George Graham

Chastising us with Scorpions


Whereas my father loaded you with a heavy yoke, I will add to your yoke; my father chastised you with whips, but I will chastise you with scorpions.

That’s what the Biblical ruler Rehoboam promised the Israelites. And that’s what the Republicans who control America’s government plan to do to us. But they aren’t as honest as Rehoboam. They pretend they’re doing it for our own good.

The tax reform bill approved by the House yesterday spells out a vicious assault on Americans, especially on the poor, the old and the sick.

And the Senate version is even worse.

The bills represent a massive transfer of wealth from the poorest and most vulnerable Americans to multinational corporations and the super-rich (the main source of the Republican Party’s campaign donations).

The poor and middle class – even families making as little as $10,000 a year – will pay more income taxes.

Old folks like me will pay more for Medicare – and get less.

As a result of  Obamacare sabotage (in the Senate bill), health insurance rates will skyrocket, and chronically sick people will once again be unable to get coverage at any price.

Schoolteachers will lose their deduction for classroom supplies, and graduate students will be taxed on their tuition waivers….

The list goes on and on…

The justification of this sadistic assault is the timeworn theory that if the corporations and super-rich get to keep more of their loot, they will use it to expand their businesses and thus provide jobs.

I’m sure that by now, most Americans must realize the theory doesn’t work.

I doubt even Republicans believe in it still. What they really want to do is further enrich the big companies and wealthy individuals who fill their campaign chests.

They don’t care how much the rest of us will suffer.

But they should read their Bibles. They will find that the Israelites refused to submit to Rehoboam’s oppression.

And they should be warned that this time they might be going too far.

As the old folks say in Jamaica:

Every day bucket go to well, one day the bottom will drop out.

What the House approved

What the Senate bill proposes

Chastising graduate students

Sabotaging Obamacare

About the author


I am a Jamaican-born writer who has lived and worked in Canada and the United States. I live in Lakeland, Florida with my wife, Sandra, our three cats and two dogs. I like to play golf and enjoy our garden, even though it's a lot of work. Since retiring from newspaper reporting I've written a few books. I also write a monthly column for