SPECIAL REPORT: "Tortured Logic: McGovern talks about Gina Haspel, the new CIA director"

The Resistance Round Table panel interviews former CIA analyst Ray McGovern about Gina Haspel, the new CIA director who oversaw torture after 9/11. The conversation includes discussion of the U.S. as an 'out law state,' American exceptionalism and the fight to defend net neutrality. Panel: Scott Harris, Ruthanne Baumgartner and Richard Hill (49:08) May 23, 2018

SPECIAL REPORT: "MIT Students' 'Day of Action': Understanding and Resisting Attacks on Immigrants"

Three-part excerpts from Avi Chomsky's presentations at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology's Day of Action on April 17. Includes a historical perspective as well as a question and answer session with immigrants. Recorded and produced by Chuck Rosina, long-time public affairs and news producer at WMBR FM, the Massachusetts Institute of Technology's radio station in Cambridge, Massachusetts. April 17, 2018

SPECIAL REPORT: "MIT Students' 'Day of Action' Takes On Today's Political, Economic Challenges"

Chuck Rosina's report on the Massachusetts Institute of Technology's Day of Action on April 17, where members of the MIT and broader local community were given an opportunity to devote the day to engaging with the political, economic, environmental and social challenges facing us today, through learning, discussion, reflection and planning for action. Includes comments from Avi Chomsky, daughter of the renowned professor Noam Chomsky (12:58) April 17, 2018

SPECIAL REPORT: "Response to chemical attack in Syria – The priority must be the people"

The Resistance Roundtable panel discusses the U.S. missile strikes on Damascus and interviews Stan Heller from Promoting Enduring Peace ( the situation in Syria and the broader Middle East. Panel: Ruthanne Baumgartner, Scott Harris and Richard Hill. April 14, 2018

SPECIAL REPORT: "What's next for the youth movement against gun violence?"

Tyler Suarez, lead organizer of the March for Our Lives demo in Hartford, CT on March 24, assesses the event attended by 10,000 and discusses the agenda for the youth movement going forward. Interviewed by Richard Hill.

SPECIAL REPORT: "March for Our Lives - Hartford, Connecticut" March 24, 2018

Selected speeches from the March for Our Lives in Hartford, Connecticut, recorded and produced by Scott Harris

Panel Discussion: Privatization v. Public Good and the Upcoming March for Our Lives on March 24

SPECIAL REPORT: Organized Labor: Resurgent or On the Ropes?

SPECIAL REPORT: Neoliberalism Comes Home: Connecticut's Water Under Privatization Threat

SPECIAL REPORT: Can There Be Food Justice Under Capitalism?

SPECIAL REPORT: Resistance Round Table – Feb. 10, 2018

Award-winning Investigative Journalist Robert Parry (1949-2018)

Award-winning investigative journalist and founder/editor of, Robert Parry has passed away. His ground-breaking work uncovering Reagan-era dirty wars in Central America and many other illegal and immoral policies conducted by successive administrations and U.S. intelligence agencies, stands as an inspiration to all in journalists working in the public interest.

Robert had been a regular guest on our Between The Lines and Counterpoint radio shows -- and many other progressive outlets across the U.S. over four decades.

His penetrating analysis of U.S. foreign policy and international conflicts will be sorely missed, and not easily replaced. His son Nat Parry writes a tribute to his father: Robert Parry’s Legacy and the Future of Consortiumnews.

Thank you for donating

If you've made a donation and wish to receive thank you gifts for your donation, be sure to send us your mailing address via our Contact form.

See our thank you gifts for your donation.

The Resistance Starts Now!

Between The Lines' coverage and resource compilation of the Resistance Movement

SPECIAL REPORT: "The Resistance - Women's March 2018 - Hartford, Connecticut" Jan. 20, 2018

Selected speeches from the Women's March in Hartford, Connecticut 2018, recorded and produced by Scott Harris

SPECIAL REPORT: "No Fracking Waste in CT!" Jan. 14, 2018

SPECIAL REPORT: "Resistance Round Table: The Unraveling Continues..." Jan. 13, 2018

SPECIAL REPORT: "Capitalism to the ash heap?" Richard Wolff, Jan. 2, 2018

SPECIAL REPORT: Maryn McKenna, author of "Big Chicken", Dec. 7, 2017

SPECIAL REPORT: Nina Turner's address, Working Families Party Awards Banquet, Dec. 14, 2017

SPECIAL REPORT: Mic Check, Dec. 12, 2017

SPECIAL REPORT: Resistance Roundtable, Dec. 9, 2017

SPECIAL REPORT: On Tyranny - one year later, Nov. 28, 2017

SPECIAL REPORT: Mic Check, Nov. 12, 2017

SPECIAL REPORT: Resistance Roundtable, Nov. 11, 2017

SPECIAL REPORT: Rainy Day Radio, Nov. 7, 2017

SPECIAL REPORT: Rainy Day Radio, Nov. 7, 2017

SPECIAL REPORT: Resisting U.S. JeJu Island military base in South Korea, Oct. 24, 2017

SPECIAL REPORT: John Allen, Out in New Haven

2017 Gandhi Peace Awards

Promoting Enduring Peace presented its Gandhi Peace Award jointly to renowned consumer advocate Ralph Nader and BDS founder Omar Barghouti on April 23, 2017.

