George W. Bush flew into Lexington Oct. 9 to raise money for Ernie Fletcher, his faithful ally in Congress. He did not speak in public, but rather to a select audience of donors who had arrived at Heritage Hall in a stream of luxury sedans, doing their best to ignore hundreds of picketers along the streets. To his invited guests Bush proclaimed that "The true strength of this country is the heart of the American people. We're a compassionate, decent nation." Presumably, he saw himself as an embodiment of American decency and compassion. A few simple statistics demonstrate that he is nothing of the kind. He is instead the servant of a wealthy ruling class who are happy to donate huge sums to the Republican Party in exchange for massive tax cuts and other favors.
In the United States, the richest 1 percent of households own 38 percent of all wealth. The top 5 percent own more than half, and the top 20 percent own more than 80 percent of American wealth. One third of the $726 billion dollar tax cut Bush wants for this year would go to the top 1 percent, over half of it would go to the top 5 percent, and three fourths ($545 billion) to the wealthiest 20 percent. The bottom 60 percent of households will get 8 percent.