Our Money

 

  • Poverty Is Not A State Of Mind
  • Raise the Minimum Wage to a Living Wage
  • Customers Are The Heartbeat of the Economy
  • Trickle-Down Doesn’t
  • Give Corporations Tax Credits AFTER They Create the Jobs, Not Tax Cuts
  • Invest in Modernized Job Training and Clean Energy

 

Poverty is not a "state of mind", as Ben Carson recently said. It's a reality for far too many.  40% of Americans face raising their families on less than $20,000 per year. 

Let that in for a second.

The deck is stacked against average Tennesseans. Wages have been stagnant since the 1970's. Incomes of ordinary Tennesseans have flatlined, while the incomes of the richest 1% continue to rise. 

Anyone who works a full time job should not have to rely on public assistance to survive. It’s been 10 years since Congress raised the minimum wage, it's time to do it again. The CBO agrees. 

Raising the wage means an estimated 35 million American workers would get a badly needed raise. I've seen various ideas about what a wage hike should look like (The Raise the Wage Act Bernie & co. just proposed is along the right lines), but the bottom line is this needs to happen - not just because it’s the right thing to do, but also because it’ll create customers, and customers are the heartbeat of the economy. 

And no, it won’t hurt jobs. Corporate CEOs ​make​ 335 times their average employee. If you're worried about wages hurting jobs, start there. 

We’re seeing depression-era levels of inequality. It isn't only unfair, it's also a recipe for disaster, and legislation like Trumpcare and the Trump budget, which serve as trillion-dollar giveaways to the people who need it least, will only exacerbate the problem.

Marsha wants us to believe if we let corporations and the wealthiest among us go mostly unregulated, untaxed, and unencumbered, they'll create jobs, and the benefits will "trickle-down" to the rest of us. But that's not how things work. We've seen it.

As businessman Rick Poore  once said: "Give me more customers, I'll hire more people. Give me a tax break, I'll take my wife to Aruba."

AN IDEA: LET'S GIVE CORPORATIONS TAX CREDITS. NOT TAX CUTS.

Instead of slashing corporate tax rates (which as Warren Buffett tells us are already low despite the narrative), and trusting corporations to do right by us and hire more people, let's flip it around. Take trust out of the equation.

Make corporations go create those jobs they're promising us, come back and show us they did, THEN we can give them their tax cuts in the form of TAX CREDITS. 

I once produced a feature-length comedy called "Welcome to the Jungle" starring Jean-Claude Van Damme, Adam Brody, and some other very funny people that cost $4 million to make. I assembled a great team and raised the money in large part by creating jobs in Puerto Rico, where we shot it, then taking what we spent down there and turning it into a tax credit given to us by the Puerto Rican government, which is what incentivized us to shoot down there in the first place.

Now, if we had been given our tax credit as a tax cut up front, and nobody had followed through to make sure we created the jobs we said we would, I'm not entirely sure we wouldn't have cut corners and done what we could to hang onto every last penny- not because we're evil, but because the incentive structure would've been backwards.

Not tax cuts, tax credits. Call me idealistic, but I actually believe people will do the right thing if the incentives line up the right way. But the way our system is set up, that simply isn't the case. Line the incentives up the right way, and make corporations follow through.

Corporations and the super-rich don't need our help. If you send me to Washington, I'll prioritize everyday, working Americans who deserve a fair shot.

 

Please check your e-mail for a link to activate your account.