Ladies and Gentlemen of the top 1 percent, congratulations! You’ve won and crushed both the middle and lower classes in a single swoop in the new Trump-Republican budget proposal! Such great components include: cutting the corporate tax rate, ending the individual mandate in Obamacare/Affordable Care Act, taxing college students even more, and raising the middle and poor class’s taxes for the billionaire donor class.
Obviously, this isn’t good for average Americans. To illustrate this point, graduate students like me usually get part of our tuition waived, so it’s basically a “free” couple of credits. This makes a huge impact on the affordability of postgraduate education as a whole. Under this new budget proposal, graduate students will have to count these “free” credits as income. So for me, I will go from being taxed at about 10,000 dollars to around 20,000 dollars. Of course, the more expensive places, like Harvard, a student could go from 10,000 dollars to 50,000 dollars easily.
Honestly, I’m not even surprised anymore. We are living in the 1920’s where the rich get richer and the poor get both imprisoned and poorer. The last two generations built the public system as we know it, made college nearly a requirement, got good paying jobs out of high school, slashed funding for healthcare and education for tax breaks, and pay us in “experience” with unpaid internships. I’m starting to become numb to all this.
Sen. Ron Johnson of Wisconsin, my home state, was the first Republican to come out against this budget proposal, though he signaled he’d be willing to vote for it if certain conditions were met. Sen. Lisa Murkowski of Alaska said she is wary of repealing the individual mandate, but if that concern is addressed, she is a likely “yes” vote. This comes down to Rand Paul, John McCain, Susan Collins, and Jeff Flake. This is not exactly the group I would entrust to save the middle and poor classes.
Do you really want to fight back? Do you really want to make our nation more free, more just, more equal, and more democratic? Then do something about it. Go to a local Democrat or Republican meeting, join a labor union, talk to your friends and neighbors; For God’s sake, VOTE!