Comment on this article |
Email this article |
No Place for Us in the Debate
by Sudhama Ranganathan
Email: uconnharassment (nospam) gmail.com
22 May 2012
Here we are in the middle of campaign 2012 for the presidency and the hope and change vibes we all felt back in the 2008 race are absent. In their place are petty attacks that, when examined closer don't even measure up, and show both campaigns and their respective parties have no intentions of bringing hope or change for the people, just jobs for themselves. It's politics as usual and that means the Democrat/ Republican family putting on the good show. Neither have anything to brag about so it's drama and cheese – the kind only big campaign dollars can manifest. That pervading feeling you get from all those commercials is the stinking sad oppressiveness only big campaign donations can deliver in such steaming over-sized bowlfuls.
Click on image for a larger version
With all that money big donors and interest groups could have chosen to give us a campaign season that speaks to who they are. They could have chosen to show that what people have written about large corporations and their related interested individuals are wholly untrue and that they bring positive things to America in the way of messages and the way they choose to represent themselves.
Instead, they have moved to flood the airwaves with nasty attacks and negative darkness. Unfortunately, the candidates have followed similar paths. They have both chosen playground bully taunts and finger pointing to distract us from the fact neither party has really done much for the average voter since 2009. Even worse, they have caused the majority of us to lose ground over the last ten years in terms of our financial positions.
On October 14, 2011 a report was published stating clearly “Last week, the government made gloomy headlines when it released the latest census report showing the poverty rate rose to a 17-year high. A whopping 46.2 million people (or 15.1% of the U.S. population) live in poverty and 49.9 million live without health insurance. But the data also gave the first glimpse of what happened to middle-class incomes in the first decade of the millennium. While the earnings of middle-income Americans have barely budged since the mid 1970s, the new data showed that from 2000 to 2010, they actually regressed.” (http://money.cnn.com/2011/09/21/news/economy/middle_class_income/index.h)
As far as the wealthy corporations? Well during that time that they ruined our economy and drove it into the tank sending jobs overseas, shutting down unions, stealing money from retiree pension funds and then saying they can no longer afford to pay them because the costs are too high and of course engineering the sub-prime mortgage scam, they gained overall.
The same article points out, “Sure, it's fair to say Americans at all levels of income, from rich to poor, were hit hard […] But according to the census data, those losses disproportionately hit the lowest 60% of Americans, while the richest 40% actually gained wealth, relative to the entire U.S. Economy.”
The article goes on to say, “'Economists talk about the lost decade in Japan. Well, with these 2010 data, we can confirm the lost decade for the American middle class,' said Jared Bernstein, senior fellow at the Center on Budget and Policy Priorities.” (http://money.cnn.com/2011/09/21/news/economy/middle_class_income/index.h)
Both parties are responsible for this backwards slide. Both candidates for president say this is about the American people, but it smells like it's much more about them. Yesterday Ben LaBolt, an Obama campaign spokesman, was asked a series of questions regarding President Obama's criticisms of Mitt Romney with regards to Bain Capital, a private equity fund, that no doubt has liquidated companies it acquired without the slightest thought for people that could quite possibly end up sleeping under one of the bridges of their local city with their spouses and kids as a result of the move.
And really that's the line the Obama campaign has been basically trying to sell with this. They have been approaching it from the perspective that, as a co-founder and general partner at Bain Capital, Romney cost Americans a lot of jobs and that's what people at private equity funds like Bain do, and that essentially people from that world cannot be trusted to help save jobs, create jobs and save our economy as opposed to being a threat and danger to the American people.
Sounds good right? Well if you're a hardworking middle income or lower income American. We don't want that right? Well wait, not so fast. The person interviewing the Obama campaign spokesman had a question for him that revealed some interesting facts about the Obama campaign and administration regarding private equity firms and even Bain Capital.
Here is the question asked, “How can President Obama attack Mitt Romney on his time at Bain […] and at the same time hold high priced fund raisers with the head of another private equity firm that’s done work with Bain, the Blackstone Group, there are people who have worked at other private equity firms in his own administration?” (http://transcripts.cnn.com/TRANSCRIPTS/1205/21/acd.02.html)
So if private equity firms are so bad why does President Obama have people that worked for them in his administration? How can he be going out and putting out these attack ads saying this, when not only does he hold fundraisers with these people he calls job killers, but he has actually holds fundraisers with people that worked for Bain? Where's this big difference?
Is this why we have seen all the stimulus money go to the same private financial organizations that caused the recession instead of any WPA style programs that would take stimulus dollars and create jobs programs until the economy gets back on its feet, like he promised in 2008 when running for office? Is this why he said he would never give Halliburton no-bid contracts, chastising the Bush administration for doing so in 2008, and then giving no-bid contracts to Halliburton the first opportunity he got? Halliburton is headquartered in the Middle East. Why couldn't he have allowed some Americans to get in on that process?
It just smells funny and looks odd – like something is there that has not been said or explained. It sort of reminds me of a time back in 2002 when I was hanging out with a friend of mine at the time, LeVaughn, and his cousin, E. Brown. (http://www.lawsuitagainstuconn.com/PROSECUTE11B.jpg) We were playing video games at Everett's house and just hanging out and out of nowhere Everett said there was this movie he wanted to see and even offered to pay for us. I had the rest of the evening off from work, so I said, “why not?” We got to the movie theater in Bloomfield Connecticut, where Everett lived at the time, and Everett went in ahead of us and said he was meeting someone.
We got our drinks and went to sit behind him and a woman. I just figured it was a girlfriend and LeVaughn sort of confirmed this when he said they knew each other from when Everett was a student at Trinity College in Hartford, Ct. However, as I sat there I noticed something odd. They never got close, though they did speak nonstop throughout half of the movie. They didn't get close like people that are intimate do or even display any kind of the laughing, affection, etc. or body language in any manner that people that are intimate do.
Yet, they kept on talking throughout the movie and their body language was more like people that had a professional relationship. It was like people discussing an important subject, no emotion at all, just information sharing and instructions. She got up and left halfway through the movie and they actually shook hands. I never mentioned it, but it was just odd and something felt off about it.
In the same way this whole thing about the president saying Romney causes jobs because of working for private equity firms doesn't add up when you're looking at it. Romney too when he says he will be better at creating jobs just doesn't seem to add up when you look at him either. Truth is they both look suspicious and neither has a record indicating they are more interested in the middle income and lower income than the upper corporate wealth holding potential campaign funders.
In the end, the only way to change our system will be through adding parties (plural) to Congress starting at the local level then moving to the state then to the national level.
We deserve better than the two parties that are basically the same, save some details, that both think we're stupid enough not to see how alike they are if their rhetoric is polarizing enough. They think Americans don't look at actions. What they don't get is that we see it, we just have no other choices right now.
To read about my inspiration for this article go to www.lawsuitagainstuconn.com.
This work is in the public domain