I never worked for a poor man. That’s right, I don’t believe I ever worked for a poor man. Every business I worked for was owned and/or operated by someone who was better off financially than me.

Did I resent that? No, not really. I always wanted to make more than I was being paid, however, that wasn’t up to me in the final say. I could stay, or leave, or take a chance and start my own business.

So like many millions of other Americans, I trudged along, paycheck to paycheck, my wife and I trying to keep our heads above water and trying to get ahead just a little at a time, increasing our standard of living. It was hard work. Buying used cars for cash we saved so not to have car payments, searching the grocery ads for sales and planning meals for two weeks in advance. If I got sick or injured, boy that really put a hole in the budget.

At age 35, I got a big break. I beat out a lot of people in landing a job with the U.S. Postal Service. It didn’t make me rich, but it guaranteed our family a steady income with benefits, and definitely increased our standard of living.

I realize that some wealthy people inherited their wealth, but most have worked hard, made sacrifices and taken chances to build a business and make it successful. Just like me, these wealthy people have a standard of living, although that standard far exceeds ours. Fancy homes, cars, boats, vacations, etc. I don’t resent that because the people who build those fancy homes, cars, boats and other things have jobs depending on those wealthy people to buy those products.

Now the part that most don’t understand. Those wealthy people who enjoy that lavish standard of living definitely want to keep it. Just like me and my family, they don’t want that standard to go down. When people start whining and complaining about the rich not paying enough taxes, the political pundits step in and start ranting about “tax the rich, tax the rich”!

If the wealthy pay more taxes, then they might very well spend a lot less on those fancy things. There goes some good jobs. Then tax their business and corporations, and they will start cutting back on hiring, and in most cases, start laying off workers. More jobs gone. If you mess with their “standard of living” that they want to keep, they will do whatever they have to do to keep things the same for themselves.

So if you think that taxing the wealthy will hurt them, I don’t believe it will. They will still be wealthy, but a lot of middle class and poor workers will be without jobs.

Dan R. Clark

Walla Walla