Note to young folks – Republicans are leaving you holding the bag

As a former Republican, now Independent voter, it is very hard to defend what my former party stands for. What used to be a party that boasted fiscal stewardship with a little heart, now is fiscally narrow-minded and mean-spirited. There are three major themes that have emerged during the Trump version of this party, all of which are leaving young people holding the bag.To summarize, they are:

  1. ignoring a huge debt problem, making it worse with the Tax Bill,
  2. ignoring the impact climate change is having and will have on our planet, and
  3. ignoring the wishes of young adults eliminating net-neutrality, demeaning civil rights of those who are not white heterosexuals, and denigrating free press.

Note, I placed three separate, but related issues into the third basket, as I see each in a composite context to restrict the rights of information to the masses.

On the debt problem, we are currently at $20.6 trillion US debt. But, that is only part of the problem. In the fiscal year ended September 30, 2017, we had a $666 billion deficit with $3.3 trillion revenue falling short of the almost $4 trillion in expenses. The Congressional Budget Office projects the debt to grow by $10 trillion over the next ten years without the impact of the Tax Bill. That would put us at over $30 trillion in 2027. When the Tax Bill impact is thrown in, the debt could be as high as $32 trillion. Note, with a $3.3 trillion annual budget, it would take us ten years to pay the debt if we spent no other money and there was no interest cost on the debt. What this means is there will be a reckoning that will come in major tax increases and major spending cuts which will hit young adults,

Ignoring climate change is a fossil fuel industry funded requirement placed on Republicans. In the book, “Rancher, Farmer, Fisherman” by Miriam Horn, these hard-working folks see what climate change is doing everyday, yet they have to tiptoe around Republican politicians in their states to explain what is happening to water, crops, topsoil, fisheries, bayou, etc. without using the word climate change. Even though we have many great things going on to combat climate change in the US, our country was not invited to the most recent climate change planning event with other major leaders. Fortunately, our business, city and state leaders don’t necessarily need Washington to make a difference, but it would be great to see what we could do when DC is not putting up roadblocks.

The net neutrality issue is frustrating, as with the Tax Bill, it favors those with money and not those folks the President promised to help. What will backfire on the GOP, is young folks are passionate about this issue and know Ajit Pai’s name as the demonized head of the FCC. Yet, it goes part in parcel with the restriction of flow of information. The media are demonized because they dare criticize the President. Civil rights are being squashed unless you look like the President – what he said about Charlottesville is insulting and distasteful. And, communication companies like Sinclair are being greenlighted to buy even more local stations and influencing their content.

None of us can sit on the sidelines and let this happen, but especially our younger voters. If we do not demonstrably deal with the debt and climate change, these failures will come home to roost. But, the attack on the free flow of information by this President and his party is also dear. It is a way to combat the changing demographics in America that do not support the GOP. Instead of wooing new voters, the strategy is to step on others. This observation comes from a former Republican who left the party ten years ago.

Please lend your voice to fight for better stewardship. These leaders are not even talking about issues that are of import, such as our infrastructure, water and healthcare needs, in addition to the three problems noted above.

 

 

 

21 thoughts on “Note to young folks – Republicans are leaving you holding the bag

  1. Great post! I come from a family of Republicans. I don’t have any type of relationship with one of my brothers because he is such a rabid Trump supporter. While my other brother also voted for Trump, he admits Trump is scaring the hell out of him. I just hope Trump will get impeached before he gets us into WWIII!

  2. Pingback: It’s up to you, the younger generation! | cornfedcontessa

  3. Reblogged this on Scotties Toy Box and commented:
    Thank you for the explanations of the debt. I enjoy reading blogs written with reason and provide clear information. I also enjoy sharing them on my blog with my viewers. I hope the people young and old can act on the information you have shared. Hugs

    • Thanks Scottie. What seems to be missed in most debt discussions is the added $10 trillion projection. If interested The Concord Coalition, Committee on a Responsible Federal Budget and Fix the Debt have great information on their websites. Keith

    • Nan, quite true. The big ticket discretionary items are defense, Social Security and Medicare, but from what I hear, Congress will be increasing defense spending. There are some modest changes that could save more than pocket change. Thanks for stopping by. Keith

