Isn't it interesting the difference 100 years can make? "Soak the rich" was the popular slogan used by those who promoted the ratification of the 16th Amendment. The paradox with today is that two Republican presidents and a Republican Congress promoted and passed the resolution that brought about the 16th Amendment and a shift from tariffs as a source of income for the federal government to the federal income tax.

When it was ratified in 1913, Congress passed the first income tax law as we know it today. In its application only the top 1 percent paid this first income tax. The bottom 99 percent were shielded from this tax by an income exemption.

Contrast this with today's Republican Party that seems fixed on shielding the super rich from federal taxes. A hundred years ago we had a Republican Party that was progressive and pursued policies that benefited the nation as a whole. Today, we have a Republican Party that pursues policies that just benefit the few.

Steve Balckham