Using the excuses of improving our economy by lowering taxes on our richest segments, likewise that we could ship jobs overseas and somehow improve our lives, that denying some medical care would get more money for others, that we didn't need regulations on anything because corporations would do it wisely themselves, that we should fight wars overseas somehow to keep ourselves safer, that a public education system is bad and we should depend on corporations to educate our children, that universities are hotbeds of wild thinking about things like evolution hence we only need again the corporate system that will yield doctorates to people based on their say so and no idea what education those people actually got, we have gotten into one hell of a mess as a people.
From the looks of it the same thing is happening around the world, with blame easy to put on left and right ideologies for how it got here. There is a very weird illogic system in place with a large segment of our population who listen to someone like Palin when she says she told us that our debt would ruin our credit rating as a people. Excuse me but maybe what impacted that (if we assume the ones at S&P used any logic), was a segment of leaders who said they wouldn't pay their bills and if they became the majority the debts owed would be ignored. But people who listen to Palin could care less about logic. And you can take that to the bank!
Try reasoning with any right wing person and after awhile you get to feeling as though you are talking to someone who had been moon-blinked as described in the stories of the owls of Ga'Hoole. They do not deal with facts or issues and their favorite tactic is insults and sometimes if the discussion is online, it becomes crude.
(Incidentally for anybody from the right who actually reads my words before saying something crude and rude, your disagreeing comment will only make it here if you use logic in the argument. Insults-- pfffft!)
My son came out this week one evening to pick up his two boys, and he asked the question as his frustration was as great as mine about our situation today-- How do we reach people who are not operating from facts but rather from feelings? I have no clue and have been trying for a long time.
When people tell everybody that a president must tell the world and everybody else how exceptional they are, they are demanding lies to satisfy their egos. They don't want any of the programs today that would help us maintain what used to be our exceptionalism. They want, I guess, to ride on the coattails of those who came before and were exceptional, who understood a public education system of superior quality mattered if a nation wanted to be a democracy where the people could vote wisely. This was a population who understood, in sufficient numbers, that the government not only can do good things like maintaining public libraries, but should!
I about go nuts when I hear a rightie put down public education as a way to save money. They do this by saying it doesn't work. Oh and corporate education works so much better when it can produce a doctoroate for someone like Bachmann's husband where he then goes around saying people can pray to change someone's gender and it works. I don't doubt for a second they can brainwash someone into denying their nature. That happens regularly but to change sexual orientation!?! Oh, doubtless, they can pray to get them to ignore what it is, to deny what it is, to even use secret perversions to hide what it is, but change it? No, they cannot but the place he got his degree wasn't teaching facts, and it was able to give a degree based on ideology because we have lost track of what an education means.
The people who put down that public education are likewise those who most likely benefited from one. They were able to attend college at a time where anybody with a B average in high school and who had taken college prep classes in high school could pay their way by part time jobs. That's was then and this is now where a university degree can put someone in hock for years and years. It's not enough that students pay back the loans, Republicans want the interest to begin the moment they get the money, hence multiplying what it will end up costing them. No wonder we hear of kids prostituting themselves to pay tuition. That suits a certain mentality of American, I guess.
My concern for the future of the middle class is obviously becoming stronger as I have grandchildren growing up who will someday be trying to make their own way in a world that seems to value none of what I remember it valuing.
American exceptionalism has to be earned and it cannot be done by saying I only want to pay for what benefits me. It has to be done by seeing us as a whole, seeing government as a valuable tool that must be kept effective and honed, ready to use as well as looking at what programs and tax codes will help us compete in the world.
You cannot fix a bridge by sitting on your hands (and wallet) saying government cannot do anything right. You cannot ignore the history of the situation that if corporations end up maintaining all of our infrastructure (for their profit not ours) with no oversight by anybody else, we will end up with a lot of it crumbling.
We are not exceptional people by just being born here. It's what we do with what we are given when we stepped into life in a very beneficial environment. Destroying that all to prop up some rich people while we ignore the educational system that could let future generations work for what earlier ones got, well that makes me so mad I cannot even write about it without a rise in blood pressure.
I don't deny that we have had programs that didn't work or do what was intended. Fix them. Don't destroy them and don't tell me that all that should matter is what benefits you and then claim to be a patriotic American. You are just a selfish one.