Against Better Interests

Voting Against Their Wallet, etc

I have more than a few friends on Facebook, and I am surprised at how many of them are liking Romney.

The first one is how many people who would be by any standard part of the working class are backing Romney despite; his record with Bain Capital, his comments about the "%47", which includes many of them, and the radical policies of Paul Ryan. Of course, a lot of this might have to do with the fact that so much of the media has done a good job at convincing them that the "%99" are little more than a group of aimless and restless young people and not their allies.

The fact that Romney has any support among women is a mystery to me as well. His remarks on Planned Parenthood, and Paul Ryan's record on women's rights leaves much to be desired. This might have to do with with how many women have accepting religious beliefs that often seem to make them believe they need to surrender the rights to their bodies in the name of faith.

But getting people to override their better interests, be them economic or otherwise, is a common trait of right-wing movements. Whether it be the corporate state that seems to be part of the core of fascism, or the narrow interpretation of religious teaching that is at the basis of a theocracy, the power rests with a chosen few.

So the question is how to get people to vote for ideas that in reality are harmful to them in the long-term. How do you get a worker to vote for policies that will allow their job to be shipped overseas where labor is cheap and exploitable, or allow a corporation to cut salaries and benefits for workers while their CEO, etc are making huge profits, Or get a woman to vote for policies that will keep her a second-class citizen.

One way to do this, as I have stated before, is to create an outgroup. You find a group to scapegoat; women, Jews, Native Americans, Hispanics, Homosexuals, Muslims. You set groups against against other; public sector workers against private sector, young against old. As long as they are not united against those doing the manipulating, all is well.

A second strategy is to create a "wedge issue", divide people along ideas of lines. The best example of this in America might be guns. The National Rifle Association and other 2nd Amendment absolutist groups have perhaps managed to pit urban areas against their rural counterparts. The issue of equal rights for Homosexuals is another dividing line. This could be a case of dividing by age. Younger people who see Ellen DeGeneres selling makeup, or hear Adam Lambert on the radio, or cheer on Megan Rapione may not see a problem with homosexuals having the right to marry. An older generation on the other hand, may be more resistant to such ideas.

I still insist one major accomplishment of the Occupy Movement is that Americans are waking up to the reality of class. What started on the streets of Wisconsin continues to this day. The question now may be where Occupy needs to head next.


Comments 20 comments

tammybarnette profile image

tammybarnette 4 years ago

First let me say, great hub and I feel your pain. I am bumfuzzled that any woman would willingly give up her rights in order to beat Obama...However, I think a majority of people vote off commercials and blood lines. They are not like us, digging for facts, watching debates, asking questions. I was talking with my daddy earlier today, now mind you I live in Republican State, TN...I said why in the world would you vote for him, he said the economy! WOW...people still believe him...I felt the same way when W was elected not once, but twice! The first time I was not even worried...he was a boob, he mispoke, he was like a television character, and then, he won! Thank God, I have swayed my daddy, will not matter here in this state, but he loves me and didn't even know R/R were messing around women's rights. I believe that is exactly the reason R's do not promote education (to all that is), the dumber the voters the better....Now there are some really intelligent conservative people on this hubsight and around the world that I will never understand, maybe it comes down to where you were when you were born, were you born into wealth or poverty? Maybe it's just some of us deeply care about taking care of all people, deeply believe in fairness and they worry more about their own families...I do not pretend to know. Sorry for writing a book here,LOL, but we certainlythink a lot alike:)


lrc7815 profile image

lrc7815 4 years ago from Central Virginia

This is so well written and done with such clarity that only an idiot would not understand what is at stake in this election. Romney's performance in the second debate should make all women take notice. Environmentalists should also take note that Romney is no friend to the environment if he can smell oil money. He wants the Keystone pipeline badly and wouldn't blink before destroying the caribou breeding ground in Alaska to drill for oil, even though the caribou are the primary source of food and clothing for the Gwich'in Natives of Alaska. If he outsourced jobs overseas for his own investments, it is doubtful he won't do it again. So many red flags. People really need to wake up and take a realistic look at the future under a Romney reign. Great hub! Voted up too and shared.


Davesworld profile image

Davesworld 4 years ago from Cottage Grove, MN 55016

"create an outgroup" - you mean like the rich.

"A second strategy is to create a 'wedge issue'" you mean like the rich aren't paying their "fair" share.

You could add a third (first) strategy: blame somebody else for my problems.

