Burch: Eliminate the underclass!?

Thursday, September 27, 2012 at 10:05pm
By Michael R. Burch

One of the many troubling things about the GOP these days is its dismissive attitude toward Americans who are not rich, healthy, straight, lily-white Christian men. This attitude can clearly be seen not only in what Republican politicians say — if we read between the lines — but also in the anti-underclass legislation they keep advancing at such a feverish clip.

I used the term “underclass” because it seems to accurately describe how the GOP as a party has come to view millions upon millions of less-advantaged Americans. When Mitt Romney recently suggested that 47 percent of Americans are freeloaders who believe they are “entitled” to food, it shouldn’t surprise us. For some time now the GOP has been veering toward a worldview in which the “good people” have the right and duty to “do something” about the troublesome underclass.

Once politicians with mentalities such as those currently permeating the GOP have achieved power, they force other people to conform to their worker-ant vision of proper appearance, productivity and behavior. Such people by nature despise nonconformists and independent thinkers. So we can probably predict what will happen to the United States if we elect politicians like Romney.

This is not just one man’s opinion but the logical product of our arch-conservatives’ backward-looking worldview.

The "Grand Old Patriarchs" have lined up millions of elderly, sick and poor Americans (all collectively “freeloaders” who lust after “entitlements”) in their legislative sights and are about to pull the trigger, if we let them.

What the GOP is saying, in no uncertain terms, is: “We don’t want your tired, your poor, your huddled masses yearning to breathe free. We want to get rid of the burden they represent to us — the good people — one way or another.” Little or no thought is given to a wildly unjust economic system that always favors the rich over the poor, resulting in 1 percent of the citizenry controlling as much wealth as the bottom 90 percent combined. Are there some freeloaders? Undoubtedly. But the simple truth is that most Americans are willing to work hard, given the opportunity, and it’s wrong to penalize the innocent collectively in the rush to punish offenders.

And who in his or her right mind can agree with Romney that half the American citizenry has no interest in working hard to get ahead? The 47 percent includes soldiers, cops, teachers and firefighters. It also includes retirees: our parents and grandparents. Or, as Jon Stewart put it, “Nana.”

Are we as a nation ready to tell Nana that even though she and Papa worked hard all their lives, they are now unworthy of the “entitlements” of housing, food and health care? That is, after all, what Mitt Romney suggested in a rare moment of candor, speaking to his rich patrons and constituents.

But suppose for the sake of argument that I’m wrong and Romney is correct. Even so, the GOP’s proposed solution — to force others to die slowly and agonizingly from a lack of food, housing and medical care — is unethical.

Instead, we must accept responsibility for helping people who are unable to help themselves. But we can do this intelligently. For instance, we now have the technology to allow people to work from home. So people who receive more assistance than they paid into the system could reimburse the government, or at least help defray the overage, by answering phones, doing light computer work, etc.

Bill Clinton is right. The Romney-Ryan budget math just doesn’t add up, unless we subtract millions of Americans by allowing them to wither and perish. This makes Romney-Ryan the road to national ruin and Nana’s painful demise. We need a president who gets basic math and the simple concepts of social and economic justice. As I have pointed out to one of the birthers who reads my column: If you love your mama, vote for Obama!

Michael R. Burch is a Nashville-based editor and publisher of Holocaust poetry and other “things literary” at www.thehypertexts.com.

Filed under: City Voices

158 Comments on this post:

By: yogiman on 9/28/12 at 1:40

A cousin of mine (Real Estate Broker) has told me a 3.8% sales tax is scheduled to go into effect Jan. 1, 2013. That means if you sale your home for $100,000 you're going to give old man Sam $3,800 bucks of that sale, via profit or loss. You better hope you make a good profit.

I understand it's part of the Obamacare bill; so let's see, if you sell your home for $400,000, Blanketnazi2, you're going to give your buddy Barry $15,200 for his [next campaign] or his next vacation.

It seems not many in congress was aware of that part of the 2700 page Obamacare bill, which I understand was because they didn't read the bill before they signed it. But what the hell, it didn't apply to them anyway. They was apparently campaigning so hard to spend much time in their office to read a new bill.

