David Cay Johnston sheds light on two critical “frames” conservatives use to manipulate us: Government “Picking winners and losers” and a “Transfer of wealth.”
David Cay Johnston wrote an article entitled, “Taxed by the boss” where he discussed the implications of the more than 2,700 companies in the Unites States that are keeping the state income taxes they are collecting from hundreds of thousands of workers for themselves. So, in case you were wondering why states are laying off teachers, firefighters, and police officers, among other drastic cuts to social services that affect millions of people’s lives throughout the country, look no further than the corporate socialism taking place, as pointed out by David Cay Johnston.
To make matter worse, big banks and businesses like Goldman Sachs, J.P Morgan, and Mitt Romney’s former company Bain Capital, are enriching themselves by a process known as “job piracy”, where one state diverts taxes in order to lure an employer from another state to relocate if they promise to create jobs. The problem is that no jobs are ever created. Instead, the money is transferred in an upward direction from workers to the corporate bosses in the top 1%, as indicated in the report by the taxpayer watchdog organization, Good Jobs First. This report also discovered that “deals cut with states over the past two decades diverted $5.5 billion from public purposes to private gain.” Talk about a transfer of wealth!!
Big businesses are getting away with diverting the taxes they collect from workers to enrich themselves because radical right-wing Governors like Chris Christie, who tops the list, has personally transferred a whopping $251.2 million from average workers to those in the “privileged sector”, who believe they are entitled to it! No wonder why Chris Christie was being groomed for a spot in the Whitehouse. He has done the most to enrich the privileged few at the expense of everyone else. David Cay Johnston calculates that this transfer of wealth amounts to $80 per household in corporate welfare average families are spending to subsidize shareholders of the big banks and large corporations in the United States.
According to David Cay Johnston, “these deals typify corporate socialism, in which business gains are privatized and costs socialized. They also mean that Government picks winners and losers, interfering with competitive markets.” So, it turns out that radical right-wing Governors, in support of an ideology that advocates corporate socialism, are actively “picking winners and losers” (big business is always the winner) which amounts to a “transfer of wealth” from all of us (ie, workers) to a select few of them in the privileged sector (ie, CEO’s and shareholders).
Those of us who watch Fox news or listen to Glenn Beck, or some other radical right-wing talk show host are being framed to believe that Government is “picking winners and losers” in an attempt to benefit lazy people on welfare programs, which serves to create a society of dependency on Government. Following this logic, believers of this frame are further inclined to believe that a “transfer of wealth” is occurring from the so-called successful people in the top 1% to those who are lazy and don’t want to work hard in order to carry out a socialistic agenda.
The problem with this logic and the rest of the radical right-wing frames is that the opposite of what they say is true! In this case, Socialism is alive and well in America, as indicated by the Good Jobs First report and David Cay Johnston’s take on this issue. However, the problem is that it’s only being applied to the top 1% instead of being used to benefit all of us!
The irony here is that the fear of socialism is being used to scare people away from supporting policies and programs that will benefit us all. A prime example is the current ‘Budget for All’ being introduced by the progressive caucus in the House of Representatives. This budget is more in line with our nation’s moral values, and will benefit all of us, as well as help prevent the abuses of power that lead to examples of corporate socialism mentioned above.
As expected, Allen West (R-FL), a conservative member of the tea party, initiated the latest socialism scare by telling people in a town hall recently that there are approximately 80 representatives in the House that are members of the communist party. Although communism and socialism are not the same, they are used interchangeably as if they were in order to increase the fear effect, I presume, so people will not vote for it!
Unfortunately, if we continue to believe the conservative “frames”, we will never know the benefits that other nations currently enjoy, such as living longer, happier and healthier lives, not to mention being better educated, less stressed, depressed and anxious, as well as having the safety and security of knowing our family members will be taken care of if they get sick, or become disabled for any reason. All of these benefits are not fantasy, but reflect the reality of countries that adopt moral budget priorities, and implement a system based on socialism for all, not a select few.