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Waterstar

The War on The Middle Class

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You can hear about "The War on the Middle Class" on almost any station and out of the mouths of many politicians as well as many protesters. Where is the opposition to "The War on the Poor"?

How can one have humanistic intentions and declare opposition to the war on the middle class yet never even think to sincerely oppose the war on the poor?

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Is there a war on the poor? There are all kinds of programs available to them. In fact poor people, like prison inmates, are products that support an industry. Welfare and all of its divisions employs thousands of people to provide for the needy. Food stamps are good business for grocery stores and Section 8 rent subsidizes are profitable for landlords, green cards make money for hospitals and clinics.

The rich have corporate welfare scams, but the abandoned middle-class is left to fend for itself while shouldering the tax burden.

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I see what you are saying, Cynique and I do agree that there are programs in place that benefit many, but more than anything, I am talking about the dehumanizing disgust that society (from the rich on down to the middle class) seems to reserve for the poor.

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I've spend most of my adult life in a very bad tax position. Family income 2 to 3 hundred thousand (wages). Sound pretty good right?

  • No inherited wealth (not unusual, but people with inherited wealth and less income bear much lower tax burden)
  • Do you know what AMT is? I hope you don't 'cause it is a really nasty alternative tax for the so called "wealthy"
  • Living in one of the country's most expensive cities
  • Sales Tax ~9%, Taxed by the city, state, Feds on wages
  • Shitty public schools -- private schools really are a must for a good, consistent education from Kindergarten through HS
  • Realestate and rents beyond outrageous. First house cost almost 100K just to close -- that was the minimum down payment.
  • I have paid student loans since I was 22. I'm 50 now and have 28 more years to go.

I could go on. But you see the point.

A couple with 150K in income living in NYC could very well be living paycheck to paycheck. Of course people do not have to dine out, take trips, own a car, or pay for private school. But in a lot of ways, in many of our major cities, the so called "middle class" ARE the "poor".

If you go to work 50-60 hours a week, get 2 or 3 weeks vacation and can't afford get your kids a decent education -- trust me you are poor.... You don't have to be starving to be poor.

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Oh yes, I definitely feel that. It's really something that (primarily) the moderately poor and the working poor just seem to live life without even the slightest consideration of there being another way.

Just because something is all that a person or society knows does not mean that that is all there is. Is it arrogance or ignorance that keeps us from even looking at other models/systems? Not even to say that the model/system has to be adopted in its entireity, but the definition of insanity is: doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results.

Many in America criticize Cuba with Cold War-like venom that rivals that of McCarthy's. However, how many students in Cuba are 70 and still paying off school loans? Furthermore, how many students in Cuba are 30 and paying off school loans?

As for schools, can you picture this? Take out the corner liquor stores and replace them with good schools. (Who can imagine that?) In Costa Rica, education is compulsory. Costa Rica has no military. When the country got rid of its military, it took the funds that were allocated for its military and poured them into education (as well as public health and culture). Can you even begin to imagine if even half the money spent on the military were spent on education and public health?

Why is the public education system so sh*tty here? In a so called First World Nation, it is utterly unacceptable. The argument that there is no money for the investment in public education sounds just about as logical as my talking snake story when one looks around and sees wars (and foreign conflicts which will ultimately lead to more war) being financed many prisons are being built as so many schools/educational programs are being- because there's "no money"- they say...

I can understand why the rich are not advocating for such social change; that would perhaps be comparable to asking a slug to pour salt on itself. However, for the rest, why not explore, let alone consider alternatives?

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You're talking revolution, WaterStar. Our capitalistic form of rule is, indeed, very flawed unless you're super rich. A socialistic government would be more equitable and beneficial to everybody. That's why it's so ironic that all of these tea party right wing middleclass conservatives are ranting about socialism and too much government interference in their lives when it's corporate America who is ruining and controlling the country with the greed and monopolies that private enterprise spawns.

The only way to trigger significant change would be to overthrow the present government and seize power. Not a chance of this happening because inspite of all the blatant disparities, the average American still dreams about cirumventing obstacles and becoming RICH! The love of money does seem to be the root of all evil. Not to mention that "power corrupts, and absolute power corrupts absolutely".

Once again I invoke the old adage that: "he who travels fastest, travels alone". Shouldering the burden of your race and your class is taking on a lot of baggage. An individual has to try and find a away to make the system work for him if he wants to thrive. And there's always philanthropy for those who feel guilty about getting rich and not paying taxes. And for the "spartans" among us, there is always the self sacrifice of altruism. For everybody else, unless you win the lottery or you or yours have the potential for sports or entertainment super stardom, then you're just "shit-outta-luck" or S.O.L. as we old school folks say.

But the operative word with me is "old". For your generation maybe hope can be energized.

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Well, it's in the social interests of the Tea Party ppl to support this present system with all its unaccidental unintended consequences, because, though the love of money is almost at the top of their lists, the love of an order based on social stratification often makes the love of money take the back burner. Some will never see how this works until things hit the fan....and the way things are going, it just might not take too many more presidential terms for that to happen.

Socialism is such a dirty word. Why? If you were to ask most people, they would give you an answer that does not even make sense and more often than not, it is because they know more about anti-socialists' definitions of socialism than socialism itself.I'll go a step further and add "communism' to the list of dirty words. Why? I am of the persuasion that most of the people who are against this system could not even make a rational argument against it. I am not really one to get caught up in the labels, but moreso the results/purpose. Doesn't matter what people want to call a system or systems that could bring about real improvements in many different aspects, it should not be taboo to at least consider it/them.

About revolution. Revolution and this former colony are inseparable. You see, revolution is okay and even encouraged when it is in the interest of the dominant culture. When it is not, revolution becomes something that is negatively "radical", a movement of disgruntled (and often "insane") "militants". George Washington is praised while John Brown is a villain. Both were revolutionaries, were they not? However, I digress.

You know, the funny thing is that most people here cannot see what the rest of the world sees clearly and that is this. America's influence on the rest of the world is weakening. While many here think that it is getting stronger, it actually is weakening. The rest of the world is starting to wake up and realize that geography does not negate the right to self determination. The rest of the world is starting to see beyond the rhetorical ethic to the actual product of democracy. Political analysts and economists know this and are beginning to speak about it, some with more anxiety than others. However, most of us find such books or programs big yawns next to celebrity gossip.China is like a racing horse gaining more and more speed. BRICs on the rise. Every single country of the Summit of Americas (except the U.S. and Canada ) were FOR Cuba's attendance in the summit. This is very telling. I could go on with countless global examples, but the point is this: things are changing and certain countries would do well to humble themselves in advance.

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