Socialist Arguments for a $15 Minimum Wage

All right, so I’m getting a lot of crap online from bleeding hearts about this $15 an hour minimum wage crap.

Here is how I see the arguments I am given.

What I think What I am told (the crap) What I think about what I am told
Minimum wage should be an entry level wage that enables you to gain a job, allows employers to hire a bunch of people, and is the first step on the ladder upward as skills, education, and experience are gained. Minimum wage was put into place to ensure that people weren’t left in poverty by unscrupulous business owners and should be today a “living wage” that enables people to enjoy all the benefits of living in the USA including housing, healthcare, family, etc. The federal minimum wage is $7.25 an hour and the federal poverty rate is $11,700 a year. If someone works full time (2080 hours a year) at the minimum wage they will earn $15,080.  If the purpose is to keep people above the federal poverty guidelines, mission accomplished where it is now.

The Federal Fair Labor Standards Act that put the minimum wage into effect did have the goal of keeping people out of poverty at $0.25/hour. This was 1938, the height of the great depression, and it was designed for factories mainly. Since that time companies use the minimum wage to offer entry level employment to unskilled and otherwise unemployable people.

Minimum wage will increase the costs for all people and the bulk of the costs will be paid by the people doing most of the buying, not the rich. The CEO’s are making SO much money and should take pay cuts to pay for the increase in minimum wage. This is so stupid I don’t know why people say this crap. McDonalds employs about 760,000 people. The CEO made $8.75 million dollars last year. If McDonalds increased salaries from the federal minimum wage ($7.25) to $15 it would need over 6 billion dollars more to pay the increase. Even if the CEO was paid zero, that leaves McDonalds short $5,991,250. So do the freaking math people. The CEO may make a lot compared to you, but compared to the reality of $15 an hour he makes nothing.
Seven states in 2012-2013 according to the National Education Association paid starting teachers less than the annual pay someone who works full time at $15 per hour would earn ($31,200).

Montana $27,274
South Dakota $29,851
Missouri $30,064
North Carolina $30,778
Nebraska $30,844
Idaho $31,159
Mississippi $31,184
Comparing the minimum wage to teacher salaries who are underpaid isn’t fair. Underpaid according to whom? You’re talking about a market-based, negotiated salary level as opposed to a government imposed salary level based on nothing more than someone pulling a number out of their ass. Raising the minimum wage for uneducated, unskilled workers to the level of a teacher is an insult and a disincentive to undertaking higher education.
Even if you raise the minimum wage to $15 and everything goes up 35% or more, there’s a well-established practice in labor relations called “me too” and if you raise McDonald’s workers above teachers, teachers are going to scream (rightfully so) and the salary will have to be raised. That means higher taxes in addition to the higher costs of commodities and services. But people deserve a living wage for a full days work. Wrong, everyone deserves a full day’s pay for a full day’s work. The level of pay is determined by the market, the skill involved, the effort, the education and training required. With $15 an hour, everyone loses and then gains, and eventually, the balance settles again to make the minimum wage of unskilled people right where it should be again in relation to all other wages, at the bottom, where there is incentive to raise yourself up. What isn’t going to change are the profits and high salaries earned by the shareholders and CEO’s.
Minimum wage should be low enough so that enough people can work to raise themselves up, go to college or tech school, gain the skills and the work experience needed to enter the work force at a higher level. THE VICTIM MODEL

But not all people can work their way through college, they didn’t finish high school, they have family obligations and situations that prevent them from accomplishing a higher education.

True, everything isn’t equal. But the USA never promised equal outcomes, only equal opportunity to reach those outcomes. If you can’t go to college because of life obligations, then them’s the breaks. Do the best you can, work at it more slowly over time, do whatever you can. Not everyone who is successful went to college, but they worked their asses off without excuses until they made it.

