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Coming Sequester Cuts Will Make Most of Americans' Lives Worse -– And People Are Mobilizing

February 20, 2013 in Blogs

By Dave Johnson, Blog for Our Future




 

In just over a week the government is probably going to enter full-scale austerity. Republicans are refusing to end tax loopholes for big corporations and billionaires, choosing to let the “sequester” occur instead. Unless something changes, and soon, $1.2 trillion in cuts to defense and domestic spending begin to kick in. This will hit jobs, growth, and above all it will hit real people.

Starting today, real people started pushing back through a series of more than 100 events that were scheduled in 23 states around the country. They are sponsored by a coalition that includes national labor groups, Americans for Tax Fairness and Health Care for America Now. (You can see a list of events at AmericaWantsToWork.org or 99Uniting.org.)

The events come on the heels of our own campaign to send messages to members of Congress:

Disarm the Austerity Bomb. Stop the Sequester.

Actual People

This “sequester” resulted from one more of those Republican hostage-taking crises. They took the debt-ceiling hostage in an attempt to force cuts in spite of polls showing that We, the People wanted taxes raised on the wealthy and no cuts in essential things government does for people. As part of the deal to release the hostages they demanded that this looming “sequester” be set up, to bring pressure on Congress to gut other parts of the budget.

People feel squeezed, and rely on essential government services, because 40% Of Americans Now Make Less Than 1968 Minimum Wage. That’s right, the linked post explains that if the 1968 minimum wage had increased along with gains in productivity, the minimum wage would be $16.50 an hour today. Between that, the continuing effects of the recent Great Recession, the decline of union bargaining power, and the “austerity” cuts that have already been forced on us by Republicans people are already stretched to the limit. And now this.

The effect of these things on actual people has not been a part of the national budget discussion for quite a while. After all, by definition in a democracy all government spending is things We, the People decide to do to make our lives better. But also by definition in a plutocracy the things We, the People want just …read more
Source: ALTERNET

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