Had you done that you would have nailed Obama to a tee.


tammybarnette profile image

tammybarnette 4 years ago

Your example of a "wedge issue," Dave would hold more water, if it weren't for the fact that it is true. the uber wealthy, get almost as many breaks as those who never worked a day in their life (tax wise, of course, 0% paid in taxes) Always astounds me when persons like yourself want to keep giving the wealthy a break, little hint Dave, these people aren't the "job creators," that is more propaganda for ya, not fact.


TeaPartyCrasher profile image

TeaPartyCrasher 4 years ago from Camp Hill, PA Author

Nice work Tammy.

But Dave relies on the "%1" for most of his ideas. Publications like "The Nation", or voices like Rick Smith or even Bill Moyers are dismissed.


TeaPartyCrasher profile image

TeaPartyCrasher 4 years ago from Camp Hill, PA Author

Your 3rd point ties into the first; or have you missed the wars on women, etc.

But then FOX and AM-Radio don't cover that, do they. . .


Davesworld profile image

Davesworld 4 years ago from Cottage Grove, MN 55016

If you two want to talk about wealthy people, that's fine. But don't insult my intelligence by claiming that earning $250,000 a year qualifies someone as being wealthy because it just ain't so. Well off, maybe, but not wealthy and not rich. That's the whole problem with the "hate the rich" rhetoric that spukes out of the Democrat party. They know not of what they speak.

Or perhaps, more honestly, they fully well know that these people are not rich. Instead what they are trying to get you and me to do is turn green with envy over the fact that somebody else makes way more than we do. And then turn that envy into revenge seeking. This is the essence of the pablum you have been fed by the Democrat party and it is sad to see otherwise intelligent people buy into this BS.


tammybarnette profile image

tammybarnette 4 years ago

Dave, I am not an envious person, nor do I "hate the rich," I do actually agree with you on one point, depending on which state you live in, $250,ooo may or may not be a wealthy person...where I live, it would be...so shouldn't the conversation start there? I do however believe that those who are blesssed with the wealth of this country have the responsibility to care the most for this country, let's face it, the wealthy have the largest benefit of the infrastructure of this great land and therefore should be happy to invest in the future of that infrastructure, don't you think?


Davesworld profile image

Davesworld 4 years ago from Cottage Grove, MN 55016

Tammy, already the top 5% of income earners pays some 60% of all income taxes. That should be enough. (Full disclaimer here, for a half decade or so my wife and I were in that exalted group, we were not, however, in the top 4.9%.)

I am an investor, both privately and through IRAs and my 401(k). My investments grow only if the companies I invest in are able to make a profit. That profit comes after taxes are paid. My investments help companies expand, hire people, and create goods and services for others. Investments are the fuel of the economy.

Now realistically, my total investment portfolio is mere chump change to Romney (net worth I don't know, income last year $20 million) and Obama (net worth in excess of $5 million), nevertheless my investments work much the same as theirs do. I expect the same kind of returns that they do. I am relying on those investments to fund my retirement - they are too.

I have never in my life "invested" in infrastructure, I have paid for it. I continue to pay for it through gasoline taxes, sales taxes, real estate taxes, and income taxes. So do the wealthy. When you get down to it, the wealthy tend to pay more in gasoline and sales taxes than I do because they tend to consume more than I do. I don't even want to think about what the real estate taxes are on a ten bedroom mansion in Florida. The point is that the wealthy are already paying for infrastructure, and paying much more than I am, through increased taxation that naturally comes from their profligate life style.

The drive to tax the wealthy is little more than an attempt to dodge the real problem which is not a lack of taxation revenue, but a lack of spending restraint. And unless and until someone can come up with an objective, non-emotional set of criteria to judge this I think the wealthy already pay enough.


TeaPartyCrasher profile image

TeaPartyCrasher 4 years ago from Camp Hill, PA Author

Tammy, keep it up.

Dave.

You have shown time and time again that you have swallowed the Tea that the "%1" feeds you. . .