 

I am not a fan of victimization. I hate the notion. It is handicapping. It is often debilitating. It is a curse on people who should instead be encouraged and supported to achieve. Why do we think that giving unskilled and uneducated people a salary that is higher than a starting teacher or a Certified Nurses Assistant that make only $12.39 an hour on average nationally (US Dept. of Labor) is beyond me.

The astronomically higher minimum will create a class of servants who have no incentive to move up and improve their education and skills. It is primarily a socialist redistribution of the limited wealth of the middle class! It is not redistribution of the wealth of the 1%. With this $15 an hour minimum wage, all we will accomplish is to beat the economic living crap out of everyone in the middle class under the flailing banner of Bernie Sanders’ socialist propaganda bull shit.

Smoke, Mirrors, and Cowardice

smokeIn an act of supreme cowardice, the Republicans and Democrats refused to show leadership to pass budget cuts. Instead they chose to allow the Sequester cuts to go into effect.

Budget cutting is a nasty business and no politician wants to be in the middle of it. No politician thinks they can cut programs without losing significant portions of their constituency.

You can see the perils of this situation for politicians every time that local schools must be closed within a school district. Board members and administration get roasted by the press, but only because they are the ones charged with decisions.

In budget cutting there is no “right” decision. That is, there is no decision that will make everyone happy. There are only bad choices among worse ones. Happily ever after only happens in fairy tales, never in the business of balancing deficit budgets.

So the politicians did the childish thing. They set up a scenario that allowed them all cover.  They knew they had to cut and they knew they did not have the stomach to compromise.

What a pathetic and cowardly way to run our government.

But as some wise person said once, “The people have the government they deserve.”

So shame on us all.

Is Lack of STABILITY the Death of Capitalism?

It seems counter-intuitive doesn’t it? Capitalism could end BECAUSE of greed? I mean, don’t we all assume at some basic level that capitalism is driven by greed and therefore, greed is inherently good and representative of success in our economic system? That becoming rich, earning one’s fortune, is the basic purpose of education and work?

I think that Capitalism is going to end because there is a higher need than to be wealthy; and therefore, a more important underpinning to the human psyche that the desire for more and greater riches.

HUMANS WANT STABILITY (and Capitalists don’t get it)

What threatens to undermine Capitalism according to the Right?

WHY GOVERNMENT, of course – large, out of control government  – which threatens Capitalism with its endless demands for redistribution of wealth, for the well-being – YEA THE STABILITY- in the lives of all people, not just for the wealthy.

I’ve been wondering what the hell is changing in our country, or which has already changed, and I think it is this;

CAPITALISM stopped offering stability for the USA in favor of stability within the GLOBAL economy (which is failing), in reality that means STABILITY of corporate earnings within the global economy as opposed to stability within the USA. So to hell with the US worker, the average “Joe” who was willing to trade his entire life to the company for the stability he needed to raise a family, own a little box of a house, to put shoes on his kids’ feet and food into their mouths. Capitalists are revealed, they don’t give a damn about America, only about their Swiss bank accounts.

THAT is the truth that everyone understands, and THAT is why Mitt Romney lost, and THAT is why capitalism is DOOMED. We used to revere the rich, and now we suspect them with good reason, now they use our country to make a fortune and then flee when the times get tough. They flee when the wages are cheaper elsewhere. They flee to tax havens like the Caymen Islands. They give up their green cards or citizenship and go back to their native country when the US tax benefits are no longer kissing their corporate asses.

I recently thought about my uncle who worked for over 40 years with the same company, Matthews Conveyor, which became Rexnord, which was bought out or God knows who…

What happened? My uncle, after 40+ years for a single company in two different countries, day-after-day – and hating it -until he lost his job when the company was sold.

Try to find a company today, especially a manufacturing company in the USA, where you could work for 40 years! Try to find company which has a foothold in an industry so firmly planted in the USA that you could raise your family on your income working there – even if you HATED the job – for 40 plus years, see your grandchildren born, and still commute to work every day of your life and be assured that you had retirement and a salary that was sufficient, NOT GRAND by any stretch, but enough if you were frugal. Not likely today is it?

