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Eisenhower proved higher tax rates could work

January 31, 2019

Shakespeare said, there is “many a slip twixt cup and lip” in “Hamlet.”

It implies that even when the outcome of an event seems certain, things can still go wrong.

That why I never count my chickens before they hatch.

So much for idiomatic sayings for today.

I continue to dwell on my favorite freshman representative, Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, D-N.Y.

Everything the press quotes her as saying makes me smile at least and sometimes makes me jump for joy. And for a 75-year-old fat crippled diabetic, jumping is not easy.

As a Facebook friend said, he keeps waiting for AOC to slowly slide into the Washington swamp by moving toward the power and money that’s swimming in the muck and beckoning to her kind.

But it hasn’t happened yet.

I have a single bumper sticker on my van. It says “Tax the Rich,” and it’s there because of AOC.

Her proposal to do just that seems to be catching on in the Democratic-controlled U.S. House of Representatives.

The plan is to tax those making up to $10 million a year under the current tax rates. But when the annual income exceeds $10 million, new tax rates would kick in and the millionaires and billionaires would pay up to 70 per cent of what they accrue.

This idea is apparently driving some of the super rich crazy. It is even driving some of the non-rich crazy. When I said in a column recently the rich should pay more taxes, an emailer called me “jealous.”

I suspect he is either a brown-nosed fan of the rich or thinks that perhaps millions are going to fall out the sky marked for him.

President Dwight David Eisenhower, perhaps the last real Republican, had a 90 percent tax rate for the super rich during his administration.

Eisenhower explained it this way: The super rich could avoid the high taxes by investing their money in things that make America stronger. If they wanted to avoid high taxes, he said they could invest in business expansions and higher employee wages. They could give a million or two to tax-exempt non-profits that feed, house and clothe poor people of America, among other things.

They did some of that, but the Eisenhower years generated enough taxes to launch and complete the labyrinth of interstate highways, the largest road project America had ever seen and is needed again.

President Trump said that the recent tax cuts would cause big business to generate more jobs. Federal sources said this week that the tax cuts didn’t bring about more employment. Businesses took the tax break money and squirreled it away or bought back their company’s stock. Greed won. America lost.

It’s time Congress took control of this country’s economy and do what must be done to take the power away from the greedy rich guys who will never let middle class America bloom the way it did before Ronald Reagan handed the economy to the millionaires and billionaires.

Let’s hope people such as Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez increase and don’t slip twixt the cup and the lip.

Dave Peyton is on Facebook. His email address is davepeyton@comcast.net.