Tuesday, October 12, 2004

Bush's 'Ownership Society' is a Sham

'Ownership Society' is a Sham

President Bush's domestic agenda was once based on "compassionate conservatism" (i.e. giving lavish tax breaks to corporations and the wealthy while cutting health, education, and job opportunities for the middle class). Now his domestic principles are grounded in the "ownership society" (i.e. privatizing critical public needs and shifting retirement and health care risks onto individuals while ensuring that the financial services and health care industries get billions in new fees and services). Either way, America will experience more economic inequality and rising economic burdens for middle-class families.

  • President Bush's tax cuts for the wealthiest 1 percent – those making $1 million or more – will total $148 billion this year alone. As the Detroit News reports, "That is twice as much as the government will spend on job training, $6.2 billion; college Pell grants, $12 billion; public housing, $6.3 billion; low-income rental subsidies, $19 billion; child care, $4.8 billion; insurance for low-income children, $5.2 billion; low-income energy assistance, $1.8 billion; meals for shut-ins, $180 million; and welfare, $16.9 billion."

  • The president's plan to privatize Social Security will leave Americans less secure in old age while Wall Street investment firms rake in billions. Let's be candid about the "ownership" of retirement: the elderly are the only ones who will take on new risks. If the market takes a downturn, there's no guarantee of a secure retirement. But regardless of whether the market is up or down, big investment firms will collect an estimated $9 billion in new fees under the president's plan.

  • President Bush's message to Americans is clear: "When hard times hit, you're on your own." The entire privatization agenda of President Bush and his conservative allies rests on shifting collective obligations and duties away from government and corporations and onto individuals. The shrinking middle class will shoulder more of the burdens and risks while the wealthy and big business will pocket more of the benefits. This is not the way to a more equitable and prosperous America that provides opportunities for all citizens.

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    GOP Talking Points

    Monday, August 09, 2004

    America's Ownership Society: Expanding Opportunities

    "...if you own something, you have a vital stake in the future of our country. The more ownership there is in America, the more vitality there is in America, and the more people have a vital stake in the future of this country."-President George W. Bush, June 17, 2004

    The Challenge: America's Changing Society

    Life in America is changing dramatically, and President Bush believes that the Federal government should change too to help meet the challenges of our times. American families should have choices and access they need to affordable health care and homeownership; Americans should have the option of managing their own retirement; and small businesses, which employ over half of all workers, need lower taxes and fewer government mandates so they can grow. continue


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