Wednesday, March 12, 2014

Just Say NO to Tax Cuts for Oklahomans -- Fix OK Education and Infrastructure

Tax cut boosters offer the false promise of a free lunch — that we can cut taxes 
without paying for it with other tax increases or cuts to services.  These are empty 
political promises that defy common sense.  (TogetherOK.Org Fact Sheet)

The more I think about the very idea of a tax cut for the wealthy in Oklahoma, the madder I get and more determined I will never support any Republican who votes for this nonsense.  Are Republicans so brainwashed by the Koch organizations that they feel tax cuts are the only way to prosperity when the economic indicators say otherwise.  When most wealthy get tax breaks, their money ends up in their pockets or much of it overseas, not in new jobs.  It was a false notion under Reagan about trickle down economics and it is just as false today as it doesn't work according to Forbes.

Want to stimulate the economy, raise the minimum wage to a living wage.  Also provide a safety net of unemployment when someone does lose their job. Problem is that doesn't fit the libertarian, religious hard right Republican Party of today where common sense took a flying leap and crashed on the pavement below.
Does anyone else see a conflict between libertarian of old and religious right?  I cannot believe the two groups came together but I guess when Koch Bros millions came into play back with Contract of America, anything can happen with spineless Republicans.  It sure explains why there were no social issues in the Contract with America.  Republicans sold out completely in 1994 in the House and in 1996 in the Senate elections and are still bought and paid for by the Koch's.  Estimates of $25M to 30M has been bandied around the Koch's spent on the 1994 House elections.

It explains Speaker Boehner as he bragged about being part of writing the Contract with America along with Dick Armey who went on to work for the Koch's Citizens for a Sound Economy (CSE) founded in 1984 after he left the House.  CSE split into Americans for Prosperity and Freedom Works in 2004 which led to the Tea Party.  Retired Rep Dick Armey headed Freedom Works until there was a split last fall between him and the Koch's and he got paid millions to shut up.  The puzzle pieces are fitting nationwide and are now beginning to fill in for state wide Republicans owned by ALEC and the Koch Bros.  Tax Cuts which will be bankrupting states in the future are being introduced in Red State legislatures across the Country.

This is not some deal just in Oklahoma.  Kansas is in real problems after all their tax cuts under GOP Governor Brownback so much so that he was told no more.  Brownback is in dire straights politically as he has most of the state angry at him.  It is so bad in Kansas that the Supreme Court had to step in and increase school funding because of Brownback and the legislature cuts.  Yet the Oklahoma Legislature wants to be like Kansas?  
From a clearer picture has been emerging of how bad a tax cut is that is put on automatic pilot.  It is a way for the members of the legislature to blame future members and also a way to have a tax cut kick in even if federal funding on programs are lacking that year.  It is abject stupidity for lack of better words.    
Priorities for OklahomaProtect Essential Revenues
If you find yourself in a hole, stop digging!-Will Rogers 
Middle-income families would get just $29 per year. 
Two out of every five Oklahoma families would get no tax cut.
One-fourth of the tax cut would go to a few Oklahomans already making more than $1 million per year.
Will someone explain to me what millionaires are going to do with another $2,000 which is chump change to them?  Why are wealthy not telling the legislature to stop the insanity of tax cuts and fix education and infrastructure?