  4. That’s a great article, Keith. While being “trillions” in debt is beyond ridiculous in any condition for any country, but particularly for one that can afford to spend so much on destabilizing the rest of the world through military aggression, isn’t the total US debt, if both public and private are added, closer to the $70-80 trillion dollar mark, thus about as manageable as a California wild fire? When I talk about national public debts people ask me, but who do we owe this debt to, and if every country in the world owes such unthinkable debts, who ever had the wherewithal to loan such amounts of money, and on what collateral? Isn’t it a fact that all these debts are as fake as a $3 bill and any government with any balls would immediately cancel the whole thing? Wouldn’t it follow than that any other government thus encouraged would follow suit and “the people” would discover they’d been sucked dry by nothing more than massive financial scams, aided and abetted by their own elected representatives? What is desperately needed right now is another French revolution round of guillotine terror. The “debt” is a total scam, Keith and we should have the guts to stand up to those Fed and IMF and other grinning clowns and at the very least put them in jail for life where they belong.

    • Thanks Sha’Tara. A big dilemma is the interest cost is becoming a bigger chunk of budget. Interesting how we get our budget more in order when we are not financing ill-conceived wars. Yet, now we are cutting diplomats which is far more cost effective and meaningful spend than bombs and troops. It is frustrating to all concerned. Thanks again, Keith

  5. This is a stirring and mature clarion call Keith.
    Although I am on the far-left (which only really has a chance of working in geographically small countries such as in Europe and has to approached with caution). Yours are always the points of view and arguments which I can respect, as they make good sense.
    Keep up the good work.
    Roger

    • Thanks Roger. Being socially progressive and fiscally conservative, I believe we can help people break cycles of poverty, homelessness, etc. In fact, the homeless agency I volunteered with has a model where it helps homeless families climb a ladder to self-sufficiency and measures success. Over 80% of the families are on their own after two years. So, I think we can marry efforts to help. Keith

      • Thank you Keith for your efforts, no matter where in the world volunteer work is carried out, this enriches the World Community.
        There is common ground for all to work with, there may be differing ways to achieve this but in a spirit of co-operation we can put an end to misery and poverty.
        All the best
        Roger

  6. Note to Readers: Our blogging friend Gronda is also a former Republican. She does in depth reporting on various topics, like the proposed Tax Bill. She has identified a morally and fiscally corrupt way of preparing legislation. At the bottom of all of this is one simple question – why are you in such a hurry to pass ill-conceived legislation with no hearings and input from people who know that they are talking about. The Tax Reform Act of 1986 was bipartisan and penned by some of our sharpest tax people and took almost four years. I do not see many Rostenkowskis, Gramms, Rudmans, et al in this bunch.

    https://grondamorin.com/2017/12/16/corruption-permeating-the-us-congress-with-republicans-poised-to-gain-with-tax-bill-passage/

  7. Note to Readers: From The Concord Coalition, a nonpartisan debt and budget organization:

    Rushed Tax Bill: Gimmicks, More Debt and Flawed Economics

    WASHINGTON — The tax legislation produced by congressional negotiators and scheduled to be voted on this week remains as fiscally irresponsible as the original House and Senate bills, according to The Concord Coalition. This latest bill is based on flawed economics, poor tax policy and a troubling legislative process that has allowed little time for careful analysis.

    “This bill is a particularly distasteful example of legislative sausage-making,” said Concord Coalition Executive Director Robert L. Bixby. “Its disingenuous combination of gimmicks and debt will not deliver the promised economic benefits, and the rushed, secretive process that produced this plan, with its many special-interest provisions, is bound to produce unwelcome surprises.”

    The federal debt is already quite high by historical standards and projected under current law to increase by $10 trillion over the next decade. Instead of helping to address this problem, the tax bill would make it worse by adding more than $1 trillion in new borrowing. Moreover, gimmicks in the bill, such as “sunsets” never intended to take effect, are hiding its true cost.

    The decision to enact a large deficit-financed tax cut at this time is very troublesome from a fiscal standpoint because the revenue loss would come just as the health care and retirement costs of retiring baby boomers are putting increasing pressure on the federal budget. Many lawmakers supporting the tax cuts are also looking for ways to increase spending on defense, border security and disaster relief.