WHERE IS STABILITY TODAY?

I’ll tell you where it is and why it is popular, GOVERNMENT JOBS GIVE STABILITY. In the stability of a government job, or in the stability of a disability check, or in the stability of a retirement check, or in the stability of a government union contract. I walk past the windows showing me the empty desks of the California Department of Public Health every morning in the dark on my way to a private industry job, this is when the only person at the Health Dept. is the security guard. And I walk past those empty desks in the opposite direction each evening when it is dark, not a soul working beyond their contracted day, not once in four years, and WHY are they all empty? Why am I working before them and after them every day? I don’t have a government job. My job is based on earning money. Their job is based on processing paper, their budget is assured, and a task can always be done tomorrow.

STABILITY!!! They are not accountable for anything that could cost them their jobs, every deadline is soft, and no deadline will ever determine whether they get a paycheck.

STABILITY is what government workers want and that why they endure the rules and the regulations and the brain-killing bureaucracy. It is STABLE employment that can’t be shipped overseas. Who can blame them? I see the fat middle-aged guy puffing his pipe ( it smells like my uncle’s pipe tobacco) every day outside the coffee shop which is part of the health department building. He sits ignoring signs posted by the coffee shop that smoking is not allowed like a bearded Bhudda in the semi light, puffing away contentedly because he is in no hurry, the work will be there later, even more assuredly his paycheck will be there every month without fail.

LIMITED ACCOUNTABILITY FOR MAXIMUM STABILITY. California is becoming a communist state and we do not even see it happening. Forget socialism, when the most powerful unions in the state are government unions, then government is no longer of and by the people, it is OF AND BY THE GOVERNMENT. The tail is wagging the golden dog.

And who do I blame? CAPITALISTS whose global corporate greed led to flagrant disregard for the most basic human need.

STABILITY Yes, Mitt the Twitt is to blame, he and his Wall Street cronies are the culprits. Who among the average Joes ever voted on some Board to liquidate a company and establish a plant in Saigon? Not one single average Joe ever voted to do that. It was the rich, the Capitalists who buy million dollar condos at Northstar, whose children spit off the balcony on the average Joes who spent half a weeks’ wages for a lift ticket and a Starbucks latte.

YES, there is a separation in the USA, there is a separation from reality. The Right Wing nut job radio fools are selling out to corporate wealthy in exchange for the scraps from their table. They deliver performance art and people still clinging to the hysterically quaint notion that the wealthy want them to join them at their dinner table as soon as they’ve “made it” lap up the anger and vitriol against the ridiculous idea of STABILITY.

Yet this election proved that STABILITY is what people really yearn for, not capitalistic entrepreneurial-ism  not risk and reward for the 1%. Not even riches unless it comes easily some effortless lottery dream with not risk. It is statistically impossible to have more than 1% in the 1%, and the 1% know this and sell smoke and mirrors to the 99% through talk radio. And so many are so ignorant to the most basic facts of mathematics that they buy in to the bullshit.

Are people today any different from 100 years ago? Did anyone 100 years ago really think they would be the next Crocker, Getty, or Carnegie? Hell not they didn’t, that was their lottery, they thought that stability of a good job in a good company was all right and the American way. Government work was mostly for schmucks who couldn’t make the grade and were willing to accept less.

But today children are being fed by the government at school while their parents trade their food stamps for junk food or sell them for cash outside the grocery stores. Breakfast, lunch, and yes DINNER are NOW being served by Title I schools around the country. Soon there will be dormitories so their parents are absolved of everything except nine months of carrying the child. The government will wean and suckle every child, and indoctrinate them to the wonders of government work. STABILITY! It was not so long ago that breakfast wasn’t even part of the daily school menu, only lunch. Children are being taught that STABILITY and SUSTENANCE comes from government, not from parents, not from home and family; rather it comes from a sterile public building and from a nameless staff wearing hair nets, and plastic gloves.

