Monday, January 26, 2004

Middle-Class Welfare

Ok, I've had it!

I endured another conversation with a middle-class suburbanite convinced that 20th Century social services destroyed the American dream and forced our national budget into deficit.

Any thinking person with nominal analytical abilities knows that New Deal and Great Society funding made us the most powerful nation on the planet because it spent money on both military/industrial funding AND social service funding.

How, then, can it be a good idea to de-fund one while over-funding the other?

Why has the American middle-class turned on the poor? How can it be possible that anyone believes our government has given too much money to the poor? Clearly the government gives more money to the rich, because if they were giving it to the poor, well . . . they wouldn't be the poor anymore would they!?!?!?

How can any home-owner complain about government subsidies? Home-owners are the recipients of one of the grandest social welfare schemes to hit our national conscience.

You scoff! "There is no welfare for the middle-class," you say.

Well, then, let's talk about the home mortgage interest tax-deduction.

Every penny a home-owner pays towards interest on the mortgage of their primary residence is tax-deductible, reducing their tax liability rather dramatically. Poor people, especially the working poor, do not have a mortgage, but they must pay income tax. The federal government offers no renters' deductions. So, the working poor are subsidizing the middle-class in their suburban homes.

Is this fair?

While the working poor is subsidizing middle-class home-ownership, suburbanites are voting for republicans who reduce the tax-burden of the wealthy, and eliminate social programs for the poor.

Is this fair?

As the middle-class undermines itself by electing republicans to a majority, those elected officials give our treasury to the wealthy. If we dare to question this, we are called whiners, or liberals, or unpatriotic.

Is this plan of subsidizing the middle-class to fund the wealthy while defunding social services for the poor a good representation of patriotism?

Is this what we've become? Are we now just nation of self-serving suburbanites with no allegiance to anyone but ourselves and no concern for others less fortunate?

If the middle-class wants welfare for themselves and the rich, then the poor should get it, too!

If you are middle-class and you vote republican, all the power to you; but, stop pretending it is the fault of the poor that our country is struggling. It is not the fault of the poor, it is the fault of the rich and their apologists in the republican party.

Get a clue!