Friday, October 17, 2014

Are You a Sucker?

If you work with your hands by the hour and consider yourself a member of the working middle class, and you vote Republican, you are a sucker. The Republican Party in Texas has done much harm to working class Texans.

Unfortunately, too many of my working friends have bought into the hypocritical, Republican rhetoric.  Their party line is: We are more responsible financially, keep you taxes low, keep illegal aliens from being paid for not working and stealing your jobs, and hold the line on any new taxes.

When Democrats last controlled the State Legislature, Texas had no indebtedness.  In fact our Constitution prevented borrowing money for which taxpayers would be responsible in coming years.  We now owe over 20 billion dollars just for roads mainly because Republican legislators refused to assume the responsibility of paying as we build new roads.

If you work for a living, consider the following things:

1. Texas leads the nation in workplace deaths, yet it has no safety program.

2. Although workers in Texas have the greatest exposure to injury or death, legislators have steadfastly refused to make workers’ compensation mandatory for Texas employers.

3. Caving in to big money lobbyists, the State Legislature has created a system of workers’ compensation whereby insurance companies and employers are almost always represented by lawyers; and yet it is difficult, if not impossible, for an injured worker to find legal representation. The system designed by big money interest in Texas prevents, in most cases, an attorney representing an injured worker from receiving a fee.

4. CEOs in Texas are among the highest paid corporate managers in the United States.  Several CEOs of companies in Texas receive over $50 million per year as their salary; while workers in Texas receive an average of $11,000 a year.  Texas leads the nation in lowest paid workforce.

5. The tax policy in Texas is among the most regressive in the United States.  While we boast of having no state income tax, our sales tax is near the top; our property tax on our homes is in the top five. Almost every form of license or permit is taxed; the ability to file for a divorce in Texas bears one of the heaviest taxes around.  There is even a tax on traffic fines.  The great tax policy fostered by Republican legislators gives oil companies a rebate, gives big corporations a tax break, and taxes country clubs at a lesser rate than your home is taxed.

If you think this is a policy which helps you as a working man or woman, think again.  Don’t be a sucker.

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