Subscribe to our Weekly Summary & receive our FREE Resist Trump window cling

resist (Car window cling)

Email us with your mailing address at to receive our "Resist Trump/Resist Hate" car window cling!


who helped make our 25th anniversary with Jeremy Scahill a success!

For those who missed the event, or were there and really wanted to fully absorb its import, here it is in video

Jeremy Scahill keynote speech, part 1 from PROUDEYEMEDIA on Vimeo.

Jeremy Scahill keynote speech, part 2 from PROUDEYEMEDIA on Vimeo.

Between The Lines on Stitcher


Between The Lines Presentation at the Left Forum 2016

"How Do We Build A Mass Movement to Reverse Runaway Inequality?" with Les Leopold, author of "Runaway Inequality: An Activist's Guide to Economic Justice,"May 22, 2016, John Jay College of Criminal Justice, The City University of New York, 860 11th Ave. (Between 58th and 59th), New York City. Between The Lines' Scott Harris and Richard Hill moderated this workshop. Listen to the audio/slideshows and more from this workshop.

Listen to audio of the plenary sessions from the weekend.

JEREMY SCAHILL: Oscar-nominated documentary filmmaker "Dirty Wars"

Listen to the full interview (30:33) with Jeremy Scahill, an award-winning investigative journalist with the Nation Magazine, correspondent for Democracy Now! and author of the bestselling book, "Blackwater: The Rise of the World's Most Powerful Mercenary Army," about America's outsourcing of its military. In an exclusive interview with Counterpoint's Scott Harris on Sept. 16, 2013, Scahill talks about his latest book, "Dirty Wars, The World is a Battlefield," also made into a documentary film under the same title, and was nominated Dec. 5, 2013 for an Academy Award in the Best Documentary Feature category.

Listen to Scott Harris Live on WPKN Radio

Between The Lines' Executive Producer Scott Harris hosts a live, weekly talk show, Counterpoint, from which some of Between The Lines' interviews are excerpted. Listen every Monday evening from 8 to 10 p.m. EDT at (Follows the 5-7 minute White Rose Calendar.)

Counterpoint in its entirety is archived after midnight ET Monday nights, and is available for at least a year following broadcast in WPKN Radio's Archives.

You can also listen to full unedited interview segments from Counterpoint, which are generally available some time the day following broadcast.

Subscribe to Counterpoint bulletins via our subscriptions page.

Between The Lines Blog  BTL Blog

"The Rogue World Order: Connecting the Dots Between Trump, Flynn, Bannon, Spencer, Dugin Putin," by Anna Manzo (GlobalHealing), Daily Kos, Feb. 13, 2017

"Widespread Resistance Begins to Trump's Muslim Travel Ban at U.S. Airports," by Anna Manzo (GlobalHealing), Daily Kos, Jan. 28, 2017

"MSNBC Editor: Women's March is a Revival of the Progressive Movement," by Anna Manzo (GlobalHealing), Daily Kos, Jan. 24, 2017

"Cornering Trump," by Reginald Johnson, Jan. 19, 2017

"Free Leonard Peltier," by Reginald Johnson, Jan. 6, 2016

"For Natives, a "Day of Mourning"by Reginald Johnson, November 23, 2016

"A Bitter Harvest" by Reginald Johnson, Nov. 15, 2016

Special Programming Special Programming

[an error occurred while processing this directive]

Between The Lines Progressive Resources

A compilation of activist and news sites with a progressive point of view

Share this content:


Podcasts Subscribe to BTL

Podcasts:  direct  or  via iTunes

Subscribe to Program Summaries, Interview Transcripts or Counterpoint via email or RSS feed

If you have other questions regarding subscriptions, feeds or podcasts/mp3s go to our Audio Help page.

Between The Lines Blog

Stay connected to BTL

RSS feed  twitter  facebook

donate  Learn how to support our efforts!

Trump "Tax Reform" Plan Revives Voodoo Economics

Posted May 3, 2017

MP3 Interview with Matthew Gardner, senior fellow at the Institute on Taxation and Economic Policy, conducted by Scott Harris


On April 26, just a few days short of President Trump’s 100th day in office, a so-called “tax reform” plan was released by the White House that consisted of bullet points on a single printed page. Although there were few details on implementation and the net impact on families and federal revenue, it was clear that the tax plan would disproportionately benefit the wealthiest Americans, like Trump himself and the billionaire and multi-millionaire members of his Cabinet.

