by Max Brantley
Stein, unlike some Republicans, is concerned about the federal deficit, mounting debt, trade deficits and the deteriorating quality of federal bonds. Context: talk of another tax cut for the rich through elimination or drastic reduction of the estate tax. Says Stein, in a letter to the new Treasury secretary:
May I respectfully suggest that in this environment, ending the estate tax is not a major sensible priority? May I suggest that having the lowest taxes in 65 years on high-income taxpayers is not really as prudent as it might be if we were not running stupendous deficits, with far worse in the future?
I know you are a Republican, and so am I. Now and then, scornful fellow Republicans ask me what kind of Republican I am, since I'm for higher taxes on the rich. I tell them that I am an Eisenhower Republican, the kind who wants to leave a healthier America to posterity. That includes an economy not headed for the status of a banana republic's economy.