Skip to main content

Yesterday evening the President of the United States attempted to walk a blurred line between perception and reality which the Republicans have been smudging since Richard Nixon took office in 1968, Reagan nearly obliterated and W. Bush finally utterly ignored.  That line is the reality that the policies of our government and the practices of our private sector define the quality of life that ordinary Americans can achieve.  The “American Dream” of wasteful, indulgent consumerism is always uphill towards a bigger house, a more expensive car and more junk to stuff in our closets.  It is always uphill and favors the hard working and diligent.  However, the steepness of that hill is set in the halls of Congress and the boardrooms of Wall Street.

This election is about weather what happens in the halls of Congress and our nation’s capital will merge with the relentless machinery of the banks and corporations to grind the American Middle Class, over the next generation or two, down to the misery that is the life of slave laborers in China.  It is an 70 year, three generation project we are already one generation into.  I can document the progress of that struggle, line by line, in my work as a Family law attorney in South Carolina.

The attack on the middle class cannot be found in the tax code, union busting or the banking regulations which blew an economy up on debt and sucked the wealth of the middle class to the Cayman Island.  It is a death of a thousand cuts enabled by the willingness of ordinary Americans to be distracted, medicated and shamed into submission by the weary club of dishonest jingoism wrapped in our tattered flag.  It is a battle working Americans such as the ones I have represented in Family Court for a generation now lose ten dollars at a time.

Read on to find out how your struggle is reflected in the struggles of the families I encounter in my legal practice, ensnared in delusions they can escape and an economy the Government refuses to control on their behalf.

In every legal action filed in the South Carolina Family Court, both parties, husbands, wives, grandparents and other relatives, are required to file a detailed family budget called a Financial Declaration.  Many people in our poorly educated state are utterly incapable of doing this so it falls on me to assist them, line by line, in what may be the only detailed examination of their Financial Status anyone will ever work out for them.  After that we fight over who pays the debts, child support and gets the remaining property.  Up until five years ago, we used to fight over the equity in the house, the savings and the pension plans but that grows increasingly rare every day.

I represent both the prosperous and the poor; Republicans and Democrats; men, women and children in a state where Democrats have been driven from political power, unions wield little influence and a rising flood of out of state money dominates our politics.  

South Carolina is not stuck in the past.  It and a handful of other relatively poor states where politics can be waged cheaply are being shaped into models for a future dominated by the power of concentrated wealth from out of state.  

In South Carolina low costs of political campaigns, racial division, a heritage of slavery and plantation labor and militarism allow the Koch Brothers and smaller players like Howard Rich to secure control of seats in our legislature for tens of thousands of dollars.  They use operatives placed in our Governor’s office to run state government on a day to day basis, gradually transitioning these “volunteers” on the payroll of some right wing political group into paid State positions.  They picked and paid for our Governor. The details being emailed to her "assistants" from ALEC and the Heritige Foundation are of no interest to the Governor.  Our Governor is flying around the country wearing short suits and SPANX in other people's jets.  Endless numbers of eager conservatives are in the pipeline to replace and supplement them.  She's happy to serve them, "having a ball."  She is Sarah Palin 2.0 beta testing the model for your state's first remote controlled Republican robot Governor.

Dedicated lifelong conservatives from South Carolina with the state’s own interests in mind are sidelined, retired early or threatened into submission. Last week the Governor helped set up a new Super PAC to attack her Republican opponents with 750 thousand dollars from five out of state donors.  The hapless Democratic Party, champions of Alvin Greene and proud sponsors of over 125 candidates stricken from the 2012 ballot by botched filing procedures struggle in irrelevance.  The national Obama campaign has given up the state for dead, mining it for contributions and volunteers to deploy to North Carolina.  Democratic campaign offices here have no Tshirts, no yard signs, no buttons and no bumper stickers.  There is no printed literature with colorful pictures of the president.  Campaigns are about phone banking and road trips North, every moment of which pounds in the grinding realization that we are irrelevant.  It is destroying the remaining liberal and progressive base here.