This Oklahoma tax cut is from last year was overturned because the Republicans in the Legislature combined three bills together which is against the State Constitution, yet the Governor signed. What do you call a group of Legislators and Governor who are supposed to know the Constitution but are so arrogant they think they can sneak a tax cut through as part of another bill when they know it is unconstitutional?  Hard headed, arrogant, puppets?  Then you read this from where Oklahoma stands on a shortfall for this year already and you ask yourself why a tax cut: 
We have yet to restore cuts made during the recession to education and other critical services. This year’s budget is $572 million below five year ago after inflation. Now we are facing a $188 million shortfall.  
Oklahomans are suffering because of state budget cuts. We have too few foster families for neglected and abused kids, students crammed into overcrowded classrooms, understaffed and unsafe prisons, rising tuition and fees, and more.
Separate tax cut bills have passed in both the House and Senate, but the debate is far from over. All Democrats and several Republicans have bravely opposed the tax cuts.  We know there are more who would like to do so, but aren't yet so brave.  Your legislators need to hear from you that cutting taxes even further when we're already in a budget shortfall is not what they were elected to do!
Protect essential revenues (download the fact sheet) 
Bill Watch!: A House tax cut bill passed the full house on March 6th.  Many legislators made compelling debates against the income tax, and those in favor had very little response. Watch the video of the debate here.   
The bill would cut both the top personal income tax rate and the corporate income tax rate in 2016, or as soon as revenues increase after that year. Although the bill passed the House, it was opposed by all of the Democrats and several Republicans. See who voted how here
The bill now goes to the Senate for review by the Finance Committee.  Now is a good time to contact your senators as well as members of the Finance Committee to tell them that putting tax cuts on auto-pilot could hurt our economy
Bill Watch!: The Senate's tax cut bill is next heading to a House Committee. Check here to see who voted how in the Senate so that you can contact your Senator and let them know how you feel about their vote.  Be polite and keep them accountable!   
Your Representatives in both the House and Senate need to know that you don't approve of these bills.  So few Oklahomans follow these issues that every phone call or letter they receive counts! NOW is a good time to call and remind them why they should vote Nay before they vote on another version of this unaffordable tax cut bill. 
Read the email from
When I was reading The Oklahoman on Sunday, I saw this letter and said he speaks for me and many like us across the state.  Over 50% last year were opposed to tax cuts but the Republicans ignored the will of the people because they know what is best for donors not the people (sarcasm):
Republican priorities wrong in Oklahoma 
Oklahoman Published: March 9, 2014 
The Republican-dominated Legislature and the governor want to give high income earners a tax break. Teachers haven’t had a raise in six years; and our best teachers continue to move to states that pay more. The Department of Human Services is a mess, and children not only fall between the cracks, they routinely die. Our roads and bridges are a mess. We are defunding what was once an affordable and outstanding higher education system that allowed most Oklahomans to attend college and not be so burdened by student loan debt that they were unable for years to contribute to the state economy. 
I am president of a startup biotech company that employs eight people. I can assure you that we don’t make economic decisions for the company on the basis of personal tax liability. I would far rather the few hundred dollars (at most) I would save go toward fixing the state’s many problems. Quality of life is far more of an issue for us than is a few measly bucks in state taxes. Obviously, the Republican Party’s priorities aren’t teachers, roads, education or anything but serving the people who already have it made. 
Robert E. Hurst, Oklahoma CityHurst is president of DormaTarg Inc.
This is a small business person who gets it -- why doesn't the legislature?  Are they that bought and paid for along with the Governor to where education and infrastructure take second place to tax cuts for the wealthy.  Wealthy can be bought cheap when we are talking about a little over $2000 a year could lead to bankrupting the state which makes you wonder what the wealthy have to gain with a state going into financial difficulties.

Just maybe Oklahoma Republicans might want to go back and read Will Rogers as they might actually learn something if they would open up their minds for a change.  Have a hard time believing many people in the legislature are more like puppets today doing their donors bidding then independent thinkers.  What this Oklahoma Legislature since 2008 has been doing to education in Oklahoma at all levels from pre-K to PhD is a travesty that defies any one's beliefs who care about education.  Have never seen anything like this State School Superintendent Barrisi and hope to never see another one. She is rude, close minded, and doesn't have the background to be State School Superintendent but she is good friends with the Governor.  The very fact she refuses to listen to those with a background speaks volumes but then she wouldn't be trying to put all these charter schools in place owned by the same groups if she didn't have a separate agenda.
Why is Oklahoma cutting higher ed when the University of Oklahoma has so many research facilities that bring people in from around the world or is that the problem?  The abject racism in the Republican Party today has turned me off so far I want nothing to do with them.  When Rush Limbaugh says that the reason Congressional Republicans don't get along with Obama is because he is black speaks volumes.  How many people in the Oklahoma Legislature don't like minorities and because a lot of research positions go to minorities now want to cut higher education here and at OSU?  Wouldn't put anything past this group of Republicans in our legislature.  Most of them have lost my total respect by being "me too" to jump on the bandwagon and quit thinking for themselves.  Whatever happened to pulling yourself up by the bootstraps and being the best at what you do?  Or is that only for white males?  Minorities and women are treated like second class citizens by Republicans today.  Women are to stay home and raise children according to many in the GOP?  Have had people tell me recently, women shouldn't have a right to vote if they are married as the husband votes for the household -- sitting here rolling eyes.

What happened to the Republican Party of Eisenhower?  One sentence:  "Libertarians and Religious Right" took over thanks to the millions from the Koch Bros over the years.  How far does the Koch influence go back?  Still being investigated but pieces are falling into place.  They made one big mistake and that is introducing the same bills in Red State Legislatures so you can track them.  Are the Koch's intent on bankrupting Government so they are free to pollute at will -- only explanation many of us can come up.


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