For decades now, the people who own and run this country have been doing terrible things to 98% of their fellow Americans. That would be those of us making less than $250,000 per year, a damned comfortable living, no matter what you hear to the contrary. Anybody out there think differently? If so, raise your uncalloused, bejeweled hands. The vast majority of working people can only dream of such an annual sum, raking in a sweet million bucks every 4 years. Imagine how diligent we’d be for that kind of dough!
The Cheney Administration ratcheted up this lopsided distribution of the vast wealth of the United States when old Shotgun Dick decided that the top 2% of Americans ought not to pay their fair share of taxes, and so implemented what are facetiously referred to as “The Bush tax cuts.” Bush The Younger couldn’t even run his mouth. Literally. He was Rain Man without the math skills or the ability to speak coherently. America’s first dictator was not satisfied with lowering the tax rate for the wealthy, but also installed a lot of free rides for them in the form of tax law loopholes big enough to drive your limousine through.
The Dictator Cheney oversaw the greatest peacetime transfer of wealth from the working classes to the wealthy in recorded history. The result is that less than 1% of Americans, the super-wealthy, now own more wealth and assets than the bottom 95% of Americans combined. He also gutted the regulatory agencies designed to police the financial industries and refused to prosecute wealthy thieves, polluters and scam artists.
Such was the atmosphere of corporate lawlessness under Cheney that the leaders of these industries engaged in reckless gambling and monumental fraud with the nation’s money, culminating in the Crash of 2008, where $7 trillion in wealth simply disappeared, formerly fabulously wealthy banks and investment houses collapsed and the nation and the world was plunged into the most dire economic circumstances since the Great Depression, another debacle caused by greedy rich people.
This on top of the decades of depredations against the working classes on the part of this ownership class; shipping our jobs overseas, stealing our pension money to prop up their corrupt failures, and rolling back pay scales and hard-won benefits, sending workers ever deeper in debt to corporate interests at loan-shark interest rates.
Executives began taking obscene salaries, many hundreds of times greater that their average worker’s annual pay, something unprecedented in business history. They grabbed huge fortunes in a single bite, year after year after year, in the form of stock options, bonuses and “golden parachutes,” awarded by themselves to themselves from other people’s money, just because they could.
Since the 1960’s, the status and buying power of American workers has steadily declined, our education system has been neglected and underfunded, and our protections in the workplace badly eroded. The ownership class would like nothing more than to return to the America of the 1930s, when President Franklin D. Roosevelt saw “a third of a nation ill-housed, ill-clad, ill-nourished.” Then he did something about it, forcing ownership to treat the workers who made them wealthy like decent, valuable human beings.
Before FDR got busy, that America had no Social Security, no 8-hour work day, no overtime pay, no worker’s compensation and no unemployment insurance. During the worst economic times in America’s history, Roosevelt went to bat for American workers and forced ownership to treat workers fairly by law for the first time. They were incensed of course, completely enraged that a man of wealth such as FDR would grow a conscience and a pair of balls and care about poor people, long the bread and butter of wealthy oppressors.
The bloody Labor War ownership had been waging against American workers with hired goons and State Militias was halted. The government itself employed more than a million workers in public works projects building dams, bridges, roads and national parks, for the benefit of every American, a galling thing to the ownership princes. Social Security was implemented to eliminate the almost universal impoverishment of those too old to work, providing them with a dignified retirement after a lifetime of labor building, feeding and running this nation.
Prior to FDR, the term “retirement” was not in the vocabulary of American workers. An old-age pension was a new concept to most, something formerly reserved for the well-to-do, and that’s the way the ownership class liked it. They paid our American ideals lip service, of course, but preferred to live as monied royalty at the expense of the masses. Exploitation, tyranny and greed were their calling cards, then and now.
People who would send armed forces against workers demanding a living wage and safe working conditions in exchange for their honest life’s labor are foul human beings, the worst sort of scoundrels. They hung on to their ownership and bided their time, waiting for their chance to undo Roosevelt’s reforms. Towards that end, they acquired the major media companies and began controlling and homogenizing the flow of information.