TeaPartyCrasher profile image

TeaPartyCrasher 4 years ago from Camp Hill, PA Author

Tammy:

As Mitt and the rest of the "%1" have proven, the only folks they too often want to invest in is themselves. Folks like Bill Gates and George Soros are few and far between,

You keep "Crashing". . .


tammybarnette profile image

tammybarnette 4 years ago

Dave, thank you for sharing you points....I believe they pay 60% of the taxes because they earn 70-80% of the income. I understand that for your family you are concerned about your retirement as well you should be and so should all Americans. I believe Americans should be responsible for themselves as much as you do, I also believe however that there are persons who have been hard workers and saved their entire lives and lost everything when the stock market bellied up, and I blame lack of regulation for that along with corruption at the top. I believe that there should be as much regulation on the systems that care for the poor and elderly as on the top and wealthy corporations. I do no more admire a person who was born wealthy and stays wealthy as I do someone who is born poor and stays poor, BUT the poor have to have a bridge, without systems for education and training, supplements for food,etc, they will never get over the hump. I believe the top of our Government has become the exact model of the Aristocracy of the England of old and that out Fore Fathers fought for the freedom to be able to climb from the class from which was born. Most of all, as an accountant, I believe in a balanced approach to fiscal discipline....The figures should be the battle, not the concept.


tammybarnette profile image

tammybarnette 4 years ago

TeaPartyCrasher, Thank you for letting me talk on your fantastic hub:) I truly believe all of us agree more than we disagree and should find the common threads that bind us as a country if we ever expect to see a return of bipartisanship in our governing policies.

Dave, I noticed that I had a little mess up there, I meant to say I do NOT admire someone born poor who stays poor and more than I admire someone who is born rich and stays rich....However, without programs for the poor to climb out of the hole, without an even playing field of opportunities, they will not have the chance, and that is what will break the system...Regulations on welfare for the poor should include drug testing, seeking work or volunteering work, etc. Many poor are not lazy, they work 2 and 3 jobs at minimum wages, many drag in from work stinking of garbage, many are policeman, fireman, teachers, constuction workers...It's no more black and white than the $250,000 figure....


Davesworld profile image

Davesworld 4 years ago from Cottage Grove, MN 55016

Tammy, like wow! There are many things you and I are in agreement on.

" ... when the stock market bellied up, and I blame lack of regulation for that along with corruption at the top." No question about it, our current economic woes result in large part for corruption in the upper levels of our government, but I have yet to be convinced that a LACK of regulation was also a part of the problem.

"I believe the top of our Government has become the exact model of the Aristocracy of the England of old ..." Spot on! There is no question in my mind about this one. If you can get a copy (might be able to find it on e-bay) try "The Ruling Class" by Angelo Codevilla - its a short book but if you mean what you said above, it will reinforce your views and probably make you angry. Here's a taste: "[O]ur Ruling Class' first priority in any and all matters ... is to increase the power of government - meaning those who run it, meaning themselves."

No one, least of all me, is arguing that we don't need an infrastructure. I couldn't get to the golf course without the road net. That is one of the primary functions of government and the Constitution instructs Congress to provide roads (and presumably bridges). It's all the other nonsense that bugs me.


Davesworld profile image

Davesworld 4 years ago from Cottage Grove, MN 55016

Tammy, and then I found the short version of "The Ruling Class" on the web: http://spectator.org/archives/2010/07/16/americas-...

You'll have to ignore the fact that it comes from a conservative publication, but it makes some solid points.


tammybarnette profile image

tammybarnette 4 years ago

Dave, Yay:) We Americans are not as far apart as the powers that be would have us to believe. As long as they polarize us the people they get away with bankrupting us all, and destroying this country. The Constitution was setup by compromise, bipartisanship, and that is what we need. There is a middle ground that can benefit all Americans, I see it here at the hubpages everyday. We the People of this great land must join together before it's too late. The greed and power at the top, that is the enemy of all of the people...I may lean left and you may lean right, but together there can be a better plan than either side can do alone. I am so happy we have found this common ground:)


tammybarnette profile image

tammybarnette 4 years ago

Dave, I will follow those links after I get dinner on the table, very interested...thanks:)


tammybarnette profile image

tammybarnette 4 years ago

Dave, Thank you for this link, I am not finished reading it but I can tell it's some good info, and thus far sounds bipartisan which I appreciate much....Will be good nightime reading for me:)


TeaPartyCrasher profile image

TeaPartyCrasher 4 years ago from Camp Hill, PA Author

Dave, tammy:

You two keep playing nice. . .


tammybarnette profile image

tammybarnette 4 years ago

TeaPartyCrasher, check out the link he sent....it's interesting to say the very least....I have been feeeling the same way about this country lately..."What if their all on the same side, and we are these passioate patriotics fools out here about to rip the Country in half? While they argue on television, and then go play golf..." The entire top is seeming like an Aristocracy to me....At the very least it makes me want to dig deeper....

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