Why does it always start with a Nixon campaign?

The heat from the summer of ’68 was starting to choke out the American spirit… students shut down Columbia College as young people across the country sat out of classes and occupied school buildings (back in the days when students had a set, and weren’t financially constricted by the system) to protest the increasingly deadly war in Vietnam, Sirhan Sirhan fired a bullet through Bobby’s head and blew out any chance of the country cleansing away the blood left over from Dallas in ’63, the Yippies boarded the trains heading for the “Festival of Death” in Chicago… but the collective sweat lubricated enough love to keep a portion of The Great American Dream in sight… Bill Graham opened the Fillmore East as a home away from home for The Dead, the population of Drop City, CO was growing in both number and vigor, Zappa paid homage to Owsley Stanley (the finest organic chemist since Albert Hoffman) and the Merry Pranksters hosted the whole gang at 24 hour tantric-freedom-fests along the Bay. The counter culture was peaking in America, ebbs and flows and running streams of psychic energy inundated the country… but a free-fall loomed with the outcome of the General Election and the introduction of Richard Nixon onto the world stage.

Grover Norquist spent the summer of 1968 as an eighth grade dimwit filing Get out the Vote cards for the Nixon/Agnew campaign… even before the onset of puberty (I could at least legitimize an argument that hormone imbalances sent the cross-eye’d little bastard out of whack) he supported the restoration to “law and order” (rhetoric Nixon dolled up to convince white-racist-Southerners he had their back in the civil rights ‘problem’) and had bought into the sensationalism of the Party of the Rich. You may be asking yourself, ‘Self, who the fuck is Grover Norquist?’

Watch. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BmUvv02hahw Yes, he said ‘poopy head’…  now read on.

If you’ve had the appetite to continue following politics even after our November media blitzes, you’re well aware we are approaching a ‘fiscal cliff.’ After three years of kicking the can, Congress is forced to make some serious economic decisions involving how to handle the nation’s debt and deficit. As in all things fiscal, the issue of taxes sits as a key point of contention between Republican and Democratic camps. One side is alright with an increase, especially on the wealthiest tax brackets, while the other side flat out refuses any kind of tax increase. What is the reason for their position? Has their economic research been so robust, their empirical evidence so stout… or is it simply American’s for Tax Reform.

ATR was created by Grover in 1985 at the behest of then president Ronald Reagan (championed as the tax-lowering, government slashing Hero of the Right… even though he raised taxes eleven times in eight years) as a pledge to the American people to keep taxes as low as possible. Essentially it is an anti-tax pledge that is a mandatory requirement for any Republican lawmaker or public servant that wants a chance at re-election. Grover has the influence and the power to order a strangle on any GOP candidate hopeful of capturing national attention (see: re-election efforts of George the Elder in 1992), and he has wielded ATR as a tool of fear for over twenty years within this nation’s governing bodies to promote the interests for one stratum of society: the rich.

Once George the Dumber took office he made sure not to make the same mistake as daddy. Instead he allowed corporations to continue running their books offshore (illicit tax havens cost the American public $50 Billion annually in the early 2000’s… and that was before the Dumber pushed through the American Jobs Creation Act…  nowadays, well check these numbers out http://www.forbes.com/sites/frederickallen/2012/07/23/super-rich-hide-21-trillion-offshore-study-says/) and provided $1.6 trillion in tax breaks for the wealthiest individuals right off the gate. Then he slashed capital gains & inheritance taxes in April 2003 with a bill that provided the top 1% with 53% of the new cuts even after the mirage of Clinton era surpluses had vanished from the horizon. There may not have been much good to come from the eight years of Cheney/George the Dumber except for empirical proof that the philosophy of trickle-down economics produces only one thing: a growing disparity between the rich and the poor. The argument of “They’ll spend all their tax break money on R&D and forming new small-businesses and investing in infrastructure and American values” has been completely nullified. There’s more money in corporate savings accounts than ever… they don’t want to go the long, difficult course. They want quick fixes and easy money. To invest in Wall St. or Washington has now become a much more viable option than putting cash towards the American people.

But the average voter, the average American, the average wage-earning and God-fearing citizen, the fabric of our great nation… they cannot see that their ‘average’ interests and ‘average’ incomes couldn’t be further bastardized by the Republican Party and guys like Grover Norquist. Joe 6-Pack has never heard of Grover, even though he runs the production company Joe’s favorite American Drama is being played out by. Think about this: taxes for the wealthiest brackets were marked at 70% during JFK’s stay at Camelot… 70%! And you know what? Howard Hughes still managed to have some fun in the 1960’s despite the tax structure. These highly progressive taxation measures helped fund the building of America after WW2 and catapulted our rise as a world power and economic leader. Spending, in those days, determined the lynchpin between Democrats and Republicans… but luckily our political struggles have evolved. Now the 400 wealthiest American’s pay an average of 17% … and I can’t even imagine the escapades of our current uber-rich… at least the ones they don’t show on reality-television shows.

The point is, at the end of the day, if you’re not banking on a trust fund from grandpa to mature or supervising daddy’s oversea business interests or sitting pretty on the books after mommy’s third stroke, you’re a goddamn fool to be supporting the Grover Norquists of the world. If you want to create an economic caste system and label it as democracy while you tout abortion laws and arguments about lazy minorities everywhere you go, then this is your party… but this is not your blog.

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