Tuesday, July 17, 2012

17 July 2012 Give them a toilet with their name on it

In a sense, Romney deserves the Swift-boating he’s now getting from the Obama campaign and the president himself. He has repeatedly cited his business experience as making him almost unbearably qualified for the presidency when, as history shows, no businessman has made a great or even decent president. The truth is that Romney is the ugly face of the free enterprise system. Job creation is a byproduct of wealth creation. When Romney said he liked “being able to fire people,” he was not confessing to sadism, just to efficiency. To the workers, being fired probably felt the same either way
“The nation has the jitters. An awful lot of sound and knowledgeable people fear an economic calamity, a movement by the financial markets to impose financial probity. Europe and the euro teeter, China’s economy is slowing (and its politics are corrupt, opaque and repressive), and the United States cannot fashion a deal to raise revenue and cut spending. The lack of political leadership has gone from appalling to frightening.
In the meantime, our great and protracted political debate is concerned with when Romney ran Bain and this matter of outsourcing. The underlying reason for the loss of jobs and for outsourcing is almost never mentioned — an education system that ill-prepares young people for the job market. We turn out unskilled people who can’t work as cheaply as someone in India or as skillfully as some robot. Worse yet, we extol a culture that denigrates hard work and study and that insists, as virtually the entire Republican Party does, that somehow the font of all education wisdom is the local school board. It always knows best...”
Cassi Creek:  Gloria and I are early “Boomers” who came of age in the 50s - 60s.  We are old enough to recall the humiliation and indignities visited upon black Americans by white Americans as the Jim Crow laws and customs of the old South gradually fell to the resistance waged by brave, common men and women who recognized the face of evil in this nation and found that they could not support it.
          Both of us recall toilets and water fountains labeled, “Colored.”  We recall when those movie theaters that allowed blacks to attend with whites required blacks to sit in the balcony or in the very back rows.  I recall Jim Crow train cars and Jim Crow busses as the rule in the capital city of Missouri.  I remember, while in my middle teens traveling by car to a Boy Scout event.  We stopped along the way to eat and one of our group was not welcome to sit and eat with the rest of us.  To our credit, we all left to find another place that would serve us all. I was taught, growing up, that such behaviors and practices were wrong, unequivocally wrong.  That speaks highly of the people who taught me and who imparted as much civilization as I could absorb.  Missouri was a pro-slavery border state that still clings to the past and lionizes the men who fought to retain slavery.

          What does this have to do with outsourcing and a political campaign?
          Mitt Romney is a Mormon.  The LDS church has, since inception, considered Blacks, all Blacks, not just Afro-Americans, as inferior and unable to fully participate in the customs and practices of the LDS church.  Politically correct statements have been issued by the LDS hierarchy over the years.  However, we have all seen companies with two sets of books and two sets of rules. 
          Romney, the GOP/teavangelists, and large numbers of their voter base are quite eager to limit access to the voting booth, blocking large portions of the electorate from voting.  I helped register Black voters in 1966.  It should not now be necessary to block the use of new Jim Crow laws. 
          Slavery was an extreme example of outsourcing.  Africans were imported into regions where climate and geology made farming difficult.  The forced labor of generations of African-Americans made fortunes for some families of the old South.  The social gap between African-Americans and the less well-to-do whites became increasingly broad as the Civil War did away with slavery.  The animosity directed toward African-Americans in the Jim Crow days has not vanished just as whites tried to block voting rights in the old South; the GOP/teavangelists are making every effort to prevent minorities voting now.  Just as in the 1960s when minorities voted for the Democratic Party, today, many minority voters have figured out that they are ill served to vote for any GOP/teavangelists. 
          In the days of segregated plumbing, one bitter truth was that the poor black and the poor white were often so similar that only a labeled toilet distinguished them.  If we give Mitch McConnell and Jim Dement toilets with their names inscribed, will they go away and leave America alone?

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