Parlor Spider...Step In, Little Fly

Insightful thoughts and/or rants from atop the soapbox from one who wishes to share the "right" opinion with everyone.

Thursday, February 28, 2013

Sequestration ambivalence

Like just about every other American citizen with a pulse, I am quite frustrated with our elected officials who put party politics ahead of the job we hired them to do: take care of America. Instead of collaborating across party lines to fix what is wrong, we continue to borrow money we can never repay and engage in conflicts thousands of miles away which we cannot hope to win. There is no way I can hope to fathom the intricacies of a national budget or begin to figure out how to please a country in total that is more politically, ethnically and sexually divided than ever. Images of the fall of Rome keep crowding out my other rational thoughts, but the excessive lifestyle that is American must have a bill to be paid, and that bill won't be paid by opening up the last pristine wilderness in Wisconsin to open pit iron mining or haggling over just who did or said what in Bengazi...just for spite.
So we sit: on the edge of financial disaster if some are to be believed. Layoffs will occur, our military might will be weakened, programs like Head Start will suffer dramatic cuts, and people will lose jobs and suffer through furloughs if they retain their jobs. That's where I get upset.
People complain that if they have to stay home from work for a couple of weeks without pay, they cannot meet their bills. Perhaps so; however, when I was furloughed four days a year for three years, nobody even thought to mention was all part of the state government's plan to balance a it was necessary. Nobody sent me any money to help pay MY bills.
Even before that: when my profession in Wisconsin lost its bargaining rights 15 years ago and was relegated to accepting whatever we were offered as long as a 2.5% increase (including insurance) was part of the deal...nobody raised a hue and cry for me. That deal predated the most recent labor issues in Wisconsin by 12 celebrities came to protest on my behalf or cared that my salary kept dropping with regard to inflation.
So, I'm sorry for the people who will lose a job. I was unemployed and underemployed (as a night janitor at McDonald's and an orderly on a locked ward at night) for more than a year. That was awful. Furloughed? not so much. Everyone seemed to think it was a good idea when I was in that position.
It's not such a good idea now, is it?