Issue:  Fair & Effective Taxes

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Corporateering, How Corporate Power Steals Your Personal Freedom...and What You Can Do About It

The Bush Tax Increase by Center for American Progress

Greed by Eric Von Stroheim

Eric Von Stroheim's classic movie "Greed", 1924

Tax Benefits & Responsible Government

Position statement:  Democrats believe that taxes should be fair and provide a tangible benefit to every American.  We believe that taxpayers have the right to a responsible government that budgets, spends and invests wisely on their behalf. 

By contrast, radical Republicans believe that the best government tax system is one that is bankrupt for our family's needs and open for business, including near zero taxes and no-bid contracts, for huge corporations.

Make "frame sandwiches" using any of these values:



  • Health

  • Protection

  • Security

  • Wealth

  • Safety

  • Opportunity

  • Spirituality

  • Community

  • Patriotism

Repeat these ready-made frames:   "Tax Cuts for the Conservative Elite"; "Taxes are investments"; "Tax dividends"; "Tax Justice"; "Put Kids First"
Use these themes:   Taxes pay benefits (dividends); Taxes are patriotic (they make America strong); Strength; Health; Safety; Opportunity, Fairness, Value
Reframe using these concepts:  Taxes are investments in our future; Taxes pay dividends, Taxes buy benefits; Taxes are the dues we pay to live good in this Country; Democrats give you more bang for your buck; Democrats are responsible money managers; Democrats are thrifty with a buck; Taxes power our Country (forward); Radical Republicans believe that some people are better than others, that some people deserve more.

Irresponsible tax-cuts mortgage our children's future; Tax cuts shift the tax burden to the middle class; The rich get richer at our expense;  No taxes? No services; Weak taxes—weak Country; Fat cats don't want to pay their fair share; "Enforce Corporate Patriotism"; "Fight Corporate Tax Dodgers"; Corporations given free-ride on your back; You pay more taxes than WalMart; Federal tax cuts raise your taxes — higher state taxes and bigger fees for everything from hunting licenses to bridge tolls; tax cuts spell disaster (firing teachers, releasing convicts early, drop in our health, safety and welfare); unfair to let corporations use what our taxes pay for (roads, banking system, scientific innovations, etc);

Contrast using these words:  Radical "Robber Baron Republicans"; Irresponsible "Credit Card Republicans"; Reckless "Borrow and Spend Republicans"; "Red Ink Republicans"; "Pirates of Irresponsibility"; "Corporate Gravy Train"; 
Avoid repeating these words:  tax "relief" reframe to "tax investments"
Know the tools in the radical Republican tool chest:  

1.  The Environment (original Luntz framing memo); 

2.  Privatizing Clean Water
     (PDF.  Luntz memo revealing that corporate control of clean water is on the to-do list);

3.  The Orwellian Language of Big Government by the National Taxpayers Union;

4.  The Radical Republican Manifesto: The Integration of Theory and Practice: A Program for the New Traditionalist Movement by Eric Heubeck;

5.  Frank Luntz Republican Playbook — Searchable Text-Version;

6. "14 Words Never to Use"

Quick facts* (statistics reflect Bush Administration pro-polluter environmental policy): 
  1. What our taxes buy — military defense, schools, roads and infrastructure, banking system, medical breakthroughs, the Internet, police and fire responders, clean air and water, recreation, libraries, —list more—


Communicating on Taxes and Budgets, Frameworks Institute

Positive Frames for Taxes, Rockridge Institute

The Great Tax Shift, Center for American Progress

60% of U.S. Corporations Pay No Taxes, Citizens for Tax Justice

Corporate Tax Dodgers, Citizen Works




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