I’m sure everyone has seen the bumper sticker that says, “If you can read this, thank a teacher.” Indeed, every time I see it, I silently thank the late Betty Lowry, my first grade teacher. And, not just because she taught me to read, though I know she did, but also because she tolerated my six year-old trouble making self. As a side note, I also thank Barbara Funk, my second grade teacher, for the same reason. You see, Mrs. Funk became my second grade teacher mid-Fall when Mrs. Hoffman took maternity leave. On her first day, Mrs. Funk wrote her name on the blackboard so all the good little 7 year old girls and boys wouldn’t forget. During recess, Ronnie Hatton convinced me to sneak back into the classroom and change one letter of her name on the blackboard. Suffice it to say, Mrs. Fu*k and I got off to a rocky start when she came back to the room and discovered us mid prank.
Sorry, I digressed. The indisputable truth is that we all owe our teachers for our ability to read, add, subtract, multiply, and recite the US presidents in order (well, I could at one time). But, as we celebrate tax day here in the United States, there’s another group we should be thanking – namely, our high income earners, who pay the teachers that taught us to read and write and who teach our children today. For, without the 1 percenters, we would have no teachers. For that matter, we would have no fire departments, no police departments, no roads, no social safety net, no Medicare, no Medicaid, no Department of Agriculture (oh wait, never mind). With the massive Obama tax hike of 2013, the top 1% are now paying 29.3% of all taxes, though their share of overall income is only 17%. Since there is no evidence that the top 1% use 29% of the resources provided by the government, I think it is very safe to say that 1 percenters are paying well above their fair share. In fact, given the wealth transfer nature of our tax system, I think it is quite likely that the top 1% are using well under 1% of the resources, while paying 29% of the taxes.
The 2014 election season is shaping up as a repeat of 2012, with the democrat party once again vilifying the top 1% and whining about income inequality, all in an effort to divide our nation and curry favor with voters. In Obama’s 2012 campaign, the top 1% were disparaged in a way usually reserved for axe murderers and Dallas Cowboys fans. As this rhetoric begins to rain down on you again, I urge you to stop and thank a 1 percenter. Without them, you would not be able to read or write or walk down a safe city street or eat safe food or breathe clean air. For it is they that have paid for all of this largess.