Friday, October 31, 2008

Shira the Bookkeeper

John McCain has latched onto Joe the Plumber and now Tito the Builder to buttress the lies that Obama's 'spread the wealth' statement is somehow Socialist when it reality it is nothing more than a progressive tax. Sarah Palin has stated: "And Alaska we're set up, unlike other states in the union, where it's collectively Alaskans own the resources. So we share in the wealth when the development of these resources occurs." She used the word collectively and the phrase 'share the wealth'. Can I now accuse her of being a Communist since she used the word collectively? Or is she is a Socialist because she used the phrase 'share the wealth'? Share the wealth is not much different from spread the wealth.

Seventeen years ago I fled from a brutal husband. I had nothing more than an Associates Degree, a job, a car, and a child to support. I took advantage of Section 8 housing out of necessity. Doing so, I was able to save on both electricity and housing costs. I also benefited from the Earned Income Tax Credit during those early years. Now some may consider the programs I mentioned as Socialist. But the end result proves them wrong. Even though I didn't pay Federal income taxes, I was still a tax payer. I paid taxes for Social Security and Medicare. I paid state income tax and sales tax. I paid property taxes on my vehicle. I paid Federal taxes on my phone bill.

What those programs did was allow me to regroup at a time when at the end of the week I was lucky to have $2.00 left in my checking account. I did not receive aid for families with dependent children, nor did I receive food stamps or benefit from Medicare. There has only been two times in my life when I had to use food stamps. The first was when I lost my job and the second was after Hurricane Katrina.

I'm one of those who also benefited from programs set-up to help people like me to buy homes. Through FHA, I was able to purchase an affordable home and Mississippi helped with the down payment. Because of that, I now pay property taxes.

Over the years, because of the programs I benefited from, my income steadily increased and I've moved up two tax brackets since then.

If those programs had not been there, I couldn't say what would have happened to me and my son. But they were there and they are set-up to help people like me.

Obama's tax plan is similar. It seeks to help ease the tax burden on those whose taxable income is less than $250,000 move up so that in the end they can too can moan and groan about the taxes they have to pay.

Call it Socialism if you like, but it seems it is more an investment in our country's future. The more people are able to move up into the middle class, the better off our country will be. I and millions of others like me, are not looking for a handout. We're looking for a hand-up and that is what those so-called Socialist programs have done.

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