Sunday, January 26, 2014

Why Americans tolerate economic abuse

Robert Reich reiterates the reasons why we don't rise up and demand economic justice. If we were to try we'd lose our jobs. And even though the middle class is earning less than they did 30 years ago, sometimes with no benefits, it's better than starving and homeless on the streets. This is a very real possibility in today's economy. Students used to be a driving force for social change but college debt is far in excess of what it used to be due to astronomical increases in tuition and other costs. Plus the job market for new graduates is pathetic. So same reason they don't activate: fear that they'll never get a job to pay of their loans, thereby permanently destroyed their credit rating.

Plus people just don't believe that government will help remedy the situation, being bought and paid for by big business which is intentionally creating the above situation to drive down wages and benefits, and decimate worker unions to fight for their rights. Big business likes keeping us in fear for our very lives because we won't fight back, we'll kowtow to the abuse and take the crumbs we are given. That way they can increase their own wealth and join the top 85 richest individuals that have more wealth than 50% of the world's population.

Reich questions whether this is a deliberate conspiracy on the part of the 1% but there seems to be no doubt about it. He also rightly notes that the longer the 98% waits to organize and take action the less likely the possibility of reform, since the government lackeys will  only respond to who fills their coffers. He mentions the R word, revolution, and that if we don't start acting to remedy the situation it becomes more and more likely as a last resort. We've seen them in the past and they tend toward the bloody. US history books praise the American revolution as necessary to free us from the tyranny of England. Thing is, the US government itself has now become complicit with big business in a similar kind of oppression of the majority.

I prefer reform and work tirelessly to enact it within the confines of the law. And Reich is right; more of us need to find the strength and temerity to engage the political process to change the situation, in spite of our dire circumstances. For if we don't out of fear that we'll lose it all it will become a self-fulfilling prophesy, because the voracious capitalist machine will not stop until that is the result anyway. It's time to make a stand now folks, because rest assured if you continue to accept it and cow the worst is yet to come.

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