Reparations, not a tax increase

During the course of the last three decades a small group of people have changed laws, tweaked those left unchanged, emasculated attempts at regulating their actions, created falsely based wars and a fictional economy. In the process they transferred an unprecedented share of wealth from 95% of us to the top 5%, themselves. A false economy was created in which people were paid incredible sums for producing nothing more than imaginary money. Then the house of cards started a full on collapse and that 95% was forced at gunpoint to go in debt to bail the 5% out. It is time for reparations.

It is time that the 5% and all the others who gained obscene wealth and profit during this period to repair the consequences of their greed. Most retain significant portions of that wealth and now chant “no new taxes” at the rest of us as though it were a political philosophy instead of the rape and pillage of us that it is in truth.

I won’t argue it was done illegally, for the top accumulators of wealth make the laws, so they don’t need to act illegally when they steal from our pockets. They just make it legal to do so.

But I will argue that the repair of our economy should come from their pockets, not ours. Yes, we are owed reparations for the moral crime of theft from the poor and middle classes. Yes, some us are complicit in that we bought into the fantasy of gaining money by what amounts to gambling, but most of us have nothing to show for it but ruined credit, lost jobs and foreclosure notices.

Yet those who gained the most feel they owe nothing back, that they have simply acted as good capitalists and are exempt from any debt to us. In any just world, they would be in prison for crimes against humanity. But this is not a just world, so I simply call for them to pay reparations — a tax sufficient to pay off the insanity of TARP and other bailouts, a tax sufficient to fully fund Social Security and Medicare and then extend health coverage to all Americans.

They owe us for the suffering we now endure financially, emotionally and politically. They owe us for not only gaming the system with frauds such as derivatives but also for fooling us into paying for a war we did not need and plainly could not afford.

Just to make sure all this does not offend the sensibilities of the “no new taxes” crowd, it won’t be a tax, it will be reparations.

That’s right, you owe us.