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Tax-hike scare goes up in thin air

11:23 am in Uncategorized by acmerecords

cross posted at the demise

Honor Among Thieves. Just the difference of a suit of clothes – by Homer Davenport, 1900

An academic study released by an economist from the University of Massachusetts found that one of the scare tactics used by both federal and state lawmakers for not raising taxes and instead cutting back funding of public works and social services is based on a falsity.

A review of recent research performed by economist Jeffrey Thompson found that there is no evidence to support the often-employed claim that the wealthy will flee states that raise taxes to pay for public services. The study actually found that the most wealthy tax payers were less affected by tax increases in general and were therefore even less likely to consider moving out of state due to increases in their taxes.

Research on the subject found that that family and community ties and the difficult prospect of moving entire families out of state assuages both high wage earners and lower wage earners from considering a move simply due to a state imposed tax increase. Thompson said that the ability of the wealthy to “absorb such increases is obviously strongest,” and therefore such households ”are less likely to cut back on spending as a result of tax hikes.”

Thompson’s study also shows that the carnivorous business class’s deployment of crude ayn randian ‘objectivist’-styled scare tactics that hold that greed is the single most important driver in human relations (the passive-aggressive tactic of threatening to ‘take-my-ball-home’ and justifying the threat by suggesting that the selfish act is somehow legitimate when viewed from a faux ‘cost benefit analysis’ point of view) falls flat when that analysis takes into consideration the desires of even the most wealthy in our society to be part of a community, to know one’s neighbors, to participate in the local school systems, churches, public projects – to achieve both personal growth and to make our communities better for every citizen.

In fact, contradicting the meme broadcast by captured politicos and dreamed up by businesses that see nothing wrong with exacting tax giveaways, tax rebates and other tax avoidance schemes that benefit them from politicians while at the same time advocating starving public programs and reneging on contracted pension benefits, many wealthy wage earners told researchers that they felt obliged to pay more for programs and services that make the community a better place.

The pilfering public pension pirates of Illinois: tax the rich to save the rest

11:44 am in Uncategorized by acmerecords

cross posted at the demise

This is the thanks they get? Our teachers and our librarians, civil engineers and school crossing guards, trash collectors and public safety protectors, public prosecutors and public defenders, snowplow drivers, accountants, file clerks, telephone operators, translators, healthcare workers, those who care for our sick and elderly and our forgotten.

Acme Arts Collective and its member artists are cooperating on this Thanksgiving day to publicize the attack on public employees carried out by both the Democrats who control the statehouse in Illinois and the Illinois Republicans who have conspired with the oligarchic predatory class to demonize Illinoisans who selflessly choose to serve the public as teachers, police, firefighters, public safety inspectors; your neighbors who’s energies have educated your children, saved the lives of your parents and grandparents and, yes, worked thanklessly to attend to the waste that is created daily by the vast mechanisms in modern America that shift wealth from the poorest to the most wealthy.

Our friends and neighbors who chose to give up the comforts that would have otherwise been accorded to them in our unfair two class system should they have decided to ‘make money in the private sector’ and cravenly given their energies to gamble and steal in the fashion of modern America’s felonious financial sector are now being attacked in a organized and systemic fashion by the multi-headed Cerberus that is the financial/political/media industrial complex. The protectors of the rich and un-civil at the Civic Committee of the Commercial Club of Chicago, the unfair-taxation-matrons at the Illinois Chamber of Commerce and the ALEC lap-puppies at the Illinois Policy Institute have banded together with the politicians from both parties who bear responsibility for Illinois’ pension ‘crisis’ in a greed induced blitzkrieg to steal pension benefits from poor, old, sick, infirm and literally helpless Illinoisans who spent their lives working to make the civic space of Illinois function for the past 30 years.

That is correct, the richest industrialists, the most bought off press and our hopelessly sycophantic to business interests politicians and weasley wealth protecting “not-for-profits” who run Illinois have banded together for the single purpose of taking food out of the mouths of our neighbors and taking medicine away from our friends who are disabled, infirm and diseased for the simple to understand single purpose – because they are greedy.

Lets break it down -

The Industrialists:
These are Illinoisans who exploit the value added to our state by public employees every single day. Their employees were taught how to read, write and reason by your neighbor, a school teacher. They ship the plastic widgets that they sell to make themselves fabulously wealthy on roads that were built using public funds that created thousands of middle class private sector jobs, and are kept safe by public sector engineers, safety inspectors and police. But these unpatriotic parasitic wealthy Illinoisans refuse to pay their fair share of income taxes to support the intellectual and physical infrastructure in Illinois that they themselves have used to become wealthy and, instead, are conspiring to ensure that old ladies do not have life saving medications.

The Media:
The Editorial board of the bankrupt Chicago Tribune, who themselves amass outrageous pension benefits that ensure that they will each receive pensions of hundreds of thousands of dollars a year when they retire, have banded with private sector companies to make certain that the school teachers and librarians who read the Chicago Tribune will have to choose between medicine and food in their retirement. Acting as the water-carrier for wealthy individuals and corporations, the Chicago Tribune has led a greed inspired propaganda blitzkrieg against the poorest among us who gave their entire working careers to serve the public. The Chicago Tribune does not think that it is fair that the average retired state employee who receives a pension lives on $20,000, but thinks that giving a combined $42.5 million in bonuses to a group of its employees just last year amounts to being a ‘productive business enterprise’ …did I mention that the company is bankrupt?

The Politicians:

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remembering the haymarket martyrs on may day

8:20 am in Uncategorized by acmerecords

- did you know the worker’s rally at the haymarket in Chicago in 1886 was for the 8 hour workday?

- did you know that the 8 hour work day was established as US law in 1937?

- did you know that the haymarket riot was the incident that prompted annual worker recognition celebrations around the world that continue to this day…except for in America?

to the streets!
What does labor want? We want more schoolhouses and less jails; more books and less arsenals; more learning and less vice; more leisure and less greed; more justice and less revenge; in fact, more of the opportunities to cultivate our better natures.
- Samuel Gompers, The Shoe workers’ journal, Volume 16‎ (1915)

All belongs to all. All things are for all men, since all men have need of them, since all men have worked in the measure of their strength to produce them, and since it is not possible to evaluate every one’s part in the production of the world’s wealth.
All things are for all.
- Peter Kropotkin, Memoirs of a Revolutionist, 1899

We are convinced that liberty without socialism is privilege, injustice; and that socialism without liberty is slavery and brutality.
- Mikhail Bakunin, Federalism, Socialism and Anti-Theologism

photo essay of the Haymarket Martyrs’ memorial in Chicago and images from the 2010 May Day/Immigrant Rights march in Chicago

cross posted at acmeartscollective