The Hidden Manifestos

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Much of the media coverage online, in print and broadcast has focused on the razmatazz of the party conventions and the soap opera dramatics surrounding their characters. What has been largely missed out has been a critique of their economic policies. The New Yorker magazine has posted an outline of George Bush’s tax policy here. It reads like an unfettered neo-conservative text without any of the social conscience aspect to taxation and government that we have come to expect from the social democratic parties that govern Europe. In addition to benefiting the very rich and adversely affecting the poor and the elderly, the cuts proposed will hollow out the middle classes. What they gain in tax cuts, they will more than lose in increased health insurance, pension allowances, education fees and social security insurance. As many political analysts will tell you, the health and stability of a country depends on an economically strong, vibrant and numerous middle class.

More than its domestic implications to all strata of society, it will also help increase the cultural and political gap between Europe and the United States.