Democrats & Liberals Archives

Where’s My Money Bubba?

After all of the talk about class warfare in relation to the recent round of tax cuts I find out that the government has stolen my tax dollars collected for use in Social Security. That money was collected over most of my working life. The money that was taken from my salary in 1983 as a young consultant is missing. The money collected when I had young babies and was still struggling with college in between working sixty hours a week is also missing. So is the money that the government took from my salary when I had some success as the CEO of my own business.

Alan Greenspan just last week told us that we have to reign in our expectations for Social Security retirement. The same guy, Alan, also told us in 1983 that if we paid our Social Security Trust Fund taxes in advance the system would be there when we retired to ease our way.

Of course in between those times, Alan, always the voice of the wealthiest Americans, has often warned us about overspending and our government deficits, hasn’t he? Why sure he has, except when the Presidents that he worked for told him to shut up and soldier on. For instance when the recent spate of Bush Tax cuts were passed with his tacit approval the “independent” Chairman of the Federal Reserve caved in to the will of the President and supported them.

The book about Paul O Neil’s tenure as Secretary of the Treasury, “The Price of Loyalty” makes it clear that the price of loyalty to the Bush Tax cuts, in this case, was the future of our Social Security Trust Fund. It is clear that Paul O Neil and Alan Greenspan knew what was necessary to save Social Security. It is also clear that, despite protestations to the contrary by O Neil quoted in that book neither man had any personal investment in saving that fund for the millions of citizens who depend on it every year. Their career’s as sycophants of the rich and powerful were their main concern. Not the good of the taxpayers of the nation at all, not for a minute. Why should I be surprised?

If you think I am angry at the cynicism of the Bush Administration toward working class citizens of this nation you are right. I have a working class background and I believe in the values of the working class in our nation. Family, God and Country above all others are our values. I have lived my life by those beliefs and served in the military as has my daughter. I worked on volunteer committees to help make government better able to solve the problems of my community. I worked endless hours as a young man to build a financial foundation for my family and raised my daughters and stepson to love the same things that I have about our nation. I made a place for myself in the business community and helped to develop a number of small businesses as my knowledge grew. I am still working to make my family secure at sixty. I will do fine if I never receive a nickel of Social Security because I intend to die with my boots on, kicking jerks like Bush out of office when I can. But oh how the lies flow from those who serve their own personal interests first in this nation; and not the nation’s interests at all. Oh how the lies flow from the rich down to the workers and the poor who cannot find jobs in the richest nation in the world. That is the reality of trickle down theory, lies and treacle trickle down but the money only rises.

How can I say I love this nation and still be that cynical about our leaders and their devotion to the wealthiest class of citizens? There is a long history of men and women who think like me in this nation. There have always been men and women here who think that the interests of the wealthiest citizens often diverge from the interests of the rest of the nation. We are men and women who know that when classes diverge the nation sometimes serves the interests of the wealthy first. This is a capacity for recognizing what is actually happening over the illusions that are spun for our consumption.

We all need a capacity to recognize the sweetest of lies for what it is; a lie plain and simple. That capacity has been honed by life and refined by experience. I know that the two trillion dollar tax cut granted by Bush to the wealthiest people in our nation took away the excess money we all paid into the Social Security trust fund during my lifetime. It transferred a large amount of wealth from the poorest workers in our nation to the wealthiest citizens of our nation. It broke the promises of Alan Greenspan and others to uphold the interests of the nation when they took office. People trust Alan Greenspan, who supported tax cuts for the wealthy at the expense of the workers. He and Bush are now betraying the people by telling the poorest of retirees that they must sacrifice their Social Security. for the benefit of the wealthiest ones.

In order to reverse that two trillion dollar transfer we will have to work very hard during this election to get some of us who had our money stolen to recognize what is happening to them. The lies of the Bush Administration are exceptionally effective in dividing the middle class from the lower class. All protestations about class warfare to the contrary, the real war between economic classes in this nation is carried out by Alan Greenspan and Karl Rove and Karen Hughes. The Karl Roves and Karen Hughes who serve their masters so well are exceptionally skilled at pitting the members of all classes against one another. They do that by using false issues like a threat against marriage by the gay people of this nation.

Pay attention America, the war on your future that you should most fear is not being waged by Osama and his cohorts. It is being waged by public relations experts like Rove and Hughes who continuously and convincingly distract you from what is happening to your future and your children’s prospects for a good life. Gays are not a threat to our American values of Family, God and Country; they are begging to be allowed to embrace them. Terrorists are real and scary but we must not allow our future to be destroyed by misuse of their very real threat to eliminate our civil rights in this nation.

Wake up America and smell the sweat of the workers and how they spent hundreds of millions of hours working to amass the two trillion dollars that was stolen from them. Wake up America and don’t deny your homosexual sons and daughters the right to live lives of respect for, and involvement in, our communities and our nation. Wake up America and relegate the scam artists who are more concerned about a woman’s breast appearing on TV than all of the lives destroyed by wars fought over oil and other sources of wealth to the dustbins of history. Wake up to the greatness of the real American Revolution that freed all of us to build a great nation together. It is in the honesty of the people who go to work every day regardless of how their life is going otherwise that our nation is strong. It is in the faith of every citizen that God will provide, if we work a little harder, that our nation has become great. It is in the shared wealth of the rich who feed the poor and build libraries and schools to bring children up in knowledge of the dignity of man and woman that this nation has become wealthy.

It is not in the greed of those wealthy few who would have you believe that greed is good. They want that so that they may be admired not shunned as they deserve. It is in the common interests of all classes in the future of every citizen that we have become the greatest nation on earth. It is in the greatness of spirit of the rich and poor alike in this nation that we have flourished.

The thing that I most dislike about Bush is that he never says a thing that has not been calculated to make his image work to keep people who support him happy. No hard truths are ever uttered by him. No calls to something above greed for his wealthy compatriots come from his leadership. No force that can drive this nation to greatness emanates from his White House. No faith in the decency of a Christ who was the Prince of Peace not the god of war is in his posturing on aircraft carriers. Where’s the beef in that burger contaminated with Mad Cow Disease that we are all being fed by those in power today?

We need to all understand, rich and poor and middle class alike; that we all stand together in this nation. We must all sacrifice and work together to attain a better world or we shall all hang separately as betrayers of the greatest revolution in human history. I will give up my Social Security if everyone who can work longer and make enough money to keep their family afloat without it will join me. I will gladly do that for those who worked with me in my early years and those who worked for me in my later years. I will pay more taxes from my future income if it will keep those people fed and sheltered through their final years. I am not advocating Class Warfare but an end to it by those of us who have won some of the money. Now in all of our hands, the choice to strengthen our nation, or not, resides. God bless you all and keep you all safe in the future regardless of class or gender or your good fortune in life.

Posted by Henri Reynard at March 17, 2004 2:25 PM