Woody Guthrie and Pete Seeger must be turning over in their graves.
Bernie Sanders must be having sleepless nights.
The left-wing anthem “Which Side Are You On?” is no longer about whether you’re a “union man” or a “thug for J.H. Blair.” It’s about the size of your stock portfolio or when to go public with your start-up.
In the 2016 Republican Party presidential primary, decades of dissonance between the party’s aggrieved grassroots and its blinkered elite spilled out into the open. For years, the chasm widened between the GOP’s heartland base, the river valley-dwelling “Somewheres” from David Goodhart’s 2017 book, The Road to Somewhere, and the party’s bicoastal “Anywhere” rulers. The foot-soldier Republican “Somewheres,” disproportionately church-attending and victimized by job outsourcing and the opioid crisis, felt betrayed by the more secular, ideologically inflexible Republican “Anywheres.”
Donald Trump, lifelong conservative “outsider” and populist dissenter from bicoastal “Anywhere” orthodoxy on issues pertaining to trade, immigration, and China, coasted to the GOP’s presidential nomination. He did so notwithstanding the all-hands-on-deck pushback from leading right-leaning “Anywhere” bastions, encapsulated by National Review magazine’s dedication of an entire issue to, “Against Trump.” Trump’s subsequent victory in the 2016 general election sent the conservative intellectual movement, as well as the Republican Party itself, into a deep state of introspection.
Democrats have argued that the tax reforms implemented through the 2017 Tax Cuts and Jobs Act (TCJA) only benefited the rich, and that the Build Back Better Act (BBBA) will help middle-and working-class Americans the most.
But several nonpartisan groups found that the TCJA reduced the tax burden for the middle- and working-class by up to 87% and, they argue, the $2.4 trillion BBBA – before the U.S. Senate this week – would increase taxes on the middle- and working-class by up to 40%.
A new analysis published by the Heartland Institute found that the TCJA reduced the average effective income tax rates for taxpayers in every income tax bracket – but the lower- and middle-class saw the greatest benefits – with the lowest-income filers receiving the largest tax cuts.
Founding father and the second president of the United States John Adams once said that “Facts are stubborn things; and whatever may be our wishes, our inclinations, or the dictates of our passion, they cannot alter the state of facts and evidence.” What he meant was that objective, raw numbers don’t lie—and this remains true hundreds of years later.
We just got yet another example. A new data analysis from Harvard University, Brown University, and the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation calculates how different employment levels have been impacted during the pandemic to date. The findings reveal that government lockdown orders devastated workers at the bottom of the financial food chain but left the upper-tier actually better off.
The analysis examined employment levels in January 2020, before the coronavirus spread widely and before lockdown orders and other restrictions on the economy were implemented. It compared them to employment figures from March 31, 2021.