I don’t want your money.

This is my response to the general theme of the negative comments from yesterday’s explosive post.

Let me just clarify that I am not speaking for Cathy, the author of the post. I am speaking only for myself, the owner of this blog and host of the discussion.

Keep your money

Keep your money, I’ll keep the change.

My response can be summed up quite simply. I don’t want your money. I don’t resent your money. I don’t care about your money.

I am lower middle class. I own my own business, as does my husband. His business is five years old. Mine is relatively new. I started it when I was laid off by corporate America. I realized the moment I got my pink slip that I had been handed freedom.

There are some consequences to this decision, and we accept them completely, just as we accept responsibility for making the decision to be small business owners.

We do not have health insurance. We cannot afford it. But we do pay our medical bills, in cash, at every appointment.

We do not have new cars. But the old beaters we have usually run, and for that we are thankful.

We do not have a large house. We have a house that fits our family and does not require a cleaning service. (After all, isn’t that what children are for?)

Our kids shop at discount clothing stores and goodwill. And that’s okay. They don’t mind, or even care.

We cut coupons and grow as much of our own food as we can on our urban lot.

We make ends meet, though some months it’s tight. And we are faced with the daily job of saying no to our children’s wants in favor of covering their needs.

It’s okay. We accept this. We made these choices. And every day, we work as hard as we can to fulfill our priorities – spending time with each other, eating good food, traveling once a year whether it’s a camping trip in Moab or a vacation in Costa Rica.

We count our blessings daily, and we have many. We are healthy, we have a home, our cars (usually) run, we have clothes and shoes and a bountiful garden. We have wonderful friends and fabulous neighbors and our children go to an amazing public school that is close enough for them to walk to. We have passports that allow us to see how people live all around the world.

Life is good.

That doesn’t mean it is easy. And that’s okay too. We come from backgrounds that have told us that hard work is necessary and that it will pay off in the end. We were raised to believe that hard work is its own form of reward. And it is. I love my job. I love what I do. And I know that am free to change my career at any point if that love should dry up, or if I decide I want money more than happiness.

So when people tell me, or try to imply, that I am some sort of Robin Hood stealing from the rich to give to the poor, or that I am engaging in class warfare because I think that all Americans should pay taxes, or that I’m an angry Liberal who wants cradle to grave handouts, my feathers get a little ruffled.

I don’t want handouts. I don’t blame the rich, or covet their money, or crave their vacation homes, third yachts and private jets. I just want them to be honest and admit that they are part of our society, not above it. And that they too rely on public sector infrastructure. Sure, their kids don’t go to public school, but their employees do. They still drive on publicly funded roads and bridges. They still call 911 and receive help from publicly funded police and firefighters.

I don’t believe it is unreasonable to ask that companies with over 50 employees offer those employees health insurance. If that means that you will only ever have 49 employees on your payroll, so be it. That leaves room for competition from people like me. People who want to run a business – yes, to make money – but also to help build and sustain my community.

I do not believe that asking the wealthy to pay the same rate of taxes as the middle-class is class warfare, or thievery. I believe it is social responsibility. I believe that if we truly want a functioning democracy rather than a corptocracy, we must acknowledge that having a healthy, educated citizenry is required. We must acknowledge that a parent working 2-3 jobs to make ends meet is not lazy if they cannot afford insurance. That they are not broken – the system is. We must acknowledge that we grossly underpay the people responsible for educating the next generation of citizens and that we have largely tied their hands with burdensome testing and poorly thought out standards under No Child Left Behind.

I do believe that there should be a social floor, below which no working American should be allowed to fall. I have been to countries where education is a privilege, not a right, and to countries where it is a responsibility, not a right. And I will fight to my dying breath to make America one of the latter. I will also fight to make America a nation where anyone seeking medical care can get it. I have been to countries where the government taxes the people, and pays for medical care, and to countries where the people themselves pay. I would be okay with either method, but paying a private profiteering company to look after my medical care seems insane. Insurance companies are not there to help us, they exist to make money. Their job is to deny our claims, not pay them.

Lastly, I do not believe Ann Romney, or Mitt Romney has even the slightest clue what the average American goes through every day. They have never, not for one single day, ever been average. They have never not had a safety net. They have never been afraid that their car would break down because if it did they wouldn’t be able to make their mortgage payment, or their child’s medical bills. They have never wondered where their next paycheck would come from, or if it would come in time.

The Obamas aren’t perfect. But they have never claimed to speak for me. And they both lived and worked as average Americans before working their way to where they are now. They have both paid their taxes and contributed to the nation that helped them get where they are today. If I have to vote for who I think has my best interests in mind, they will win every time. Because, unlike the Romneys, they have been here. They have walked in my shoes before. They have had to make hard choices, and they were raised by parents who had to make hard choices.

So no, I don’t want Romney’s money. I don’t want your money either. I just want us all to admit that we’re in this crazy boat together, and that we all have to pitch in to keep it afloat. I don’t understand what is so revolutionary about that. I’m not asking for charity. I’m asking for partnership.

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123 Comments

Filed under Of Course I'm a Feminist, Rant

123 responses to “I don’t want your money.

  1. Victoria Hanley

    Sing it, sister!

  2. Pingback: A letter to Mrs. Romney | ThinkBannedThoughts Blog

  3. Not Jealous Liberal

    If you want to talk about them paying their fair share of taxes why wod you want them to pay more in taxes than you do? Do they use the streets more than you? Do they use 911 more than you? Why is it that you feel they should pay the same percentage as you which would result in a hell of a lot more in taxes as you? If it were a fair share, then the would pay the same as you? Is that really what you want? Or you want them to pay more becuase they make more…which is what they do now. Why should they pay more for using these same services and possibly using less of them then others? Becuase they have been more financially successful? You say you don’t want a hand out, but you want them to pay more than you for the same services to make sure these services are available to you and others who you indicate don’t want a hand out. Doesn’t add up!

    • Where did I say I wanted them to pay more than me? Oh, that’s right, I didn’t.

      • Becci

        You didn’t. That person just did not read your response properly.

      • Diane M

        And the wealthy are NOT paying the same as “the rest of us”. So many legal loopholes to allow them exemptions/deductions to significantly lower their tax liability. Ah yes, what was that percentage the Romney’s paid? It’s less than me and I only make $30K/yr.

      • Meg Kelleher

        Actually, that idiot is saying that the equal percentage of tax we want them to pay would result in more dollars paid by them (for the bridges and roads) because they make more dollars. I guess the idiot feels an equal percentage of tax isn’t fair because it would result in more tax money coming from the rich…well, because they make more… I don’t know, it seems to me that’s the only fair way to do it.

      • Sean N.

        Yep, sounds like Not Jealous Liberal is proposing everyone pays the same dollar amount in taxes each year. So, for the 3.7+ trillion dollar 2012 budget, that comes out to about $15,000 for each American adult over 18 years. So NJL is saying the 18-year old working at McDonald’s part-time making $7,000 per year should have to pay $15,000 in federal taxes and Mitt Romney should have to pay $15,000 in federal taxes to make everything fair. Which makes a TON of sense, dude.

        (Not.)

      • Arcy Hawks

        I think this is the problem with our world….No one listens..they take what they want out of our conversations and hear only the things that affrim there positions.

    • Kathleen Cuartas

      The supper rich are buying our government. Through their lobbyists they write laws with tax loopholes, to which they benefit. That is why the middle class pays 30% and the millionaire’s 15
      to 0 %. Nobody is asking for a freebie, If you have a strong middle class, you will have a strong economy. And by the way, the money has not trickled down. It trickled upward, draining the middle class with a loss of 40% of its wealth.