But make no mistake, STABILITY is what people want, riches may be what they dream about and don’t believe in. But if the CAPITALISTS can’t offer better than 5 years of employment before they’re moving to China or Vietnam, then you better damned well believe that the good ol’ USA is destined to socialism or communism by democratic vote.

People want STABILITY and right now Capitalists are greed soaked in global riches and do not need the USA. But it doesn’t matter what their motivation is, they’ll kill the root of their wealth if they kill the STABILITY that keeps American workers motivated to slave away for their families believing that they can count on their employer for the long term. They will kill the stable platform their businesses were built upon and therefore kill their own success. They will be forced to deal with one banana republic after another. But perhaps so long as some country offers no taxes or accountability for their money and investments, they’ll just flee to that shelters.

Maybe the Capitalist fantasy was shattered long ago and that’s why we deteriorating. That’s why people go belly up on their creditors, because they perceive that the same damned people they owe have already gone belly up on them.

Perhaps the deteriorating ethics in credit is based on distrust of CAPITALISTS. Why should people offer the wealthy any more STABILITY in repaying debt than they’re being offered in their income? STABILITY works both ways, it cuts both ways, as CAPITALISTS are now learning: offer none, expect none.

Make no mistake, PEOPLE are motivated by STABILITY and government jobs are offering STABILITY at a time when CAPITALISTS are not, and I question if they ever will again. And if they do not wake up, Capitalism may well be finished in America.

Why is Government STABLE? You can’t ship IRS jobs to China, can you?

America is Texting While Rome Burns

I wonder how much longer people are going to stand for the current system of banking and economics? The fundamental corruption that is being revealed does not seem to be on the radar of the general public. The corruption has been apparent ever since the meltdown and bailout.

I’ve lost faith in the economic system in ways I’d never thought to question it before. I always assumed there were insider deals and all of that, but as a kid I bought into the image of the moral Brittish banker in Mary Poppins, the hard-core, honest-as-the-day-is-long guy with no sense of humor but an incorruptible sense of duty to the depositors.

When WILL I stop believing all the fairy tales?

Here are my specific reasons for losing faith:

  • Mortgage companies were doing fraudulent home loans on a massive scale using fraudulent practices, lying about applicant incomes and putting stupid people into variable rate loans they could not afford when the rates went up (don’t worry, you’ll flip it in a year and make a cool $100k)
  • Banks were then packaging and selling these fraudulent loans to investors.
  • Banks were manipulating interest rates via LIBOR another form of fraud to increase their revenue, thereby making mortgage holders even less likely to be able to make their payments.

The real estate bubble was obviously created as a global ponzi scheme so that a few people could get filthy rich. The system is being played, the middle class has been robbed, and the rich walked away richer with government bailouts. The very same people who set up the fraud in the first place benefited from the fraud, the bailouts, and now the recapture of valuable real estate.

The most startling thing to me is that the average American so stupid they can’t even look up from their smart phones long enough to say, “Wait, wait …what the hell?”

Industry needed a serf class in America. The wealthy needed to impoverish Americans just so that they would say “thank God I’ve got a minimum wage job!”  It is a brilliant scheme and it is working to perfection.

You would think that the wealthy might be afraid that Americans will put down their video games and get pissed off.

But the truth is that all they need to do is producing shiny things we can barely afford to buy, things that distract us from thinking, things that not only occupy our feeble brains and enable us not to think at all about how we’re getting screwed at every turn by the wealthy.

The incredible thing is that we also PAY them to participate in the distraction.

Well, at least I’ve still got the tooth fairy to believe in as my teeth fall out from lack of dental care.

 

 

 

Schwanns Hurts Bob

I know a guy, let’s call him Bob. Bob has worked for the same company, Schwanns, for about 15 years. Recently, Schwanns shut down the facility where Bob works. It’s just a distribution warehouse and Bob is a driver/salesman for the company. Bob’s route won’t be eliminated, he’s been a good salesman.

