John Kasich in his “State of the State” explained what drives his actions. “Just about every day,” Kasich said, “I search for what the Lord wants me to do, because I know life is short, and I know that my purpose on this Earth, whether I’m the governor or whether I’m a has-been, is to bring about a healing.”
Yesterday, the Dispatch quoted Kasich as saying, “You know what? I think we ought to get up every day and figure out how to cut taxes.”
Putting these two Kasich declarations together, it must follow, then, that Kasich believes that God wants him to cut Ohio’s taxes, and to cut taxes in a manner that brings “healing.” Fair enough. Our governor deserves the courtesy of taking him at his word and granting that in his own thinking, Kasich wants to advance public policies that will help build a strong and healthy society. The problem is, there are many ways to cut taxes and Kasich is advocating a strategy — an “across the board” cut of Ohio’s income tax — that advantages the wealthy and penalizes the poor. We can grant that Kasich is sincere — that he wants to build a strong and healthy society — but the “trickle down” theory of economics that has been used to defend the kind of tax cuts Kasich is advocating is now thoroughly discredited.
Ohio’s tax system already, as a whole, is regressive — as incomes increase the percentage of income paid in Ohio taxes decreases. The chart below shows that at the lowest income level, almost 12% of the income is paid in Ohio taxes while at the highest level only 8% of income is paid in Ohio taxes. This fact, that in Ohio those least able to pay are taxed at a higher rate than those more able to pay, would seem to contradict an important principle of “fairness.” I’m thinking that those Ohioans who understand Ohio taxes, if asked, would not choose to make Ohio’s tax system even more unbalanced — more regressive — than it already is.
Since Kasich has framed his actions as Ohio’s governor as those of a sincere believer seeking to do God’s will, it seems fair that Kasich should be expected to explain why he’s concluded that, at this time in Ohio’s history, regardless of the apparent unfairness of such an action, God wants Kasich to advance a change in Ohio’s tax system that will make the system more regressive. Kasich needs to explain how changing Ohio’s income tax to further advantage the wealthy will promote the “healing” he seeks.
Although Ohio’s income tax is “progressive” — those taxpayer with more income pay income tax at a higher rate (dark blue) — Ohio’s total tax is regressive. In Ohio, taxpayers with smaller income pay a bigger share of their income in total Ohio taxes than those taxpayers with larger incomes.
An “across the board” cut in Ohio’s income tax system, such as Kasich is advocating, will decrease the progressiveness of the system by the same percentage as the percentage of the “across the board” cut. See this 2008 post that analyzes Ohio’s 2005 “across the board” income tax cut of 21%: Ohio’s 2005 Tax Reduction Law Diminished, By 21%, The Progressivity of Ohio’s Tax Code.
In response to my article, The Dayton Daily News Cut Fifty Words From The Heart Of My Article, where I suggest that MCDP needs to be transformed, Stan Hirtle asked a good question — Can I provide any model of a local political party that has accomplished such transformation? The answer is “No. Not yet — but here is a start on a two part strategy by which such a model might be developed”
Stan, the problem you cite — “imagining a political party being anything other than bosses and insiders raising money, handing out jobs and advancing and protecting themselves”
…continue reading the article Imagining A Transformed Montgomery County Democratic Party — It’s A Systems’ Problem
The Dayton Daily News finally published my letter — on the editorial page (p. 9), under a large headline “On Your Mind”, and under an eye-catching cartoon by Mike Luckivich.
Fifty words, exactly, are cut from the article I sent to the DDN — 50 words from the center of the article and at the center of the message I wanted to deliver. Most of the third paragraph was cut — the very part that I worried most about, because it is the most accusatory and antagonistic sounding. The DDN kept the first sentence of this paragraph and merged it with
…continue reading the article The Dayton Daily News Cut Fifty Words From The Heart Of My Article
At the Dayton rally announcing her candidacy for Lieutenant Governor of Ohio — as the running mate of Ed FitzGerald — Democrat Sharen Neuhardt said that the election will come down to who voters believe will protect the middle class, and that she and FitzGerald are ready to make that case.
