This month we learned that one in seven people in the United States is living below the poverty line, meaning on of the richest and most powerful country in the world is in grave economic trouble. Yet the uber wealthy are still complaining about a slight increase this year when the Bush administration tax cuts expire. You would think they would at least have a little love for the country that allowed them to amass such a fortune, and the overwhelming feeling of obligation and guilt would force their consciences to lend a hand to their fellow countrymen who continue to financially struggle, but no. They feel they should receive special privileges because they are “job creators.” However we all know this is complete bullsh*t, as trickle down economics doesn’t work and never has. Tax cuts for the wealthy just allows the rich to get richer, as proven by the last decade, when they all accepted tax cuts and did nothing whatsoever for society.

The perfect example of this is the Forbes 400 list of the richest people in the country. Three decades ago the Forbes list only totaled a combined fortune of just $91.8 billion: the equivalent of about 208 billion in today’s dollars. The current top 400 reported by Forbes last week, hold over a trillion dollars more in wealth. Their current combined fortune? $1.37 trillion. That’s a ridiculously high number. So high in fact, that if you imposed a 15 percent wealth tax on all 400 of these billionaires, it would cover the budget shortfalls of all the 50 states combined. When 400 citizens hold enough wealth to balance the entire country’s budget, you know something has gone drastically wrong, this is the harsh reality of trickle down economics. Yet the billionaires who have benefited the most from these polocies are not lining up to help heal the country that made them so rich. Instead they line up to bankroll candidates dedicated to cutting taxes on America’s wealthiest as well as erasing regulations on the corporations that make these people so rich.

One perfect example of this skewed view on the distribution of wealth personified is billionaire-club errand boy Karl Rove, who has been pouring millions into attack ads aimed at destroying any canidate that supports the tax hike. Really Karl? Under Obama’s new plan, the tax rate for the wealthy will go from 35 percent to 39.6 percent. Is this really the best thing you can find to spend millions of dollars fighting? Especially when it was your party that led us to financial ruin in the first place. The fact is, that even if the taxes are raised on the rich they still will be very low in historical standards. Under Eisenhower, the top tax rate was 91 percent, and under Nixon it was 70 percent. All Obama wants to do is raise it three percent, back to where it was in the ’90s. Remember the ’90s? Bill Clinton and a balanced budget? Those were the days. Today we are running trillion dollar deficits and the people who are making hundreds of millions of dollars every year are unwilling to pay their fair share. That’s chronic greed at an astonishing level; these billionaires are the same business owners that outsourced all the jobs, destroyed all the unions and replaced the stable and qualified American working class with teenagers in Asia and the Indian sub-continent…and now they want a discount. These people don’t need a tax break. They need a reality check; these are the same exact bums we just bailed out. They spent our tax dollars not creating jobs or fixing the problems that led to the financial crises but on corporate bonuses for high-level executives. Currently the U.S. has more billionaires than the other top ten countries combined, this is the result of deregulation and tax breaks for the wealthy. Last year in America, the top 400 billionaires increased thier wealth 27 percent. Did you? The top 400 billionaires on the Forbes list currently hold over 1.37 trillion dollars; that’s more money than they could spend in ten life times. These people need to be taxed their fair share, to help heal the economy of the country that made them rich. If they have a problem with that they can, quite simply, go f*ck themselves.

-Patrick Zarrelli