      • Beverly

        Right on Sister.

      • Debra Kemp

        Only the rich are asking for the freebie, it seems.

      • wednesday

        This is called an oligarchy. It’s what Rome had, and why Rome’s slaves took care of everything while the rich citizens played until the barbarians invaded. Incidentally, fascism is where the government owns the corporations, or the corporations owns the government — it doesn’t matter which, it’s still a fascist state. What terrifies me is that both are starting to sound very, very familiar here in the U.S.

    • sb

      well, if you really think about it, it does add up…capital gains, corporate profits, etc. are derived from usage of public infrastructure that goes beyond just an individual using roads and public services. Everything that’s shipped requires infrastructure and protection from public services. And beyond that, corporate profits are based on extracting value from labor and other resources, so the wealthy not only use roads personally but they also profit from every employee’s use of public goods such as roads to get to work and education so they can perform their duties. Once you start thinking of how the economy works and the sources of income for the wealthy it does add up; they should pay more.

    • Lisa

      I’m thinking (disregarding that you’re off topic) that rich people should pay more tax because they can? Because they feel a moral responsibility? I pay 25% of my very meager income in tax, and I actually don’t mind. I’d rather have free health care, I gladly pay the tax knowing that people who’re in an even shittier situation than me can get care.
      And if I don’t miss that money, I don’t understand why someone who earns more than ten times my paycheck go “But it’s miiiiine!”. But that’s just me; I don’t understand how you can have capability to help out in society and then don’t.

      • This is my situation exactly. I pay about 25% of my fixed income in tax, and I don’t mind. Every day I see people who are working hard every day, who are good people, but still need help when they hit a bad patch of life. I’m glad to be among those who pay taxes so they can have a safety net. I’m glad to pay my part so we all can have clean water, interstate highways, and police protection. And I, too, don’t understand how those with so much extra can NOT want to help others.

    • Let me explain something to you because clearly you have missed it somewhere.

      These people have an obscene amount more resources, and access to resources, than anyone else in the U.S. They are called the 1% for very good reason.

      Now they got that way by one of two methods. Either:

      1. They had the exact same access to tax-funded infrastructure as the rest of us, but somehow along the way they managed to extract more out of it, indicating they either cheated or had special privileges none of us have; or

      2. They had MORE access to tax-funded infrastructure than the rest of us, indicating they either cheated or had special privileges none of us have.

      If you get more, you give more back. If you are not willing to give more back then that means YOU ARE STEALING.

      And as they have STOLEN from this country, YES, THEY SHOULD PAY MORE BACK.

      That’s not their resources. That’s OUR resources and I want them BACK OUT IN THE ECONOMY where they can do EVERYBODY some good.

      Haven’t you noticed that those same roads and bridges and electrical infrastructure THEY used to get filthy rich are now crumbling? At *minimum*, they need to pitch in and fix!

      • Catherine Mitton

        So let me get this straight – every successful person has stolen from the country or had privleges unfairly and thus “stolen”? really? I guess hard work and achieving success just isn’t in your realm of thinking. Our country is full of people who haved worked hard and achieved great success and didn’t cheat to get there! Doesn’t matter which side you are on – that is just crap. Must be sad to be so angry and resentful.

      • Ron O

        Dana,
        I truly don’t understand how you can make the accusations you make? You paint the picture that all rich people cheat; I submit that there are people in all of society who cheat; the rich do not have a corner on that market! What really bothers me is people of your ideology don’t see a problem with the government “stealing” from the rich by taxing them inordinately! You seem to be in favor of politicians deciding what is fair; I’m not, because they decide fairness based upon their personal agenda or ideology, which certainly isn’t always in the best interest of the general good.

        It’s obvious, for some reason, that you have bitterness toward the wealthy; does that include the wealthy liberal politicians (who, by the way, always seem to be far wealthier when they leave office, as do most politicians), liberal pop stars, liberal actors, etc.? Or, is it just those who have become wealthy through entrepreneurship? I’m not a wealthy man, but I have worked hard and provided retirement resources for my wife and I; for someone younger than me, who hasn’t put in the time, “paid their dues” and been through what we have been through, to tell me that I didn’t earn what I have and I should give it to them through taxation is absurd! I have served on the Board of a major food bank, which provides an incredible amount of food to people struggling in our community; I’ve envisioned, organized and held fundraisers that provide food and money for those in need. I’ve served on the Board of a local Boy’s and Girl’s Club, etc.

        How about everyone who is writing on this blog stop pointing fingers at the rich and looking for the government to “punish” them for their supposed cheating or being somehow more greedy than themselves, put your energy into making a difference in your community! I know from experience that the majority of the rich will gladly help with funding and, quite frankly, do the research and you’ll find that conservatives far exceed liberals in charitable giving!

        If you give the government a little, they will demand a lot and we will never keep up, through taxation (in order to protect their jobs and get reelected) with all that the politicians want to fund; just look at California and New York City for perfect examples of government spending going crazy and, they want more!

    • @Not Jealous—maybe it comes down to this—-WHAT is fair about me and my 74 yr husband who are on SS, one Pension payment, and a Minimum required IRA withdrawal, ending up at the end of the year paying in almost *20%* of our income for education, defense, highways, Medicaid for your parents in nursing homes, and the Romneys and others can pay anywhere from *0-13%* of all they rake in. It is the PERCENTAGE, not the total. Just because they can finangle loopholes to protect their’s, and it is legal, is it ETHICAL? Does the man who aspires to be the Head of the IRS, feel he is moral about sending his out of country, so he can avoid taxes on it? THAT is the point—WHY won’t they pay the same rate the rest of have to.

    • Jason

      You don’t understand how marginal taxes work. Everyone pays the same percentage in taxes on their income. Both you, me and Mitt Romney pay 10% on the first $17,500 of adjusted gross income, then 15% on the next 53,000 up until we are paying 35% on all income over $388,000. The reason people pay more on the higher amounts is … they have much higher amounts of income and can more easily afford to pay more. The part that makes no sense to anyone other than extreme conservatives is that Mitt gets to pay 15% on his income that is generated by investments (capital gains) vs. the rate the rest of us pay on our actual work.

      • Peep

        The other thing to consider is that it cost everyone about the same amount to have a place to live, to eat and to cover yourself with clothing. We can choose to spend more if we like and we are able. For someone with a family of 4 to pay $3,000 in taxes on an income of $30,000 is much more difficult than it is for someone making $200,000 to pay $50,000. This is Biblical. Christ blessed the woman that gave pennies in front of the all of the rich people. Christ said, “This woman, even though she gave little has given much. She put in all she had while you put in a portion of what you have.”

        Before you go there, I am not for socialism – I do not think that the rich should give all they have, I do think that people need to be encouraged to invest – we take care of that in our system of taxation with the deductions we give for home ownership, deductions for business expenses, etc. For people who make large amounts of money to pay less than – in cold hard dollars – someone who is living pay check to pay check is not right. That’s not socialism, that is fair.

    • JJBerrier

      Yea, I’m not sure what you were reading, but she didn’t say any of that, I think you should practice reading with an open mind, rather than making up your mind before you read something.

