by Bill Forman
If you're not among the top 1 percent of Americans whose income rose this past decade by an average of more than $250,000 each, you might want to pay a lunchtime visit to the Tax Day: Make Them Pay protest today at noon outside the 90 S. Cascade Wells Fargo building.
There you'll be able to find others who've just spent their weekend filling out tax returns and wondering why those privileged few aren't paying their fair share. (Hint: Politicians do not come from working-class backgrounds.)
While the protest is being organized by the MoveOn organization, it will be interesting to see if any local Tea Party advocates join in. After all, the original Boston Tea Party was a protest against tax breaks for the Dutch East India Company, a large corporation that was undermining local merchants. (Sound familiar?)
And based on the criticisms leveled against General Electric's army of tax-dodging attorneys during the Tea Party's own rally at Acacia Park this past Friday, anything's possible. At least theoretically.
Message from your host, Cathy K.: General Electric with more than $14 billion in profits last year pays nothing in taxes. G.E. spends millions on lobbying to rig the tax system, and now the U.S. owes $3.2 billion in tax benefits to G.E. Consequently, every single taxpayer owes G.E. about $14. G.E.'s not alone — Bank of America, FedEx, BP, Google, Wells Fargo, and dozens of other major American corporations make billions of dollars in profits but pay less in taxes than you or I do.
We need to put these tax dodgers on notice. On April 18 we're having a "Tax Day: Make Them Pay" event. We need to hear your voice!
(All of us will have to remember to not block the sidewalk or impede foot traffic going into/out of the Wells Fargo building.)
Wells Fargo Bank, 90 S. Cascade
Colorado Springs, CO 80903
Monday, April 18th, 12:00 PM
Or, as Obama put it:
"Worst of all, this is a vision that says even though America can’t afford to invest in education or clean energy; even though we can’t afford to care for seniors and poor children, we can somehow afford more than a trillion dollars in new tax breaks for the wealthy.
"Think about it. In the last decade, the average income of the bottom 90 percent of all working Americans actually declined. The top 1 percent saw their income rise by an average of more than a quarter of a million dollars each. And that’s who needs to pay less taxes? They want to give people like me a two-hundred-thousand-dollar tax cut that’s paid for by asking thirty-three seniors to each pay six thousand dollars more in health costs? That’s not right, and it’s not going to happen as long as I’m president.
"The fact is, their vision is less about reducing the deficit than it is about changing the basic social compact in America. As Ronald Reagan’s own budget director said, there’s nothing 'serious' or 'courageous' about this plan."