The “Big Lie” has been most closely associated with the Nazis' incessant propaganda campaign about an international Jewish “war of annihilation” against Germany, a campaign that brought the totalitarian Nazi regime to power and paved the way for the Holocaust. In assessing Adolph Hitler’s psyche, the U. S. Office of Strategic Services reported,
His primary rules were: never allow the public to cool off; never admit a fault or wrong; never concede that there may be some good in your enemy; never leave room for alternatives; never accept blame; concentrate on one enemy at a time and blame him for everything that goes wrong; people will believe a big lie sooner than a little one; and if you repeat it frequently enough people will sooner or later believe it.
Sound like anyone you know?
On Nov. 22, Donald Trump declared, “We’re going to give the American people a huge tax cut for Christmas … a great big, beautiful Christmas present.” This is one among many lies Trump has bleated about the tax cut -- a con job designed to appeal to Americans who struggle to make ends meet, whether they be unemployed or underemployed, the elderly, working or middle class, or poor. In reality, the Trump/Republican Party tax cut, whatever final form it takes, is a pack of lies and distortions designed to further enrich the wealthiest Americans and solidify the takeover of our government by corporate wealth.
What makes this a Big Lie is its repetition over a period of 35 years of “supply-side economics,” years marked by an unprecedented upward redistribution of income and wealth and the growth of staggering inequality.
We know the wealthy are the chief beneficiaries of this tax cut. According to the Tax Policy Center, the top 1 percent receive 34 percent of the corporate tax cut benefit, and the top 20 percent receive 70 percent of the benefit. Eliminating the estate tax only benefits those individuals with wealth exceeding $5 million ($10 million for married couples). Eliminating the alternative minimum tax gets rid of the very tax created to prevent the wealthy from getting away with paying no taxes at all. If it were removed in 2015, for example, Donald Trump would have been $31 million richer and taxed at 3.5 percent. By contrast, according to the Center for Budget and Policy Priorities, those with incomes below $75,000 will be paying higher taxes by 2027.
The only possible legitimation for such a blatantly inequitable tax is the claim that cutting taxes on corporations and the wealthy will produce investment and job growth; not surprisingly Trump claims the tax cut will produce 10.5 percent growth in GDP over 10 years. By contrast, the Urban/Brookings Tax Policy Center predicts 0.3 percent growth over 10 years. When the non-partisan Congressional Research Services tracked tax rates from 1945 to 2010, they found that cutting the top tax rates had no positive effect on economic growth or the growth of savings, investment or productivity. Corporate CEOs themselves have acknowledged that they would use new revenue to buy back shares, retire debt, and issue shareholder dividends – i.e., benefiting Wall Street and its clients, not Main Street where we live and work.