The decision by the Republican National Convention not to seat the Paul delegates hits home for me. Much like many other people who have placed their faith in the Republican Party of the past two or three decades, they have been betrayed. My father is a former Republican and agrees with me. I imagine my grandfather, a dyed-in-the-wool Republican who served as a judge, would also agree – but he is not around to ask.
Many people who consider themselves Republicans do so based on a rather simple belief system, one which I actually would like to agree with. They believe that if you just work hard and play by the rules, that you will succeed and become part of the middle class. That used to be true for the most part but it isn’t anymore. Even in their own convention, to their own delegates, when the results of Maine’s vote cannot change the outcome – they marginalized even their own activists. Playing by the rules doesn’t matter to them anymore. It seems like to win at their game now you need to cheat. Democracy no longer is the game we play, but plutocracy. Whoever has the money makes the rules.
They do so at their own peril. Given enough time, the average voter catches on, and from my time knocking on doors I would say they are beginning to figure out just what’s going on. And that includes the Republicans; they aren’t blind. People like Mitt Romney push tax policies that benefit the richest Americans and raise everyone else’s bills. They do so under the guise of “rugged individualism”, the belief that we don’t need anyone, we can just do it all ourselves. Mitt’s father George once referred to rugged individualism as “nothing but a political banner to cover up greed”. And he was right. George Romney understood something the Republican Party has since forgotten – the value of the social contract and of our communities. He understood how his employees made him wealthy, and so he took enough for himself and gave the rest to them.
George knew we needed to be in the game together, not all playing for ourselves. It’s no wonder that we spend all our time debating over whether low-income women deserve welfare checks or whether teachers make too much money. There are powerbrokers at the top, bipartisan powerbrokers, people with lots of money that have decided the best way to keep most of their money is to keep most of us divided. They force us to fight among ourselves for an ever-shrinking piece of the pie.
So they pit non-union workers against those in unions, public sector workers against private sector, those who favor marriage equality against those who do not. They pump billions of dollars into political advertising designed to make us do nothing but react against the people we see as our opponents and do everything we can to beat them. And then they extend tax cuts for the wealthy for another decade and snicker at the rest of us as we fight one another to survive.
I have more in common with most Republicans than I do with plutocrats. Admittedly, we disagree more than we agree. But we all want enough money to provide for our families and to live with dignity. I would say to Republicans, Democrats, and Independents alike – let’s pull back the curtain and see who’s there. I think it’s high time that we “common folk” – the disaffected middle class – shake the halls of power and place them back into our hands, not the hands of wealthy interests who only have their own interests at heart.
A quote from a great president, Progressive Republican Teddy Roosevelt: “Of all forms of tyranny the least attractive and the most vulgar is the tyranny of mere wealth, the tyranny of plutocracy.”
I would argue this country does need a change, but it isn’t based on red states or blue states. It’s whether or not the middle class will continue to endure the tyranny of the wealthy.
4 thoughts on “Tyranny”
Pingback: Guest Post by SD 25 Dem Candidate Colleen Lachowitz: Tyranny « Maine Progressives Warehouse
Colleen, I couldn’t agree with you more. Your political background is the same as mine. I come from a family of Republicans (the trad type) but both my sister and I were disaffected years ago. You can guess where we are now!
OMG! I, too, come from a looooong line of dyed in the wool Reps, and one was a member of the John Birch Society as well. They always voted the party ticket, regardless of the candidate offered. My mom had a sign she thought was something to be proud of: “Democrats – pay in advance. Served in the rear.” Alas, it seems that others embrace this closed-minded ridiculous philosophy to this day. Yes, I chose not to be a voting sheep, and was ostracized because I felt it was important to size up the character and vision of a candidate, not be cowed by their party or be freaked out because they recreate on line.
The Never Ending Story… Again, we, the Middle Class, get to shoulder the financial and other burdens of our great nation, like Atlas, sandwiched and squished between those in the higher or lower income brackets. Dammit! We work hard, and if a person chooses to enter into an alternative realm for relaxation and FUN, I cannot see it harms anyone else. This fine woman and others (183m+) aren’t doing dastardly, evil things in person, just enjoying themselves IN A GAME. It does not in any way compromise Colleen’s ability to be effective and successful while representing her constituents. How totally ludicrous! Her shallow, narrow-minded opponents should get with this new era. People of all ages play online and other games! We have four adult gamers in our home, all of us work, and we have met and met with new cyber friends online and in person. I feel that it gives one a more well-rounded perspective and even clears the mind to play. You Go, Colleen! Seems to me you’re the candidate for the people!
Excellent post with Tyranny. It is how many of us, ‘real’
Republicans feel today; and how the Party has been highjacked by arrogant morons, pandering to the more than 34% of ‘simply stupid’ and to the 1% ‘greedy’ to, primarily, keep themselves in office. They would prefer to dumb down the country, rather than push for greater intellect, which might cause folks to question their knowledge and their authority to run, not govern this Nation. Hang in there, Colleen. History, with rare exception, has shown that those, who spend hours, days, weeks and months trying to find something, no matter
how flimsy, to defend their own views, or to justify their attacks, on those, they don’t agree with, are ultimately, the
biggest losers, often in ways they could never have imagined. I wish you all success and good fortune. I think that you will be a excellent addition to the State Legislature. BTW, the US Military searches for those who are good gamers. Today’s “Banana Republican’s” would know that, were they lining up to raise their right hand and serve, as we once did.