Letter: Blame the Reagan Revolution
I do not understand all of this outrage over the $165,000,000 bonuses paid to the AIG employees.
Everyone should be aware that these people are being rewarded for a job well done. They all backed and were supporters of the "Reagan Revolution." Maybe your readers remember the Revolution with its emphasis on deregulation, promotion of the "free" market and the "get the government off our back" attitude that lead to this current financial debacle.
In 1994 The GOP took over congress and effectively did everything it could to implement the Reagan Revoluton.
Many of your readers may not have realized that the Reagan Revolution, with its emphasis on a "return to the good old days" harkened back to a time before FDR.
A time before labor unions: when people labored 12 to 16 hours per day, six days per week, with no benefits, no job security and all of the money they earned was spent at the company store; a time before social security and medicare and workers labored until they died without any hope that their labor would ever provide economic security in later years; a time before child labor laws to protect children from exploitation; a time before welfare benefits that provide income for those unable to work; a time before food stamps to help those on welfare supplement their incomes and provide adequate nutrition for their families; a time before strict regulation of the financial institutions that caused the "Great Depression."
The time before unemployment insurance to help displaced workers and their families make it through lay-offs and firings until they could find new jobs. The Good Old Days before disability compensation for disabled workers and those crippled by industrial contamination, etc. The pre-FDR era when the robber barons ruled supreme and only the children of the wealthy elite had access to higher education that prepared them for the best jobs. No OSHA! No civil rights! No Justice!
Yes, indeed, the Reagan Revolution harked back to the good old days when there were two classes of society: the haves and the have-nots.
The whole point of the Reagan Revolution was to undo everything that FDR and his predecessors have created to protect ordinary Americans from the excesses of the wealthy elite that brought about the first Great Depression.
The people at AIG accomplished their goal. The collapse of the American economy and a return to depression-era behavior where the unions are destroyed; people are out of work, they are losing their homes, and soup lines and poverty are the rule rather than the exception. They got their bonuses the old-fashioned way, they stole them.
Wake up people. The Reagan Revolution has been completed and we are returning to the pre-FDR America where the little guy was always vulnerable to the whims of the greedy elite.
Either prosper with the wicked or suffer with the righteous. That is the new America. But take heart, because greed is its own punishment and suffering builds character. There will be a lot of character building if something real is not done to restore America to a country that puts unrestrained capitalism back under regulation.
Unrestrained capitalism is a train wreck heading full speed toward destruction. The corporate pirates that plunder our public treasury with the help and assistance of our elected officials must be stopped. The question is how and when will we stop them. The answer: Nobody has a clue.
John A. Bond
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