In our long history, the US has been at its best when our individual striving didn’t get in the way of caring for each other, economic justice and equal opportunity for all. In the 1950s, among the tools Republican president Dwight D. Eisenhower used to maintain strong economic growth, high employment and social mobility was a reasonable (but compared to rates today, high) marginal tax rate on the very rich. Eisenhower’s rationale was that it was the government’s job to actually do the work of ensuring a stable, strong economy and political system, a rationale I believe in. I believe it is the government’s role to ensure that there is enough freedom and justice in the marketplace to allow everyone the opportunity to make the most of their capacities. Eisenhower’s thinking and actions ultimately resulted in America growing stronger than any other nation, growing the strongest middle class in the world, and our population possessing self-respect and dignity.
It’s not rocket science. It’s straight economics backed up by courage. Likewise, as US Senator I will take the simple, straightforward and moral actions needed to grow our economy, increase income equality, lower the influence of money in politics, while maintaining strong incentives across the nation to work hard.
Why reforming our tax system is not a mainstream, simple solution is because the powerful own an ever greater share of our media system. In 1985, fifty US companies owned the vast majority of all radio, TV, newspaper, movies and other media. Today, there are only six transnational companies, with little to no allegiance to the US, which exert this enormous control over the American mind, including what we believe to be possible and fair.
Simple solutions such as a fairer tax system are kept out of the conversation, kept from reaching the public on an ongoing basis by journalists who self-censor or editors who find something else to publish or broadcast. Yes, “taxation is the power to destroy”, as Supreme Court Justice John Marshall said in 1819 but what is worse and more destructive is taxation that is unfair.
I will work to ensure our tax system is fair, enabling our state, and for governments to inspire innovation and free enterprise while also ensuring no person, corporation, or entity, grows too powerful for the good of society.
My aim will be economic growth, an ever stronger middle class, and a political system the envy of the world in part through money playing less of an influence. Our institutions– private and public– will have integrity from the government playing its proper role.