Trickle Up Ignorance
Has it been almost a year already? I have to admit that I haven’t been writing with the frequency I once did. My nearly daily entries have waned to nearly weekly in some cases. But it has been almost a year since we’ve had the chance to read an entry from The Black Sentinel. I was more than happy to see the email saying that she had a new entry. I returned to her blog to see a brand new post after almost a year. My how time flies.
The new post was named “Trickle Down Knowledge” and featured a picture of the participants in the last Republican presidential debate. I was stopped in my tracks trying to exercise a little prejudice by imagining what the article was about. The title was an obvious play on “trickle down economics”, the title of the mostly conservative economic theory that if we take steps to make the wealthy even wealthier they would reciprocate by using their new levels of über abundance to help the rest of us. This seems to be the main message of popular conservative politics these days where candidates promise corporations the perfect environment for business with little government regulation, little fear of judicial interference, little impact from unions or any other organization to challenge big business, no minimum wage, and anything else that promises to benefit corporations at the expense of the rest of us.
It is understandable that these presidential candidates would support such economic theory. These people vying for the presidency are all much wealthier than the average joe. These people push economic and social policies that are bound to serve themselves very well. And no matter which one of these people wins, they all will share in the bounty. But what I really don’t understand is why people who are struggling in their day-to-day would support this corporate welfare on a silver platter.
I find it frustrating to see everyday joes actually advocate that we should cut tax rates so that we can justify cutting back on our investments in education and infrastructure and in our ability to provide for the benefit of all. It is far better that we keep our money to ourselves instead of helping each other improve our collective living conditions.
As a national collective, we think America is the best country in the world. But when some of us think of the concept of us coming together as a nation to develop social programs for the betterment of all of us, America is no longer a collective but a collection of individuals with no social responsibility to help each other. In fact, quit waiting for somebody to help you because if these people had their way, ain’t nobody coming to help. Quit waiting for some kind of handout because the only people who deserve a handout are the people at the top of our financial pyramid who don’t need it at all.
So people who don’t want to see the success of people at the bottom of our social structure look for government representation that epitomizes their social beliefs and wants. If you think that it’s a problem to have a social net that protects everyone and not just the wealthy, then you’ll look for representation that will look to protect the wealthy at the expense of everyone. It’s better to make cuts in education, supposedly the foundation for success, rather than raise tax rates that would help ensure that all of our children receive an education that would prepare them for our collective future.
And so the people in the picture represent the cream of the crop for this kind of thinking. Government is the problem and these people promise to run government under that philosophy. There are conservatives who support education. There are conservatives who understand the need of a balanced approach to taxation. There are conservatives who understand the need to keep government responsible to everyone and not just the wealthy. But such moderate conservative leadership could never succeed in today’s anti-Obama at any and all cost environment.
In today’s conservative environment, nationally mandated government healthcare cost jobs and is just a small step away from socialism and communism and everything that goes against capitalism. But the same mandate from a state level of government is perfectly acceptable. We are told that government interference is keeping companies from being successful, even though today’s corporations are making more money than ever in the middle of an economic crisis. Obama care is what’s keeping America down, but America was going down before Mr. Obama even took office. What gives?
The truth of the matter is that few are taking an honest look at the political situation and are making their choices and philosophies on nothing but rhetoric and long held but unsubstantiated beliefs. If cutting corporate taxes created jobs we’d have tons of jobs by now. Cutting those taxes further isn’t going to create a single job. Cutting investments in education and keeping the populace ignorant isn’t going to create a single job no matter how much rhetoric we hear to the contrary.
People need to read and to learn for themselves. Simply looking for people who do nothing but recite rhetoric isn’t the answer. Listening to somebody recite all the differences between pit bulls and hockey moms doesn’t help. What helps is information. Taking an educated approach to the issues and taking a thoughtful analysis of the solutions being proposed is bound to be a more thoughtful approach. If nothing else it should lead to a better understanding of what’s going on.
Now if you’ll excuse me I have an article to read. It’s been a year since The Black Sentinel has written an article. I need to see what exactly has brought her back on the scene.