The issue is that Bob’s route won’t be driven by Bob any longer. Bob is being displaced by Schwanns. I asked Bob one day of the closure of the warehouse which I’d read about in the paper would affect his job. He said yes. I asked how.

This is how. Bob would have to go to another warehouse where there are a couple of routes open. Bob could not keep his present route., Bob could not keep his 15 years seniority. Bob could not even keep his rate of pay.

Bob decided that rather than start from scratch with this company, he’d just quit working for them and look for another job. I’ll miss Bob. He’s a nice guy and knows the business.

I am no fan of unions and if you’ve read my blog for any length of time, you know that. But if I were in Bob’s shoes, I’d sure as hell want a union on my side. I’d want a ravenous union president who’d staple signs on sticks and organize a march for me.

There is no other way to describe it except that Bob is getting screwed by Schwanns. And I doubt there’s any Republicans standing up for him. Hell, they’ll vote to give Schwanns a tax break, they’re “creating” jobs right? They’re swell guys.

I used to buy my breakfast sandwiches from Schwanns; well, I bought them from Bob. But I’m never buying anything from Schwanns again. As far as I am concerned, the management of Schwanns is a bunch of bastards for the way they’re treating Bob.

Where is Economic Responsibility?

I’ve written about where the rock bottom is for our economy and the fact that I do not think we’ve hit it yet.

Witness two conversations I’ve had with people in the past week who earn a good living, both own condominiums in two different cities in California, one in a suburban city and one in an urban city. The former bought a condo at $119k in about 2003. He told me that the mos recent sale of one of the units in his complex was for $22k, yes, $22 thousand dollars. My friend still owes $90k and he has been denied a refinance to get a lower interest rate by his bank not because he has poor credit, which he does not, is that he has no equity. My other friend bought her condo for about $450k in the city and at the peak of the market these condos were selling for $600k. She still owes $300k on her condo and the last one sold in her complex went for $102k.

I asked both of them if they are considering walking away. Both waffled a little. My friend with the condo in the city said there’s still one lady who’s living in one of the units who hasn’t made a payment after foreclosure two years ago…two years the bank has allowed her to stay in the condo, so far.

So I have to wonder, where is the economic responsibility for this mess and what if the home owners who are upside down in their homes all decide to walk away? They’re getting pissed, they’re confused about why they aren’t being allowed to refinance when the interest rates are lower, even though the property is upside down. They are all upside down in their loans now and wasn’t the bailout meant to give banks money to loan? Shouldn’t they be making those loans, and making them to people who are being responsible and helping to keep us from slipping off the ledge of the double dip recession?

I keep hearing that this mess started because someone was asleep at the wheel of regulation, well I’d say that someone is asleep at the wheel of the bailout. Someone in Congress, someone in the White House, someone on Wall Street better wake up. The people who ARE responsible are getting bitter and angry, they are paying the freight and being economically responsible, so far.

Other Cranky Posts About the Economy:

Is Capitalism Over?

The Economics of Trust: Eroding Globally

The Wall of Great Distraction: Part II

I must say that Jerry Brown employs some pretty fast-working spin masters.

The increased tax revenue suddenly created a hole in his argument for more taxes so he needed to create a new one.

To quote Dr. Suess from How the Grinch Stole Christmas, “But, you know, that old Grinch was so smart and so slick. He thought up a lie, and he thought it up quick!”

Faced with the PR disaster in which the increases in tax revenue erased his powerful argument that school children would suffer without the tax increases, Jerry Brown gathered his team around the picnic table and this is what they came up with, “We’ll spin our insatiable need for more public money into ‘The Great Wall of Debt.'”

Wow, nice smoke and mirrors, but at this point he and his team are just throwing stuff against the wall of public disdain for government overspending and hoping it will stick.

