Broken Promises

Dear Mr President,

The people in Wisconsin need you.  With the announcement today that you will not appear in Wisconsin before the Walker re-call election, you are in effect abandoning the very struggling middle class Americans whom you say you are fighting for and appear to be basing your re-election campaign on.  This is heart-breakingly exploitive and utterly spineless.  You have abandoned the promises you pledged to the people who needed you most.  The American worker has been fighting with his back against the ropes for the past 30 years and this election is a pivotal moment for hard working wage earners.  While it may be good for your approval ratings to attempt to care about the working class by freely throwing around catch phrases like "American worker," "picket line" and "collectively bargain," and it may just be political jargon for you, but for us, these words are a reality.  They are what define our lives and how we feed our families.  We take these words seriously and we took your promises seriously.  What you see as votes from our Union members and campaign donations paid with our Union dues, we see as the stepping stones to the American Dream and as the defining element of what you politicians call "American Exceptionalism."  What that term means to you, I do not know, but us, the American workers, we see American Exceptionalism as the thing that once made America great—knowing that our country would protect us and care for us with programs like Social Security, Medicare, Medicaid, no matter the cost, because that's what the best fucking country in the world did—took care of it's own.  

Our Unions built this country, the highways you drive on, the cars you drive in, the office buildings you work in and are the municipal life blood that hold our cities together.  We have fought a 100 years war in blood and struggle for the right to work fair hours at a livable wage, 2% wage increase every five years indexed for inflation and in return for a life of back breaking work we would be rewarded with a pension and health care for our families.  A man without a college degree used to be able to work the line in a car factory in Detroit and earn a middle class wage that allowed him to drive 2 cars, send his children to state college and go on vacation once a year.  Today that dream is barely achievable as big businesses years ago gave up on America and the very workers who gave their lives to building the company name.  These profit hungry corporations decided to abandon the middle class lifestyle that defined the Post-WWII manufacturing prosperity because it ate away at profit margins, and after all, the only thing that really matters is feeding shareholders endless appetite for exceeding quarterly expectations and CEO bonuses bigger and fatter than the year's before.  The greedy bastards choose instead to rob us, and export the American Dream to emerging markets, invest their money overseas where they could abandon work place regulations, fair wages and exploit these workers abroad, thus turning back the labor standards clocks with the creation of 21st Century Gilded Ages.  All the while, these S+P 500 companies sit on record high piles of cash and refuse to hire new workers in their own country that are so very desperate for work so we can instantly reinvest our wages back into the economy as we survive paycheck to paycheck.
Instead, Mr. President, by abandoning Wisconsin before June 5th, you side with the likes of Scott Walker himself, Mitch Daniels, Rick Synder, Chris Christie and all the soulless free-market rat scabs who have destroyed our country and whose efforts to deny collective bargaining to workers and to strip unions of their political power.  You must have lost your mind Mr. President, can't you see that those extremist Republicans dont actually care anything about Unions, their clever idea to attack the number one source of Democratic campaign funding (yes, Unions) as the main obstacle to balancing State budgets, has nothing to do with shared sacrifice and everything to do with striping political power from the left, along with voter ID laws and the war on women.  This sacrifice isn't shared, it rests solely on the backs of the men and women who wake up everyday sore and tired and fight to pay mortgages, high gas prices, credit card bills, and put a hot meal on the table everynight.  

It us, the American workers, the ones who have sacrificed everything for this country, who believed your words, who trusted that you would be there "standing in our corner" ready to fight with us when we needed you.  And, we, the American workers, are the ones who voted for you.  You have had many opportunities Mr. President to stand in our corner, and believe me, we sure could have used you with us in Madison, the Gulf Coast and in every state budget meeting, but you were no where to be found.  You have lied to us Mr. President and you have abandoned us when we needed you most.  You crossed the picket line and you have become a puppet for big corporations.  You are not a Union man and you never will be.  Broken promises are the only thing I can believe in.  "He who expecteth nothin' ain't gonna be deceived."

For the past 30 years the American Dream really has been a dream.  In a free market capitalist society, any economist will be the first to tell you, nothing lasts forever and everything comes to an end, as the always in motion cycles of capitalism and the get rich or die trying quest for endless profits have left our nation's politicians and the corporations that fund their campaigns, socially and morally bankrupt.  

We allowed Reagan to deregulate big business and convince the masses that the Laffer Curve and trickle down economics would be good for the average wage earner as he cut taxes for the rich at the expense of the poor and domestic discretionary spending—schools, safety net programs, infrastructure.  We allowed Clinton to reform welfare programs allowing the poor to slip further through the cracks into misery.  We allowed Clinton to repeal Glass-Steagall which freed big banks to take massive derivative bets on high yield securities with tax payer insured money.  We allowed Bush to spend freely with a surplus when he should have been implementing austerity measures; two wars and a housing crisis later, he ran up a government deficit that will impede GDP growth for decades….it's amazing he even called himself conservative, he spent more than any big government liberal.  We allowed the Supreme Court to silence the voice of the common man with the Citizens United decision, legalizing bribery in the form of unlimited campaign finance donations as millionaires, billionaries and the corporations they run to pay off politicans and ensure anti-regulatory, pro-business, loophole and tax break infested legislation is passed, further starving the US government of much needed revenue.  And Mr. President we did nothing as we watched your promises become lies, we allowed you to be a weak compromiser as you wasted two years negotiating with terrorists before they finally won the House majority, wasting so much time on passing a half ass health care bill which the Supreme Court will most likely repeal this summer all while the nation's unemployment soared to nearly 10% and peoples lives were being destroyed.  And your half measure stimulus program has only temporarily slowed the fall of the economic guillotine that has mercilessly decapitated the middle class.

Blood pours from the doors of our abandoned factories, down the sidewalks of Main Street, and into the living rooms of so many hardworking Americans who have played by the rules their whole lives.