I urge every man and woman in Vermont regardless of age, party affiliation, color, creed, born citizens, naturalized citizens, to clip and read his column regularly to remember the political shenanigans that had been going on in Washington D.C. since the early 1970s at the expense of the general welfare of the great majority of Americans, the bulk of the 99 percent struggling to stay alive, make ends meet, and keep their heads above water.
Chipping away at the Affordable Care Act (Obamacare), to which 6 million Americans have already signed, people who had no health insurance before. Chipping away at Medi care, Medicaid, food stamp pro grams that feeds four out of 10 children including four of my grandchildren. Today 70 percent of all U.S. workers earn an average of $8.77 an hour. There has not been any particular significant increase in workers wages in 40 years and today's minimum wage buys less than half of what it did in 1965.
It has not always been this way. Sixteen million men and women participated in World War II and when we returned to our civilian lives had the great privilege of participating in the American Dream. It wasn't all peaches and cream, champagne and caviar. We all worked very hard and enlightened companies understood, welcomed and rewarded us with fair and decent wages. There were social programs never before offered in our long history. In 1968, George Romney, the chairman of the board of American Motors, declared that his salary, $275,000 a year, 40 times the wages of an average American motors worker, was enough for any chief officer in the country. No more. The ratio is much closer than 400 to 1.
I had promised myself and the Journal I would be silent until my health was restored and returned to the regular writing of the column sometime around July 15 or August 1. But I have decided I must speak out now, to urge people to read Mr. Torre again and tell our three representatives in Washington once again, "We're mad as hell. We're not going to take it anymore." We've been shouting but obviously the right-wing crazies have not heard us. More likely they have and will continue to ignore us unabashedly.
A few months ago, former Senator Robert Dole, about whom I wrote a column, declared the right-wing crazies were so entrenched, with old, never working political ideas, which - if President Reagan were alive today - he, Dole and other moderate and thoughtful conservative Republicans would not be able to work with them.
Even though theologians today would say that God loves Rush Limbaugh and company as much as he loves me, that does not mean I have to adapt and love what they are espousing. Many of these ideologues are filled with racism, bigotry, huge egos, indifference towards the poor, the elderly, children, and the very ill in our country. We cannot continue in the atmosphere of hate, indifference and refusal that the right wing ideologues have espoused. They not only refuse to work with moderate Republicans and Democrats and dare not approve any bipartisan bills to help the majority of Americans who are in such great need.
"O tempora, O mores!" Indeed.
Hal DeBona lives in Dorset.