Instead, the first thing the Governor could do is take away the extra 3 billion earmarked for the California Teachers’ Association next year and reduce the deficit by that amount.  Then he could go to work hacking away at the general budget guarantees on the retirement systems of public employees, and at the guaranteed contribution to those pension funds that is above and beyond their salary.  In the case of teachers, the public contributes another 8.25% on top of their annual salary to the retirement system.

Employed and unemployed people in the private sector cannot be blinded by bullshit like “The Great Wall of Debt” this time.  We are the ones suffering the brunt of the economic downturn, there are no public coffers  to bail us out and the bad news for Jerry Brown is that there’s no public goodwill toward state government overspending.

In spite of the lack of public will to increase spending, Jerry Brown and the unions are yet demanding that all of us pay out of pocket to help politicians avoid making the cuts they must. The President of the CTA even got arrested in the Capitol last week, even as Jerry was about to announce that MORE money would be coming to schools next year than this year (i.e., union contract negotiations can proceed at full tilt to soak it all up).  Talk about someone missing a memo!

I don’t know about all of you, but if the state budget is still out of balance, I believe it is simply because the legislators have not made enough cuts.

Cut, cut, cut and balance the sucker.  I will not be voting for any tax increases Mr. Governor.

The Wall of Great Distraction

The Greeks are rioting because of government austerity.  They’re tearing up public projects and equipment over cuts in government services. California seeks to avoid similar scenes. But there’s a difference in California, here the most likely rioters are not among people receiving government services but those who are paid to deliver them.

Jerry Brown is set to lay out his “all cuts” budget today.  The word on the street is that this radical budget will slash and burn services.  The Governor is really just trying to rile up the public. He wants to see if he can get the public upset about cuts to government, upset enough to vote for higher taxes.

The GREAT DISTRACTION is this, by selling a cut in services, he hopes to avoid the reality that the union-driven, public employee wages and benefits are the cause of the problem.  The crisis is being billed as too much government when it’s really “too-expensive” employees that are the trouble.  Unions are pushing hard to create a sense of panic around pictures of school children left without teachers, on dirt floors scribbling their times-tables in the dust.

Services are not the issue, nobody I knows feels they are over-served by a state agency. The cost of employees is the issue.  We don’t need fewer teachers, firefighters, or police: we need less expensive teachers, firefighters, and police. We need costs that reflect current economic realities.

The public should not be distracted into agreeing to higher taxes.  Not before salaries and benefits of public employees resemble those of employees in the private sector.

Ultimately the public will make the decision on higher taxes and wages and benefits will be maintained at the cost of thousands of jobs because the weak-kneed politicians do not have the stomach for battling the unions.

The question is will the unions be able to foist the Great Distraction on the general public in a slick ad campaign and thereby convince all us couch potatoes to vote for higher taxes? Perhaps so, we can be cajoled by the media into even talking about providing a new stadium for a pro basketball team at a time when we’re laying off teachers. We’re a stupid lot sometimes.

But I won’t be distracted, will you?  I want cuts, I will not be convinced to vote for taxes or kicking this can down the road one more time.

The Sucker Formula : Federal Budget Reductions

I have a bone to pick with politicians and with everyone who is out there wringing their hands about what’s going to happen with the budget battles. Stop wringing your hands and get out your checkbook.

Forgive me if this comes across as cynical, but I say it’s all about BUYING influence. 

Politicians do the work of those who pay for their campaigns.  I ask you, how much money did you contribute to ANY politician in the last national campaign? How many zeros on your check?

That’s X.

Next, calculate how much you raised for any politician’s campaign from other people? Did you gather 30 people on your yacht at $1000 per and give a nice check to a politician? 

That’s Y

Now calculate whether the candidate you supported won the election.

That’s either an exponent of +2 or -2.

Now calculate the amount of money you donated to the candidate’s party and/or foundation.

That’s F.

So, if X = 0, and Y = 0, and for the sake of argument let’s make the exponent +2, and if F=0, here is the sum total of your influence.

