I spent my entire career listening to the personal, often tragic stories of children and parents in need. I did my best to help families make sense of the pain and confusion they experienced. I tried to help them make plans, to take steps to regain control over their lives and pursue their dreams. I advocated to marshal the assistance they needed from the larger social service community and their government. My work brought me into contact with all the major social issues of our day and all of our basic institutions such as law enforcement agencies, courts, prisons, schools, hospitals and medical professionals, county social services and welfare agencies, psychiatric hospitals, universities, non-profit service agencies and governments on the local, state and federal levels.
This was a privileged vantage point from which I observed every level of our human ecology, from the lives of individuals to the operations of government institutions. The impact of state and federal policy on the unique lives of ordinary people was amazing, and often disturbing to see. The rising tide of political conflict and the clash of ideologies has real, observable and sometimes devastating consequences.
An old African proverb says: “When elephants fight the grass dies.” This sums up what inspired me to create this blog. I want to share my perspective on issues that impact the lives of ordinary Americans. I want to give voice to those who are too often ignored. I want to help inform our political dialogue with the best data I can find, data that can be independently verified. Ideology is no substitute for reason. Our political leaders can agree or disagree on principles, but when there is no agreement on facts there can be no common understanding and no effective action to help strengthen families and our communities.
Brian T. Lynch, MSW
Vernon Wall, Gulf Harbour New Zealand, Christmas Greetings from the South Pacific.
I read your “fair wages” article and went on to find and read your “Voter rights” blog. It amazes me that the US constitution, federal law and state law is today at such variance and disarray after 200 years and many thousands of fine educated lawyers educated and entering the service. That that this matter has not been properly sorted long since, nor honest enforcement to be confidently relied upon.
It is a sad indictment on the level of corruption of your politics that this is so. The general concept of capitalism does work in a wide sense of a even and just market, Unfortunately no such market now exists in this world (if it ever did). We here live under a nominal Monarchy headed single house government, which has no great constitution, so our laws are those of common law (inherited from the English as a colonial outpost) and precedent law of our own Courts, ie the law practices evolve. As a result, our voting rights are commonly uniform across the nation. Our fair wages are like yours, depressed in relation to market prices, which has several main drivers, however two are notable. One is that cost plus economics is constantly driving the unaccountable and inefficient government run services and hence their charges continue relentlessly upward without any relationship to output, efficiency or general inflation, which coupled with a plethora of new charges, fees and taxes especially in specific compliance areas generated by an ever increasing control mentality has placed an unseen burden of passed on charges to the property owner, property renter and consumer. These fees and charges are no more than a form of unaccountable service tax, for which there is no added value. The disproportion of such fees and taxes paid by lower income consumers in the act of mere survival consumption is a major driver of the disparity between poor and wealthy because that cost steals from that lower income group any prospect of saving or wealth accumulation.
What I believe your articles fail to do in both cases is connect the dots to intentional political design. (by your own Government)
It is not by some freak accident of fate that your inept double house system and over riding presidential decree abuse, fails to provide for its voters and wage workers, it is by internal design. Sadly your much attributed Constitution is being bypassed and your Courts are powerless to hold the line.
The design of impoverishing the middle class and maintaining the lower working class at a subsistence level sustained only by the addition of substantial subsidy is the clever plan of the new world order to subjugate the population without right of protest, to the system of government maintenance provided the population conform by producing an output which enhances the value passed to the elite who control this very system.
This wolf capitalism clothed in the sheep’s wool of communist practice, is pure Marx theory, being perpetrated by your very own so called elected officials.Alas no longer can the American joke at the ludicrous folly of politics of the french and Italians, they have created worse for themselves.
