The one thing I have learned in seven and one-half decades of life is that one must always be prepared for the unexpected.
Additionally, things are rarely fair and we don’t get a trophy for participation. There are winners and losers. And, yes, so much for educations ballyhooed self-esteem building rhetoric.
Cases in point: Just when one has determined that all of your fences are in an excellent state of repair and now you may embark to that family reunion on the other side of the state; you discover that your cattle are invading your neighbor’s corn field.
Or, just when you are excited that the family is arriving for that delicious Thanksgiving dinner, the sewer line decides to collapse and sewage backs up into the basement inundating the entire house with that horrible sewage smell. Oh, such is life!
Therefore, the recent elections outcome did not come as a shock to me. With Trump’s “rigged election” allegations, he won the election not by popular vote but by the partisan influenced Gerrymandered structurally “rigged mechanics” of the Electoral College.
Many votes were cast for some personal uncorroborated ideological reason that has potential catastrophic consequences to the nation or state and individually to the person casting the vote.
As an example, early in the election campaign some politicians stated that they wanted to reform the United States tax code and implement a flat tax.
However, when one looks at former Presidential TEA Party candidate Ted Cruz’ flat tax for example, why would any low to middle income household even consider such a regressive, economy killing tragedy?
As an example, let us take a married parent earning $13.75 per hour or $28,600 gross income, filing jointly with two dependent children.
When filing their tax return they will choose the minimum standard deduction of $12,600 and take an exemption of $4,000 for each eligible dependent totally $16,000.
The total of $12,600 standard deduction and $4,000 X four dependents for a $16,000 dependent exemption leaves no taxable income. Therefore, their tax liability is zero.
One could add an additional $2000 to the equation for childcare tax credits.
Now, after tax reform and, let us say 15 percent flat rate across the board, this same couple with two children will now be paying $28,600 X .15 = $4,290.00. Why would any low to middle income household in their right mind want that?
Then the most disgusting thing about a flat tax is that America’s most wealthy tax rates currently are 39.6 percent of taxable income.
With a flat tax their tax rate will be cut from 39.6 percent to 15 percent or a 62 percent tax cut. I will not even begin to address the resulting unprecedented growth in economy killing wealth inequality.
President elect Donald Trump wants to give this middle to low income household a 35 percent income tax cut and a $5,000 child care credit. May I ask just for clarification, “Duh, they currently pay no tax, so what is gained with this new tax rhetoric? (Oh, I get it; he wants to exploit the low information American voter while he slips in a huge tax cut of 39.6 percent to 15 percent or 62 percent for America’s most wealthy.)
Given Nebraska doesn’t even have a way to carry out capital punishment, and most likely will never have, there is a very strong likelihood that if Nikko Jenkins is sentenced to death, after Nebraska spends millions on appeals, he has a 95 percent to 100 percent chance of dying a natural death from old age.
Given a $21.8 million dollar settlement, possible garnishment of wages and property from Gage County employees involved in the Beatrice 6 debacle, the proponents of the capital punishment that supported their argument stating capital punishment could be used to coerce a confession of guilt probably needs to know this is not a real smart game plan for the future.
Sometimes there is just no rhyme or reason for the vote that is often cast.
Nebraska’s Unicameral and its governors have chosen regressive tax shifts to protect the state’s wealthy while not enacting appropriate property tax reform with a more progressive income tax, an opportunity to retain our Southeast Nebraska youth, develop a highly trained work force and help reduce Nebraska’s “brain drain”, the Southeast Community College bond issue failed miserably.
With total disregard for basic economics’ supply and demand curves, disregard for academic research and allegiance to a “welfare tit” federal farm bill favoring mega-farm operations, I hear Nebraska’s “rural Republican’s ‘less government’” zealots screaming for increased Trump led government intervention now that they followed the “for profit only corporate research ‘feed the world’ rhetoric” and greed induced overproduction; wildlife habitat, deforestation and grassland destruction and “Obama caused” tanking commodity market. (It is hard to blame yourself, just blame Obama.)
Oh, yeh! With Nebraska’s beloved former Governor Heineman on Trump’s Agricultural Advisory Board, didn’t Trump say he would repeal NAFTA and withdraw from the TPP?
In your Trump vote, was the crippling student loan indebtedness experienced by Nebraska’s students of middle and lower income families, even a consideration?
After President elect Trump’s victory, student loan service companies, Nelnet’s, Sallie Mae and Navient Corporations stock soared 25 percent, 30 percent and 30 percent respectively. The soaring stock prices were given as news that a Trump White House will be friendlier to student loan companies. Ah, yes, isn’t the Republican mindset of “profit first” at the expense of all others, wonderful.
Just to be a “daisy”, I’m wondering what Nebraska’s depth of critical thinking was concerning Nebraska’s ethanol production if President Trump names fossil fuel giant Texas’ former Governor Rick Perry as Secretary of Energy?
My best guess, none! Wouldn’t it be wonderful if in Nebraska, academics would receive the same respect as tax breaks for the wealthy?