(0x0)2 x 0 = 0

That is correct, you have zero influence.  ZERO-ZIP-BUPKUS

You have no hope of lower taxes, higher income, or receiving the services you deserve from the government because you have no influence.  You haven’t paid for it, CHUMP.

So what do you get?  You get Ryan’s plan.  Pay the rich, tax the middle, and rape the poor. Why?  Because the rich are paying for influence while the middle class struggle to hold on to a slim vision of being upper middle class and while the poor simply struggle.  Neither class donates enough to buy influence.

None of these politicians on either side will talk about reducing military spending because it feeds the bank accounts of the wealthy.  They pay for that influence. Why are we tossing bombs on Iraq, Afghanistan, Libya?  Because it buys bombs. It certainly is not keeping oil prices down which would be a benefit to America. It is even hard to argue at this point that it is about keeping America safe from another 911.  I mean come on, the TSA is frisking 6 year old girls for explosives. How low is the terrorism risk level if the most suspicious suspects in airports are first graders with little mermaid blinky-light sneakers? Are we now officially at risk level frilly pink?

But military industry buys influence, the oil industry buys influence, Wall Street buys influence, YOU people do not with your little teensy-tiny $10 online donation. They want your money but they aren’t going to return your phone calls.

CHUMPS! Figure it out already. You don’t have the money to buy influence so the system isn’t set up to favor what you want!

Poverty is the Real Danger

Think about an Egyptian or a Libyan scale uprising here in the good old USA. What would it look like? What would trigger such a revolt?

A picture of bullets.I’ve been thinking about that question lately.  There is at least one HUGE difference between the US and Libya: our citizens own guns and ammunition.  If a month from now, a million people were starving and out of work and really angry about that, we could be in for BIG trouble because a lot of people are heavily armed in this country.

We have limited restrictions on owning guns. You can go to a gun store and buy a 50 caliber gun, a miniature cannon. I’ve seen them in the past.  They are formidable weapons and frightening.

So I worry about this country for a few reasons.

1. Our governments (state and federal) are broke and need to cut deeply to stay afloat.  This will create increased unemployment and decreased economic activity at a time when we can afford neither.  Yet, both are unavoidable from what I can see.

2. Global credit could get tighter and more expensive causing our government to spend more on interest in its massive borrowing and less on the people.  I.e., less spending, less employment.

3. What will we the people do in the face of such adversity?  Who will rise up to lead us through this storm? I do not hear anyone even preparing us for a storm coming. I like to watch the weather on TV so I know if I should bring an umbrella along to work. Where is our economic weather man?  I do not hear all the so-called experts predicting the economic weather for us at all. It makes me VERY nervous.

I hope I am playing the role of Chicken Little in this post.  But I wonder and I worry. I have little faith in the government when I see a continuation of the bitter,divisive, partisanship that has dominated the politics and prevented real answers in this country for decades now.

If justice is blind then where is the accountability for the Wall Street Pirates who plundered the people twice, once in mortgages and a second time in the government bail-out? I fear their accountability for them. I fear that it is coming. I fear it will be a reckoning we all should fear. 

When the establishment does not resolve broad and far-reaching wrongs, the people often take matters into their own hands in history. Let them eat cake indeed, but Marie did not have to answer to a mob armed with AK’s and Ouzis.

Congress is holding hearings on Muslim terrorists at the moment.  I wonder if that’s not missing the point of the world entirely, that it’s poverty that causes people to go to extremes. Often the poor are led and manipulated by the false promises of wealthy and deviant people.

Where is the Bob Dillon of this generation?  Where is Carol King?  Where are the Simon and Garfunkel of these difficult times?  I don’t understand why someone has not emerged yet in the role of popular poet as we saw in the 1960’s. Surely the times are calling for a new folk singer who can present the emotion of the times. We need someone to express what we’re feeling in song before it’s expressed in some other way.