    • Sandy

      She never said she wanted them to pay more. She said they should have to pay the same as us regular class people . I pay 30 percent mitt 13 percent really WTF

  4. anonymous

    Women should stick up for women…no matter what their political views are!! To me this letter is wrong. And Many of my “middle Class” friends have their kids in Piano, sports, etc and still have housekeepers and nannies…And since Obama has been Pres..MANY of my friends and aquaintances have LOST their companies or greatly downsized (including my husband!!!) because of new taxes and rules aimed at middle class America….so dont write as if you are Most of “Middle Class America”…please…I find Liberals to be so Angry all the time and have to have the last word…OVER IT!!!!! And I voted for Obama too!!! PS…Go see Obama 2016….Many democrats are interviewd in it…

    • Do men have to stick up for men, even when their political views differ? Or even when one supports a party that wants to strip them of their individual rights?
      I’m sorry, but if a woman is lying, or a woman states incorrect facts, I get to call that out.

    • Jennie

      If they have their kids in activities and still pay for nannies and housekeepers they either aren’t middle class or are employing illegals so they can pay them $2 an hour. Your math doesn’t add up. NONE of my middle class friends can afford nannies and housekeepers on top of $100 per child per piano lessons, $150 per child for soccer (and that doesn’t include the cost of the ball, shin guards, cleats, etc.), and football is outrageous because we pay $185 per son (again, doesn’t cover equipment). Cheerleading runs slightly cheaper at $150 per daughter. There is no way someone middle class affords of all this AND a housekeeper and/or nanny at the LEGAL hourly rate. Nice try, though.

    • christine

      Yes, Everyone in this country needs to go see “2016″ , NOW, Before it is pulled from the theatres again.

      • Lena

        2016 SHOULD be pulled from the theaters! A bigger a load of hogwash being offered as ‘fact’ I’ve rarely seen. And, YES, I have seen it. A friend wanted to see it and paid for me to go along as company. Anybody who buys the malarkey in that film should be ashamed of themselves. The money you paid to see that film, very likely hard earned, went to fill the pockets of a charlatans.

    • varza

      Your friends who have nannies and housekeepers are not middle class… that’s upper. Take it from someone who has lived most of their life in the middle class and still does and has no plans to leave it. And if I did… I would have no problem paying my fair amount in taxes because I feel that paying taxes is part in parcel of being a citizen of a country. Your friend Mitt gave more money to his church then he paid in taxes.

      As for Obama 2016… yeah for fear mongering. Fear is the path to the dark side.

      But if you like fear mongering… look up the White Horse Prophecy.

      • So, Romney is bad because he paid less in taxes (what he paid is perfectly legal) than he did to his church? He’s just terrible contributing to his community like that. Thankfully, Obama would never appropriate funds like that. He’s too busy taking his family on vacations.
        You don’t have to be upper class to have a housekeeper, or piano lessons. You just have to pass on that lotto ticket, bottle or pack of smokes. Simple sacrifices that you make can free up money for things that your family needs.
        Ann Romney is a hard working woman. Yes, she’s out of touch with her gender in 2012, but MO isn’t much better. What I like about the Romneys, though, is the very thing you complain about. He takes care of his people, and when he is in office we will all be part of his community.
        Obama had his chance, and he blew it in every way. Our only other option is Romney at this point, before we crash again. But you women hold a lot of power, and can easily push a candidate through in 2016 if you band together. I can think of several women (none named Clinton) that could handle the job better than either candidate we have now.
        Thanks. I know this was a disjointed dive into a bunch of topics, but I wanted to view my opinion. Ladies, rock on. Please consider voting for a new “change” in November.

    • The Cool Cookie

      “women should stick up for women…no matter whatvtheir political views are…”. Where does Phyllis Schlafy stick up for the teenage girl who wants an abortion after being raped by her cousin? Where does Michele Bachmann stick up for Nancy Pelosi’s right to freely voice her political opinion? Where does Ann Romney roll up her sleeves and tough it out with a woman who has choose between cancer medicine for herself and food for her child?

      Ann Romney is a woman who lives a life far different than the majority of women in the nation.

    • How come TBT has to stick up for Ann but Ann doesn’t have to stick up for TBT?

      Are you somehow too good to do your own housework and childrearing? Oh no, you lost your second house. Go talk to people who are actually homeless and get back to me.

    • Meg Kelleher

      Wait a minute…do you actually think Romney will cut taxes for the middle class?????

    • Honey, Obama 2016 has been fact checked and found to be very lacking in facts. Things taken out of context. Democrats are easily led also, so do NOT go by a documentary written by a Hater. Speaking of angry, Which party sat for 2920 days and let Bush destroy this country, our rights, our privacy, spit on the Constitution, and then 56 days into Obama’s administration, take to the street in their silly Ben Franklin costumes, railing about his birth Certificate and religion? Your angry little white men, who couldn’t stand to see a Black man in the WH.

    • Finally a voice of reason. I too voted for Obama and have been a registered Democrat for 20 years. I am a single Mom with two kids and my own consulting business. I pay 30% in taxes. I am amazed at all the women who are getting sidetracked from the real issues. The Democratic platform is not planning to provide free healthcare to anyone. Obamacare mandates that you purchase it. I looked it up because I pay for my own insurance. Should I choose to not insure myself for $4,800 per year, I will owe the government a penalty of $6,400 for me and my two kids. Someone please tell me how that plan helps me. It robs me of my CHOICE. Goodness knows all of us women want choices and freedom.
      I don’t understand why my fellow registered Democrats are not demanding to see Obama’s transcripts, tax records, etc. He has sealed all his records. Why? What did the Obama’s do to have their law licenses revoked? Seriously. Get ticked off at that? Ask what THEY are hiding. They don’t represent the middle class. How do you know they worked and paid taxes? Where is the proof? Who paid for law school?
      I am all for giving people a hand up with Medicaid, welfare, WIC, and foodstamps, but what about requiring something from them in return like proof they are drug free or required birth control while you are receiving my tax dollars. If they want freedom and choice then get a job. Why demonize the Romneys? I agree with Anonymous above. Please go see Obama2016 movie. So much more is at stake in this election than Mrs. Romney not understanding our plight. Every election people talk about abortion and religion. THE issue is the economy and everything is on the line right now. I guarantee if you vote of Obama our lives as Middle Class are going to get even tougher. Quit being angry and get informed about the details of Obamacare.

      • If you “choose” to not pay for health insurance, *I* pay increased premiums to cover your emergency. You rob me of *my* choice and ask me to pay *your* debts.

    • JJBerrier

      well it sounds to me like you’re pretty angry yourself. You can’t blame Obama for everything. There’s a government for a reason, not JUST a president, so there are more people to blame than just him, but his name seems to be the only one I see conservatives seem to be able to use.

  5. I want them to pay more because they have more. They can afford to pay more. In the 1950′s & 60′s when the top tax rate was 70-92% we laid the Interstate system, put a man on the moon, defeated communism, built the internet, our educational system was the envy of the world, the middle class was thriving, home ownership was at an all time high, we could afford to build infrastructure an pay our debts because the wealthy invested in our country instead of offshore accounts. It was still at 70% as late as 1980! Then dropped to 50%, then 39%, now its only 35%. So yeah, they should pay more. Especially since if they invest it would mean hiring people to fix all those roads, bridges and crumbling schools. It would allow us to add policemen, firefighters and teachers. It would put people to work, stimulate the economy and provide money for education. Which would in turn only earn the wealthy more money in the long run. Win/win.

