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Grayson writes: "In the past 11 years, the number of Americans living in poverty has increased from 33 million to 44 million. The number of Americans receiving food stamps has risen from 18 million to 46 million. 'Trickle-down' has not even been a trickle."

Alan Grayson looks at the last 11 years under the Bush tax cuts. (photo: Getty Images)
Alan Grayson looks at the last 11 years under the Bush tax cuts. (photo: Getty Images)

11 Years Ago Today

By Alan Grayson, Reader Supported News

08 June 12


s I mentioned on MSNBC last night, today marks 11 years since the Bush tax breaks for the rich were enacted. President George W. Bush signed the Economic Growth and Tax Relief Reconciliation Act on June 7, 2001.

Bush claimed (as right-wingers always do) that tax breaks for the rich would create jobs in the private sector. Well, they haven't. There were 110 million private sector jobs in America in 2001. There are 110 million private sector jobs in America today. Despite a population increase of more than 25 million, there are no more private sector jobs today than when the Bush tax breaks for the rich became law.

In the past 11 years, the number of Americans living in poverty has increased from 33 million to 44 million. The number of Americans receiving food stamps has risen from 18 million to 46 million. "Trickle-down" has not even been a trickle.

But what could we expect? We didn't give tax breaks to the poor; we gave tax breaks to the rich. And for the rich, the past 11 years has been one long party. According to the Paris School of Economics, the top 1% in America saw their share of national income increase by more than 13% from 2001 to 2010. The top 0.1% saw their share of income increase by 20%. The top 0.01% saw their share of income explode by more than 37%, from 2.4% of all of the income in America to 3.3%.

The Bush tax breaks for the rich have yielded the most unequal distribution of wealth in American history, more unequal even than that of 1929, just before the Great Depression.

The lurch toward inequality started decades ago; the Bush tax breaks for the rich only accelerated it. According to the nonpartisan Congressional Budget Office, since 1979, income for the top 1% has increased by $700,000 a year, while income for the bottom 90% has declined by $900 a year. Between 1992 and 2007, income for the richest 400 Americans increased by 392%, as their taxes dropped by 37%.

You see where this is going. The end-game of the Bush tax breaks for the rich is the end of the middle class in America. No jobs, no healthcare, no pensions, no home equity, no higher education. The rich get richer, and the poor get poorer.

The Bush tax breaks are due to expire in a few months. We are at a fork in the road.

No more tax breaks for the rich. No. No. No. No.


Alan Grayson

"The rich get richer and the poor get laid off.
In the meantime, in between time,
Ain't we got fun?"

- Van & Schenck, "Ain't We Got Fun" (1921) your social media marketing partner


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+5 # MidwestTom 2012-06-08 22:43
The Bush breaks have to go away at all levels. The increased taxes o n dividends will decrease all retirement payouts from ORAs and pensions,, and the increased taxes will bring back into the tax paying crowd a substantial number of people that were exempted on the lower end of the middle class. Wiping out the Bush tax cuts will also bring back the marriage penalty, and decrease the deduction for children. however, these are all needed to decrease deficit spending, I am told.
+8 # Innocent Victim 2012-06-09 08:21
Few of the progressive bloggers or Keynesian economists make the case that cuts in "defense" spending should be made for the sake of the domestic economy. They are all hushed when it comes to challenging our militarism.
+12 # Rick Levy 2012-06-08 23:46
"No more tax breaks for the rich. No. No. No. No."

Mr. Grayson, You know it. I know it. Now stop Obama before he extends again.
+8 # SpyderJan 2012-06-09 05:12
Hey Alan, you continue to be a brave voice for sanity. I sure hope you never give up. I live a couple of counties East of you or I would have voted for you and so would a lot of other sane people. Continue to speak the truth. We get so little if it these days. Forget Clinton in 2016, how about a Grayson, Warren ticket. Now there's a thought.
+7 # trevorlasvegas 2012-06-09 05:55
If the Democrats were a real alternative, instead of an ineffectual insult to the constituency it purports to "protect" we wouldn't be in this position to begin with.
+10 # lexy677 2012-06-09 06:10
These whole mess is due thanks to white working class and middle class folk who allow their insecurities and racism to be exploited by the unscrupulous and greedy 1%. They even succeeded in convincing these "troglodytes" to deny Mr. Grayson another term in office; whilst keeping in office those who are actually "screwing" Governor Scott.
+7 # Bob P 2012-06-09 06:43
Correct--no trickle down. The flood up turns out to be only that--flood up.
+1 # Innocent Victim 2012-06-09 08:07
All progressives should disabuse themselves of the idea that re-electing a few left of center Democrats, such as Alan Grayson, Dennis Kucinich or Russ Feingold will make a difference. They did not make a difference when they were in office, even when the Democrats had a majority in both Houses.

Only a third party able to challenge the duopoly will make a difference. None of the now "retired" progressives is willing to give up his Democratic Party affiliation to lead a third party movement. They are careerists, not citizen legislators. They have hopes of running again or of receiving appointments from Democrats in power.

The first loyalty of such people is to the Party not to progressive ideals. This was proved by the breaking of the pledge to vote "NO" on any health-care bill without a strong public option. They voted "YEA" in order "to save the Obama presidency". What they tried to save is the presidency of a liar, an assassin, a violator of his oath of office to support and defend the Constitution, Barack Obama.
-4 # dick 2012-06-09 13:00
Inequality has accelerated faster under Obama than Bush, with Banksters getting EVERYTHING. Obama takes his supporters for CHUMPS, just like Rush & FAUX. Suckers. Dupes. Losers. If GOP prez had Obstructed Justice for Wall St. as Obama has, Dems would have sought impeachment. It's not too late. Remember, Obama had a chance to SEPARATE middle class tax cuts from B/M billionaire/mil lionaire tax cuts in 2010 & REFUSED. His absurd Stimulus nuked Keynes & recovery. Boycott Obama. Support Dems for Senate.
-5 # Michael_K 2012-06-09 16:46
Tried to give you a thumbs up... the counter refused to acknowledge it. I surmised, but now I know this site is "in the tank" for O'bomber.

Vote Jill Stein or Rocky Anderson. Refuse the "Cripps or Bloods" game!
-3 # Majikman 2012-06-09 21:44
What is it you don't understand about "the system"? Anderson or Stein would be superb candidates for prez., but with our current political system they haven't the chance of a snowball in hell of even getting their message out, let alone saturating the media.
-3 # Michael_K 2012-06-10 07:17
That's a self-fulfilling prophecy. What you're saying is that you won't vote your conscience, because you think it impractical. That's what's really wrong with America nowadays... Americans!

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