Monday, March 18, 2013

Back, back in the USSR

It was an early morning at work as I joined my fellow associates to do some of the dirty work before the customers get there. Two of us are a little older as the third is a college student at Ohio State. I made the comment that one of them must be a communist. The youngster looked at me and was just puzzled. He didn't understand why we belittled communism. I had to explain that in the present day world that is simply an American joke.

My young associate didn't understand. He had not lived through the times when it was us vs them in everything. It was ingrained in us as Americans. Then we started talking about why the USSR fell in the first place. I think one of the problems is simply the aspect of human greed. The Soviet system was fine in theory but not in practicality. The power structure evolved in such a way as it was completely top-heavy. All the power was locked into a small, elite group of people who put themselves completely above the rest. Within this power base came the enforcement of their wishes by a brutal police structure. Unlike the populace of the US, our citizen base is still able to exert their own skills to improve their lot in life.

We must now ask ourselves, how close are we to going down the same path as the Soviet Union? We now have one aspect of their past in our present; we have an elite power structure where the government officials have set themselves above their citizens. Congress has not been subject to their own laws in many years. And although they are routinely replaced by the electorate, then are still a highly privileged group with perks the rest of us could not dream of.

What's worse, much of the troubles we now face are a direct result of our elected officials. They are the ones who spend the money on whims. They are the ones who regulate us yet they take none of the blame for the mess they have created. If it was up to me, I would recall every elected official in our nations capitol and simply start over, Democrats, Republicans and Independents, every last one.

The first new rule would be to make all elected officials subject to their own laws. Let's see how they like it when they are out of a job in four years and don't have a pension to fall back on. That $350 per week unemployment check doesn't look so good from the cheap seats now, does it? It'd be a brave new world and I'll bet the problems would magically begin to fix themselves in short order.

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