I put Middle Earth Journal in hiatus in May of 2008 and moved to Newshoggers.
I temporarily reopened Middle Earth Journal when Newshoggers shut it's doors but I was invited to Participate at The Moderate Voice so Middle Earth Journal is once again in hiatus.

Saturday, December 16, 2006

The GOP's ownership society

When Republicans talk about an "ownership" society they are talking about a minority of the population, not a broad program of an economy of opportunity for all.

Reagan, in his forst term hired a consultant named Jerry White to plan which Dept. of Defence jobs could be privatized.

In Reagan's second term Jerry White was appointed at the under secretary level to implement his plan.

Since then the following conditions prevail:

1. The end of the eight hour work day in favor of the open ended work day.
2. The end of the forty hour work week in favor of the eighty plus hour work week.
3. The end of time and a half pay for overtime.
4. A wage level barely at, and frequently below the cost of living in the regional economy.
5. The end of job benefits like medical insurance coverage.
6. No pensions.
7. No union protections, or collective bargaining rights.

Working Americans as cattle.

What kind of family values can people build if they are working nineteen hour days, and eighty plus hour work weeks, not including commuting time?

What are the health, and on the job safety effects of a chronic eighty plus hour work week not including commuting?

Time and half pay was implemented by Franklkin Roosevelt's New Deal as a tool to limit overtime demands of employers to give working Americans time to, among other things, sleep and eat. From Reagan to Bush/Cheney/Rumsfeld that tool has been eroded until it is finally gone.

Federal contract workers must pay for mortagages, cars, insurance, medical care, school expenses, monthly bills, food, and fuel on wages that tend to be below the cost of living. It just doesn't add up, no matter how much they work they fall steadily behind.

Federal contract, and sub-contract workers must frequently work in heavy industrial environments with out medical insurance coverage, combined with the fact if they don't show up they don't get paid. An injury can be a financial and family calamity.

Dependance on social security means dependance on a workable system crippled through the years by official looting by both partries, simultaneous with a massive demographic increase in people qualified to make claims, and the Republicans changing retirement age upwards until retirement is a meaningless pipe dream.

Work until you die. Retirement is not an option. Get injured and you're on your own. Work more get less. Buy a nice car because you might be living in it at any time. Credit going down because even small payments are hard to make, and when they don't get made, the Republicans have arranged credit laws to allow sky high interest rate penalties.

What does the Republican Ownership Society mean for ordinary American workers? Look at bankruptcy statistics. Look at infant mortality. Look at wages and benefits compared to the cost of living in the regional economy. Look at savings rates. Look at debt levels. Look at people's ability to pay for medical care, and how many bankruptcies are caused by medical expenses.

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