“I believe in a merit nation, an opportunity nation where people by virtue of their education, their hard work and risk taking and their dreams — may be a little luck — could achieve great things.”
-Republican Presidential Candidate Mitt Romney
There has been a lot of talk about Romney’s statements regarding the unequal distribution of wealth favoring the already-wealthy and powerful while continuing to stab and demonize the poor and struggling. Romney basically said that income inequality is all about envy. In other words the have-nots are jealous of the haves and the have-too-much.
Romney, like most of his right-wing comrades, believes that with education, hard work and luck, anyone can touch the skies of success. It the simple plan towards the fabled American Dream that many believe in. It has been the faith that those on the Right firmly uphold as many believe that the rich and powerful have earned their millions and billions and therefore, deserve a lot of breaks and privileges that the government – in their minds – is trying to take away from them.
Republicans are afraid of equality. Some fear that economic fairness to the poor raises a red flag in the name of socialism or communism. They can not stand it when the poor are given assistance by the government for they think the poor are too lazy to work. So, they sneer at any opportunity to help the poor population in times of any economic crisis.
Conservative Republicans also believe that the wealthy helps keep the economy going. Any regulations against them such as tax increases is bad for business and are therefore bad for the economy. It’s no wonder why at every election year “tax cuts for the rich” has been the promise from the mouthpieces of the Republican party.
However, the not-so fortunate population knows that the plan of going to school and working hard (also referred to as “pulling up by the bootstraps”) does not guarantee a place among the upper class. In fact it doesn’t even project a 50% chance for those stuck at the bottom in a society where inequality is American.
Too many people are duped into believing that this country is “the land of opportunity” without realizing that it is IF, AND ONLY IF one has social, economic, educational, political, and even color-based advantages set up by the society. There are a few who do somehow advance beyond all kinds of adversities, but there are large groups of people who have also tried and were screwed not necessarily because they messed up – not all of then – but because someone or something got in their way that was far beyond their control.
Those obstacles that are insurmountable to the poor and marginalized are based on the belief that the rich and powerful not only should be helped and supported, but are necessary in helping the economy prevail. It has been the Republican model even since Reagan’s election, and it has been recycled by Bush and his son.
The major problem with that ideal is that it has failed BIG TIME! It is the same model that caused the recession in the 80’s during the Reagan years. It is the same model that has caused the current economic crisis of the new millennium during George W. Bush’s regime. And yet, REPUBLICANS STILL BELIEVE IN IT! Of course they would, it helps the insanely rich get richer and hyperprivileged while making sure the poor not only stay poor but will never be able to rise above it in their lifetimes.
The rich are supported financially and politically by the rich. It’s the birds of a feather mentality that keeps rich people on top unless they screw with other rich people. Perhaps part of the reason is the myth that rich people got rich out of their own merit. The fact is some, if not most, of the wealthiest people didn’t get their based on hard work. Some were privileged enough to rise to the top with little effort. Some have inherited their fortunes from their families. And some have risen thanks to other people’s work. It is one of the greatest cons many Americans believe in.
What’s even more baffling is that there are poor people who buy into the scam. They too support limited government and breaks for the rich even though their chances of becoming one of them is one in a million.
Some Americans also buy into the stereotype that poor people are lazy. The reality is that there is little or no employment for many working class Americans who struggle to make ends meet. Most of them actively try to find employment to support themselves and their families, but no matter how hard they work, they still remain poor. If an economic crisis occurs, their situation gets worse. They struggle twice as hard for even less pay, and when that fails, they may end up homeless, involved in crime or both. They MUST do whatever they can not to live, but to survive.
Mitt Romney is poised to promise the same strategy this year should be become elected. After all, he is rich himself. If he does get elected, the gap between the rich and poor will likely become so wide and so deep that it may never be closed any time this decade. Politics that favor the rich and powerful is proven to be an utter failure on many levels. It proves that forbidding economic fairness for all people is a crime against humanity.