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Laughing all the way to the bank

November 11, 2011

“Occupy” movements in New York, Oakland and all over the country are growing and gaining momentum, but the folks in Washington seem to have their eyes shut and their fingers in their ears.

Do we have to wait until we completely lose our middle class to take measures against the death grip big banks, corporations, lobbyists and corporate-controlled media have on our government and our futures?

Americans used to be able to rely on hard work, ethics and a good education as a means to get ahead, but the system we have in place now does little to provide for the future success of our country.

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Many lawmakers are well aware of the protests, but dismiss the very real concerns of a growing tide of Main Street Americans, and instead label them “takers” as they look down from their posh corporate offices, million-dollar mansions and corporate-loophole jets.

The contempt shown for the millions struggling to find work in America was absolute when they refused to even talk about President Obama’s jobs bill. But I guess asking elected officials — whose “No. 1 goal is to make sure Barack Obama is not re-elected” — to do what is best for our country, rather than for their corporate sponsors, is expecting too much.

We need to get the money out of politics. Limiting campaign finance to federal funding is the only way to have a fair, balanced process.

I am filled with sadness when I think of the inscription on the Statue of Liberty, “'Give me your tired, your poor, your huddled masses yearning to breathe free.” I think of the tired, poor, huddled masses we have growing at an alarming rate in our country because they are denied the same opportunities and benefits prior generations have benefited from.

Millions of Americans are yearning to breathe free, but it's hard to do that when you are worried how you're going to find a job, make your next mortgage payment, pay medical expenses or pay off college loans.

Where do banks laugh all the way to, I wonder?

Amiee Klem

Glendale

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