  6. Jennie

    I think ALL women need to stick together in a time when we are threatened (like now with the Republican ticket). And I think any woman even considering voting for that ticket must not have much self respect. How else could you vote for men who don’t think you’re bright enough to make your own decisions regarding your uterus? All this talk of taking us backward makes me really nervous. This was such a well written letter. I don’t want their money either. My dad is rich and miserable, though he puts on a great show for the neighbors and his “friends.” And he doesn’t pay anywhere near the taxes the rest of us do because he can afford a good account that finds many loopholes. There are so many advantages to being rich. We’re at a point in this country where we need to stop electing rich, white men who don’t really know what it’s like to live OUR lives. We need a government FOR the people. These rich, white men aren’t for us. We can’t do anything to help them get richer. We need people who are real and down to earth – who have had student loans to get themselves through college, who have worked in the real world, who don’t want to force their religion on us. Loved the letter and I love this response to the men (because why would a woman be posting something negative to two well written blog posts??)!

    • Im a republican, and I have a healthy self respect, thank you. and it isnt an issue of a man telling me what to do with my own uterus, because if someone else is living in that uterus, they have just as much right to life as u do. And anybody who thinks Barrack and Michelle are grounded in the real world, just bc she makes a show of buying a dress at Walmart, get real. They are as over the top as Mitt and Ann. This country has become a joke.

      • Nobody has the right to use you as a life-support machine unless you consent to that use. Obviously, in your case, you would always consent to that use. Now you get the hell out of the way and let other women make choices about their individual situations and whether THEY want to be used as life support. This is America, not the Republic of Gilead.

      • I’m continually interested – If it was your life, or the life of your fetus and your fetus would not be able to live outside the womb – what would you wish you were able to do? Would you want someone to save your life or let both of you die in the name of fetal human rights. That’s the question that the GOP has put back on the table.

      • Mary

        @ Dana you wrote, “Nobody has the right to use you as a life-support machine unless you consent to that use.” When a woman and man WILLINGLY engage in sex she and he are, by definition, CHOOSING to exercise her/his right to reproduce or, as you say, be used as a “life-support machine”. Here is the definition of SEXUAL REPRODUCTION: the production of new living organisms by combining genetic information from two individuals of different types (sexes). In most higher organisms, one sex (male) produces a small motile gamete that travels to fuse with a larger stationary gamete produced by the other (female). Source: New Oxford American Dictionary 2nd edition © 2005 by Oxford University Press, Inc.).
        Since we all learned in our school’s sex ed classes that birth controls are not 100% effective, there only 2 ways to have a 100% chance to avoid sexual reproduction or, as you say, ‘being a life-support machine’. One, is a complete hysterectomy. The other, by not having sexual intercourse. So, if a couple is using birth control they knowingly are taking a risk that a pregnancy could still occur.
        I will not argue that the current ‘law of the land’ does give a woman the right to destroy the new living human organism that she, through the act of sexual intercourse, WILLINGLY took part in producing. Or, put in your terms, that a woman can legally pull the plug on the life that she WILLINGLY took a risk of having to provide life support for when she had sexual intercourse. The law does not say however, that I have to like it, or that I cannot express my disdain for it. Most important, it does not say that one cent of tax payer dollars be used to pay for it.
        As far as who should pay for birth control. The 1st Amendment reads, “Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the government for a redress of grievances.” When a religion’s core beliefs prohibit the use of birth control and therefore the religion CHOOSES not to have it’s insurance carrier(s) cover birth control for employees of THAT RELIGION’S INSTITUTIONS the government ‘prohibiting the free exercise thereof’, of that religion. If there are employees who want to use birth control they can either pay for it themselves or find a job that has insurance that covers it.
        ‘ladeebuggn’ is not standing in the way of your RIGHT to CHOOSE. She (and I) are using that pesky 1st Amendment RIGHT to say we do not like that law and legally want to change it
        You see, I believe that the life you can now legally decide to stop “being a life-support machine” for should have the right to make you carry through on having exercised your “reproductive rights” when you WILLFULLY engaged sexual intercourse. Which, by the way, EVERYONE knows is still by far the number one method for producing human life. So, the idea that a pregnancy is “unplanned” is like saying that you did plan not to get a DWI because you planned to drink but not get drunk. If you drink there is a chance you might get drunk. And, it’s YOUR RIGHT to CHOICE to drink. But, you do not have the RIGHT to expect or insist others pay bail to bail you out and make your “unplanned” DWI just totally go way! Same with birth control and abortion. you do not have RIGHT to expect or insist others pay for your birth control, or the cost for you to stop being life-support machine for the life you knowingly took the risk of producing and now you are CHOOSING to murder just to make her/him go away.

      • Sean N.

        Actually Mitt Romney has a net worth over two times greater than the past 8 presidents COMBINED (which includes two of the super-rich Bushes…). So, no, not by any reasonable standard are the Obamas as “over the top as Mitt and Ann.”

      • Sean N.

        @Mary If you go to the doctor for a sprained wrist and end up catching meningitis from another patient in the waiting room, did you WILLINGLY get meningitis? If a man drives to the market and ends up being killed in a car accident, did he WILLINGLY die? Of course not. Sometimes normal, innocent activities have unintended consequences that cannot be forseen or prevented even when reasonable caution is used. So are you to blame for catching meningitis since you went to a place where you were exposed? And if so, does that mean you are not allowed to go to the hospital to be treated for the illness because it was your fault for going to the doctor that day?

        It’s actually simple. You have a simple (not easy, but simple) disagreement with Jennie about when life and human rights begin, that is, at which point a collection of cells becomes a protected human individual under the Consitution. Whether those cells are the viruses of a nasty strain of meningitis or products of the cellular replication that occurs when the two gametes featured in your definition undergo meiosis and eventually form a blastocyst, one certainly cannot say the cells in question were created or invited WILLINGLY into the host or that the host has CHOSEN them to be there unless it is one’s intent to expose oneself for the stated purpose of forming those cells (i.e. the person is trying to contract a disease or is trying to get pregnant). So arguing that someone who engages in any level of risk is WILLINGLY CHOOSING the unlikely consequences of that risk is counterintuitive since every activity in life (even inactivity) contains some remote level of risk of unplanned dire consequences resulting from that activity.

        And here is a suggestion; if you really would like to discuss these issues in a rational, peaceful way, throwing around words like “murder” is not helpful to either side of the debate, since these words divisively galvanize one side toward rhetoric and against genuine dialogue while simultaneously repelling the other side from wanting to engage at all.

  7. To the person who says her “middle class” friends have lost their housekeepers and nannies–well, boo hoo to you! My family has always been lower-middle class, with no freakin’ housekeepers or nannies, even with two working parents! We’re proud of making our own way, we don’t want, and never have had, handouts, the men have always served in the US Armed Forces–so eat my shorts, lady. You’re part of the privileged class, and with your attitude, you’re welcome to it!

  8. I want to Thank You Ladies for sharing your thoughts with all of us.I am so glad to hear I am not alone in my thoughts. I have 3 beautiful grown children and I never had to seriously consider having an abortion and I thank God for that. I have had some terribly horrible times in my life where it crossed my mind but I could not bring myself to have an abortion. But if I did choose to have one I do not believe its any ones business. That does not make me better than someone else who chose to have one. I will never judge someone for the choices they make with their body. I do believe we all have to make our own mistakes in life and its not my place to judge, I believe with all my heart that it is between that person and God. Not our gov’t and for dang sure not some man who don’t even know me! I know Mrs. Romney has never had to endure half of what I have in my life and I ,like her have had cancer also and lived to tell about it. I pray that I do not lose my rights to my body for some one elses mistakes please think before voting I know I am Obama 2012.

  9. varza

    Thank you for your post… I haven’t been able to express myself and you did it for me!

