June 21, 2005 /

The Falling Working Class

As you drive through our towns and suburbs, you get reminded of what was once thriving communities. You see the factories that generations worked at and provided for their family. Bustling stores enjoyed continually growing sales, and the mom and pop diner server up your favorite style of sausage and eggs. There’s the town pharmacy […]

As you drive through our towns and suburbs, you get reminded of what was once
thriving communities. You see the factories that generations worked at and
provided for their family. Bustling stores enjoyed continually growing sales,
and the mom and pop diner server up your favorite style of sausage and eggs.
There’s the town pharmacy sitting on the corner. You knew you were in good hands
because the pharmacist there took pride in his job and made sure he knew his

Unfortunately that is not the landscape we see in America today. Now you
drive through these towns and you see the falling down factory and boarded up
stores. That great mom and pop diner you loved so much has now been replace with
a golden arch, so your favorite sausage and egg breakfast you loved so much is
now provided to you in the form of a sandwich; wrapped in paper and shoved in a
bag only to be presented to you by some kid who does not care you are providing
the money that goes to his paycheck. That pharmacy on the corner is now a major
chain pharmacy. Your old pharmacist, the one who cared and knew what medicines
you should or should not take, he is long gone and replaced by a corporate robot
whose only concern is pleasing his bosses and making them money.

Reading this you think I would be describing a time span of decades, when in
fact I am describing a time span of only a single decade. See, I have been on
this earth for 34 years now, and I remember the town of yesteryear like it was
yesterday. Now I find myself resorting to the old lines my grandparents would
use of “when I was your age”. The problem is our lifestyle, our traditions, and
our basic way of life has been greatly altered in the name of progress.

During the 1980’s we went through the Regan administration. People were
amazed by the dashing speeches this once Hollywood star, turned politician was
able to deliver. He had a warm and caring demeanor that Americans proudly
welcomed into their home. During that time we were introduced to a new term
called Reaganomics. This term had power and appeal. It was delivered as a way to
save our small towns and ways of life. We learned how cutting taxes to the rich
business owners would trickle down to us, the working class. If they had less
taxes to worry about, then they could pass that fortune onto the employee in
ways of better wages and better benefits. The consumers would also prosper from
this great plan. Less taxes means less of a margin required to mark up their
product in order to profit. Another savings passed onto the working class that
compose the majority of our nation.

This plan was enacted, and only a few descending liberals would speak out
against it, but their voices were muted by the louder voices of it’s supporters.
After Regan left office in 1988, he went through four years of Bush the first.
This was a time of no major policy changes in our domestic front. Why should he?
We had the infallible plan of Reganomics. Besides, Bush Senior had other
problems to worry about, like Iraq.

Then in 1992 the unthinkable occurred. We got plagued with an unknown
Democrat governor from Arkansas. How could our prospering country do such a
thing? Ronald Regan gave us Reganomics and provided us with a more secure and
prosperous future.

Ironically though, Bill Clinton came to power and started making some of his
own changes. He realized that the tax cuts to the rich were not only unfair but
also not working, so he changed it. This provided a some what renewed hope to
the American working class, as they were able to once again show signs of
prosper. New homes started getting built, unemployment was steadily declining
and America was on the right track again. The only problem is the conservatives
could not let his no-body governor from backwoods Arkansas take credit for this.
They quickly started their spinning machine and accredited this prosperous time
to the trickle down theory. In order to even make this hill-billy look worse to
the American people, they conducted a crusade against him. They proceeded to
take his focus away from his job of running our country, to defending himself
over sexual relations with an intern. After all if people like how he is doing
then we must ruin his character. Shocking enough though, this did not work as
well as they thought considering Bill Clinton’s approval rating remained in the
60 percentile throughout his presidency (a number our current President can only
dream of achieving).

Now we have reached the year 2000. It is the new millennium. A time of new
hope and new beginnings. We quickly realized that the whole country was not
going to be catapulted back into the 19th century through Y2K computer failures.
Our fears were behind us and we needed to elect a new leader.

Out of Texas, we heard a once familiar name rise again. This was not the same
person, but the son of our former President. He hit the airwaves with a kind of
rough cowboy talking style. He gave the impression of the person you would love
to have over for dinner. His quirky speeches and mis-quotations brought a smile
to the American people. They actually saw their next door neighbor as being the

In November of 2000 we voted for this new President. He won the presidency in
what would be called anything but a landslide. In fact he won in one of the most
controversial elections that would quickly plague this country for years to
come. The most ironic part is the deciding state in which he won was Florida.
The state his brother was governor of, and one of his campaign managers was the
person who oversaw the voting.

When he took office in 2001, the country was still on the right track. I mean
no one can make that big of a change over night. For the first 9 months of his
presidency, it looked as though we had elected someone who was going to be a do
nothing, but then the unthinkable occurred. We were hit by an event so
unthinkable, it in an instance stopped all of America in it’s tracks and you
could hear jaws drop coast to coast. We had been attacked.

Now the American people were pissed and quickly rallied behind our fearless
leader. This became a great time for him to make whatever changes he wanted. He
launched a war against those who attacked us, but also managed to get laws and
tax cuts passed that would once again hinder the working class.

In a time of war, when a country usually prospers economically, ours has been
falling. Ironically enough, a week before his re-election in 2004, President
Bush, fearing a defeat in the coming week, signed a new tax cut for the American
Businesses. Large corporations such as General Electric benefit from savings
reaching a billion dollars a year from this tax cut. It was the perfect time for
this. The American media was engulfed in the campaigning and elections so they
would not spend time on a meaningless tax cut that would cost our country

Now we are in 2005 and the Republicans control our entire government. We have
seen bills passed that not only take away from our government services, but also
help out the already well to do corporations. We have had bankruptcy all but
made illegal. In a time where families are struggling the hardest they have
since the great depression, our Congress has ensured that they will have an even
more difficult time to recover. The trickle down theory that was born in
Reganomics is now alive again. Congress had the notion that by preventing people
from filing bankruptcy, business would not have the losses and that would
trickle down to us.

Now our deficit, that was eliminated under Clinton, is now the greatest it
has ever been. It can not be ignored. It will continue to grow. Congress
realizes the problem, and is trying to balance our budget by cutting some of the
fat. Unfortunately this fat includes things like Public Broadcasting, Medicare,
Medicaid, aid to Farmers, and numerous other protections the American people

We can see how Congress is doing what they can to make our small towns look
more like a post war village we see in history books. They are continuing to
work hard to destroy Americas working class, and keep us closer to a class of
poverty. Once we reach that the only thing left to do is either live as the poor
people we see in third world nations that Sally Struthers talks about, or revolt
against the government. Neither is an acceptable option, so now we must work to
restore our nation and our working class. Please take the time to research, and
learn more about this on the internet. Your mind is your best weapon!

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