Originally it was Gen.McArthur who paved the way for US capital to exploit the vanquished post WW2 Japan and bring onshore quantities of cheap asian goods. Goods which deprived US workers of the opportunity to benefit from the product of their own domestic markets, Instead that action extracted capital profits which bypassed domestic workers and went straight to the capitalist investors and started the modern wage income discrepancy spiral. The Act by Nixon to take USA alongside China which has initiated manufacture in China with US capital and has been fundamental not just in China’s growth but in removing jobs from USA, which has enabled the lowering of domestic wages and created a false domestic market condition whereby many jobs could be extracted from USA mainland and relocated offshore if wages spilled above the minimum. The free market, enabling importation of cut price consumer goods, is not just to benignly benefit consumers, it is to create the price pressure on internal manufacture that holds down general prices by creating a mechanism where a wide range of domestic raw process goods are price suppressed to that of the larger world market, while a narrow range of consumer goods are price hiked by a cartel of monopolistic suppliers to that prevailing on other markets thousands of miles away (enabling local consumer price gouging) whilst wages are suppressed in whole markets, including those only applying to domestic consumption, to that of other markets also thousands of miles away, which in no way relate to local domestic provisioning, An absoluter monumental Rort, and a serious con over the people. This corrupt practice enables higher capitalist profits which derive directly to the investors, most of whom are foreign registered corporations that contribute little or minimal real tax, whilst the real community cost is being borne in the form of social supplements, which are a substantially and community crippling increased local tax, upon a diminished local revenue base. This is the mechanism that is overlooked. This is the mechanism that is disenfranchising Americans of their lawful heritage.
Why does this occur you ask, Are not our politicians all patriots, who work for the citizens good. The short answer is NO. Politicians work effectively for the (lobby) groups that enable their tenuous over remunerated survival. That group is largely backed by capitalist interests. Politicians pay lip service to voters making a few voter visible efforts to retain public approval, whilst working efficiently to sustain capital support. Remembering that voters only get to vote on the limited choice of those candidates already selected (nominated) and given the running by the political system. (in this practice so called american democracy differs very little from France’s version of Communism). The recent Presidential election (a modern casino farce) is a good case in point. (A Wall Street bet of; heads we win, tails you loose). But the underlying cause of all these apparently random chance occurrences that systematically deplete the wealth of the USA citizens are the the exact same policies of the UN Agenda 21, which have the full endorsement of all the supporting communist regimes and indeed the very same endorsement of the capitalist lobby of USA. The UN which is hosted by USA and spreads its world domination policies world wide via USA diplomatic intervention and USA military enforcement, and of course the IMF, and now the highly secretive Pacific Treaty (TPPA) which involves China, and suggests to permanently entrench dismemberment of your Constitution and worker dis-empowerment practices, forever, in favor of unimpeachable corporate capitalism rights
The plight of the USA worker is to be placed alongside the asian worker, in reduced earning power, by the continued suppression of wages
(all blamed on so called market forces) and the increase of inflation.
Capital will be protected by; holding the levers, investing in essential resources, deriving income from monopoly on essential infrastructure and retaining wealth not in the programmed to fail US dollar denominated treasuries or the doomed US currency , but in gold backed inflation adjusted United Nations Special Drawing Rights, which are fast becoming the currency platform of the elite. It is my belief that a near future step will be for the President to declare gold to be the so called cause of an inflationary spike. causing and justifying him to confiscate all the Gold from the US banking market and from all US citizens for an unrealistic nominal payout in worthless inflated dollars (as was done in 1935).
This confiscated gold will be paid directly to the IMF for a drawing fund in US dollars to enable the so called payment of the US treasury debt. This will have the effect of transferring all the real gold value out of the economy (permanently removing that last stability underpinning)(opening the way for further designed inflation) and securing permanently and exclusively to the capital elite the substance behind their special drawing rights funding, I would also expect to see that the elite become citizens of some special UN arrangement (ie UN citizens) and that some small locations (with adequate private airport facilities, become special UN domiciles, so that these elite are not taxed in the direct manner of citizen landowners or workers, as are most ordinary citizens.
The rather abused second amendment was installed to specifically prevent executive or military abuse, however the new weapons technology and population spying technology that has been purchased with taxpayer funds and held closely to the power brokers, has all but castrated that noble founding fathers provision.
There are very few effective provisions that the taxpayer can continue to exercise, (none without some effective unity), but some are:
(1) The discerning boycott of any consumer product or service that directly or indirectly supports the foreign merchant behind job replacement or the corrupt regime. (2) Raising local candidates that sign an electoral contract ensuring their freedom from corrupt practice. ( an electoral audit committee that follows in every step along the the way for the whole term might restore confidence in integrity). (3) Abstain from using and contributing to financial services that are aligned with suspect alliances, let the proof of integrity be with the financial service. and (4) Form sound regional and industry co-operatives for mutual service and internalized reward. (5) Stand strong to retain localised control over internet connections, telephone infrastructure, local banking, local essential resources and local food distribution.
