For some time, I’ve wondered why my Republican friends continue to vote against their own self-interest. I do have a few wealthy friends who benefit from Republican policies. But the majority are more often harmed by Republican initiatives.
For example, Republicans talk about tax cuts for the rich being good for small business owners who generate most of the jobs in this country. That may sound reasonable. However, you have to look at what Republican leaders consider small businesses. By their definition of limited ownership, Cargill (the world’s largest privately-held corporation) and Koch Industries (the world’s second-largest privately-held corporation) are “small” businesses. And, of course, extending the Bush-era tax cuts would be very good for them.
The reality is that eliminating the Bush tax cuts for the wealthy would affect only 3% of small business owners.
Republicans have also been at the forefront of providing tax breaks for corporations that ship jobs overseas. They refuse to entertain penalties for large American corporations that move their “headquarters” off-shore to avoid U.S. taxes. Republicans rail against common sense regulations that prevent greedy corporations from destroying our environment and robbing our citizens. Indeed, Republicans actually apologized to BP when the Obama administration demanded it pay for damages to those affected by the massive Gulf oil spill. And virtually all Republicans voted against reform of Wall Street after it collapsed our economy!
So what have Republicans done to earn my friends’ loyalty? Social Security? Nope. That was passed by Democrats over the protests of many Republican. Medicare? Nope. That was passed by Democrats with little to no help from Republicans. Corporate-provided health care and profit-sharing? Wrong again. Employee benefits are the result of labor union fights (literally) against greedy company owners.
So what does the Republican Party do to deserve the undying loyalty of those who work for a living? They lie. And they are very good at it.