By: bfra on 9/28/12 at 1:57


By: Blanketnazi2 on 9/28/12 at 2:09

Some STILL can figure out www.factcheck.org

By: Blanketnazi2 on 9/28/12 at 2:15

And it wasn't your "cousin" idiot, it was a chain email. That's why you reference $400,000 - that amount was used as an example in the chain email. What a doofus.

By: Blanketnazi2 on 9/28/12 at 2:16


By: Blanketnazi2 on 9/28/12 at 2:19

Some of the chain e-mails that claim ordinary home sales will be taxed include a copy of an article written by Paul Guppy, a policy analyst with the conservative Washington Policy Institute (that’s Washington state, not Washington, D.C.). The article appeared March 28 as an op-ed in the Spokane, Wash., Spokesman-Review, and Guppy claimed that "[m]iddle-income people must pay the full tax even if they are ‘rich’ for only one day." That brought a quick rebuttal from Sara Orrange, the government affairs director of the local Realtors association. She wrote a letter to the newspaper calling Guppy’s article "inaccurate" and saying, "Most people who sell their homes will not be impacted by these new regulations. This is not a new tax on every seller, and that correction needs to be made." In a news article the next day, business reporter Bert Caldwell confirmed that only "a very few" home sellers would pay the 3.8 percent tax.

By: dargent7 on 9/28/12 at 2:26

Brrrk and Loner....I'll be gone but not forgotten. I hope.
I'm sure the Key Largo crowd has a "yogi" hanging around.
I'll surely miss the familiar, "Just who is this man in the White House..."?
Gee, I dunno. Maybe the President of the United States?
The way "yogi's" talk, it's like a black man can just walk up to the Oval Office and start signing legislation. Happens all the time in America.
Maybe I'll walk into Haslam's office on Monday and say, "Hey, I'm your new assistant".
Christ,...I couldn't just walk into a McDonalds and start working the fryer without someone asking who I was and what in the hell was I doing?
Birthers....Townies, ....the whole, "Take Back America" crowd.....they make Larry of The Three Stooges look like the smart one.
I'll check in here Monday, am. The "demolition crew" isn't coming until noon.
Sounds like an attractive bunch of guys.

By: Blanketnazi2 on 9/28/12 at 2:28

dargent, are you all packed up?

By: bfra on 9/28/12 at 2:31

d7 - Computers work in FL, lol, so keep in touch.

By: dargent7 on 9/28/12 at 2:32

ps, re: Southern Hospitality (that I really never experienced as compared to the Aloha Spirit...)
The landlord told me the "demolition crew" is coming at noon to tear down the house, ..."whether or not you're in it..."
Well, alrighty then.

By: Blanketnazi2 on 9/28/12 at 2:33

Wow. What a guy.

By: brrrrk on 9/28/12 at 3:41

dargent7 said

"ps, re: Southern Hospitality (that I really never experienced as compared to the Aloha Spirit...)"

As I've always said, "Southern Hospitality" is a myth.

By: yogiman on 9/28/12 at 4:00

I don't know where they got it, but I was by my cousin he got that info from the National Association of Realtors. Were they wrong on what the said?

By: Mike Burch on 9/28/12 at 4:04


You seem to think that some people are "inferior" to you. Therein lies the rub ...

By: Mike Burch on 9/28/12 at 4:10


I doubt that King Bibi the Merciless is really afraid of Iran. Rather, I think he knows that if Muslim nations get nukes he and Israel won't be able to bully them militarily any longer. To remain the bullies of the block, the US and Israel need to keep other nations in the region from getting nukes.

I think Israel still intends to expand its borders, first by annexing the West Bank, then in the future by grabbing parts of Jordan, Lebanon and perhaps Syria. An Iran armed with nukes would be able to protect Israel's neighbors from its land-grabbing.

Also, when Israel acts as if it fears for its existence, it gets billions in financial aid from Germany, the US government, and American Jews and Christians. So I think Israel's "fear" of Iran is entirely for show. The real danger is not Iran, but Israel, because only Israel is trying to expand by stealing its neighbors' land.