  10. Ralph

    Great reading all the different comments.I’m a 65 yr old male who will be finishing 7yrs of working in the UK. I transfered because the department I was working in was closing down. I can’t begin to tell you what a feeling it was for my wife and I to leave our family,home, and friends to seek employment over 5000 miles from the lifestyle we had known for so long. I started my career on Wall Street 44 yrs ago after serving our country in Viet Nam at the age of 19yrs old. I received the Bronze Medal and was happy to live to come home again.Most of my friends were not as lucky as me. Mt first job was as a page on the New York Stock Exchange for $77.00 per week. Oh did I mention that I did enroll in Nassau Community College right after the tour of duty in Nam.Yes that was a great learning expericene.I can tell you it was not pleasent being spat on just because I was a veteran and when I got drafted I chose to serve rather than run off to Canada.I put that behind me and worked my way uo the corporate ladder. I earned everything I got.NO HANDOUTS.I PAID my full share of taxes.Now as I an entering retirement age, having spent my whole life paying MY full share of taxes I expect to receive all the benifits due me. If you think working in London a minimum of 10-11 hour days, and paying a tax rate of 50%!!!! is fair,then you have’nt walked in my shoes. Comming from a working class family and having friends whose dad’s were either Fireman or Policemen, I know first hand how they managed to get by. Most always had second jobs or business. After 20,25,or Max 30 yrs on the job they retired to a pension,healthcare and a pretty good lifestyle. I would love to know the percentage of government employees who are still working after 40-45 yrs!!!So please see my point of view. I have always given was asked of me in my tax bracket. I’m sick of being asked for MORE! Let the government clean up the continued waste and stop pitting the so called RICH against the so called middle class. We as a nation need a change..I hope one comes in November.

    • Keep in mind that Romney/Ryan want to take away those benefits that you feel are your due. They are now saying that they won’t take them from people above 55 years of age but everyone below that age will seem them cut. This is especially difficult because, as you know from reading the letter, many people have mounting debt they have accumulated from trying to go to college. Student loan debt is a huge problem which people across the political spectrum recognize. And the cost of education is much much higher than it was forty years ago. To deny people a stable post-retirement future is meanspirited, especially when it is being done to finance tax cuts to people who have a great deal of resources already at their disposal. I would think that someone who has worked as hard as you say you have would understand that debt keeps people from being able to secure a stable future which you appear to believe is due to hard working people.

      And I should add, the Ryan Budget is designed to save money by cutting Medicaid and Food Stamps to offset massive tax cuts to the wealthiest people in the country. We are talking about a budget designed to make sure very wealthy people don’t pay taxes on dividends and capital gains while people who are in dire poverty lose medical insurance and food assistance. Think about that for a minute. It is besides the point to dismiss people who are in dire poverty, who are the most vulnerable and have to be the most self-reliant because they are so vulnerable, as wanting “handouts.” This is not about handouts. This is about being able to survive. If we create a society where people can’t get by on multiple jobs undertaken to feed their families, what kind of society do we actually have? What kind of future will we have?

      People who oppose Romney/Ryan do so, in no small part, because they believe that there is such a thing as a social good. Education, health care, the ability to retire (at all) are necessities. Not to mention an environment clean enough to live in, secure enough to build a future within and upon.

      • Ralph

        Will everyone please tell me “What percentage of my earned dollars due you feel I should pay in taxes” Just give me a number….Is %50 not enough! I think that’s more than enough…Why don’t we just have a FLAT tax for everyone.

  11. Thanks for this, it expresses how I feel pretty much to the letter. I don’t want anyone’s money, I don’t want handouts, I want to be able to pay my own way and have a little extra for fun. I don’t especially want credit, but I definitely *don’t* want to be demeaned for how hard I work in every arena of my life by those who have never been there. That sort of thing makes me more bitter than my own actual situation does.

  12. This is a great response. I would love it if there were campaign ads that said exactly this.

    Calling people who want justice and equality “jealous” is just a dodge. A lazy dodge. You cut right to the heart of it.

    Thank you.

  13. anonymouse

    Don’t you get it? They don’t *want* to call 911 same as you, or drive on public roads and bridges the same as you! In the future they’re imagining, they all drive on the Platinum Class Luxu-road and you get some dusty third world pothole thing. They will call the Gold-Plated private security firm, and you will get the OCP from Robocop if they feel like showing up that day.

    They *want* to withdraw from society, while erecting their own society above.

    • Adam

      i’m afraid that this may be the truth. and that, eventually, stopping it will require violence. i hope not, but it would not be without precedent historically.

      by the way, both the letter and your responses are wonderfully, eloquently written. i could not agree more!

    • Yes – I know this, but I want the lower and middle class people who have been bamboozled into voting for them to see it too.

  14. Thank you for posting the original article and this response. They are both well-reasoned, passionate, honest, and compelling.

    I struggle to understand why people who aren’t megamillionaires somehow think that the Obama policies are working against them. These are the same people who support politicians who say “government shouldn’t do everything for you” and then whine when the government does nothing for them. Romney: “It’s not the government’s job to create jobs, it is the job of the private sector. Obama hasn’t created enough jobs so he’s failed. When I am president I will create jobs.” The cognitive dissonance makes my head hurt.

    It is not class warfare to suggest that our country’s tax code is out of whack (compare our tax code to every industrialized nation that we are competing with). It is not class warfare to suggest that maybe some of the burden of financial debt be shared by people and businesses who are literally making hundreds of millions of dollars a year off of other people’s money (and more every year) while the rest of us are happy just to have a subsistence level job.

    Also, those who are against Obama, it’s not that difficult to learn how to spell, use proper grammar, and proofread in order to make your arguments, If you can’t spell the president’s name correctly or think that typing “u” instead of “you” makes your opinion sound valid, well, then you clearly don’t have a very firm grasp on reality.

  15. I enjoyed your commentary as much as I enjoyed your friend’s original post. Well said!

  16. Leigh

    If you cannot afford health insurance, how can you afford to pay for each medical appointment in cash? I have health insurance because I could not afford the cost of a medical appointment without health insurance. Do you know a secret that the rest of us do not?

    • Carol Spurling

      This is easy. Health insurance for a family of four costs at least $800 per month. A doctor’s appointment is around $100 per visit where I live, more or less. If you never need to go into the hospital or the emergency room, it costs less per year to pay cash to the doctor for checkups and minor illnesses than to buy health insurance. But this family, like many families, would be bankrupt by any serious or chronic illness or injury or accident. And who among us is NOT going to have a major health problem at some point? Going without health insurance is playing roulette, which is why I wish we had nationalized medicine like other major Western first world countries.

      • Amen – I’ve lived in those places. Loved knowing I didn’t have to worry. Sure they took a chunk out of my paycheck, but I still had plenty to live on (and I was being paid minimum wage at a part time job.)
        I’ve also lived places where the people pay for their own medical care and there is no government support or insurance – and I’d take those too. (Though admittedly, in those places minimum wage would not cover quality care and it only seemed okay because I am a spoiled American and my lower middle class income is their wealthy tax bracket.)
        But my point is that it is private insurance companies (and lawyers) who have jacked the price of medical admission. That’s what needs reform. But I’d be more than happy to take socialized health care.
        If it’s so bad and evil, why do all of our congresspeople refuse to give theirs up!?

    • Honestly – pure stupid luck. We can’t afford to get sick, and knock on wood, we haven’t. If any of us ever did get really sick we’d be up the creek without a paddle. And hopefully we would find somewhere that would treat us and give us a payment plan like back in the old days.

