Two cheers for Sen. Ron Wyden’s billionaire tax! Raising taxes on the ultra-rich is a good thing; income/wealth inequality in this country is beyond obscene. But it won’t pay for Build Back Better, which itself is just the first step in what is necessary to kickstart realistic programs to prepare the U.S. and the world for the oncoming climate crises.
A faster, more foolproof and more remunerative method to balance the budget is to order the IRS to enforce existing laws regarding all tax shelters and to beef up those laws so that the rich pay their fair share. The Pandora Papers detail how much they legally and illegally sequester wealth that should be taxed. This needs to change!
But the real bottom line here is that Build Back Better, just like the military budget, does not have to be paid for. The federal budget is not like your household budget. I urge everyone to read Stephanie Kelton’s book The Deficit Myth. These programs are paid for by a stable USA which can prepare for the imminent disruptions already being forced on us by our fossil fuel-besotted economy.
Jere C. Rosemeyer