Courier-Gazette letters to the editor, Oct. 12

Oct 12, 2017

Tax BS

You don't have to read the NYT OpEd of Sept. 28 to know that Trump's new Tax Plan is BS. ("Bigly Scary). The suggestion that the plan will help the Middle Class is absolutely ridiculous but others can cover the inanities and perfidy that is involved in the Republican effort to once again "diddle the middle"!

Let's peek at the Corporate side of the Tax Plan. Ask yourself why Corporations need to pay less corporate tax, when in fact many already pay very little or none. Consider the 2016 annual income of the top ten companies. Check to see how much tax each paid: is that fair?

Revenues in $Billions (Fortune Magazine)

1.Walmart $485

2 Berkshire Hathaway $223

3 Apple $215

4 Exxon Mobil $205

5 McKesson $192

6 UnitedHealth Group $184

7 CVS Health $177

8 General Motors $166

9 AT&T $163

10 Ford Motor $151

Now consider the amount of taxes some of the other major companies paid: (Source: Americans for Tax Fairness)

General Electric, Boeing, Verizon and 23 other profitable Fortune 500 firms paid no federal income taxes from 2008 to 2012.

Corporate share of federal tax revenue has dropped by two-thirds in 60 years — from 32% in 1952 to 10% in 2013.

288 big and profitable Fortune 500 corporations paid an average effective federal tax rate of just 19.4% from 2008 to 2012.

Profitable corporations paid U.S. income taxes amounting to just 12.6% of worldwide income in 2010.

U.S. corporations dodge $90 billion a year in income taxes by shifting profits to subsidiaries — often no more than post office boxes — in tax havens.

U.S. corporations officially hold $2.1 trillion in profits offshore — much of it in tax havens — that have not yet been taxed here.

Most of the 30 companies listed on the country’s most famous stock index, the Dow Jones industrial average, have seen a dramatically smaller percentage of their profits go to U.S. coffers over time, even as their share prices have driven the Dow to an all-time high. ( Source: Washington Post)

So if the big companies are making record profits and the DOW Jones is on a record high, why are we worrying about the Corporate Tax rate? If these companies paid the correct rate we could have the world's best infrastructure and the most hack proof cyber security systems. We could return to being the America that was great before full blown greed took over. The Republicans want smaller government, and they are right. But what we are getting is a government owned by corporate power. A government managed by Trump, Mnuchin, Zinke and DeVos that is collapsing (goodbye Mr. Price) under the weight of avarice and materialism. America cannot grow when the life blood of the country is being leeched by corporations. So if corporations are people, as defined by the Supreme Court, why don't they pay taxes like people. To paraphrase President G. H. W. Bush this is "Deja Voodoo Economics". As for Republican "Trickle Down Economics"; the only thing that will "trickle down" is the sweat of the ever poorer American middle class.

Andrew Stancioff

Spruce Head

No expansion of Medicaid

This November, Maine voters will decide if state taxpayers should expand welfare Medicaid to non-disabled, working-age adults. Some see Medicaid as insurance, but that is not the case. Expanding Medicaid is simply more welfare to people who already have access to affordable rates on real health insurance through the government exchange. With Medicaid, the person pays nothing, has no monthly premium,no co-pay, no deductible. There is no incentive for a person to utilize a regular doctor instead of showing up at the ER for minor afflictions, and this costs the rest of us lots of money.

According to my research, a single male, aged 30, at 100 percent of federal poverty level can buy real insurance for less than $15 per month. I bet most people reading this would love to have a chance to pay that low of a premium. Medicaid already covers our very poor seniors, pregnant women, poor parents, children and the disabled. Expanding welfare Medicaid will go to non-disabled, working-age adults and it will harm and strain the system for those who really need it. Vote no on Question 2. No more welfare expansions.

Maine state legislator and health insurance trained professional Karen Vachon [R-Scarborough] is my resource.

Linda S. Bodnar

Spruce Head

Comments (0)
If you wish to comment, please login.