Protecting the middle class

EDITOR: More than any vote since Franklin Delano Roosevelt in 1933, this election will define the future of the American worker. The very mechanisms of the social contract of Social Security and of Medicare and Medicaid are under the threat of extinction. These programs allow the middle-class worker to be secure in their retirement and help insure the least fortunate of us have access to healthcare. If we are to have a secure middle class, this must not be allowed to occur. It is these programs and fair progressive income tax, that allowed middle class America to flourish. In a strangely ironic juxtaposition of history, we are celebrating our Civil War's Sesquicentennial, a war that when viewed objectively, was not caused by either the abolition of slavery or of the issue of states' rights. It was the expansion of the continent, the quest for freedom, of land and of social equality. It was the clash of labor, free or chattel, a need for social justice, that fueled that conflict. Lincoln understood this and eloquently stated it in his first inaugural address. The immigrants from poverty stricken Europe, from an aristocratic ruled Great Britain and Ireland knew this intrinsically. We now live in a time that underscores that great irony. We have a president of African descent where the concept of a free labor force, with social justice and fair taxation, is under assault, not by a slavery driven aristocracy, but by the forces of a new aristocracy that would undo almost 80 years of social progress and justice and lead us down a path to a greed fueled plutocracy. Economic tyranny, even in a democracy, is still tyranny. The massive inequality in wealth in this country, the largest since the Great Depression, reflects that tyranny. I accept Governor Romney's love of wealth as the beau ideal and his disdain for the working class. I accept the fact that he will repeal Obamacare and allow the insurance companies to again do as they please, because in essence, Obamacare is not an government takeover of the healthcare system, it is an insurance reform bill. I accept that he feels that 47 percent of Americans are victims and free loaders, that our elderly are undeserving of security and healthcare after a life time of work. I accept Governors Romney's statement that Social Security needs to be privatized and Medicare, instead of being a defined benefit, will become a voucher. I accept that he has pledged to Grover Norquist never to raise taxes, which makes a compromise, that is so badly needed, impossible. I accept the fact that a Romney presidency would deny a women's right to choose, to have control of her own body. I accept the fact that any environmental safeguards that protect the air we breathe and the water we drink are, in his eyes, cumbersome regulations. I accept that he feels it is equitable for someone with a multi-million dollar income pay less than 15 percent in Federal taxes, while many workers pay well more than that amount. I accept that the Tax Policy Center's analysis, a group that Romney has called "objective," stated that Governor's Romney's new tax plan would again benefit the very wealthy at the expense of the middle class. I accept, at face value, Representative Paul Ryan's love affair with Ayn Rand, his immature fascination with a toxic Laissez Faire economic model. I accept these views because they are the stated facts. What I won't accept is more of George Bush's failed economic policies and another Republican administration. I won't accept that a woman should be paid less than a man for the same work. What I won't accept is another massive military build up, even more threats of foreign military involvement, when we have so much need at home. I will not accept a policy of zero compromise just to protect the wealthiest 2 percent of our population. We must assure that Barack Obama retains the Presidency. Democrats must regain the House of Representatives and keep a Democratic majority in the Senate. If not, the American worker will be crushed in a fantasy world of Capitalism run amok. Plutocracy does not deserve the White House. Neither does Governor Willard Romney. Obama, Scollo, Casey, 2012.

William Earnest

Laceyville