Thousands demand that the rich pay their share

Thousands are taking to the streets tomorrow, Apr. 17, to kick off a nationwide campaign to stop corporations and the super wealthy from gaming the tax system at the expense of the vast majority.

The outpouring of demonstrators will follow today’s debate in the U.S. Senate over the “Buffet Rule,” which would require multimillionaires to pay at least as high a tax rate as their secretaries and the cleaning staff in their offices.

The demonstrations will be at banks that have spent billions of dollars lobbying to keep tax rates down for the wealthiest Americans. For a list of demonstrations initiated by local labor unions, click here:

Many of the tax day demonstrations will deal specifically with corporations that hide their wealth overseas to avoid paying taxes at home. Demonstrators will mass outside Veterans’ hospitals, for example, to draw attention to vital services they say are being cut in order to pay for losses to the government treasury that result from failure to pay taxes by big companies.

Many of the actions will be organized by allies of the labor movement. For locations of demonstrations organized by click here:

Demonstrators are also planning to mass in front of the offices of members of Congress who voted for the Republican budget plan. That plan would further cut taxes for the wealthy by an average of $150,000 per year. Senators who vote today against the Buffet Rule will be added to the list of those who can expect demonstrators to show up at their offices tomorrow.

Demonstrators will use a variety of techniques to dramatize their cause. Many of them learned how to use these techniques in special 99 percent Spring training sessions held from one end of the country to the other.

In Los Angeles, for example, their will be a downtown “tour” of corporate tax dodgers with thousands marching from place to place in the financial district, “stopping off” at the offices of various tax dodgers.

In New York thousands of demonstrators will give postcards with a penny taped onto them to representatives of Verizon, General Electric and other corporations, the message being, “Today, we are giving you money. We are giving you more money than what you paid in taxes last year!”

In Denver demonstators wearing chicken suits will protest cutbacks in meat inspection in the name of budget cuts they will say would not happen if the rich paid their fair share in taxes.

Photo: Tony Pecinovsky/PW



John Wojcik
John Wojcik

John Wojcik started as labor editor of the People's World in May, 2007 after working as a union meat cutter in northern New Jersey. There he served as a shop steward, as a member of a UFCW contract negotiating committee, and as an activist in the union's campaign to win public support for Wal-Mart workers. In the 1970s and '80s he was a political action reporter for the Daily World, this newspaper's predecessor, and active in electoral politics in Brooklyn, New York. Along with being labor editor, Wojcik is a co-editor of