As his tax plan was rolled out, Trump boasted that this would be the largest tax cut in U.S. history, even larger than that signed into law by Ronald Reagan in 1981. Overall, the plan proposes a massive reduction in taxes for the nation’s richest individuals, including a drop in the top individual tax rate from 39.6 percent to 35 percent, repeal of the estate tax and alternative minimum tax, designed to ensure that the wealthiest pay their fair share, and elimination of the tax linked to the Affordable Care for those individuals making over $200,000 annually. Importantly, the plan also oproposes to reduce the top corporate tax rate from 35 percent to 15 percent.

Although Trump and his advisors maintain that the tax cuts would pay for themselves by promoting economic growth, history has shown that so-called “Trickle-down” economic theory has never worked, leading many economists to predict that Trump’s tax plan would add as much as $7 trillion in debt over 10 years. Between The Lines’ Scott Harris spoke with Matthew Gardner, a Senior Fellow at the Institute on Taxation and Economic Policy, who talks about why his group views Trump’s tax plan as a revival of “Voodoo Economics.”

MATTHEW GARDNER: There are a lot more blanks in this plan than there are specifics. But, I guess the shortest way to describe it is to say that the Trump administration has been very specific about the easy part of tax reform. How far they're gonna cut the rates down to 35 percent on the individual side, and an incredibly low 15 percent on the corporate side. They're going to repeat the estate tax. They're going to repeal the high income Medicaid tax that's part of Obamacare. They're going to repeal the alternative minimum tax which tries to make sure that the best-off Americans pay their fair share.

What they won't say is how going to pay for a lot of this. And so based on a very preliminary estimate of what's been specified, we think this amounts to a very large tax cut on the order of $7 trillion-plus over the next decade and one that will lavish almost half of its benefits on the very best-off one percent of Americans.

BETWEEN THE LINES: The justification for this kind of tax plan that would disproportionately benefit the wealthiest Americans is that – and we know this from back in the Reagan era – it was pitched as a way to get to economic growth and the deficits would disappear because this tax plan through the growth, woulud pay for itself. Matthew, can you explain to our listeners the track record of this so-called "trickle-down theory" that has been a real standard part of the Republican agenda for decades now. What do we know about the veracity of trickle-down economics?

MATTHEW GARDNER: Well, a lot of economist and a lot of other people have tried to tell a compelling story about how tax rates drive economic growth and as you mentioned, the Reagan tax cut experiment of 1981 is sort of the pioneer in that. But no on has ever shown any relationship at all between cutting taxes and economic growth. And there's a pretty good reason for that historically. A couple, actually. One is that we all know, upon reflection, that taxes aren't levied for the sake of having tax revenue. They're there because taxes provide the services that make civilization. What that means is that in a deficit-funded environment, which is of course what we've had for the last 40-odd years on and off, anytime you cut taxes by a billion dollars, or a trillion dollars, that's a billion dollars that has to be paid for. It could be paid for by hiking other taxes – that's a lot of what happened after Reagan's 1981 tax cuts, for example. It could be paid for by cutting spending across the board in a way that no one wants to see. Either of those situations where the other shoe falls after your original tax cut is actually going to hurt the economy, taken on its own.

BETWEEN THE LINES: Well Matthew, just time for one more question here. I wonder if you could tell our audience about your views on the link between U.S. federal tax policy and growing income inequality in this country. And then, a second part of that question would be, "What would be a simple way to explain how our tax policy could be shifted to reverse that many-decade long trend to really push this inequality pattern in a different direction?"

MATTHEW GARDNER: What's happened in the last 30 years is that there's been an erosion in the fairness of our tax system. It used to be substantially more progressive. We've seen cuts in the estate tax. We've seen major cuts in the capital gains tax. Top income tax rates have gone and up again. There are now tax breaks for dividends. There are tax breaks for all sorts of corporate activities: investing in manufacturing and fossil fuels and alternative fuels. All of which have basically cut in half the yield of the corporate tax, which is generally thought to be the most progressive, one of the progressive taxes out there. The result is that we've seen a gradual shift in the tax load away from the best-off Americans and onto middle- and low-income Americans. What's happening when you do that is that you're actually redistributing income away from the poor towards the rich. Just absolutely the converse of what you hear with these claims of socialism. Through that lens, the remedy is pretty clear. Let's preserve the estate tax, not cut it. Let's get rid of capital gains tax breaks - let's make sure capital gains are taxed the same way as wages, as Warren Buffett has been arguing for years. Let's make sure that the corporate tax loopholes are gone, that all corporate income is treated the same way.

These are of course, the exactly the opposite things, as what Trump is proposing. In fact, he said nothing about closing corporate loopholes, hasn't named a single one. Wants to repeal the estate tax. He's doing nothing to remedy the gaps in capital gains and which sharply reduce taxes on the best off. So it's important to be clear. The Trump tax plan as we understand it right now, would be redistributive. It would redistribute income away from the poorest 99 percent towards the top 1 percent.

Related Links:

Subscribe and get Between The Lines' Weekly Summary in your inbox!