Our state has been lost to the right wing Republican plan for America’s future and nearly everyone is attempting to avoid admitting it.

In the line items Financial Declarations I help prepare, file and read in Family Court, I can document the grinding down of the Middle class in my state, a process men like Mitt Romney have been happy to drive.

Lagging wages are the first cause.  I have seen rent rise from from 300 dollars a month to 900 for a modest two room apartment.  Wages have only doubled.  No one carries the cause of the working class to the companies who hire or the government agencies responsible for economic development.  We persist in promising cheap labor to the world.  We have seen our once massive textile industry offshore.

Jobs are recruited at a huge, often hidden cost.  After the Union at the local Boeing contractor’s facility was decertified, the state legislature held a special session to approve unknown subsidies for a much larger plant here paying a fraction of what Boeing employees earned near Seattle.  Grants, subsidies and tax breaks for this plant were hidden around government like Easter Eggs: road construction, job training, special tax districts, low interest government guaranteed loans and land sold at below market value.  The impacts on the middle class show up as lower wages, less money for the school district, higher costs for government services elsewhere, and deferred infrastructure maintenance.  Of course all of this was driven by the terror that someone would underbid South Carolina in the race to the bottom.

Every August parents pay hundreds of dollars in school fees and deliver a box of supplies to school purchased at their own expense.  The total cost of this climbs every year.  Field trips now cost money as does every sport or extra curricular activity.  Fundraising dominates PTA concerns, now paying for library books, school nurses, language teachers and art teachers.  Wealthy public schools were able to accumulate endowments when the economy was fat.  Now the fundraising auctions which used to generate fifty thousand dollars or more, struggle to raise ten from a thin economy.  Ultimately this money largely comes out of the pockets of parents.

As pressure to cut taxes has been gratified by Republicans fees have increased throughout Government.  The filing fee for an ordinary uncontested divorce case has risen from 25 to 150 dollars and a new 25 dollar fee is due for every motion filed, even uncontested ones.  Originally this money was earmarked to put recently retired judges on the bench to cut backlogs, but they’ve largely disappeared while the fees have stayed.  Traffic tickets, building permits and rental fees to use once free public meeting facilities and parks have multiplied.  Bus fare on our transit system has risen from 50 cents to $1.75.  Fines for ordinary petty offenses have risen to over a thousand dollars.  If you are found not guilty in many cases you’ll pay over 250 dollars to get your criminal arrest record cleared.

Fees for recreation department programs and admission to county parks have risen.  Everywhere Republicans are trying to “run government like a business” while cutting taxes for the wealthy.  In our area, that focused on a popular program to slash real estate taxes on expensive beach front and resort property while raising sales taxes on clothing and food.  More recently another round of property tax adjustments have cut what is paid on rental and commercial property meaning now nearly no one who is wealthy enough to own property is actually paying taxes based on what their property is actually worth, even if they bought it last week.  When sales taxes fall, public transit is cut, schools are closed and grass in road medians grows five feet tall because no Government agency wants to pay a contractor to cut it.

The homeowner's insurance provided by large, politically influential corporations grows ever more expensive and provides less value.  Property insurance in our hurricane exposed area now exposes homeowners to massive deductibles and co payments.  In 1989 when Hurricane Hugo smashed the coast here, my home had a deductible of one thousand dollars and no major, relevant exclusions.  Today that deductible is over thirty thousand dollars.  Thousands of often elderly homeowner have given up covering their homes, gambling the expensive coverage now available won’t be needed.  Insurance companies contribute generously to political campaigns at every level directly and through interest groups.  Republican administrated state agencies have little interest in what happens to consumers.

Heath Insurance is likewise more expensive and less voluble.  In a market and political arena dominated by Blue Cross deductibles have risen from 200 dollars a year to over a 1000 on most people's plans.  Copayments and exclusions have appeared and grown.  Of course if something serious happens, the carrier will search for some alleged preexisting condition so they can escape paying for anything.

