I am writing regarding J. Karl Miller's column dated Oct. 29. In his column, he defines Republicans as those who "opt for lower taxes and free markets." This is indeed true. However, how well has this worked?
We went to war, and Bush cut taxes for the rich. We were told we could pay for the war by "going to the mall and spending money." This is the first time in American history a president cut taxes in a time of war. President Polk in the Mexican-American War simply left taxes alone, which generated America's first real budget deficit.
Further, Republicans went on a massive spending spree, which included the pork-laden Highway Bill, creation of the Department of Homeland Security, the prescription drug program and other programs that greatly expanded government and government spending, contrary to their beloved ideals of smaller and less government. And how did Republicans pay for this spending spree? They borrowed it, much of it from Communist China. They doubled our national debt to a point where we now spend $281 billion in interest. This is 9 cents of every tax dollar.
This notion (and that is all it is, a notion, not a proven economic policy) that cutting taxes for the rich will stimulate the economy and pay for itself has generated an enormous drag on our economy and subjected our national security to the whims of a communist nation. What the Republicans say is one thing, but what they have done is pursue an economic policy of attempting to borrow our way out of debt. Barry Goldwater is spinning in his grave at 7,000 rpm.
Free markets? Oh, how has that worked out? Do you not own a TV, Col. Miller?
Col. Miller defines the Democrats' policy of taxation "as a government tool to level the playing field for the disadvantaged..." This is indeed a contrast to the Republican policy of creating an uneven playing field for the rich. The statistics are clear: The rich have gotten richer, and everyone else's buying power has declined. After all, who got rich on $4 gas? Not me.
The truth about the Democrats' policy on taxes is that taxes are a tool to pay for the expenses of running our government. Clinton left office with a balanced budget. However, to give credit where credit is due, this was a bipartisan accomplishment with "old school" Republicans.
It would have pleased me to no end had the recent Republican policies of lowering taxes for the rich, expanding government and deregulated free markets worked.