American Consequences - August 2020

LETTER FROM THE EDITOR

delusive – “Protect and Empower Women Globally” – to the disturbingly picayune – “Create a ‘Safer for Shoppers’ program that gives compliant businesses a sign for their window.” Some proposals exude a whiff of totalitarianism, such as the promise to “Ensure questions about sexual orientation and gender identity are included in national surveys and data collection efforts... including the decennial Census.” While other items on the Biden agenda smell of a total divorce from reality: “smarter cities that can withstand storms, floods, heat, wildfires, sea level rise, and more.” Alexa, drain the basement . You probably didn’t even know you were a wealthy American – but you’ll find out that you are... if Joe keeps his promises. Joe makes all the standard-issue liberal promises, of course. He’ll lead us, without map or compass (or caveat), into the Green New Deal’s impenetrable jungle of policies and endless wilderness of expense. Joe will provide “a public option health plan” that will cover contraception and abortion, restore federal funding to Planned Parenthood, and “codify Roe v. Wade” into federal law. (But he won’t, presumably, go so far as to make having babies illegal.) Joe will lower the cost of health care insurance for middle-class families, “cutting their premiums almost in half,” slash prescription- drug prices, limit price increases of generic

communities across the country.” Paducah is lovely in the spring. Or you might just wind up on the wrong side of the tracks. Joe promises to alter “local regulations to eliminate sprawl and allow for denser, more affordable housing near public transit.” Wherever you wind up, you’ll have “universal, reliable, affordable, and high-speed Internet,” Joe promises. So you’ll be fine... Unless, of course, you try to make money. Joe promises to “keep well-off business owners from using any program to unjustly enrich themselves.” And if you’ve already unjustly enriched yourself, don’t go trying to save and invest that money. Joe promises to close “loopholes in our tax system that reward wealth, not work.” He promises he’ll be “getting rid of capital gains tax loopholes” and will “restore the 39.6% top tax rate” and raise the cap on Social Security taxes while he’s at it. Joe promises “common- sense tax reforms that finally make sure the wealthiest Americans pay their fair share.” You probably didn’t even know you were a wealthy American – but you’ll find out that you are... if Joe keeps his promises. Which, with the unfortunate exception of the tax increases, he cannot conceivably do. I have, so far, barely skimmed the flotsam and jetsam from the surface of the ocean of promises Joe makes. While navigating, with increasing mal de mer , the bounding main of his campaign platform (soon to fill the recycling bin to its brim), I did my best to keep a list of Joe’s promises. That list is 25 pages long. The promises range from the grandiose and

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