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Home > Letters & Commentary > What Alan Greenspan Didn't Say

What Alan Greenspan Didn't Say

by Phil Hammerslough

On his most recent visit to Capitol Hill, Mr. Greenspan took issue with the Bush Administration's rosy picture of the economy. He said it was an illusion to think we could grow ourselves out of the $521 billion deficit. He also warned about increasing taxes because it might slow down the economy.

What Mr. Greenspan didn't address was putting an end to the $1.6 Trillion Bush tax cut, most of which benefits the wealthy, or the $43 billion depreciation tax credit made to corporations for the purchase of new products.

He didn't address the facts that in 1971 corporations paid 23 percent of income tax, and now pay only 17 percent. Nor did he comment that rather than paying 35 percent of earned income. Now, 250 of the largest corporations pay only 20.1 percent of earned income. He did not address oil, gas, and timber industries pay only between 10 - 11 percent of earned income. He did not explain this means the individual taxpayer and small corporations make up the difference. He forgot to tell us, if corporations were to pay the IRS the same percentage they paid in 1971, each of this years tax filers would receive $628 rebate, with no net loss to the government!

Rather than address Congress' failure to close the loophole letting corporations go offshore to avoid taxes, he cautioned Congress to curb its spending on Medicare/Medicaid, and other social programs. Thus, Mr. Greenspan fell right in line with the Republican goal of strangling the Federal government economically in order to do away with such trivial social programs as education, health care, and veterans' benefits.

Mr. Greenspan seemed to have no qualms on spending billions to support a war that will benefit large corporations. He did not suggest curbing our military spending. Instead, he cautioned us about social security and not being able to pay for the millions who will need it in the near future. It's not that he's a bad man, or uncaring. He is just a reflection of the way Washington is thinking these days. Shall we let Washington stay the course, or will we take action and change it?

Phil Hammerslough
Essex Jct. VT

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