Sunday, September 18, 2011

Class Warfare: Why Do Only Conservatives Utilize This Trope?

When a conservative, usually a politician, utters the term "class warfare," he or she is about to obscure meaning in order to misdirect, confuse, and dismay. What's especially irksome is that very few television and radio moderators ever call them on it, e.g. "What do you mean by class warfare, and why does it only work one way, that is it's class warfare only if we suggest taking money from the rich to give to the poor? Why is taking money from the poor to give to the rich not class warfare?"

Why don't conservatives ever say, "That's class warfare! Give that money back to the poor!"


Here's ever-reliable Very Serious Person Lindsey Graham on CNN. Pay attention to exactly what he says, which is that it's unfair for people who have the most money to have to pay the most in taxes. He then points to the 47% who don't pay federal income taxes. The clear implication is that we should tax the middle class and the poverty class more. Who's declaring war on whom? Money quote:
Graham: When you pick one area of the economy and you say we're gonna tax those people because most people aren't those people, well, then that's class warfare.
 In spite of the bamboozlement language, is there any clearer expression of the conservative philosophy as it exists today? Remember, the wealthy pay far lower taxes now than at any time in the last 80 years, and that includes the Reagan, Bush I, Clinton, and Bush II years. So the idea of restoring equity to marginal tax rates is, for conservatives, class warfare.
And yet the war that Lindsey Graham, John Boehner, Paul Ryan, Mitch McConnell, and Eric Cantor want to declare is on the lower classes. Can anyone deny that? Orrin Hatch speaks for them all:

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