Friday, September 20, 2013


Timothy Egan nails the head-snapping misrepresentation of poor whites by their Teapublican overlords:

Among the 254 counties where food stamp use doubled during the economic collapse, Mitt Romney won 213 of them, Bloomberg News reported. Half of Owsley County, Ky., is receiving federal food aid. Half. 
You can’t get any more Team Red than Owsley County; it is 98 percent white, 81 percent Republican, per the 2012 presidential election. And that hardscrabble region has the distinction of being the poorest in the nation, with the lowest household income of any county in the United States, the Census Bureau found in 2010. 
Since nearly half of Owsley’s residents also live below the poverty line, it would seem logical that the congressman who represents the area, Hal Rogers, a Republican, would be interested in, say, boosting income for poor working folks. But Rogers joined every single Republican in the House earlier this year in voting down a plan to raise the minimum wage over the next two years to $10.10 an hour.
Instead of voting for their pocketbooks, poor whites have succumbed to a frankly tribal and bigoted appeal that finds fear and threats in blacks, immigrants, and anyone who's different. It's not an accident that the heart of this appeal to the basest of American traditions springs from the South, where it seeks to recapitulate Jim Crow. Never mind what the majority wants, suppress enough votes to keep the aristocracy in power.

The GOP can do this because they've changed the postwar social norm. After WWII, we all knew from the battlefield that we were one nation, all in this great cause of freedom and prosperity together. This made very threatening times for the lords of the manor. They might prosper even more under Democrats than under Republicans (look it up), but they needed greater income inequality to feel better about themselves.

So they took their financial resources and put them to work changing the social norm. Now, we have an entire right-wing media apparatus built for the purpose of convincing their racist teabagger serfs of a thousand things opposite the truth.

But the main new social norm for the conserfatives is the ardent faith that the government and organized labor are the source of their problems, when in fact they are the only counterbalance that exists to the plutocracy that has gluttonously gobbled up all the economic gains of the past thirty-five years and still cannot be sated short of neo-feudalism.
What’s at work here is the poison of ideology. Underlying the food assistance fight is the idea that the poor are lazy, and deserve their fate — the Ayn Rand philosophy. You don’t see this same reasoning applied to those Red State agricultural-industrialists living high off farm subsidies, and that’s why Republicans have separated the two major recipient groups of federal food aid. Subsidized cotton growers cannot possibly be equated with someone trying to stretch macaroni into three meals.
The saddest part: Those people in Owsley County who are made hungry by Republican fealty to the wealthy will continue to blame the government and the United Mine Workers. In a way, the fucking morons deserve to live in a company town. They've failed to live up to their self-image as self-reliant, independent yeoman Scotch-Irish sonsabitches. But the rest of us don't deserve that company town. And their children don't either.


Anonymous said...

Just what should the minimum wage be? Tell me.

lovable liberal said...

Inflation has eaten away at the purchasing power of the minimum wage. I'm not sure we could go all the way back, but how about $12 per hour. That would be barely above the poverty line for a family of four.

I would index the minimum wage to inflation. I'd also limit the tax deductibility of CEO compensation to forty times the lowest paid employee. Or maybe twenty times median pay.

You? Zero, like your moronic Teabaggers.

Anonymous said...

I was thinking more along the lines of a living wage of $25.00/hr. or more. Why do you insult me?

lovable liberal said...

Sorry. I thought you were my usual troll, since he commented about the same time. But I take it all back. My bad!

By the way, $25 per hour is above the current median income, so I don't think it would be a good idea.

Anonymous said...

Well then what's the sense of having a minimum wage if it can't be a living wage for everyone?

Anonymous said...

Don't tell me you're too busy watching Duck Dynasty like the baggers to answer me. I really want to know why you think that there shouldn't be a minimum, living wage as opposed to the small minimum wage. It's just not fair that these big corporations get away with enslaving us with low wages while they live in the ivory towers.

lovable liberal said...

I'd go for $12 an hour. But I think you're a faker.

Anonymous said...

Alright Fidel, I’ll spell it out for you and your little friend. Conservatives oppose the minimum wage for several reasons. First, the gangster government has NO right or place to tell a business operating in a supposed free market how much they have to pay their help. Secondly, a number some bureaucrat picks out of thin air may work for some business but would harm many others. You yourself argue for $12 per hour while your communist sidekick thinks $25 should be the law. Everyone that thinks there should be a minimum wage also has a limit to what they think it should be. Therefore, if there can’t be a minimum wage that all business agree to, there should be none at all. Finally, the minimum wage is as unfair as can be. It’s just like the corrupt union bosses demanding that every job has the same pay for all laborers. This is socialism at the workplace. It rewards the lazy and punishes the productive. The absence of a minimum wage would create competition between employers and companies would have to pay higher wages to attract the more intelligent or productive laborers.

Can you two pinheads compute all that?

lovable liberal said...

You really do have a top percentile ability to pack bullshit into small packages. Obviously not a one percenter in any other way, though...

You can assert some bullshit about the government having "no right" to regulate the terms of a contract between people, but there is nothing more than your infantile belief in that. Most people grow after the vacuous bullshit asserted by Ayn Rand without justification. No you, though.

Pretty much everything in a democracy is subject to compromise. Not really a surprise that you don't get that. Look at your Teabagger role models.

Then, you want a standard that all businesses to agree to. Bwahahaha, what a stupid criterion! There's no such beast in thousands of areas. And businesses don't get a vote (though they still have waaaay too much power).

The rest is just too stupid. Lack of a minimum wage would lead to higher wages?! Might as well switch abracadabra for competition!

Any chance of you learning a better variety of bullahit? Nah, I didn't think so.

lovable liberal said...

By the way, your abject failure, Morguy, is still on display here, the thread where I totally pwned you.