    “This is not the time for a big tax cut,” Bixby said. “The economy does not currently need fiscal stimulus; unemployment is low, corporate profits are high and the Federal Reserve is raising interest rates. At best the legislation could have some small short-term impact on the economy but even that is open to question. In the longer term, it does little to improve growth.”

    Bixby added: “Tax cuts don’t pay for themselves — even with generous assumptions about their possible impact on economic growth. Eventually there will need to be tax increases or spending cuts to pay for this legislation. The bill leaves unanswered how that would be done, who would pay and how that would affect the economy.”

    There are a number of other problems with the legislation from a tax-policy perspective. Some provisions would disappear in later years, for example. This makes no sense, particularly if the provisions are as beneficial as their supporters claim.

    The Concord Coalition has long called for tax reform that would substantially broaden the tax base by reducing or eliminating many “tax expenditures” — provisions that reduce taxes for certain individuals and businesses. The broader tax base would enable Congress to lower rates and — ideally — reduce deficits as well, while making the code more economically efficient.

    But the current legislation does not provide enough base-broadening relative to the planned rate cuts. In fact, the legislation creates new complexity in the tax code.

    Congressional leaders and supporters of the proposed law should also be ashamed of the hurried and haphazard legislative process that produced it. There were no hearings or time for debate on the final product, or even thoughtful consideration.

    There was no serious attempt at bipartisanship, which is preferable with such far-reaching legislation. Consequently, the views of many Americans were never really considered by those who wrote the legislation.

    The Concord Coalition is a nonpartisan, grassroots organization dedicated to fiscal responsibility. Since 1992, Concord has worked to educate the public about the causes and consequences of the federal deficit and debt, and to develop realistic solutions for sustainable budgets. For more fiscal news and analysis, visit concordcoalition.org.

  8. Note to Readers: As this terrible Tax Bill nears passage, I think of the young staffers to Republican legislators. I have told a couple that you know you will be left to pay for this? I want them to question their bosses, as their bosses are letting them down.

  9. Dear Keith,

    Here’s the silver lining with this tax cut. Those republicans who say they care about the US deficit and who put on a hissy fit show every time the words tax increases are mentioned, can no longer claim any credibility, the arbiter of fiscal responsibility.

    What they want is to starve government. Americans aren’t that foolish. We all know is that we do need government for policing, our judicial system, the firefighters, to maintain our parks, to build up US infrastructure, etc. We just want the government to work with effectiveness, competence and professionalism. We do not want to see the likes of Katrina and now, Puerto Rico.

    The young peoples in Virginia voted democrat by at 70% in 2017. They are not fooled. They are the ones who will be picking up the bill for the republicans tax cuts bill adding to the US deficit and for the republicans turning back the clock on addressing negative climate change consequences. The issue of net neutrality is huge with young folks.

    This is the republicans last hooray and they will be going out with self inflicted wounds.

    Hugs, Gronda

    • Gronda, Paul Ryan was introduced as a deficit hawk this morning, to which I laughed – you cannot be a deficit hawk and pass a bill like this. I heard jump starting the economy when we are at a crest. I heard him say he will now reduce entitlements like Medicare, Social Security, ACA and welfare. We have poverty problem and the answer is to give money to corporations and rich people and gut social programs. And, Jesus wept. Keith

  10. Note to Readers: I think a very telling part of the passed Tax Bill is the corporate tax break is permanent while the individual one is temporary. As my friend Gronda has pointed out in her excellent blogs on the Tax Bill, the corporate tax break is the key component of all this, followed by the wealthy breaks. What is interesting the corporate breaks will be used to buy back shares to prop up EPS. In so doing, incentive pay will be higher for executives. Some will use it to increase the dividend which will make all shareholders happy, including the 30% of non-American shareholders. If Congress was serious about improving wages, they could have increased the minimum wage or obligated companies to pass through wage increases.

  11. Note to Readers: The reference in the first paragraph where I assess what the Republican appears to have become is not mine alone. I have heard conservative columnists David Brooks and Michael Gerson espouse this sentiment.

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