All of these items and more show up on the Financial Declarations of the broken families I represent.  Increasingly in our traditional culture, an angry wife is lashing out at the husband and father who seems unwilling to provide the quality of life her father provided her family in 1975.  She works, paying for a vehicle, taxes and often daycare but it adds little to the family’s disposable income.  He takes odd jobs on the weekend, but it doesn’t cover the growing gap.  They’re exhausted with little time and energy for their children beyond the struggle to finish homework, school projects, fundraise and attend soccer games.  Almost none of these people have time or energy remaining for culture, political involvement or civic life.  They deeply resent those of us who do, resenting us as liberal snobs.  

For about twenty years debt and rising real estate values here in coastal South Carolina, driven by the continuous influx of wealthy retirees from the North allowed working families to hide this struggle under a rising pile of debt secured by appreciating real estate.  Families ran up lines of credit and credit cards, refinancing every few years into a new and larger mortgage.  When they could, they moved into a new and larger house so the debt monster could continue to grow.  This economy was finally supported by a desperate last few years of loans to people who could never pay them back to renovate tar paper shacks and buy the working poor minivans based on applications signed by people who didn’t understand them.  Half the people I knew were in real estate, banking or construction.  Now corporate middle management has been downsized, the big pensions are gone and the river of northern wealth headed south has dried up.

Now both the retired from elsewhere and the working locals with kids are both underwater.  There is no more money to borrow.  Dad’s weekend odd construction jobs have evaporated.  The local banks and construction companies aren’t grandstanding at the school fundraiser with a five hundred dollar check.  The fees for building permits down at Town Government have dried up.  Traffic tickets aren’t being paid.  The uninsured swamp local free clinics.  Goodwill in our once prosperous Republican town sells over 3000 items every day.

For many people, the work day has quietly expanded to nine hours or more.  Unpaid work on Saturday is now common.  They’re on salary now thanks to changes made by the Bush administration.  Staffs have been slashed and paid vacation, for those who have it, is a struggle to actually take.

I’m lucky.  I was a student of economics and history educated by pessimistic liberals in our redneck state who could see where this was going a long time ago.  My home and car are paid off.  I’ve saved.  Unlike George Baily, I took my wife to Paris before the crash.  I resisted the pressure to leverage everything I owned to buy a house to flip seven years ago from the friendly real estate agent prepared to hook me up with a million dollar loan.  He said real estate never went down.  I replied 1931.  He's now a Republican on the verge of bankruptcy who hates President Obama and attends a mega church to recruit business prospects.  We don’t talk any more.  

I provide legal services of absolute necessity which must be paid for even in the most desperate circumstances.  I treat my struggling clients well and they remember.  I now represent some of their children, whose custody I litigated twenty years ago.  I respect them.  I understand that a large part of their problem is not of their making.  I talk to them about it, but most can't accept the reality.  Their kids are different.  They hope for little.  They believe in nothing but Jesus.

More attention to the priorities of Jesus on their part won’t solve their problems despite what the preachers at the mega churches they attend say when they’re being instructed to vote Republicans so the angel of prosperity will return to America next Sunday.  A bit of attention to the priorities of Jesus, Paul Krugman or John Maynard Keynes by the men and women who rule their corporations and governments certainly would.

Last night our President listened, too patiently to Mitt Romney’s fabric of lies, woven out of the strands of delusion which have knitted in the dark halls of the right for a generation.  The President has been warned that he can’t raise the banner of class warfare.  Obama must confine this election to the safe margins of tax policy and budgets.  The President is not supposed to threaten the concentrating money at the top. He's not supposed to say that the reason you can't take your kids to the Doctor is because men exactly like Mitt Romney have rigged every economic and social transaction necessary to your survival against you because they believe you are resources to be exploited.  They have rejected the counsel of Jesus and are in league with the Devil to rob you of your rights as an American and the God given joy you are entitled to in your life.

We must remind President Obama and Mitt Romney that the miserable math of these Financial Declarations reveals a citizenry being degraded by exploitation planned in the corporate boardrooms of Wall Street, Wal-Mart and Bejing.  It is a grinding campaign of economic annialation only the Government has the power to stop.   This election is about what side our Government will be on, a choice between the priorities of women who drop their children off at daycare to work for nine hours for eight hours pay vs. women who drop in to see how their dressage horses are doing.

