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Some of the supporters of this $1.5-trillion debt-financed tax bill are the very same members of Congress who insisted that a relief package for Hurricane Sandy — costing roughly 4 percent of what their current tax bill costs — be fully “offset” by spending cuts elsewhere in the budget.
Similarly, many, including Congressman Ryan himself, objected to the extension of unemployment benefits in 2013 when the unemployment rate was still around 7 percent, on the grounds that it simply cost too much. That extension, by the way, was 1/60 the cost of the current tax bill.
If Republicans in Congress have now decided that it is okay to spend, spend, spend without regard for the deficit and debt, surely they can think of better things to do with $530 billion than giving it away to some of wealthiest people in the world. If they really can’t think of anything better, let me offer them some alternatives:
- We could repave every mile of highway in the entire country — twice;
- we could triple the salary of every single firefighter, EMT, and paramedic in the nation;
- we could increase the budget for the National Cancer Institute by over 900 percent;
- we could provide free lunch and free breakfast to every single public school student in the country, every school day of the year, for the next decade;
- we could build enough solar power plants to increase the solar energy capacity of the United States by about 600 percent;
- we could hire 700,000 new public school teachers;
- we could increase the budget for the Veterans Health Administrationby 80 percent.