The Commercial-News, Danville, IL

April 10, 2013

The rich always win


DANVILLE — Please, enough of Ron Gore’s partisan revisionist history lessons (re: “Obama Can’t Deliver,” March3).

He’s in this publication often and his message is always the same: All of our nation’s ills can be laid squarely at the feet of the liberal/socialist/progressive/Democratic left. He even goes so far this time to imply that one of our greatest presidents, Franklin Roosevelt, had some sort of twisted admiration for the policies of the murderous dictator Joseph Stalin.

“Selective” history rants like this are examples of what many of us are sick and tired of. It serves only the “I’m always right and you’re always wrong,” posturing we see daily in our elected officials, and does little to enhance our political discourse. In fact, it only sullies it.

When we continually find fault with one side, be it conservative or liberal, Democrat or Republican, we only feed the misinformation beast that drives the partisan bickering we all say we are disgusted with in Washington. I believe most people look at our leaders with equal disdain. It should be apparent to most that neither side is representing the vast majority of citizens in this country, mainly those of us in the rapidly disappearing middle class.

The game in Washington is rigged to benefit a very small portion of our society; that select group of uber wealthy, or what’s been called the “1 percent,” who through their lobbyists, political action committees and special interest minions, ensure they get the lion’s share of this country’s wealth and influence. And so far, they’ve been wildly successful at it.

Even during the biggest financial crisis since the Great Depression, the super wealthy escaped with nary a scratch. In fact, they made billions. And they’re the ones who caused the disaster.

What happened after the dust settled? Nothing. Nada. Not one fat cat, Wall Street CEO, billionaire has gone to jail.

Need more proof these super rich are making the rules? Look no further than your friends and family. Who’s eliminating their pensions, moving good paying jobs overseas, breaking unions? Add that to the increasing cost of food, fuel and other necessities, while your income and investments are substantially less, and you want to blame who? Obama? Congress? Don’t kid yourself. You, me, Ron, the politicians, we’re all just pawns. It’s not our game.

As the late comedian Lenny Bruce once lamented, “We’re all a bunch of saps.” We argue over guns, abortion, gay rights, who’s a patriot and who’s not, religion, immigration, all while the fat cats are laughing and counting their riches. Reminds me of a little parable: Three people are sitting around a table with 10 cookies in the middle. One is a staunch Republican, one a die-hard Democrat and the third is a billionaire. The billionaire quickly grabs nine of the cookies then whispers to the Republican, “Better watch out, that Democrat is going to steal your cookie.” That’s right, Ron, you just keeping blaming the Democrats, Wall Street loves you for it.

M. Stephen Hopkins resides in Danville.