By: yogiman on 9/28/12 at 4:24

I must be getting a lot of fake emails. I just got one about a Michigan Campaign Banner. I thought it was hilarious. It said:

Romney's Free Market vs. Obama's Socialism so the Choice is Clear

Romney's Bain Capital invested PRIVATE money in:

AMC Entertainment
Burger King
Burlington Coat Factory
Clear Channel Communications
Domino Pizza
Dunk n' Donuts
Guitar Center
The Sports Authority
Tour "R" Us
Warner Music Group

Obama invested taxpayers money in:

Solyndra - Bankrupt
Ener 1 - Bankrupt
Beacon Power - Bankrupt
Abound Solar - Bankrupt
Amonix Solar - Bankrupt
Spectra Watt - Bankrupt
Eastern Energy - Bankrupt

All of these companies were Obama's campaign contributors

The Choice is clear...

Do you want a businessman who has generated Billions... or do you want a President who has wasted Trillions?

Was that a fake campaign ad I looked at? It looks pretty correct to me.

That ad was presented by www.ottawacountypatriots.org

By: yogiman on 9/28/12 at 4:27

Darn, my computer is too slow. I've gotta slow down on my typing.

By: Loner on 9/28/12 at 5:28


By: dargent7 on 9/28/12 at 5:29

My phone # is 601-9830.
I'd love to talk to the people who I connected with on this board while in Nashville.
Please, no collect calls.
And please, call before the wreckin' crew tears down my house on Monday. That noise can interfere with the conversation.....

By: Loner on 9/28/12 at 5:33

Mike, Bibi is one of the most dangerous men on the planet; his sarcasm and arrogance barely mask his utter disdain for the non-Jewish world...what a creep.

Darge, good luck in the keys...maybe I'll come visit...I have a connection in Big Pine Key...the Long Haired Ranch....it's a very exclusive sanctuary. for abused old hippies.

By: Captain Nemo on 9/28/12 at 5:38


By: yogiman on 9/28/12 at 7:30


I don't know why you picked Key Largo FL to get away from us Tennesseans, but I hope everything goes well for you.

And to show you my good thoughts of our "arguments", I'd like for you to hear a few of Barry's good lies.



By: govskeptic on 9/28/12 at 8:00

Mike: As one that has a huge heart and always supportive of so much social
spending of Taxpayers money I must ask if you are somewhere within that
47%? Maybe that portion that has a trust fund that doesn't have to pay taxes
on. Don't be offended by this request, it just an automatic thought I always
have on these subjects. Often, it's others such as retired educators that
are drawing retirement benefits higher than many that working in the same
field today, and others that are beyond their working years and could gave
a dump over what the future workers will be saddled with struggling to pay.

By: Ask01 on 9/29/12 at 2:02

Should the unthinkable come to pass, and Willard wins the White House, I fear his plan for the "underclass" can be summed up in two words:

Soyleny Green.

By: budlight on 9/29/12 at 4:17

Mike Burch on 9/28/12 at 9:58

Bishop Romney was NOT talking about cell phones, but the stuff of life. He specifically mentioned housing, food and healthcare as "entitlements" that 47% of Americans think they are entitled to. His obvious belief is that they are not entitled to basic things that make life possible.

We provide housing, food and healthcare to convicted criminals. So Bishop Romney is wildly off base, like a baseball player caught in a rundown between third and home who is about to cost his team any chance of victory.

Ronald Reagan started the cell phone plan and it was for older or disabled Americans who could not get a land line. the it was expanded on Bush's watch. Now it has blown up to 1.8 billion dollars on obama's watch. Every single person who gets signed up to be in the goodwill's jobs or training program is asked "do you want information about a free cell phone"? Goodwill is a liberal organization.

Also, a cell phone (or two or three free ones) is not a basic fundamental of life. Many people did without one for years. It is a luxury to have one. So no, Mitt Romney is not far off base. I know a woman who pays for her own DROID and has a FREE CELL phone. She said "it's because I can". Yes she can. She's a scammer like the rest of her 47% and she even has a job to boot.

