A commenter, Chris Schultz, wrote the following. I agree with every single thing he said. He makes many excellent and insightful points.
Like him, I see no future at all. Sure, the rich created the problem, but the US working class cheered their rich enemies on while they did. They cheered every time the working class was attacked, which is all that ever happens anymore.
Americans hate the working classes. Even the working classes hate the working classes. They hate themselves! Many of them won’t even call themselves working class. We’re all “middle class,” but middle class is an invention. People making $10K are middle class based on their value set or ambitions. The rich say that $250K or $840K is middle class. The rich love being rich, but many don’t want to call themselves that. Some of our Republican political class have been quoted on this.
And the problem is mostly White workers, though not exclusively White workers. We see the same mindset in a certain subtype of Blacks and Hispanics.
We will burn ourselves at the stake of middle class identity while the crowd watches and aims a circular firing squad at the burning heretics, the lazy government workers or pampered union losers. The rich snicker, watch from their balconies and cheer the suicidal on. Ashes, ashes, we all fall down. It’s a middle class Inquisition and Black Plague, self-inflicted.
A Medieval passion play in the era of 1’s and 0’s, but we all die on the cross, and instead of wailing, the audience whoops and hollers angrily. It’s their turn next, or so they hope. Or do they?
It’s all nuts, but no one can see it. There’s an elephant charging cocktail party, but everyone insists they can’t see it when they look right at all. We’re doomed, just like them. But even in our death, we will deny being mortal as we try to strangle the poor corpse next to us.
We’re all doomed.
We’re worried about unions, yet what I see here is a resurgence of Nazism, or perhaps Jew-phobia. Forget race. It doesn’t matter. Those who focus on race are intent on creating divisions that divert attention from the real problem. It’s not the color of skin, it’s the color of money. The haves versus the have nots. America’s biggest advantage is its biggest weakness.
People born in poverty can elevate themselves to the top of the financial food chain. I know of a few of these people. They are rare, exceptional and they have compelling stories. Every one would like to be like these success stories. Alas, most of us won’t make it.
But that desire and almost insane competitiveness drives workers apart as they plot and scheme for their own little nirvanas at the expense of their neighbors. It seems to hit white Americans hardest because from the beginning of this country, it was white Americans who benefited from the upward mobility. But I believe it afflicts all American workers to some extent.
And if we’re all going to be rich, why associate with a bunch of Union losers who are planning to retire from their same old job 30 years down the road? No health insurance? No problem. In 10 years I’ll be a mulitimillionaire and buy my own damn doctor. Or so the thinking goes.
With a national psychosis that runs so deep, I see no cure. The Republic is doomed to be torn apart by the growing wealth and power of the Haves and the increasingly frustrated ambitions of the Have Nots. What you’re seeing now in the U.S. is the end game, as the power elite consolidates its power through the Republican Party and subjugates the remaining 99.5 percent to their interpretation of democracy and the Constitution.
The 1950s and early 1960s were an aberration created by World War II. Most of the old-line union members were former military men, hardened by the Depression and war, who were used to cooperating to get a job done regardless if they liked or even respected the man next to him.
We are now returning to a politics like that of the 1890-1910s, in which management is able to create artificial divisions in the labor movement and separate middle class working folk from each other based on their race, their financial fortunes and whether they work in either the public or private sector.
Perhaps the saddest thing I’ve seen is hardworking middle class construction workers, foundry workers, truck drivers and police and fire personnel in my home state of Wisconsin applaud while our right wing governor forces the state government and school districts to shed tens of thousands of middle class government jobs.
They applaud while the power elite grows the ranks of the unemployed and powerless and shrink their numbers to nearly nothing. Unbelievable. Anyone who thinks American style democracy can survive this kind of systemic onslaught is blind or insane.