To pretend it is something else wont scare people, but it concedes more of the battle than is safe when the stakes are this high.

Fri Oct 05, 2012 at 6:45 PM PT: I was able to publish the unposted typographical corrections I prepared yesterday.  

Originally posted to wjhamilton29464 on Thu Oct 04, 2012 at 08:21 AM PDT.

Also republished by Community Spotlight.


I plan to vote for

94%132 votes
0%1 votes
3%5 votes
0%1 votes

| 139 votes | Vote | Results

Your Email has been sent.
You must add at least one tag to this diary before publishing it.

Add keywords that describe this diary. Separate multiple keywords with commas.
Tagging tips - Search For Tags - Browse For Tags


More Tagging tips:

A tag is a way to search for this diary. If someone is searching for "Barack Obama," is this a diary they'd be trying to find?

Use a person's full name, without any title. Senator Obama may become President Obama, and Michelle Obama might run for office.

If your diary covers an election or elected official, use election tags, which are generally the state abbreviation followed by the office. CA-01 is the first district House seat. CA-Sen covers both senate races. NY-GOV covers the New York governor's race.

Tags do not compound: that is, "education reform" is a completely different tag from "education". A tag like "reform" alone is probably not meaningful.

Consider if one or more of these tags fits your diary: Civil Rights, Community, Congress, Culture, Economy, Education, Elections, Energy, Environment, Health Care, International, Labor, Law, Media, Meta, National Security, Science, Transportation, or White House. If your diary is specific to a state, consider adding the state (California, Texas, etc). Keep in mind, though, that there are many wonderful and important diaries that don't fit in any of these tags. Don't worry if yours doesn't.

You can add a private note to this diary when hotlisting it:
Are you sure you want to remove this diary from your hotlist?
Are you sure you want to remove your recommendation? You can only recommend a diary once, so you will not be able to re-recommend it afterwards.
Rescue this diary, and add a note:
Are you sure you want to remove this diary from Rescue?
Choose where to republish this diary. The diary will be added to the queue for that group. Publish it from the queue to make it appear.

You must be a member of a group to use this feature.

Add a quick update to your diary without changing the diary itself:
Are you sure you want to remove this diary?
(The diary will be removed from the site and returned to your drafts for further editing.)
(The diary will be removed.)
Are you sure you want to save these changes to the published diary?

Comment Preferences

  •  Right. But the answer to your dilemma is (6+ / 0-)

    not less money, but more.
    The only reason the majority of the population is able to be subordinated behind the veil of money is because the money is being tightly controlled to deprive them of their rights.

    If money is to be properly used as a tool to mediate transaction, it has to be demystified.

    Watch to see how it can be done.

    We organize governments to provide benefits and prevent abuse.

    by hannah on Thu Oct 04, 2012 at 08:42:34 AM PDT

  •  Upstate (6+ / 0-)

    Agree with all of your post.  I live in the Upstate, and it can get very depressing.  I hear anti-Obama, pro Chik-Fil-A crap all day at work from overt bigots.  This morning apparently before I got here all the talk was about the debate, and how wonderful Mittens did.  I'm glad I wasn't here yet to hear it.

    It's a hard place to live for a progressive.

  •  With your permission, wjhamilton, (9+ / 0-)

    I would like to share your diary with my college composition students. We are studying rhetorical analysis just now, and your writing is impressive, an excellent example of the persuasive political text I am encouraging them to select for their upcoming essay's topic.  The fact that we would then read and discuss your message, I feel, is vitally important here in Nevada, a state that too easily could follow South Carolina's path if voters like my students don't understand what's truly at stake.

    No one elected Grover Norquist anything. If everyone ignored him, he would dry up and blow away.

    by vahana on Thu Oct 04, 2012 at 12:11:51 PM PDT

  •  Can you spell out just who has (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Just Bob

    warned the president that he can't etc.
    why he must confine the election to etc.
    why he is not supposed to say, etc.