      • Leigh

        I appreciate your honest answer. I have recently had extremely bad luck in the health department, requiring two surgeries in the same year. If I did not have health insurance I would be in serious debt(around the $100,000). I went without health insurance for about 6 months before that because the company I worked for did not pay enough for me to be able to afford rent and their health insurance. I definitely commend you on making the sacrifices you have made to make the best life you can for you and your family.

  17. I am firmly situated in the lower middle class, and I’m fine with that. It’s a step up from where I started, and I worked really hard to get here. I have a modest house that we can afford, a job that provides insurance, cars that work and the ability to pay a mechanic to fix them when they don’t, and an enormous, lush garden that produces enough food to feed the neighbors, too. (Anyone want zucchini? Please?) I know I am privileged to be here. I also know that if either my husband or I were unable to work, it would all fall apart in very short order. We’re a couple of paychecks away from disaster, and have been all our lives. I do not see that changing anytime soon.

    I don’t want handouts, though if I needed them, I wouldn’t hesitate, because I’ve paid into that system since I was 16. And that’s the thing: most people who take assistance do so only temporarily and usually reluctantly. Considering how meager that help is, and how humiliating the process, most folks who are able to do so would much rather be working. Further, I don’t mind paying into that system, because I would rather folks less fortunate than I have access to medical attention and the ability to feed their families than to see them go hungry or die for want of a doctor. Part of the problem I have with the current Republican party is the prevailing attitude of “I got mine; screw those who didn’t.” The religion they tout as being the model for how folks should live was fairly explicit about how to treat “the least of these.”

    And here’s the thing: I’m not even asking for them to give away all their money. I just want them to pay the same percentage of income taxes I do. They won’t be impoverished by paying taxes. The country will be enriched by it. The inability to see the patterns of history and realize that our current tax rates and loopholes are an anomaly is astounding. They don’t get that the financial crisis was partly due to tax cuts (and largely due to wars unfunded in the annual budget). They don’t want to see that the lack of regulation and oversight in the housing, banking, and investment industries caused the instability that sent the economy into the gutter. It is too much work to learn about economic cycles. Easier by far to demonize the people most hurt by the greed of the moneyed class.

    The America of one-income families being able to get by in nice houses in nice neighborhoods, with mom in her apron (and, inexplicably, a perfect coif), apple pies cooling on the windowsill and children all scrubbed up waiting for when daddy gets home has only ever existed for the few, and then only briefly. Attempting to go back to a mythological “better time” is part of the human condition, but reasonable people learn enough about the past to realize that it’s never that simple and, quite often, not desirable for most of the people who lived through it or recognize its down sides. To wit, both of my grandmothers worked for most of their lives because that was the only way to get by, much like today. My great-grandmothers worked even harder, and in far more dangerous times.

    It seems to me it makes more sense to make now the better times. That can be done if everyone is given a chance to move forward and up, which means valuing – and making widely available – good education, paying a living wage, doing our part to stop the deterioration of our planet, and treating the poor, sick, and elderly with the respect due to all human beings. And in order to do that, we all have to pay our share into the systems that make such things possible. I don’t think it’s so difficult to understand. Unless, of course, you’re mired in the attitude that “I got mine; screw the rest of you,” which is a willful ignorance of the worst sort.

  18. Karen F

    Question for Anonymous, who said: “MANY of my friends and aquaintances have LOST their companies or greatly downsized (including my husband!!!) because of new taxes and rules aimed at middle class America.” What new Obama-implemented taxes and rules are you talking about that would cause downsizing or lost companies?

  19. What a wonderful letter which says it all. Excellent and is true for so many of us. Thank you.

  20. I am extremely impressed with how you handled that…that…that prattle! Your response was insightful, intelligent, and respectful. Thank you for sharing what goes on in your brilliant mind!

  21. Angie

    This was so fantastic! You say it so eloquently!

  22. I am simply appalled at all the fear mongering. If for one minute you think that the Obama’s are middle class and can relate to the average american you’ve got another think coming. Time to do some research and stop with the Republicans are taking your rights away prattle. I’m amazed that people who claim to be informed can be so thoroughly misinformed. Do you all even do any reading? I’m frightened to know what/who your sources might be as you’re far off base with most of your commentary as regards what a Republican administration would do for this country.

    4 years ago President Obama was given the opportunity to fix the economy AND unemployment…he has completely failed…regardless of all special interest groups that have valid concerns, this country must make a change to put people back to work and save our economy….the present administration had their opportunity, it’s time to give someone else a chance.

    • John Rork

      He has done a better job than could reasonably be expected given the circumstances which are outside his control, (i.e. European debt crisis, housing collapse, offshoring labour by companies rushing to the bottom, etc.)

      Part of the problem is that executives in transnational corporations only care about the bottom line, and that means a race to the bottom in terms of costs, which leads to jobs migrating to China, India and other places where they can pay less, pollute more, and bribe effectively. CEO’s in turn get tremendous bonuses for doing it, and don’t have to live with the consequences.

    • I count among my sources the actual wording on actual bills put forth by the Republicans, as well as their party platform, and it is very clear to me that my right to determine if/when I procreate is in jeopardy. Similarly, I distrust any party which purposely uses thinly-coded language to whip up class, ethnic, gender and racial hatred. I read rather widely, including history, which tells me that allowing religious fervor to dictate civil law is a recipe for oppression for any who do not follow that religion to the letter. Examples of this are legion all over the world, most particularly in – but not limited to – the middle east. Not coincidentally, it is girls and women who suffer most due to these religious policies and laws. So yes, I do feel that my rights, and the rights of my sisters, nieces, and friends are in jeopardy. I don’t think it’s fear mongering to actually BE afraid of the plans of people who have made it quite clear that they believe women to be less than fully-functional human beings capable of making their own medical and life decisions.

      I read economic journals and every single one of them has convinced me that the economic policies of the Republican party would be disastrous for this country, much as they were the last time Republicans had control of the government. Expectations that anyone could fix the already out of control economic crisis in only four years is absurd and goes against all of the historical evidence from previous periods of economic distress. Also noted in the historical record is the inability of any president to succeed when the legislature is firmly set against it. Hence, Harry Truman could not get universal healthcare approved when he tried it. There are many other examples. But it’s pretty rare for party spokesmen to state and reiterate that, no matter the good work or affordability of any bill, if the president was for it, they were determined to vote against it.

      I strongly suggest that you read up on what happened – or didn’t – during the last four years in Congress. Every single bill designed to get people back to work or increase their wages or safety on the job – EVERY single one – was killed by Republicans. Now, you tell me, why should I give those same people the benefit of the doubt when they adamantly refused to help the American people when they had the chance?

  23. I agree with everything especially the first part. We are all entitled to our opinions, hope, and fears. Our family was lower middle Class a few years ago. But in the last few years I lost my job, and my husband had his pay cut. By 20 percent and now we are in poverty level.

    We do not apply for government assistance, we just work harder and cut more from our budget. When I thought I could cut no more God showed me differently.

    My family is conservative. We are not republican or democrat but we vote for who we think can do the best job. I am a business woman and will vote for Romney, not because of money or abortion but because he is a business man and we need someone with economic skills.

    I don’t want to start on medical. We pay for our insurance and have 5k in bills I am trying to pay that they didn’t . Life is hard right now and everyone should have a vote because I may be wrong and I would want you to be right.

  24. They only call it class warfare when the 99% pushes back. The rest of the time it’s just oppression as usual.

    • Or as Thucydides said – “Everywhere the strong do what they can and the weak suffer what they must.”
      So, I say we “rise up in the cafeterias and stab them with our plastic forks.” (Christian Slater – Pump up the Volume)
      The meek might inherit the earth, but who wants to wait that long?

