Friday, December 22, 2017

Pull ourselves up by our boot straps...

I really can't believe Al Franken is resigning while Trump is staying put. I'm trying to watch his farewell speech without crying. I do take pleasure in Franken having addressed Trump during his farewell speech. A speech, I might add, Trump could never deliver. His inability to use English well limits his expression & frustrates the listener.

Franken begins his speech by talking about his wife, Frannie, and how her family endured great financial hardship when she was a toddler. Widowed at 29 with five kids, Frannie's mother received widow/survivor benefits. Three of the five children, including Franken's wife, attended college through Pell grants and scholarships. Later in life, Frannie's mother took out a GI loan in order to attend college. She went on to become a teacher. She choose to work with underpriviledged kids (Title I children), and was able to have her loans forgiven. Through our then government's social safety net, every person in Frannie's family became a productive member of the American middle class. Franken goes on to say, 'We can only pull ourselves up by our boot straps when we have boots. Our government was then in the business of giving out boots. Now it's in the business of hiding and hoarding boots.

'We all do better, when we all do better'.  --Franken's predecessor, Paul Wellstone.

Illustrating the quote, Franken goes on to say that 'we all need to be able to particpate in and contribute to democracy'.

Those at the top don't always concern themselves with those at the bottom of the socio-economic ladder. Some people believe that we are all in this life on our own. Some people believe that those who are born into more fortunate circumstances are more deserving. But all these arguments matter, says Franken. He finds the disagreements that lead to discussion beneficial. 'It's about challenging our own views and sharpening our critical-thinking skills'.

The current policies do not reflect either Franken's or Wellstone's beliefs. The Repubs in charge are about consolidating political and econonic power into the hands of corporations and the very weatlhy. 'Trickle down' economics is a disproven theory. It didn't work during Reagan's presidency and it doesn't work now. The tax bill is about giving enormous pay-outs to wealthy donors and corporate interests. Under this tax plan, approximately 35 million working and middle class Americans will see their taxes increase. The monied 1% will see their wealth increase.

I'd love to hear from those who think that HRC would have championed such a bill were she to have become president.


  1. Sigh.
    Sadly our guvermint is viewing the passage of this tax bill as a sign that we MUST follow suit. And has more than one advocate of the trickle down effect. How will they pay for this generosity? By targetting (shafting) those at the bottom end of the scale.
    Sometimes I despair. Often I despair.

    1. Me, too.

      I find it very disconcerting that your gov't would take a page from our current playbook to help inform what they implement. We are a shambles.

      'Trickle down' is a trick.

    2. Is in 'in shambles'? I think so.

    3. Trickle down is dammed by those at the top - and used for their exclusive benefit.

  2. I read somewhere that the GOP is "cashing out". Of course.

    I read somewhere else someone touting how wonderful it was to have majorities in the government like they did in 1928. (With someone commenting about how it all came crashing down in 1929.)

    I choose to believe this is the death rattle of these economic policies. Those in power have to go so far so that the willfully blind and stupid can finally figure out that these people do not have their best interests at heart.

    The French Revolution had to happen. The aristocracy went too far. It's time for a new revolution, albeit a bloodless one. (There's no need for another actual civil war.)

    1. Good points made, Liz. My hubby has mentioned our coming to a revolution of sorts as well. When the disenfranchised become the majority and have thoroughly had enough, then we're going to see a seismic shift.


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