To the editor:
The old saying which used to be said as a joke is actually a reality: "The rich are getting richer and the poor are getting poorer." Census figures show that, in the past 30 years, income for the top 1 percent has risen 240 percent while the remaining 99 percent has remained the same.
This change may have been subtle in the past, but the erosion of the Republican Party by huge corporate interests has now made it unmistakable. The onslaught is now intense.
1. Republican Speaker of the House Paul Ryan in his budget plan wants to privatize Medicare. All your premium money would go to Wall Street. Which do you think would take precedence, treatment for Aunt Jane's stroke or the CEO's bonus for keeping healthcare "costs" down?
2. Republicans in Congress begrudge middle-class workers a payroll tax cut, while fighting furiously to keep a tax cut given to the ultra-wealthy by George W. Bush (Republican) rather than let it revert to the previous level.
3. Republican governors, such as our own Tom Corbett, have pledged in writing to Grover Norquist, a Republican operative, that they will not raise taxes under any circumstances. (Norquist's motive is to deny government money so it cannot function properly.) With weaker government, guess who controls more of our life - wealthy corporations. The Grover Norquist pledges sound illegal in that an elected official has openly pledged allegiance to something that may interfere with his official responsibilities. This makes it clear why Pennsylvania is the only state with no extraction tax for Marcellus Shale.
There are many more examples, but the theme is the same. Put more burden on middle and lower income people, while giving more to those who have more wealth than they can spend in a lifetime.
The Republican Party is not working for you if you are an ordinary American.