All that glitters

Director of Hominoid Publications (

By now you’ve received your letter from the IRS informing you of the glorious tax rebate you’ll be getting courtesy of George W. Bush, or possibly the check itself. My wife and I have no wish to benefit from any of this man’s ridiculous policies, so we’ve decided to join what The Nation is calling the “rebate rebels,” and use ours to fight back.

At first we were contemplating some symbolic act such as sending $600 worth of manure to the White House, but on further reflection we concluded that the most effective thing would be to donate the money to one of the many organizations that are working to thwart Bush’s reactionary agenda (see for a list of suggestions).

It’s not just that the tax cut is unfair and irresponsible. The really sinister thing is that the Bush administration hasn’t even bothered to figure out how it’s going to cover the lost revenue over the next few years.

If nothing else, this may prove that Bush is not a total idiot after all, as even a total idiot would be able to see that if you slash your own budget without considering how this is going to affect spending, there’s going to be trouble. This is so transparently obvious that I can only conclude the whole thing is deliberate.

The explanation, of course, is that the Bush administration is packed with corporate goons who resent any interference with their obscene profits, and will resort to any means to impede the government’s ability to enforce regulations protecting the environment, workers’ rights and the like. Despite all this nonsense they’re passing around about “jump-starting the economy,” the tax cut is ultimately intended as an act of sabotage.

We need to remember that in a democracy, the government, whatever its inefficiencies, is us. When I pay my taxes each year, I understand that I am (in theory, at least) making a contribution to the common good. By returning our tax money to us, Bush and his cronies are seeking to limit our influence over the affairs of our own country.

But we do have the money. There are any number of organizations out there working to stop this administration from turning the United States into a corporate fundamentalist gulag, so it seems appropriate to donate it to one of them. If Bush doesn’t want to use our money for the common good, we’ll find someone else who will.