USA is a nation full of slobs.
I’m sorry, but that’s the only conclusion I can reach after fourteen pages of The 53.
Let me tell you my own story:
I was born second of five brothers. During the ’96 crisis, all of our school uniforms and nearly all re rest of our clothes were hand-me-downs. But my mother had heatlh insurance in her work, and when we got sick, we were covered by it.
On my first part-time job, health insurance was paid in equal parts from deductions of my salary, from the company I worked for, and from the government. After four months of working, I was diagnosed with a hernia. I got a surgery and three weeks, fully paid, to recover.
It’s in our Constitution: everybody is elligible for healthcare programs subsidized by the government. It’s slow and has a big overload of people, but it works. And if you work for a company that pays its taxes, you enter the healthcare system I was in. That’s where our taxes go.
I was working while I was on the university, but I wasn’t working to pay the university. I was in a public university, and the semestral tuition is like… one and a half cents of dollar. The rest is paid by the government: that’s where our taxes go.
Have you seen the movie The Big Gay Musical? The protagonist, Paul, is feeling lonely and contacts a call boy, and upon being asked why did he engage in prostitution, he answers:
“I’m from Seattle. I go to New York State University, and this… this is how I pay for it”.
I was shocked. Not because he did it, but because someone HAD to do it, and said it as a matter of fact, just like it.
When I went to The53 website and saw people talking about working through all college, or getting loans and then spending the next 15 years paying for them, and I was amazed. Not because they were able to do that, but because they had to do that. Where I live, over one million students can go to public universities with tuitions of less than 100 dollars per semester.
I’ve never, EVER, known anyone who has to work two jobs to support their family. NEVER. Both my parents work one job each, and with that we could eat, dress, buy a half-built house, finish building it, and me and my four brothers went to university. Both of them have eight days of fully paid vacation per year, which they can take whenever they need. Plus Christmas and New Year vacations and national festivities.
I live in a city where disabled and elderly people ride the subway for free.
I live in Mexico. All my life, I’ve lived here. This is what we call middle class in Mexico.
You’ve got a problem, USA.
I know, there’s poor people here too, and they are really fucked up. That’s why lots of them cross the river and work for you, USA. I’m not denying that. I admit that they have a lot more opportunities in USA to get out of poverty.
But the problem is that it works both ways: you have a lot more possibilities to end in poverty there, too. I’ve never, ever, met someone who lost their house because their son got cancer. Or because their father lost their job (remember Sam from Glee? That doesn’t happen here)
How can it be that a country so small and poor, compared to USA, crippled by the drug war and with blatant poverty, manage to grant a great share of their citizens a level of security (in terms of health, house and education) that USA doesn’t?
Trust me, you’re not gonna like the answer.
That’s right. The money you pay with your taxes is being used by the government to save corporations deemed as “too big to fail”. Then, the corporations keep the same dynamic that led them to be rescued in the first time, keep the same leaders, give them a rise, and go on knowing that they will be saved if needed, again.
That’s what the 99% movement is going against. They don’t want your money in their pockets. They want everybody’s money (including yours) out of Wall Street’s pockets.
You say that you don’t want your money taken away from you and given to improductive sectors of society, who don’t even mind paying their taxes.
Then why do you allow exactly that to happen? The Wall Street enterprises pay a lot less in taxes than people who work for them (including janitors and secretaries with two jobs that belong to the 53%… that’s you, by the way). And if they need it, they receive money from the government (that got it from everybody who pays taxes… that’s you again, I think) with the promise of paying it off when they are profitable again, which could be never, because… well, they keep on charge the same people that screwed them for a start and give them raises.
That is happening to your money. You say Wall Street doesn’t owe you nothing. I think they do. They owe you what was taken from you to rescue them. And you, you owe NOTHING to them, so you shouldn’t let them do it. It’s your money what they’re using to save themselves, without giving you ANYTHING fromit.
You pay your taxes. Part of it comes back to you in the form of street maintenance, public lighting, etc. But not all of it. Lots of money are given to people who didn’t work for it, who didn’t do anything to deserve it and who are not giving you back ANYTHING. And that’s not the 99%, no. Those people are Wall Street.
That money should be going back to you and your children, in the form of healthcare, university funding, transport subsidies, and those other things that you lack, even working so hard, and that even middle class Mexicans can have.
Or, if you don’t want the government to give it to you, and prefer to get it by your own effort, then the money to make it happen shouldn’t be taken from you in the first place, and definitely shouldn’t go to someone who does not deserve it.
It shouldn’t be going to Wall Street.
That’s what the 99% are protesting for. They don’t want to have your money. They want YOU to have your money, themselves to have their own money, and Wall Street to get their (and only their) money.
They don’t want communism. They want justice.