Neuhardt said that she has complete confidence in FitzGerald and that she and FitzGerald are both staunch supporters of women. She said women’s issues are issues that impact the whole state — not just women. She said, “When women are making 23 cents less for every dollar earned by a
…continue reading the article Sharen Neuhardt Tells Kasich — “Memo: In November You’re Going To Be Sorry You Messed With Women”
Saturday, Ed FitzGerald — the Democratic candidate seeking to replace Republican John Kasich as Governor of Ohio — spoke in Dayton and introduced his running make, Green County resident, Sharen Neuhardt. Over 200 people were in attendance and gave Fitzgerald and Neuhardt enthusiastic encouragement.
FitzGerald said that Kasich has created an inside group that has gained a lot of money and advantages from his policies — and that the poor and middle class Ohioans have been left with the bill. He said that Kasich represents a very small group of people — “And that is not what a democratic form of
…continue reading the article Ed FitzGerald Slams John Kasich For Coddling Ohio’s Wealthiest — At The Expense Of Everyone Else
Every four years, according to state law, the Montgomery County Democratic Party (MCDP) is required to “reorganize.” This is the year: a “Reorganization Meeting” is scheduled to be held in June. The deadline to register to become a delegate is February 5.
At a “Reorganization Meeting,” changes to the MCDP constitution and changes to its leadership are determined by the majority of delegates voting. Historically, a majority of delegates simply reaffirms the MCDP constitution and the MCDP leadership.
If delegates at the Reorganization Meeting fairly represented county Democrats, certainly there would consensus at the meeting that the MCDP needs major changes. The
…continue reading the article At The Reorganization Meeting, A New Constitution Could Transform the MCDP’s “Political Boss” Structure
Deadline for becoming a delegate to the forthcoming Montgomery County Democratic Party (MCDP) Reorganization Meeting is February 5. Every precinct can elect one delegate to this meeting in order to vote on new leadership and to vote on a new constitution. The last meeting was in 2010, and, as usual, the insiders stayed in power, and the old boss centered constitution stayed the same
The insiders always stay in power because news of this important meeting is always kept a big secret from any county Democrat who is not a party insider. This deliberate disenfranchisement of county Democrats of their right to meaningfully participate
…continue reading the article The MCDP Is Disenfranchising County Democrats Of Their Right To Vote For New MCDP Leadership
Our South of Dayton Democratic Club meeting last night revealed a big disagreement — not only within our club but within the Democratic Party as a whole. The disagreement boils down to this: Should our club and should our party operate according to a democratic organizational structure or according to a hierarchical / boss centered structure?
During the meeting last night, I was reiterating the thoughts in my e-mail to members from the previous day (copied below) urging that as a club we find delegates to the June, 2014, Montgomery County Democratic Party (MCDP) Reorganization Meeting who will vote for new
…continue reading the article Disagreement In Local Dem Club Mirrors The Conflict Within The Montgomery County Democratic Party
Representative Jim Butler (OHD-41)— picture taken at Panera’s at Town and Country
Last Friday, January 10, I met for coffee with Republican Jim Butler, my Ohio House District 41 representative. And, after what was a generous amount of time for discussion, I was surprised that we kept going. We had an extended talk and a lot of agreement.
My goal in meeting Mr. Butler was not to get all the details of his votes in the Ohio House that I disagree with, but, to attempt to develop an understanding with Mr. Butler that might be a basis for working together to
…continue reading the article At My Meeting With Representative Jim Butler, OHD-41, We Discuss And Agree On Four Non-Partisan Goals
Jim Butler, Representative for OHD41 — including Riverside, Oakwood, Kettering, and Centerville.
In a recent DDN article, “Lawmaker’s Military Claims Questioned,”reporter Laura Bischoff quotes several military officers who charge that the biography of representative for Ohio House District 41, Jim Butler, exaggerates and misrepresents his military service.
The disputed sentence in the House biography of Butler is this: “Representative Butler served in the United States Navy as fighter pilot, flying the F-14 Tomcat.” But according to Bischoff, “Butler said that after nine months of training flights on the F-14, a medical condition became apparent and he was grounded from flying in 1999
…continue reading the article Did DDN’s Questioning Of Rep. Jim Butler’s Military Bio Stem From A GOP In-Fight To Choose A New Speaker?