers' licenses to public schools, state and local governments are raising money any way they can–all while cutting taxes on the rich.

-By Joshua Holland

September 9, 2011- Here's a simple fact the Right would like you to ignore: cutting public spending doesn't lead to fewer dollars being “taken out of your pocket” for the services government provides; it merely shifts those costs around, and often increases them.

When conservatives say, “I'm for lower taxes and fiscal responsibility,” what they really mean is that they favor cutting top marginal tax rates – those paid by a relatively wealthy few – capital gains taxes on investments, inheritance taxes and taxes on corporations. And to make up for those revenue losses, they are happy to run higher deficits and very quick to raise taxes on the rest of us.

The Nation: Charles Koch to Friedrich Hayek: Use Social Security!

-by Yasha Levine and Mark Ames

September 27, 2011- There’s right-wing hypocrisy, and then there’s this: Charles Koch, billionaire patron of free-market libertarianism, privately championed the benefits of Social Security to Friedrich Hayek, the leading laissez-faire economist of the twentieth century. Koch even sent Hayek a government pamphlet to help him take advantage of America’s federal retirement insurance and healthcare programs.

This extraordinary correspondence regarding Social Security began in early June 1973, weeks after Koch was appointed president of the Institute for Humane Studies. Along with his brothers, Koch inherited his father’s privately held oil company in 1967, becoming one of the richest men in America. He used this fortune to help turn the IHS, then based in Menlo Park, California, into one of the world’s foremost libertarian think tanks. Soon after taking over as president, Koch invited Hayek to serve as the institute’s “distinguished senior scholar” in preparation for its first conference on Austrian economics, to be held in June 1974.

The Brad Blog: The Koch Brothers: Very Rich Job Killers

-By Brad Friedman

September 25, 2011- First, hearty congratulations are in order to the Koch brothers who, according to Forbes, are now worth $25 billion each!

That's up from the pathetic $17 billion each were worth back in 2009. So it looks like this economic downturn…this "Obama recession"…despite all of those "job killing tax increases" (there were none, he's cut taxes repeatedly)…and "job killing regulations" (there were very very few new regulations)…seems to be working out great for the two "job creating" co-owners of Koch Industries, the oil and chemical conglomerate the brothers were fortunate enough to inherit from their father.

Think Progress: Gov. Rick Scott Brags About Laying Off 15,000 Government Workers After Decrying Florida’s High Unemployment

-By Marie Diamond

September 23, 2011- The GOP presidential candidates and other prominent conservatives spoke today at the Conservative Political Action Conference (CPAC) in Florida. This afternoon, Gov. Rick Scott (R-FL) took to the stage to talk about “successes” in his state, including decreasing the state’s unemployment rate to 10.7 percent — which he noted is still well above the national average.

In the next sentence, though, Scott touted another “success” — laying off 15,000 public sector workers, which of course increased the unemployment rolls in his state. Scott then declared, “government can’t create jobs”:

SCOTT: We’ve had plenty of success so far. Not enough…In Florida, unemployment rate’s gone from 12 percent down to 10.7. We’re still above the national average, but we’ve generated 87,200 private sector jobs — private sector! And we have 15,000 less government jobs in the state of Florida. [Applause] Government doesn’t create jobs.

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