    The President has been warned that he can’t raise the banner of class warfare.  Obama must confine this election to the safe margins of tax policy and budgets.  The President is not supposed to threaten the concentrating money at the top. He's not supposed to say that the reason you can't take your kids to the Doctor is because men exactly like Mitt Romney have rigged every economic and social transaction necessary to your survival against you because they believe you are resources to be exploited.  They have rejected the counsel of Jesus and are in league with the Devil to rob you of your rights as an American and the God given joy you are entitled to in your life.
    Great diary. Lots of substance but I would like the who has done what spelled out.
  •  Wonderful diary on real & frightening facts in (9+ / 0-)

    the real world.

    Wow. I lived in NC and went into SC from time to time so already have an opinion about its being a place in which I could not live.

    But I did not realize the state of the state's government having been taken over by wealthy interests. The extent of that is horrifying. What you describe is simply 3rd world type, but refined, Corruption on a scale unheard of. It takes my breath away as you describe how the state is run at the behest entirely of corporate owners.

    Wow. I cannot quite believe it but I do. It makes me angry as well because I live in Florida where Scott is the same type of governor. He stripped state education of I think 2 billion. Then a bit later he "adds" 1 billion, solely for the purpose, this accounting trick of his, so he can claim to have been good to education by "raising" the ed budget 1B. Because he was in so much trouble, so unpopular. So tricky.

    Hopefully the Florida electorate is diverse enough to resist the SC type of change. It must be heart-breaking at times. Those poor people who are poor there must have an awful time. It's very hard to keep up with higher consumer taxes and fees when you have little to live on.

    Your description of them as having given up,  relying only on Jesus, this coincides with what my niece's husband tells me he finds here in rural areas of N. FL. where he works as an EMT. They have no hope, he says, large areas of poor people. So sad we have come to this.

    Thank you so much. May I suggest you post this again, republish, on a Sunday? People may have more inclination to look. Very worthwhile piece of writing. Maybe add corruption to title? I hope you write more on this here, especially regarding the governor and how all that is working. I apologize if you already have and I missed it!

    "extreme concentration of income is incompatible with real democracy.... the truth is that the whole nature of our society is at stake." Paul Krugman

    by Gorette on Thu Oct 04, 2012 at 01:20:19 PM PDT

    •  It's interesting... (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Just Bob, roadbear

      I was shocked in 2010 when the majority of, let's say, educated republicans that I know stated they were not going to vote for Haley.  I thought that her opponent, Vincent Sheheen, might just have a chance.  Unfortunately, he came up short, but it was closer than I would have thought.  The good old boy mentality down here is way too strong sad to say.   She's not all that popular, so I could perhaps see her getting primaried out, but if she wins the nomination in 2014, re-election is a slam dunk unfortunately.  

      •  As someone who has only lived in SC for 2 years (6+ / 0-)

        It still amazes me what the level of hatred toward President Obama is, and how so many people  fail to equate the out of state interests (except for their vacation home on Kiawah Island or another beach community) that have taken over the state with why they have to send their kids to private schools, or why the libraries struggle to acquire materials, computer hardware, or new facilities despite the extensive growth of population in many parts of the state over the last several years. They fail to equate that decades of one party rule has left the state a mess, yet keep voting for those same politicians with the blind hope that these issues will be addressed. It's why the roads and infrastructure are falling apart, communities are literally spreading themselves out to the hinterlands (Moncks Corner, some 40 miles from downtown Charleston is now part of the Urbanized Charleston area, according to the US Census Bureau, while mile after mile of former port areas and rundown neighborhoods exist in the inner sections of the region. It is an area that, despite the extensive coastlines, discussions of rising oceans and climate change are verboten.  As someone that looked at these issues from a planning perspective, it scares me what will happen to Charleston (and SC as a whole) once fuel prices really spike in the next decade or so, and climate change affects the state further.

