Have Republicans no shame or sense of shame?

On page 1 of Sunday’s Statesboro (GA) Herald for all the world to see is the start of a 30 column-inch article headlined, “Report: Ga. should avoid tax proposal: Sen. Jack Hill takes cautious approach to trading income tax for higher sales tax,” by Jason Wermers.

In this “fair and balanced” mainstream media article, Wermers tells us the Georgia legislature is and has been seriously considering doing away with the state income tax and replacing it with a higher sales tax, perhaps a 14 percent state sales tax. Wermer quotes both sides of the so-called argument as formulated by right- and left-wing propaganda tanks, which is absurd.

It’s absurd this idea could ever have been considered in the first place by grown men supposedly smart enough and ethical enough to be state legislators. It’s absurd it would be published on page 1 of a mainstream daily newspaper as objective news. Anyone with an ounce of common sense or knowledge of economics and economic history would know replacing income taxes with sales taxes would be the worst thing a state could do in today’s economy.

What all states, and the country as a whole, need now are jobs and aggregate demand, if there is any hope of getting out of the depression we are in, and the way to increase aggregate demand is to put more purchasing power in the hands of consumers who will spend the new purchasing power, namely poor and middle class people, by lowering their sales taxes so they can buy more goods and services from small businesses in local communities who will create new jobs, given most new jobs are created by small businesses, not large corporations and the elite rich, like the Koch Brothers, who support the political careers of state politicians through Republican propaganda tanks like ALEC, the American Legislative Executive Council, that writes legislation they bribe state politicians to implement with free vacations at posh resorts.

Cutting the taxes of large corporations and the elite rich will not increase aggregate demand one whit. Quite to the contrary, it will reduce aggregate demand, since it will take money out of circulation. Large corporations and the elite rich will simply put their new tax windfall money in their computerized investment accounts, and send it to the Cayman Islands, or use it expand their factories overseas. They have no need whatsoever for another tax windfall to purchase new consumer goods and services.

Doing away with corporate and personal state income taxes and replacing them in state budgets with sales taxes taken out of the hides of poor people, which will also enrich the rich even more, is just the sort of thing ALEC pays politicians to enact into state legislation. These steadfast Robin Hoods are dedicated to taking even more from the poor and giving it to the rich.

Yet most of them profess to be Christians.

Americans in recent years have taken their eyes off the ball in state governments, being obsessed with the rip-offs of the rich and their political lackeys and lapdogs in Washington, the fighting of unnecessary wars, the cutting of federal taxes for the rich, and the like.

As bad as George Bush II was, his ethics were as good or better than most state governors elected in recent years. How do you get elected as a state politician? First of all it helps if you can always project a smiley happy face that appeals to semi-literate know-nothing Republican voters to whom you tell fairy tales about cutting taxes always being good (for both rich and poor) and increasing spending always being bad, as you consort with bored rich people and CEOs running large corporations, who will fund your political career, if you promise to cut their taxes, and vote for legislation in their favor.

Yes, it’s a fine kettle of fish.

Richard John Stapleton is an emeritus professor of business policy, ethics and entrepreneurship who writes on business and politics at www.effectivelearning.net and on Facebook.

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