History Says: If Your Not a Multi-millionaire Voting Republican is Economic Stupidity.
A Bloomberg News article of November 3, 2022 documents that of the 12 biggest political doners to the 2022 election, 10 support Republicans. Those 10 Billionaires have donated $338 million dollars to Republicans. Among the top 100 political doners $574 million has gone to Republicans.
Intuitively this makes sense. You become a billionaire by devoting your life to the accumulation of wealth. The Republican party genuflects to wealth, so most billionaires would feel most at home in the Republican party.
But a more sinister explanation is that the Republican parties signature issue for the last 100 years has been cutting taxes on the income of the wealthiest taxpayers — pushing the tax burden of citizenship on to others. Literally every time the Republican’s have grabbed control of government they have cut taxes on the wealthy.
The result? When Republicans control tax policy the top tax rate is always below 40%, the National debt soars, the economy becomes a roller coaster that nets out at virtually zero economic growth. It doesn’t really impact the billionaires because the result is a wealth transfer from the rest of US taxpayers into the pockets of the top 10% and most particularly to the top 1%, so billionaires continue to pile up wealth. If our Democracy collaspes, not a problem for them. They own yachts, islands and walled estates — they can ride out whatever storms come along — money will smooth their transition into any government.
History tells the story. We had a Republican President and Congress from 1920 to 1932. The first thing they did was cut the top income tax rate on the wealthiest Americans. Within a decade the housing market collapsed, the stock market collapsed and we sunk into the worst economic collapse in modern history, the Great Depression.
In 1933 Democrat took control, and began boosting the top tax rate up to 70% or higher. Once we pulled out of the Great Depression for the next 40 years we had few and mild recessions and a stable housing market as home ownership expanded, income inequailty shrunk and poverty and homelessness nearly disappeared. During this period voters were old enough to remember the Great Depression, so polls showed voters believed Democrats were better at the economy.
We reversed course when Ronald Reagan renewed the Republican obsession with tax cuts for the wealthy in 1981. Our National debt, which had been falling since the end of World War II, began rising. When Republicans gained complete control of Congress in 1995, they immediately made further major changes in the tax law to favor the rich and speculators. They held control of Congress until 2007 and just like in the 1920’s, a decade after their tax changes the housing market blew up, the stock market blew up and we sank into economic stagnation that we now call the Great Recession. Democratic policies enacted in the 1930’s kept us out of a depression, but the only way we could pull ourselves out of the Great Recession was by continuously dropping interest rates to encourage borrowing to support consumer spending. By the time interest rates hit zero, the massive borrowing spree had triggered enormous inflation in the housing market leading to the current housing market collapse, and inflation sweeping across much of the rest of the economy.
Voters today didn’t live through the Great Depression. For the last 40 years those Republican tax policies have blown up our national debt, destabilized the housing market and are the root of our current inflation. The result for the rest on us is more expensive, or unaffordable housing, resulting in massive homelessness in the most expensive housing markets, and in all markets a bigger chunk of our income must go to housing. But the change has been gradual, so voters who have no recollection of the Great Depression still think Republican’s are better at managing the economy, because the claim to be on the campaign trail.
History says otherwise. If you are not a multi-millionaire and you vote Republican you are making your economic life harder, and society more volitile, for yourself and your descendants.