  •  Chilling (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    I'm from SC; moved to Houston for grad school. I was learned at Clemson, and attended both public and private schools in South Carolina.

    This is a chilling and too accurate picture of the scene there. It's a real bubble - a haven for people holding on to a legacy they shouldn't be proud of and wishing for a return to prosperity that will never come. The people of the state are burdened by a host of biases. These are often racial and more often religious.

    It is a strange place where intellectualism is shouted down at every chance and where old-world ideology is alive and well.

  •  So Much (5+ / 0-)

    Excellent piece.

    The one thing that I continuously confront is the fact that so many people vote against themselves, and how good the so-called Republicans are at getting them to do this. A mega-millionaire who ships jobs to China and is a Mormon is getting the votes of born-again working class Christians, while the middle-of-the-road President who actually share the values and goals of 75% of Americans is facing a close race.

    As bad as Charleston is, it's heads above the upstate, which is close to stone age. The hate and ignorance there permeates every thought and every spoken word. I feel as if I'm visiting the old East Germany every time business takes me there.

    A Southerner in Yankeeland

  •  Best description I've seen (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Buckeye54, barbtries, roadbear

    Your writing rivals Josh Grisham.

    I'd like to see this widely read. Would you consider submitting it for publication?

    Others have simply gotten old. I prefer to think I've been tempered by time.

    by Just Bob on Thu Oct 04, 2012 at 05:17:29 PM PDT

  •  One of the best written diaries I've read in some (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    time. Bravo, and keep up the good fight!

    I think what would help in SC is to allow more than just one party to run the same candidate. In New York fusion balloting allows a person to run as a Democrat and a Workers Party candidate, a Republican and a Conservative, they both fight for the Independent line.

    There are many people who just won't pull the lever for a Democrat because of social issues, who would vote for a more progressive economic party. This also solves the "1st past the post" problem with multiple parties that resulted in people like Gov. LePage in Maine get elected with like 30% of the vote, because 4 people were running in 2010. I don't know what the iniative process in SC is like, but I think it would be worth a shot to try and get fusion voting that way.

    -1.63/ -1.49 "Speaking truth to power" (with snark of course)!

    by dopper0189 on Thu Oct 04, 2012 at 10:28:35 PM PDT

  •  I wrote this comment last year (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    but it makes sense to re-publish it as a response to your wonderful diary.  I spend my time between Seattle and Greenville (or, rather, between work and the heart).  I'm not sure what the answer is in SC.  On the other hand, I know a lot of Republicans in WA who feel the same way, and this pleases me.  :)

    Last week I attended a Democratic Party forum at Furman University in Greenville, which was supposed to be a forum about "An Endangered Species?  The Future of the SC Democratic Party."   The panel on this forum consisted of SC state representatives Chandra Dillard, Karl Allen and keynote speaker Bakari Sellers, as well as failed "Dem" candidate in the 22nd District (the district I moved to from Seattle), Joe Waters.  We were pleasantly surprised to see a full house of around 150 mostly young people in the theatre.  (It should be noted that Karl Rove was also speaking at Furman that night, to a much larger crowd).

    Well, I can honestly say I have NEVER been more disappointed at a political event than I was at that one.  The panel consisted of the three elected officials trying to out-Republican one another, moving even beyond the term "Blue Dog" into "I'm more Republican than my opponent, I just have a D after my name."  The panel kept coming back to the fact that Republicans brand and market themselves better, and Democrats need to do the same.  Fair enough, and true--but all we heard the entire evening was a litany of Fox News lines about "San Francisco values" and the evil of "Pelosi and Reid."

    Now, I get that South Carolina is more conservative than, well, Saudi Arabia.  Fine.  But don't expect voters to go with you as a "Republican lite" when they can actually vote for a Republican.  Stand for something!!!!  The 22nd district, where I live and have been visiting for 8 years, is NOT a hard-right district!  It has a pretty diverse mix of higher-end housing, middle class housing and some poorer areas as well.  I walk our dog often enough to have seen a decent number of Obama bumper stickers and even more than a few Hillary stickers in the primary.  Yet this clown Joe Waters thought he could run as a hard-right Republican with a D after his name...and he got STOMPED.  I wouldn't vote for Democrats like these if I were forced at gunpoint.

