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Letter: It started with Reagan


Thursday, August 09, 2018

Donald Trump is not responsible for the turmoil roiling our land. He has, however, taken full advantage of the underlying theme which, in a way, paved the way for his ascendancy. The tipping point came with the election of Ronald Reagan in 1981. It was during Reagan’s presidency that fundamental changes in governmental policy were initiated. Of considerable importance were the changes in tax policy.

In a nutshell, much of the tax bill was gradually and cleverly transferred from the wealthy to the middle class and those living in poverty.

Over the years this has caused the relative quality of life for middle-class folks to deteriorate. That, in turn, has fostered feelings of frustration and resentment. Trump’s genius is found in his exploitation of those negative feelings.

When one considers the things that motivate responsible citizens in a democracy, fear and resentment are not desirable traits. When almost 50 percent of the electorate does not even vote, when a majority of high school seniors do not know the three branches of government and when many acquire their understanding of events from social media, the basis of government “by the people” has been seriously compromised.

The wealthy elites move in and assume control. The goal of this wealthy elite is that of acquiring more power through the acquisition of more wealth.

Is it not possible that Shakespeare predicted this future when he wrote “the fault, dear Brutus, lies not in the stars, but in ourselves that we are underlings”?

DOUG LOWE

Concord