It’s no accident that nearly every media outlet reports identical stories day after day, night after night, almost word for word. For example, it is a little known fact that the recent catastrophic oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico caused by greed, expedience and unsafe conditions was nothing out of the ordinary at all, but a fairly commonplace occurrence. It was just BP’s bad luck to have negligently killed 11 workers and spilled millions of barrels of oil off the coast of media-saturated America.
Tony Hayward’s petulant and dismissive behavior was business as usual. How dare we interrupt his yachting weekend with our overreaction to BP’s corruption and mismanagement? It’s not like his summer palace had its beach fouled, it was only the drones who would suffer and die! No one in Big Media made a stink when Big Oil poisoned the once-bountiful and beautiful Gulf of Niger in Africa over many decades, killing thousands of human beings, destroying millions of livelihoods and fomenting bloody civil war in several East African nations corrupted and controlled by multinational corporations with loyalty to no nation, only to profits.
Hundreds of thousands of East Africans perished and continue to be slaughtered, starved and displaced as the price to pay for ownership finding their oil under someone else’s soil. No problem, simply destabilize, corrupt, murder and pollute on a grand scale, then exploit the chaos to do as they damn well please. .
This is what we do! is the unspoken reaction of the ownership class to disaster, genocide and poisoning. That’s how profits are made and oil is provided for your damned SUVs and Toyotas! Not giving a rat’s ass about the working classes comes as natural as grand larceny to these people. Once they decided that workers in America were a little too comfortable for their liking, and darned uppity too, they went about selling our jobs and undermining our material comfort and our personal security with a vengeance.
It was only by a whisker that The Dictator Cheney did not get to hand over our Social Security money to these greedy scumbags, a goal they have not abandoned. They’re still kicking themselves and wondering if they should have bought the entire Congress instead of most of it. If and when that happens, kiss that money and any thought of a dignified retirement goodbye.
And don’t get so comfortable with a free internet either, an unforeseen technical juggernaut that allows pretty much anyone to have their say, globally and in a matter of seconds. They’re really pissed off that they don’t own and enjoy censorship rights to the World Wide Web and are striving mightily to correct that lapse.
If China and the various Stone Age Theocracies can get the giant internet companies to knuckle under for a buck, rest assured that Big Money is doing their level best to put their boot on our necks once again, especially since we enjoy the damned thing so much. That just won’t do.
Will the ownership class succeed? They’ve already drummed up considerable support at the grass roots level for their evil agenda, their wars, their greed and their pampered, royal lives from the very people they are hell bent on returning to 1933 and the bread lines, the soup kitchens, the epidemic of home and farm foreclosures and homelessness. They’re counting on your vote, since after all, as they have repeated again and again and again, only traitors vote against them.
They have succeeded in creating a Red State vs Blue State America, a house divided against itself. They openly import millions of uneducated immigrants and hire them to replace you, and then command you to hate them, people who have only done what our forebears have, come to America to find a better life, only to have it yanked out from under them as their reward for diligence and loyalty.
Then the super-wealthy tell you that the answer is to maintain their tax cuts and surrender your rights and your dignity, and all will be well, we’ll trickle down some crumbs for you to fight over like dogs under the king’s banquet table. Like that ever happened. These pricks have velcro fingers and never drop a crumb!
Here’s a fun fact: Mobile Oil paid no taxes to the United States Treasury in 2009 on their $10 billion profit, and yet received a $1.1 billion tax return! How’s that for new math?
Greed only wants one thing: more. Too many of us are too willing to surrender, mistakenly thinking they will be admitted to the club. Those who believe this fairy tale have two chances of that ever happening, one fat and one slim. Hopefully they will wake up while they still have the gold in their fillings and help the rest of us throw the ownership class out of our government, ensure they pay their taxes and act like law abiding citizens.
That sound you hear is FDR and those killed in the Labor Wars spinning in their graves.