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Web Letters | The Nation

Then They Came for the Pensions

We're entitled to representation

Let’s go back before there were unions and ask the people then what they think of unions. They were willing to fight and die for union representation. With unions the quality of life became better for working people. We should be supporting the teachers and public workers, not envying them for having union representation. And hopefully by supporting them we can help ourselves, and have representation and support from them. I’m sure if you asked the steelworkers, autoworkers, coal miners, etc. who worked before unions, you would hear nothing but praise for the unions.

Think about it, what do you want to determine your standard of living, representation or corporations whose only concern is profit at anyone’s expense? I think you’ll find corporations have no conscience or empathy for working people. What have corporations done? Moved to repressed countries where workers have no representation. But now they’re revolting in places like Egypt because they can’t survive on $2 a day, they’re fighting for representation, so they’re able to make a living wage. You don’t see corporations caring about them. Come on people wake up and smell the coffee, get on the right side of the fence.

Governor Walker wants public workers to give things up, but I don’t see him giving anything up—maybe we could start with lowering his pay and taking his pension away from him. I bet he thinks that’s his entitlement and we all know that entitlements are a bad thing, ask any Republican.

"Entitlement”? When you pay for something I believe you’re entitled to it, duh. They act like it’s a favor. From Reagan to Bush, the Republicans have made things worse and worse. The economy has plunged, the deficit has ballooned. But they keep insisting their tax cuts for the rich are needed, even though things keep getting worse. Let’s cut the things that benefit the less fortunate, Social Security, Medicare, Medicaid, education, and on and on... so we can make the rich richer, why should they have to pay taxes, they support the politicians, that’s good enough. Let’s put the burden on the working people. The Robin Hoods of government rob from the poor and give to the rich. Let’s stop the tax cuts and tax shelters and save our entitlements.

They’re fighting the same class war all over the world: France, England, etc, If anything, we need to step up our fight against these wrongdoings. About Social Security, it makes more sense to me to lower the age of retirement—how are you going to open up more jobs by making people work longer? They should be working on ways to lower the age of retirement to open up jobs for the younger generation.

I have a suggestion, what if we stop the tax cuts and tax shelters, and let President Obama determine what budget cuts are necessary and see what happens? If that doesn’t work, we can reverse it. We know that the policies of Bush and Reagan haven’t worked, it’s time to try something else. I’ve had enough of the failed Republican policies. We sat back and let Bush screw things up to just about beyond repair. Let’s give President Obama the chance he deserves to repair them. How can we find out what kind of president he really is, when they stop him at every turn? And keep pushing their failed policies. And no one can deny the fact that these are failed policies, just look at the country.

Kenneth Nelson

Monticello, IN

Mar 4 2011 - 7:16pm