  25. John Rork

    I grudgingly pay my taxes, but I pay them. I acknowledge that collective benefits are essential for a functional country to work, and that it entails everyone contributing their fair share. What I fail to understand is why so many in the overburdened middle think that the Romney’s of the world should be able to pay less tax as a percentage of their yearly profits, (which is income to most of us who don’t have the corporate lawyers and accountants who can do the revenue two step better than the IRS.) For the record, I will admit to being pretty well off, not rich, but not hurting, and living a damn fine life thank-you. I pay my taxes because it is the right thing to do, and for them I receive very good services. I also live in Canada, where most medical costs are born by the province and country. Our percentage of GDP spent on health care is 5 – 6% lower than what is spend in the United States. While I may someday be off work with a serious illness, it will not bankrupt me, force me to mortgage or sell my house, or otherwise burden my family with the obscene costs that would be born by the average middle class family in the United States. The Canadian system is not perfect, but it is cheaper, and fairer. I cannot be cutoff because my risk rating has changed. I hope that common sense prevails in the United States, and that people are savvy enough to see through the propaganda when it is time to vote. And for the record, I cannot see how any woman could vote for the GOP in its current form. They seem to have a hate on for women which falls just short of burkas and chastity belts.

  26. Penny O.

    Your words are really heartening to me and I stand by everything you say– especially after reading some of the comments here, which I know mirror the similarly selfish and ignorant views of much of the country. I live now in the CA Bay Area and grew up with a very liberal family in Montana, but I know I live in a liberal bubble. Seeing how people are convinced that supporting public health and public services = handouts to the undeserving makes me hope beyond everything that those who believe in the rights of humanity can band together to get Obama elected again, because the contrary is just too frightening and sad to face.

  27. I agree with this blog..I like the first part of this blog. It’s a wonderful letter. Thanks for sharing this,,

  28. Hello again!
    Interesting post, also the one from your friend.
    I am always very shocked how political discussions in the US are very limited. One can either be Democrat and social, or Republican and liberal. Coming from European perspective I think it is appaling that health care can be a financial murder for people without insurance. Everyone should have the right of affordable health care. However one also has to keep in mind that a social safety-net can only be there if the economy provides the government with sufficient tax-money.
    A progressive tax bracket is a good way to make sure everyone pays according to what they can afford, however it is a bit strange to blaim “the rich people”. Some (maybe most) of the rich people have also worked hard to get rich, or they create a lot of value for the society. The battle is not different here in Europe, socialists blaiming the capitalists. But both know that the answer lies in the middle.
    It is easy to say tax the rich, but if there is not a proper redistribution plan behind it the only thing that you accomplish is a government with a lot of money to spend (on war for example).
    I like coming back, the posts are well-written and the following you have create a good discussion, with respect for all (most) reactions.

  29. Todd S.

    I’m an American, and it makes me the same as ALL Americans, Rich, Middle Class, or Poor. I am so ashamed at the way so many Americans talk so poorly about other Americans. You can color it anyway you want to, but our President has cultivated Class Warfare for his own political gains, and that is just true. I know Liberals don’t want to believe it, but if you are honest, you can see it’s true. We are Americans, neighbors, friends. If you want fair, then we must police and protect the entitlements that are necessary to some, but not as many taking them. Everyone should pay taxes, everyone! Too many pay nothing, yet the clammer of this Class Warfare is how the Rich need to pay more. Let’s be really fair if we are going to be fair. I suggest to all of my American friends that we think for ourselves, practically and not sign on blindly to ANY politician’s agenda. They want to be elected. ALL politicians have a proven record of saying one thing, doing another, and our President is far from different. Don’t be Democrat, Republican or Independent….be AMERICAN! Don’t let anyone turn you against your fellow Americans. Anyone that tries to is just showing you they are not real Americans. I will take Anne Romney’s attempt to say something nice about Americans than the negative comments our current administration keeps spewing against ANY American. I just want a unified America again, I’m tired of the separation we have now.

  30. Peep

    I would love to be one of your neighbors, I already am your sister in circumstances, thoughts and heart.

    Both the letter and your general response to the negative comments are beautifully written. Thank you for this bit of logic and compassion in a crazy political climate.

  31. Rose

    The biggest problem with your rant is that it’s not factual when addressing the circumstances of the Romneys. They were NOT born with a silver spoon. If you even listened to her speech or read any of the FACTUAL commentaries on Mrs. Romney and the couple’s married life, you would know that they DID endure financial hardship. They lived in a garage apartment when he was working on his master’s degree and they DID eat tunafish and noodles more times than they could count. They STILL do NOT have a housekeeper and she does NOT have a personal assistant. They do their own laundry, he cooks, she cooks. Period. So they really DO know what people struggle with. Yes, they were blessed with success. And due to HARD work on his part, common sense and the blessings of the Lord, they are now extremely wealthy. AND they pay all of the taxes REQUIRED under the current laws. Wouldn’t it be nice if the 50% of Americans that live off of the government even TRIED to get jobs?

    So rather than demonize success which is what you’re trying to do, you really should consider voting for the candidate that is smart enough to get the job done for ALL Americans. Not the one who won’t release his transcripts or who never worked a REAL job in his life or who has NO business experience. (No, community organizer is NOT a real job).
    Oh and have you seen the house the Obama’s lived in in Chicago prior to 2008? Yes, they had servants! So don’t think for one minute that 4 more years of the misery we have seen will help your circumstances. Instead, vote for the candidate who wants to LOWER your tax burden, not increase it with hidden taxes and taking away the write-offs we all enjoy that Obama and Pelosi want to do.

    • Did you even read her blog post? Doesn’t sound like it.

    • So… She wasn’t the daughter of the Mayor of Bloomfield Hills, MI? And she didn’t attend private elementary and high school? Her *father* was a self-made man. He worked hard and was an innovator. She, on the other hand, has led a very comfortable life from the beginning.

      Are you saying Mitt wasn’t the son of the Governor of Michigan and didn’t attend private elementary and high schools before heading off for Stanford? Considering how well-off both of their families were, I’m skeptical that their reported “poverty” was anything akin to what actual poor people go through daily.

      Working as an attorney and also as a professor of Constitutional law at the University of Chicago would be considered holding a real job. And if you think overseeing a staff of 700+ doesn’t constitute working, then I’d like to know where your threshold lies. Similarly, Michelle Obama worked as an attorney as well as at the University of Chicago Medical Center. Their combined jobs is how they afforded the house which. There was no inherited money. Now, who’s background do you think is closer to the average person’s?

      Further, I don’t vote based on personality. I vote based on what they say they believe and the platform of the parties they represent.

  32. I am a single woman (hiding behind my dog) that chose to not have children. I did so because I felt I could not offer children the type of upbringing they deserve. And yet, though I am childless, I have never resented my paying taxes that pay for schools. That’s because just because they aren’t my children, they ARE my future.

    I don’t want anyone else’s money either. I’m more than willing to work for mine. But I AM tired of people who complain about government justify their stance by saying their changes won’t affect older Americans today, just the rest of us schmucks who are working our asses off and have planned for Social Security and Medicare (which I AM paying for now) don’t deserve to have those benefits.

  33. JB

    It is truly amazing that someone can spend a few paragraphs complaining about the financial hardships they must endure and then make assumptions and judgements about the character of rich people they don’t know and how they don’t understand or care AND THEN in the next breath say, “but I don’t want their money, and/or I’m certainly not jealous of their money!” You can say it a million times, but it is patently obvious that you do and you are.

