The Socialist Speaks

by Norman Horowitz

In the early ’90s, I was forced by the management of MGM to make draconian cuts in our overhead. Management then wanted us to accelerate payments from our customers by offering them a discount. They went nuts when I told them that almost all of the people who could do that had been terminated.

At Columbia Pictures, I was asked to present an operating budget with a 15% contingent reduction. I sent it to them along with a reduction of our sales. They went nuts and told me they only wanted to reduce overhead, not sales.

Welcome to America, where our politicians believe that they can take out a red pencil and cut spending without a concomitant effect on our citizens.  

From the New York Times:

General Electric…reported worldwide profits of $14.2 billion, and said $5.1 billion of the total came from its operations in the United States.

Its American tax bill? None. In fact, G.E. claimed a tax benefit of $3.2 billion.

I have a few questions that I’d like to ask of conservative Republicans.

Do you believe that every man and woman should have a job if they wish to work, and the compensation for that job should allow them to live decently?

Do you support the notion that rich people should be able to have much more money than poor people?

Do you support the notion that we must protect our environment as much as is possible and reasonable?

Do you believe that every person should have the right to a proper education, with no child left behind, and no young adult left behind either?

Do you believe that, as one of the richest countries of the world, every person should have health care?

Do you believe that we should not go to war as casually as we have in the past, and we must protect ourselves from atrocities like the Gulf of Tonkin Resolution and the WMD misleads that took our country to war?

Do you believe that men should be able to marry other men, and women should be able to marry other women?

Do you believe that we must ban the possession of assault weapons?

Do you believe we must keep the government out of as many things as possible?

Do you believe that, when Congress passes a Medicare drug bill, it must allow the government to negotiate for the lowest possible price for these drugs?

Do you believe that the government should stop encouraging the process of industry consolidation and that anti-trust laws need to be expanded and enforced?

Do you believe that gigantic self-serving companies should control the media?

Do you believe that we must break up the media holdings of General Electric, Viacom/CBS, News Corp, The Walt Disney Company, and Time/Warner?

Do you believe that we must find a way to reduce the influence of lobbyists?

Do you believe we must accept that there will be terrorist attacks?  Do you believe that we must not allow our constitution to be shredded in the pursuit of preventing this?

Do you believe it’s disingenuous to speak of “savings,” rather than refer to them as “cuts,” without any reference to their impact  on our nation? Well, I do.