To the Editor: How many times must we take it on the chin?
Written by Jaxon Sebek   
Friday, 21 August 2009 08:25
"9 Banks pay $33 Billion in bonuses", screams the USA Today Money section headline recently. This identical story was on page 12 of the Sentinel-Tribune. My blood pressure immediately soared to catastrophic levels. How many times must we Americans take it on the chin? These are the same financial institutions that cried out for governmental help.
Industry gurus are to blame for their creativity which forced thousands from their homes. The financial ponzi schemes that brought over priced dwellings to people who could ill afford them were the brainchild of the whiz kids who touted buy now before the price goes up.
The economy went south while interest rates headed north. Jobs were either consolidated or completely eliminated. 401Ks and IRAs shrank like a new wool sweater. Meanwhile Fox News Channel interviewed experts who blamed the consumer for their woes, stating they have no one to blame but themselves. No one put a gun to their heads. These are adults. They should have done their homework, etc.
Now the very same intellectuals have received obscene financial rewards. And every fiscal quarter some mega corporation is bemoaning the fact they "lost" money although they bested the same period the previous year, they failed to reach initial projections.
Athletes demand and receive higher compensation than our elected officials. Owners hold cities hostage demanding larger elaborate stadiums in lieu of taking their toys and moving elsewhere. Drugs are used for recreation or physical enhancement, or both. Those who are caught, do their penance and are welcomed back with open arms. Just don't own up to gambling or you will be shunned for perpetuity. States continue to ram the casino issue at us for another try on the ballot. What part of no don't they understand?
The alleged peers we vote in to represent us can retire following one term at full pay with no cost health insurance while the rest of us work a lifetime and will be lucky to receive social security. Pensions are becoming a thing of the past.
What's wrong with this picture? And how long do we stay complacent? When is enough, enough?
We can start by treating our elected officials like employees, which they are. They work for US. They should have a starting wage and we their constituents should give them a raise based on their individual performance. (How many of us would like to vote ourselves a raise and our own retirement package and tell the company that's how it is and to "suck it up?).
Our vote is our voice. Let's use it before we lose it!
Jaxon Sebek
Bowling Green

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