We are facing not dissimilar problems in our country, mainly because local greed dominated politicians would be happy to sell our sovereignty down the swanny, for their own graft, leaving our countrymen at the mercy of unwanted multinationalsforeign trade officials and their oppressive UN handmaidens, all done legal if you accept that the clean paper face of collusion and treason is ever legal. Americans keep your guns, it is your last line of defense (mainly posturing but real) for honest men against real tyranny from opportunist street criminals and conniving office criminals.
With fond memories of WW2 comradeship, New Zealanders tend to like Americans, not least that many have similar English and European roots and live by similar values as our own. Today we are cast in the same boat with the same commercial corporates dictating the market winds and the same political bosuns pulling on the ropes of their choosing. We all seek an unimpeachable Captain to steer a straight course.
Observer from the far Pacific.
Hello Vernon Hall. Happy Holiday’s to you also. Thank you for your provocative comment. I suspect you have more dots to connect than I do so far. I may take some time to unpack everything you wrote. Until then, I do believe you meant to post this comment under the article entitled “Wage History and the Case for A Living Wage” Here is that link for anyone who wishes to follow-up on your comment: http://wp.me/p2WIGz-5 Enjoy the day!
Vern could you be a little more specific & thorough, whew.
So glad you found me in cyberspace so I could find you! Really enjoyed my trip through your blog this morning and look forward to your future posts.
In the spirit of passing it on, I nominated you for The Sunshine Award. Here’s the excerpt and link:
“I just recently discovered DataHeart because he found me in cyberspace – I admire this man. He writes about subjects that I would love to write about, but my musings would undoubtedly turn into a bloody rampage over the injustice of it all. He does so with logic, finesse and a calm spirit that tells, “Just the Facts, ma’am.”
He also manages to take data points from a variety of places and show you how they relate to one another. In our complex world and especially as we try to make better decisions regarding the systems we have that are failing both us and future generations, thinkers like him are sorely needed.
Kudos to you DataHeart – may you never tire of taking the data and explaining it well to those of us who prefer the written word to charts.”
Just read your article. I think that keeping real asset price histories
out of sight is the central villainy … I try to expose it, to little effect so far.
What do you think, please?
I consider you part of my WordPress Family – You’ve been Nominated:
The Liebster Award is for those with under 200 followers – I nominated you so those in my circle could get to know you! You can view the award nomination here:
Thank you TamrahJo for nominating me for the awards. It is an honor, to be sure, but I don’t actually understand what it is all about. How does it work? Who votes on nominations? What are the criteria?
The awards process is more about showing appreciation to fellow bloggers and giving your followers a chance to discover bloggers you’ve enjoyed. It rather like an appreciation chain letter that allows you to share with others those blogs you really like.
I picked you and did a post (which is the link I included) to share with my readers your blog – hopefully get some more viewers headed your way to share in your fabulous information –
To ‘accept” the nomination, you need only click on the link I provided and it shows what to do if you choose to accept – usually you are asked to share some random facts about yourself (they can be as serious or silly as you wish) and then you are asked to nominate other blogs in return.
There are many in WordPress world that do not like the work involved in doing the Awards and/or do not see them as pertinent to their activities – you are in NO WAY pressured to accept the nomination, nor will bad things happen if you choose to say, “Thanks, but I choose not to do the awards” or whatever other gracious reply you want to use.
I nominate those who fit the bill for the award parameters (I awarded you with the award for those with under 200 followers.)
It’s just my way of saying, “Hey! I’m really glad you’re here, blogging, I enjoy your site and I’m listing here in hopes that those who follow me will find your site as awesome as I do, now that they know where to find you.”
🙂 If you choose to accept and need any help with the process – feel free to contact me! If you choose not to, no worries! I still think you’re awesome!
Thanks. That explanation is very helpful and I am greater up to you for nominating me. I will check it out further next chance I get. B
Sent from my iPhone (973) 951-7009
You hold up the mirror on American life, politics and policy. Thank you for that. I’m one of those crazy people who makes ends meet by doing more with less, gardening, canning and avoiding so-called modern entertainment. I am a news junky, though, and through that lens I find that there’s a complete disconnect between “American lifestyle” and sustainability and sanity.
Thank you for your kind words. I agree about the disconnect between American lifestyle adn sustainability. The disconnect is also between media portrayal of American lifestyle and the gritty reality of most of our citizens.