    Yes, the Romneys were born into successful families, but it is also a fact that Mitt Romney donated his trust fund to charity because he wanted to succeed on his own. I have no idea if they have ever worried about mortgages or other bills and neither do you. I do know that whatever is being done now and in the last 3 1/2 years by Obama’s administration is not making it easier for anyone, except the very wealthy, to pay their mortgages and bills. Only people laboring under an extreme delusion can claim otherwise.

    Obama has given bailout after bailout (PLUS BONUSES!) to the very wealthy in the banking industry, and he has given hundreds of billions in handouts to wealthy American and foreign investors to start businesses that promptly failed. He has added numerous new regulations that many industries will now have to follow, which makes starting and running a business more onerous and expensive. This slows job creation because some people are discouraged from even starting a business so those potential jobs never materialize, and existing businesses must cut back on costs (like hiring) to remain profitable. Large companies can absorb the cost with little effect to the bottom line, they may just have to do a few more lay-offs. Now, unemployment is persistently high with nothing else on the horizon unless policies change. Poverty and dependence on government programs are at all time highs. Republicans do not want to end government safety nets, but they believe they should be temporary. They believe that government policy should not hinder but help encourage employment so those safety nets can be temporary.

    It is disconcerting to most people, myself included, that the very wealthy can take income through their investments and only pay 15% on that, while the rest of us must pay the income tax rate on the income we actually worked to earn. The rationale for the capital gains rate being kept low is to encourage those with money to invest in new and existing business which will keep those businesses expanding and hiring. It is a fact that when capital gains taxes are kept lower the government actually collects more than when the rate is higher.

    It seems some people have a distorted view of how Republicans view choice and how much they value choice. It is interesting how liberals always bring up threats to the mother’s life to support the legal abortion for any reason we have today. Republicans support the right to abortion when the mother’s life is threatened, so the point is moot. The vast majority of abortions done today are for lifestyle reasons, only a tiny percentage are done to save the mother’s life.

    If you are so worried about being able to choose what happens to your own body you may want to look further into Obamacare. There will be panels of experts to decide what diseases will be covered for which kind of people and the main question will be, “Is it cost effective to treat this person?” So if you want treatment for cancer when you are 70, the panel may have already decided that it just isn’t worth it to treat 70 year olds with cancer. Even if we still have private insurance, the panel will still decide for Medicare patients and those on other government care and private insurers usually follow those leads. Just FYI! Remember “he who pays, says.” Republicans merely want to retain freedom over their bodies. We do need to help those who cannot get private insurance get it and Mitt Romney has actually done this in Mass. Just a few things you may want to consider before you refuse to vote for someone simply because he is rich.

  34. Barb Ziek

    Very, very well said. I can relate. I taught middle school for decades…this resonates.

  35. Lynn

    Just a couple notes: When people say roads are publicly funded, that means with taxes that we pay on fuel–everyone pays for those.
    The investments that hard workers pay 15% on?-they’ve already paid taxes once at the higher rate and are reinvesting the already taxed money in companies that pay them for the use of that already taxed money.
    Finally, hard workers don’t see themselves as above society, they seem themselves as investing in society: By providing jobs, paying 50% of all income taxes, and giving to charities. I’d like to hear those who say hard workers don’t pay a fair share of taxes share their own percentage of salary paid in income taxes. 47 million households pay no federal income tax…and make no investment in the USA.

  36. Suppressing my voice, creating words.

    Reblogged this on Another blogger, in a world of blogging and commented:
    This is inspiring and perfectly written. Thank you.

  37. Great follow up! I agree, and then some. Somewhere along the line, “taxes” became a dirty word and something to be ashamed of. We need to take that word back and make it our patriotic duty; like buying war bonds during WWII. All the screaming back and forth about who pays what and cooked statistics that claim there are loads of people who don’t even pay taxes…well, I’m not listening to them anymore. I pay taxes, I give to charity, I pay taxes every day from my paycheck, from the gas I buy, the shoes and pants for my kids and I am proud of it! Let’s reframe this debate and leave the hyperbole and fake facts in the garbage can where they belong.

  38. Ashley

    I agree with most of what you said. But the huge issue in my mind is $16 TRILLION in debt. All of your comments about living paycheck to paycheck, etc…would leave me to believe you would under how dire a situation that is. How can you ask a government to provide all these things when we don’t have the money to do so? We are at the mercy of other countries and that is scary. We can’t continue at this pace….we need someone that will reign in this spending and get us to a position to provide all the wonderful things you outline in this post. I think it’s obvious we’re heading in the wrong direction with the current administration.

  39. Well put, well said. Not harsh. Just a fair reflection of how many hardworking people live as they try to do their best for themselves and their children.

  40. The question is not who pays more or not enough. The real question is do we want the freedoms to make our on choices? The country is slipping away and we are heading toward total destruction. Thomas Jefferson said “the deocracy will cease to exist when you take away from those who are willing to work and give to thowe who would not”.. The moral fiber of our Country is in decay. It makes little difference to me, I am over 70: however, I feel sorry for the younger generation that will not know what it is like to be free.

  41. Becki

    EXCELLENT POST!!!
    I sincerely hope to God that Romney does NOT win. He/they are so out of touch with American life, it makes me sick. Why is the tax burden so heavily on the middle class? because the upper crust pays less. Not only does tax dollars go to roads and schools, it also goes to financing federal government employees … the senators and congressmen pay nothing for their healthcare and it covers everything. I could go on and on but I won’t. It’s all there, for anyone to find.

  42. Why do Republicans not understand that paying the same percentage is not “paying more?” I could explain how it may actually be considered paying less, but their minds could never comprehend such things. It’s probably the same mental block that makes them think “free market capitalism” means making laws that favor your friends’ companies. It’s probably the same mental block that makes them incapable of remembering that the bailout was a Republican created and championed program; or that Obama has been more Republican in his actions than Reagan ever was; or that while money moving up the ladder is a fact (it’s what Capitalism is based on), ‘trickle down economics’ is a theory that has been proven false in almost every attempt to use it; or that while ‘job creators’ have failed to create any jobs despite having no significant new taxes or limitations put against them during the Obama administration (they’ve been discussed, but have not been carried out), history shows us that the more corporations have been taxed in the past 100 years, the more the country has prospered. You can’t argue intelligently with someone that doesn’t understand basic math and cannot remember history beyond 6 months.

    Equal is not unfair.

    • Thanks for stating this so well. I find these days that most of my arguments could be solved if the people on both sides understood basic math. This includes arguments about parenting, about teaching, about women’s rights, about… Seriously, if people could just add, subtract and compare numbers, we would never have to argue again.
      Longer memories would definitely help too.

  43. Daisy

    Absolutely love this. I appreciate you and Cathy so much for your posts.

  44. @Disgruntled Democrat and other neocon idiots who’ve commented but don’t understand: Maybe if idiots like you didn’t vote for the members of the Democratic senate that keep on blocking whatever Obama proposes, you’d be able to get heath care like I’ve got living in Canada and just like NHS in the UK. But, people like you vote for idiots like Bush and most of the GOP at the municipal, state and federal levels, and for Dems who don’t want to do or be anything progressive, so you sow what you reap.

    Also, your idea about people who need assistance being drug tested before they get assistance is complete bullshit-poor people are not buying drugs because they have no money to buy them, especially pot. Most poor people are too busy buying food to get high in crack, cocaine, or pot, so the idea proposed by that asshat Rick Perry and by you is just a whole ton of racist nonsense designed to penalize somebody because they’re poor and need help. Please turn of Faux Noise and Corporate News Network and read/watch something else besides neocon brainwashing.

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