Norm Osterman's last letter (Save your pity for the 1 percent, June 25) printed the day after mine (Ranting about the rich is a scam, June 24). Had he taken more time (does he have the U-B on speed-dial?) perhaps I wouldn't have been misquoted.
My letter didn't "parade the tried and not-true that the 1 percent and corporations are the job creators." No, I wrote "the top 5 percent are the employers who provide jobs." That 5 percent does include the top 1 percent, plus those who make $159,619 and over (per 2010 IRS database).
So you see, the top 5 percent, including both corporations and most small-business owners, are in fact America's job creators. Mr. Osterman's point that the "lower half pays this (state and local) tax or that (gas or other) tax is somewhat faulty since those taxes are also paid by the top 52 percent of wage earners -- those who also pay 100 percent of the income taxes!
Again, this isn't about the rich "paying their fair share" but about class warfare and socialistic wealth redistribution, pure and simple.
We can bat statistics and percentages around all day, but what we really have here is the typical Democrat/progressive/Marxist/socialist (pick one or more) versus free enterprise ("capitalist") debate that is not about who should or should not pay taxes (or how much) but about which of these two economic/political/ideological systems should America continue with or "fundamentally change?"
Yes, today's Democrats/progressives/Marxists/socialists (again, pick one or more) want to fundamentally change America (Obama's stated objective) from what has worked well -- for the most part -- for America over the last 236 years to something that has been demonstrated will not and cannot work. History is rife with such examples.
Regarding Ayn Rand, perhaps I should have completed her quote. It reads, "They did not starve the people to pay for America's industrialization. They gave people better jobs, higher wages, and cheaper goods with every new machine they invented, with every scientific discovery or technological advance -- and thus the whole country was moving forward and profiting ..."
It appears to me to be somewhat disingenuous to call that theory entirely selfish or greedy.
I recently read, "Progressives have become a corrosive, corrupting influence on our society's framework ... thoroughly infiltrated our academic institutions, infecting our youth with disdain for concepts like individual sovereignty, capitalism and ... compromised our political processes."
Couldn't have said it better.