by Mel Griffith
I first started listening to national political conventions in 1948. That was the first year I was old enough to be aware of politics and also the first election year that my family could afford a radio. Conventions used to be fascinating shows, with big fights over the platform, which delegates should be seated, and who should get the nomination. There was always a lot of suspense waiting to see who would be the vice presidential nominee. I don't watch too much any more since nothing is decided at the convention and they are just made-for-TV informercials to anoint the pre-chosen candidates and the platform they have written. I did, however, watch the acceptance speeches of the Democratic candidates. Two things about them struck me. The first was how many ways they could say "raise taxes" without ever using those exact words. The second was how many important things they forgot to mention.
Back at the 1984 Democratic convention Walter Mondale promised to raise everybody's taxes and found out the hard way that lots of people don't want their taxes raised. Since raising taxes is the democrats all-purpose solution to every problem, they still want to raise them, but have to find creative ways of saying so. They are going to "roll back the tax cuts," in other words, raise taxes. They are going to "close corporate tax loopholes," that is, raise corporate taxes. They are going to "end tax giveaways," another way of saying "raise taxes" without actually saying the forbidden words. They are going to be "fiscally responsible." Since they plan to expand just about every federal program there is, that means "raise taxes."
Raising taxes on corporations and the rich who own them has a nice ring to us poor folks, unless we happen to remember that when their taxes go up, they simply add them to the price of goods and services they sell us. It is actually us, the consumer, who really pays when we try to soak the rich.
Then there are the things they forgot to mention. They are worried about the high cost of health care but forgot to mention that one of the principal reasons for the high cost is the need for doctors to practice defensive medicine and run unnecessary tests to try to keep from being ripped by ambulance chasing parasites like Edwards. They worry that many Americans are uninsured, but didn't mention that insurance is so high because of the ability of con men like Edwards to fast-talk ignorant jurors into outrageous awards. Edwards claims to have spent his life helping ordinary people get what was due them. If he is so concerned about them how did he end up with so many millions of their money, instead of charging a reasonable fee for his time?
Kerry seems to have almost forgotten that he served in the Senate. He spent less than a minute of his speech on his nineteen years in the Senate, while talking at length about his four months in Vietnam. Perhaps that's because he has the most left-wing voting record in the Senate. He wants to reduce unemployment and job outsourcing, but forgot to mention that his plan to raise the minimum wage will increase both.
Edwards main concern is that there are two Americas. One for rich people like him, and another for the rest of us. He proposes to fix that by taxing the rich out of existence. As soon as the government has all the money and everyone is poor, there will only be one America and everyone will live happily ever after, at least if they can avoid being sued by someone like him. Of course, they forgot to mention that jobs aren't created by poor people, they are created by people and corporations with money investing it. Once the government taxes away available capital, job creation will slow down and unemployment will go up. But wait, that's wonderful if you are for big government. The government can then start a whole host of make-work job programs and create a new army of parasites on the federal treasury. All of them and the bureaucrats who live off the programs will be eager to vote in the next election for whoever will promise them the biggest handout of our tax money. Guess who plans to make the grandest promises.