You built a factory out there? Good for you. But I want to be clear: you moved your goods to market on the roads the rest of us paid for; you hired workers the rest of us paid to educate; you were safe in your factory because of police forces and fire forces that the rest of us paid for. You didn’t have to worry that marauding bands would come and seize everything at your factory, and hire someone to protect against this, because of the work the rest of us did.
Now look, you built a factory and it turned into something terrific, or a great idea? God bless. Keep a big hunk of it. But part of the underlying social contract is you take a hunk of that and pay forward for the next kid who comes along.
That’s part of Elizabeth Warren’s terrific speech below explaining why it’s completely ridiculous Big Industry can get away without paying any taxes while the rest of the country suffers. It’s also a response to the GOP’s quick efforts to protect millionaires and billionaires from the more fair tax structure Obama is insisting on in a debt deal (rather than cutting more social services, clean air and clean water protections, disaster relief, climate change protection, and so on).
While the Obama administration is doing decent work on this, Warren’s speech really nails it. Here it is in full:
Now, who is Elizabeth Warren?
Here are some details from Wikipedia:
Elizabeth Warren (born Elizabeth Herring; June 22, 1949) is an American attorney, law professor, and United States Senate candidate. She served as Assistant to the President and Special Advisor to the Secretary of the Treasury for the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau. She is also the Leo Gottlieb Professor of Law at Harvard Law School, where she has taught contract law, bankruptcy, and commercial law. In the wake of the 2008-2011 financial crisis, she became the chair of the Congressional Oversight Panel created to oversee the U.S. banking bailout (formally known as the Troubled Assets Relief Program). She long advocated for the creation of a new Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, which was established by the Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act signed into law by President Barack Obama on July 21, 2010. As the special advisor she worked on implementation of the CFPB.
On May 24, 2010, Time magazine called Warren, Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation Chairman Sheila Bair, and Securities and Exchange Commission Chairman Mary Schapiro the “New Sheriffs of Wall Street” in a cover story. On September 17, 2010, she was named a special adviser by President Obama to oversee the development of the new Consumer Financial Protection Bureau. The position included the responsibility of recommending a director for this new entity. She was not chosen for the post, with Obama instead nominating Richard Cordray, subject to Congressional approval.
On September 14, 2011, she announced that she would be running for the Massachusetts United States Senate seat currently held by Republican Scott Brown.
Good luck to her in Massachusetts! You know we all need people more like her in office (and less like Scott Brown).
Image Credit: Congressional Oversight Panel