Reading at the Crossroads

Reading at the Crossroads is an archive for columns and letters which appeared in the Terre Haute Tribune Star. I also blog here when my patience is exhausted by what I feel is irritating, irrational and/or ironic in life. --gary daily

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Location: Terre Haute, Indiana, United States

The material I post on this blog represents my views and mine alone. The material you post on this blog represents your views and yours alone.

Thursday, July 21, 2011

Daily Dose of Depression--What Do You Have On Your Back?

“To avoid inelegant struggles as you don or remove your backpack make sure you buy one with a nice easy-slide surface. In their fab new bag collection for the Row, Mary Kate and Ashley Olsen have introduced a nice glazed croc number which slips on a treat, yours for a mere $39,000.”

OK, OK, fearless defenders of the Rich and the Foolish,  save yourselves the trouble of hitting the always at the ready line, “It’s their money and they can spend it on whatever they want.”

I post this to demonstrate again how out of whack things get when the wealth of the top 400 in the country exceeds that of the 150 million at the bottom.  Not saying taxes should be part of a vast income redistribution scheme. (Lots of luck with that in a country run and controlled by the Rich and their slavish minded minions.)  But $39,000 backpacks and the other gew gaws of the Rich do have a way of catching the eye.  Some may long and moon over finding a used glazed croc thingy at Goodwill, but eventually resentment sets in.  And resentment is not the stuff of a Happy Kingdom.

Wednesday, July 20, 2011

Daily Dose of Depression--Cracks in the Edifice?

New York Times, July 19, 2011
Cost-Cutters, Except When the Spending Is Back Home

WASHINGTON — Freshman House Republicans who rode a wave of voter discontent into office last year vowed to stop out-of-control spending, but that has not stopped several of them from quietly trying to funnel millions of federal dollars into projects back home.

They have pushed for dozens of projects in their districts, including military programs opposed by the president, replenishing beach sand lost to erosion, a $700 million bridge in Minnesota and a harbor dredging project in Charleston, S.C. Some of their projects were once earmarks, political shorthand for pet projects penciled into spending bills, which Republicans banned when they took over the House. . . .
Go Here


This story isn’t so much evidence of a crack in the radical right wing edifice as it is a result of creating edifices that were cracked from the beginning.  No one applauds wasteful spending. In Congress it’s always a case of sorting out what is needed locally and has a positive impact nationally and, most importantly, what the times call for.  Dems and Redubs both succeed and fail at this task.  It, however, is only the Redubs who of late have taken a holier than thou stance on budgets, spending, taxation.  The pristine statues they erected  to themselves end up with feet of clay and hearts of stone.  People are coming to realize this and will act accordingly.

The temporary ascendance of these self-styled saints was assured by two things. They, 1. had  national media outlets (FOX and right wing talk radio) to hum and drum their hum drum ideas incessantly and 2. large boodles of cash from the Kochs and corporations, political naifs and political nihilists were made available to them at crucial points in their rise.  Again, people are being made aware of these tawdry, interest driven puppet masters manipulating their creations.  The interests of the Rich, the soulless corporation, the extremists without fellow-feeling are being unmasked, denounced and deserted. 

Damage is being done but our democratic republic will survive.  Perhaps someday even Glen and Rush and the Radical Right will read the history of the Progressive Era, the New Deal, the Fair Deal, the New Frontier, the Great Society and realize the truths they so willfully evade.  -- Nah.  Won't happen.