A few months ago, I made another bold prediction: If Republicans really want to run on the platform that the richest Americans should continue to pay a smaller percentage of their income than anyone else in the country, they’ll have hell to pay.
Oops. Wrong again. Now they’re pretty much doubling down, and nobody seems to be giving Obama’s new plan any chance of success. Let’s just say that when I talk politics these days, the wife doesn’t pay much attention.
At this point I’m willing to concede that I don’t exactly have my finger on the pulse of the American electorate. I have no future as a pundit. Corporate profits have risen astronomically since the start of 2009, which was supposed to have fueled a big burst of hiring and capital investment. Instead, those profits are fueling endless rounds of mega-bonuses for elite executives. Companies big and small are leaving the cubicles unfilled and banking the dark time. For them, everything’s jake. Thanks for the help, Uncle Sam. Now piss off.
So you suggest that folks who have proven themselves immune to economic hardship should start paying a percentage more in line with what the less-wealthy pay, and the best the Republicans can come up with is the old trope of “class warfare.” It’s ludicrous, and somewhat ironic, but it seems to be working. The Tea Party folks and their fellow travelers — probably not a lot of corporate suits among them — are so consumed by their antipathy toward a black president that they are incapable of thinking in their own best interest. They’ve become kind of mindless — ready to burn down the hospital without considering they might have to use the emergency room someday.
Interesting times. Republican leaders are sitting pretty, but their stool only has two legs: the rich must get inexorably richer and the government must dwindle to dust. That’s where the too-obvious irony comes in: Who’s making war on whom?