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Why do so many ordinary folks vote to help the rich and hurt themselves?

Why do those on Social Security and Medicare vote for Romney and Ryan? Ryan calls Social Security a Ponzi scheme, a collectivist system that we should end. He wants to turn Medicare into vouchers, which won’t adequately cover costs. And if you’re old and in the private market, who will insure you, anyway?

I have friends who don’t make enough money to pay income taxes, but they want Romney even though his plan will bring Mitt’s taxes down and raise their own rates*:

For those making under $30,000 taxes would increase $183
For those making $50-75K taxes would increase $641
For those making $1 million + taxes would decrease $87,000
*Source: Tax Policy Center and Brookings Institute

Romney complains about people who pay no income taxes – the lazy 47% -- and says everybody should. Unless you’re an investor. Ryan has said he wants to reduce the capital gains rate to 0. Then Mitt wouldn’t pay income taxes, either.

One of my friends who’s uninsured hates Obamacare, but now his daughter’s in the hospital.

Another guy I know is blind yet he rails against government like any other good libertarian.

What’s up?

Turns out, people tend to see through the eyes of the privileged because the privileged have more control over ideas. They own television and radio stations, newspapers and magazines. They run government -- and get campaign contributions from wealthy donors, who expect something in return. They fund think-tanks to create an acceptable message. Billionaire-owned Fox News and friends then spread the word.

Example: A wealthy Wall Street businessman makes a big contribution to his local member of Congress. He has a conversation telling her that a low rate on capital gains will encourage investment (a message created in think tanks). There’s no proof of this, but the excuse will do. Fox and friends then spread the word. Now repeat over and over so that people begin to believe it.

Others could find excuses for tax cuts, too: I should pay lower taxes because…

•  My job is dangerous

•  I’m a small business owner whose work involves manual labor and I must retire early

•  I have to work hard for a living instead of sit on my butt and let my money work for me

These folks just don’t fund think tanks or have the campaign cash to change the tax rate.

For good measure think tanks message claims that minorities take money – in the form of welfare – away from hardworking whites. Welfare uses less than 1% of the federal budget. But it’s a great distraction from the redistribution of wealth upward, via big tax cuts and shelters for the rich, outsourcing, offshoring, union-busting, etc.

As Nobel Prize winning economist, Paul Krugman, describes the charade:

Do everything you can to exaggerate the disincentive effects of higher taxes, while trying to convince middle-income voters that the benefits of government programs go to other people. And at the same time, you’d do everything you can to disenfranchise lower-income citizens, so that the median voter has a higher income than the median citizen.

Ah, but what if the truth comes out?  

Easy-breezy: Warn against academics, liberal media bias, and fact-checkers so that folks will continue voting in the interests of the rich and powerful, and against themselves.

Pay no attention to that man behind the curtain, Dorothy.

Originally published by BroadBlogs

Originally posted to BroadBlogs on Mon Nov 05, 2012 at 04:12 PM PST.

Also republished by Dream Menders.

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