    Bakari Sellers is a dynamic, young (26) representative who apparently is an Obama advisor, though he told us he kept telling "Barack" that "Barack" needed to move farther and farther to the right.  Here's a guy who, in a perfect world, would be a Republican--and it would be good for the country as a whole to have a kid like him espouse sane conservative thoughts as a Republican.  He damn sure isn't a Democrat.  Allen just talked about wanting more federal program dollars for his district while slamming the representatives from parts of the country that actually subsidize those programs for South Carolinians.

    My g/f is an elected Democrat and SC native, and she was nearly as pissed as I was.  Even worse, this full house of young potential Democrats left bored out of their skulls.  There was absolutely no energy there, and that's a damn shame.  Can't say I blame them, though--I have less than no inclination to either work for or vote for anyone who represents that so-called party.

    I like lemurs -6.50, -4.82

    by roadbear on Thu Oct 04, 2012 at 10:29:06 PM PDT

  •  Thanks for writing. (0+ / 0-)

    As a 'nawthun' transplant to SC (Columbia), it always baffled me WHY Carolinians returned the same people or types of people to power year after year despite their obvious failings, and just how poorly they represented the state.
    Your article definitely had that 'beautiful and terrible' quality.  It doesn't look like things will get better in SC anytime soon.

  •  saddest (0+ / 0-)

    part of all...It will get worse...until people step up to the plate..and vote..serve on back...but I think you all are too poor to leave...

  •  They say “run government like a business” (0+ / 0-)

    when they really mean to "ruin" our dreams.

  •  Well done and true. (0+ / 0-)

    With your permission I'd like to use some of your words in a letter to the editor.

    The longer I live, the clearer I perceive how unmatchable a compliment one pays when he says of a man "he has the courage to utter his convictions." Mark Twain

    by Persiflage on Fri Oct 05, 2012 at 03:12:54 AM PDT

  •  This is not happening only in SC-or in the South.. (2+ / 0-)

    It's a reality everywhere the GOP is in control. Here in PA our Republican governor has cut state funds for education by over 50% in 2 years, has laid off or dismissed thousands of government workers, teachers and cops, and has given away rights to drill and frack for oil and gas-free, no payment to the state-to companies which supported his campaign. Our GOP controlled legislature passed the most restrictive anti-voter law in the US, which has just been blocked at least till after the November election. Our environmental laws are being ignored, and many social services completely eliminated. Rents are extremely high, while real estate values are low, and taxes on real estate along with fuel and insurance costs are high.
    Oh, and our state legislators voted themselves an automatic "cost of living increase" after outrage at a huge pay raise they gave themselves several years ago at midnight on the last day in session. PA has long had the reputation as having the most corrupt legislature in the US... George Washington wrote letters complaining about it from Valley is now worse than ever.

    This is EXACTLY what the GOP wants as the future of America-the rich own everything and are all powerful, while the rest of us are best. The republican party is out to destroy democracy, and I don't mean the democratic party...I HOPE there are enough of us around to stop them this time.
    Thanks for the post.


    Retired AFSCME Steward and union thug-licensed gun carrying progressive veteran.

    by old mark on Fri Oct 05, 2012 at 04:01:31 AM PDT

  •  Missing Edits (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    I made some typographical corrections to this post yesterday, but they didn't publish.  I'll try to clean it up again.

    I'm honored by the many kind comments to what is admittedly a hard piece of writing.  Many fine points are made in these comments.

    There are some incredibly tough liberals, Democrats and progressives down here.  I value both their comments and company.

    Those of you who wanted to use this writing in educational programs are more than welcome to do so.

    William Hamilton practices Law and is a writer and community activist in the Charleston, SC area. He can reached through

    by wjhamilton29464 on Fri Oct 05, 2012 at 06:38:15 PM PDT

Subscribe or Donate to support Daily Kos.

Click here for the mobile view of the site