Sean P. Pratt

People are Angry

People are angry. I have been reading about the "Occupy" protests that are popping up in the major financial cities; the latest in Chicago was 7000 strong. Capitalism has a stranglehold on all branches of the government including the Supreme Court. The harmful policies and legal opinions used to give the wealthy and corporate entities more rights than everyone else are reaching critical levels of absurdity.

 

The economic crisis is nothing new. A recession prevailed under Clinton's magically profitable administration. There were tiers within the middle class and I was part of them all. Being lower and mid-middle class was more of a struggle than being poor because you did not qualify for any assistance and the prevailing attitude was "shame on you for asking." To discuss it only opened the door for arguments about how worse off the third world nations were so stop crying about being middle-class-poor. Get a better job or a second job if you are not happy. Some people I debated this with were not as polite as I just described. Especially over the Internet where relative anonymity made people braver and down right viscous.

 

But now, as I predicted many times before, the wealthy have developed strongholds with their bottomless lobby coiffeurs and legal opinions about corporate personhood, shareholder rights, as well as other protectionist bullshit. Now people are feeling the boot heel of the wealthy as our elected representatives discuss ending all entitlements and eliminating taxes. But read the fine print. They don't mean local taxes, state taxes, payroll taxes or the miscellaneous fees that the 99 per cent of Americans will continue to pay. You can also forget about Medicare and Social Security being part of your retirement as well. This is not because the money will run out as the media pundits and talking heads have been claiming for years. This is because they will do everything in their power to destroy it. And they have been attacking it like a bunch of pygmies shooting darts at an elephant. 


Even so called religious leaders like Pat Robertson have been calling for the end of entitlement programs. Isn't Pat Robertson supposed to be a Christian? Isn't he supposed to be charitable, compassionate, and a protectorate of the poor? Entitlement programs, although flawed thanks to bureaucracy, are in place to attempt a level of assistance for the needy, the elderly, and the disabled. All of whom will ultimately suffer the most by eliminating these programs. I know one way to fund those allegedly failing programs...ending all of our military activities in the Middle East and rechanneling those billions of dollars back into entitlements and education.

 

But I digressed here. My point is about the growing angry mob that is fed up with the bourgeoisie supremacy of faceless shareholders and their impersonal corporate entities. Why are the needs of a company and wealthy investors more important than the needs of human beings? People have been starving in the streets of America for decades and now entire families are being forced into poverty by falling/stagnate wages, fewer opportunities, and the ever rising cost of all goods.

 

We are right back to choosing between one necessity over another, or robbing Peter to pay Paul. And in Massachusetts we are forced to buy health insurance: so that commodity is more important than food, clothing, and shelter. You can thank Mitt Romney, John Kerry, and Scott Brown for that. Plus, instead of basing universal health care on a hybrid of the Canadian model and the existing Medicare program, Congress and the Senate chose to model it after the Romney health care that force citizens to buy a commodity. We can also thank the Brown Shirts (aka the Tea Party) for being the muscle at all of those town hall meetings. I want to know how that is working out for those morons. 

 

Again, I digress. We are on the edge of that dangerous chasm of revolution. I am all for taking down the power structures that allow the wealthy to manipulate our legislators. I am all for kicking out every elected representative, every appointed official and bringing in new blood: blue collar blood: non-elitist blood. 


But what about our Constitution? 


The thing that makes our country great is the Constitution and the Bill of Rights. These documents forge the freedoms that our servicemen and women put their lives on the line to protect. What guarantees do we have that those will remain the law of the land if the 99 per cent revolts? There are no guarantees. Germany was a democracy in crisis when the Brown Shirts and the Nazi party took over. America is a democratic republic in crisis. We must be careful about what we wish for in these fragile times. We can discuss and even vote for term limits, earning caps, fair taxation and so on. Yet, the ones who control legislation and the masters of government will never allow these things to happen no matter what the people vote on.

  

Those who gain power will cling to it until death. This makes revolution inevitable.