Begging The Gop To Care About Americans

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by Mikel Weisser, Candidate for U.S. House of Representatives

A group of Prescott activists met at the office of Congressman Paul Gosar on Jan. 9. We were there to plead for mercy for our fellow Americans. The GOP still delayed a bill to resume long-term unemployment benefits. Some 1.3 million workers had been without incomes for almost two weeks — in the dead of winter, during the coldest winter ever. It is a manmade economic catastrophe on the scale of Hurricane Katrina. And “someone else’s family going broke” isn’t typically the kind of catastrophe GOP leadership cared about; so we were worried.

They were using the same old dodge: They weren’t going to vote for anything that wasn’t funded. As Rand Paul ranted, they certainly “weren’t going to borrow money from China to pay people not to work.” Something was going to have to be cut, if they were to be expected to take care of the families of 1.3 million Americans.

The GOP says that unemployment benefits make people lazy, cause people to stay unemployed. At a time when there are three job seekers for every new job posted, that’s easily debunked. People receiving unemployment had been employed, contributing to their own unemployment insurance, paying into the system, sometimes for decades, for times exactly like this. It typically takes 35 weeks for a person who loses their job to find an equitable replacement. The extended benefits would have lasted 36 weeks.

Who really benefits from unemployment benefits? Well yes, the people who don’t starve to death or live in the streets, they, of course, get benefit, but more importantly, money in the hands of the poor and middle class goes right back into the stores where people shop, and onto the factories and farms that produce the goods and produce those people consume. With 1.3 million poor and middle class people, every extra dollar they have adds up through consumer spending.

The $26 billion or so the benefits are said to cost are about the same amount as the GOP cost the government with their recent shutdown. If they are OK with borrowing money to spite the president, why won’t they borrow to save the lives of Americans?

No matter what purity the GOP want to claim, when it comes to taxes and borrowing money, the government already borrows 40 percent of all it spends because of GOP resistance to taxes, which means that we still owe the money later anyway. Who are they helping with this anti-tax BS? The public, at some point, will still have to pay for the debt through future taxes. So there are 100s of billions of dollars worth of things the GOP is ready to borrow money on — but not our citizens.

Americans are supposed to care for each other. It is in fact the clear and stated purpose of the American government according the very Constitution Congress is charged with upholding: to provide for the common defense and promote the general welfare of all Americans, to raise sufficient taxes to do so when possible, to borrow when necessary.

Consciously choosing to extend their fellow Americans very real misery for their claim of abstract principles violates their oath to the Constitution. They haven’t even gotten the Preamble right and flunk at Article One. If they can’t get that right, how can we trust them with the future? What kind of future are they after when they are so willing to starve the present?

Grover Norquist’s dream of having a government so small it could be drowned in a bathtub, means government that could not provide social services to the needy, security to the public, or infrastructure for the economy. Gosar also backs a popular Tea Party concept of ending public education entirely. With no education, social services, health care for the poor, or even fire or police protection for areas who could not afford privatized services, much of America will resemble a third world country. So yeah, we were begging for an extension of our fellow Americans’ unemployment benefits, begging for our country, begging Paul Gosar to have a heart.

I wonder what he will say?

Mikel Weisser is a Democratic candidate for U.S. House of Representatives in Con­gressional District 1 and writes from the Left Coast of AZ.

Comments

don evans 7 months, 3 weeks ago

LOL....This guy must be one of Ted Paulks political mentors! Read this clowns bio info. And he's teaching your children in a public school!

A native Texan and the son of a nightclub singer, Mikel Weisser, after being an accomplished plumber and homeless shelter manager returned to college at 30, collected a MA from the University of Illinois at Springfield, where he presented papers at three national conferences and a M Ed from Northern Arizona University in Flagstaff. Mikel has lived in Mohave County since the turn of the century, teaching Junior High in Bullhead City and Middle School in Kingman. Mikel Weisser has been a political activist with organizations like Occupy Kingman (Occupy Together), Heartland Peace Center (Springfield, IL), Move On.Org, A.N.S.W.E.R., Amnesty International, Code Pink, and Phoenix's End the War Coalition, both writing and organizing on peace, immigrant rights, and gender bias issues. His recurring humor blog, "Current Comedy" goes back more than 20 years and has been featured on OpEd News, Dissident Voice, AlterNet, Illinois Times, Daily Kos, AZ Central, and his local paper, The Kingman Daily Miner, among others. Reprinted by groups as diverse as from My Gay Spot Entertainment to a Public Enemy fan site, from Useful Information Nation to San Diego's "Draft Notices," Weisser "writes from the left coast of AZ."

Mikel Weisser now teaches Social Studies and Language Arts to middle-schoolers, is a member of the NORAZ poets, a performance coach for the AZ Arts Commission, a member of the Arizona Education Association fund council and resolutions committees, the Arizona Democratic Party's LGBT Caucus' regional advisor for Western Arizona on Gender Bias Issues, and an organizer of Kingman's annual book festival, KABAM! ("Kingman-Area-Books-Are-Magic!"). A tireless touring poet and performer, Weisser has performed at Chicago's Green Mill, L.A.'s Beyond Baroque, the Beat Museum and Cafe International in San Francisco and standing in the pouring rain ... in various places.

Frustrated with the lack of discussion on progressive issues, Weisser launched his campaign to bring variety of thought back to public discourse. For all those on the left who are always left out: the poor, the homeless, the LGBT communities, minorities and patient and prisoner rights, Mikel Weisser is a voice for the voiceless, a protest to tell the Right when they’re wrong and to bring America back to its senses. Real democracy doesn’t demand a dress code. Mikel Weisser is already changing the discussion in Arizona. With your help we can change the world. Yes we can!!!! Lol.............

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Ronald Hamric 7 months, 2 weeks ago

Don,

How many studies have to be done before people accept the reality that conservatives (aka GOP) give far more to charities in $$$ and volunteer time than do liberals (aka Democrat)? Here is just one example from that liberal stalwart, the New York Times. http://www.nytimes.com/2008/12/21/opinion/21kristof.html?_r=0

And another: http://www.democraticunderground.com/1018414674

Not sure how some who post here will spin these facts since they come from their very own ideologues, but I think we can expect they certainly will try.

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