And blanketnazi doesn't have to pay taxes. Trust fund babies don't pay taxes -- or if they do, it's not much. Right Blanket girl?

By: bfra on 9/29/12 at 5:05

bud - Nobody scams the system more than you. You are even dumb enough to have bragged about it on this board in the past.

By: Ask01 on 9/29/12 at 8:29

Did anyone see the French plan for taxation of the rich?

While I don't have a very high opinion of many things French, their ideas about dealing with the elitist upper classes do have merit.

By the way, if a citizen suspects someone is potentially scamming the system, fraudulently obtaining benefits to which they should not be entitled, that citizen is obligated to report such.

Or am I wrong?

By: yogiman on 9/29/12 at 9:29

Suspecting is one thing, Ask01. Knowing is another. What kind of idiot are you going to feel like if you're proven wrong?

I suggest you keep your eyes and ears open and your mouth shut until you know what you're talking about.

By: bfra on 9/29/12 at 9:30

Ask01 - You are absolutely correct about reporting people that scam the system, however, with bud, she puts things on here that everyone knows isn't true just to get attention. So reporting someone like that would be futile. Blanketnazi has posted any number of times about her work and enough info for anyone to know she isn't a trust fund baby. That is just another bud lie, as usual

By: bfra on 9/29/12 at 9:32


By: yogiman on 9/29/12 at 9:39

Question: Was Romney so wrong when he made his comment about the 47% will not vote for him because they're so sure they'll get their handouts from the Democrats to get their votes.

How many people will refuse a handout if a political party gives it to them.

Isn't the US using social politics by robbing from Peter to pay Paul? That's just one more step today into communist.

By: bfra on 9/29/12 at 9:53


By: Ask01 on 9/29/12 at 10:53

Many years ago, while on active duty, we were instructed to report any suspicious behavior to maintain operational security. Investigations would be made, and if warranted proper action taken. If no action was needed, the investigation was retired with no one any the wiser.

The same principle apples here.

Yogi, I don't normally address you directly, as I consider you to be mentally unstable, possessing limited intellect, and possibly suffering early stages of dementia, however, when someone of your demonstrated deficiencies accuses me of not knowing of what I speak, suggesting I keep my mouth shut, I must respond.

You are the idiot if you would not call the attention of authorities to someone you suspected was abusing the system.

I suggest you take your meds and a nap and follow your own advice.

Our conversation is ended.

By: Captain Nemo on 9/29/12 at 11:07

Good post Ask01 but just ignore and (click). lol

By: Ask01 on 9/29/12 at 11:16

Thank you Captain Nemo, excellent advice, as always.

From time to time, though, I just have to have a good vent.

Oh, and a (click) to the offensive poster.

By: yogiman on 9/29/12 at 11:22

Military life and civilian like are two different lives to live by, Ask01. Everyone is different (thank God). To make a report on someone simply because they aren't living their lives the way you think they should be, how would you feel if that person also suspected you for the same reason?

Think the way you wish. I think differently.

By: yogiman on 9/29/12 at 11:35

One more point, Ask01; you say you consider me mentally unstable. I don't just consider you and your fellow posters to be mentally unstable, I consider you all to be damn fools for accepting someone as your president when you don't even know their name or where they were born. Especially when he is know to be the biggest liar ever in that office.

You being a veteran, I would think you would want to know who the CIC is. Unless you're a fellow communist, you have 39 days to the; "What in the hell happened to my nation?"

By: Loner on 9/29/12 at 11:36


By: yogiman on 9/29/12 at 11:40

Have fun listening to the lies Obama has made.


By: Loner on 9/29/12 at 11:44

The French make the world's finest saxophones, but they make some of the worst laws on the planet. Taxing their wealthy at 75% is equivalent to the decapitation frenzy that characterized the French Revolution. The French never got the connection between decapitation and loss of intellectual function. Let 'em eat cake!

The US should invite the wealthy French to come to America....bring Grey Poupon and champagne...and saxophones.

By: bfra on 9/29/12 at 11:48


By: Captain Nemo on 9/29/12 at 12:45

(click) lol

By: yogiman on 9/29/12 at 12:55


Uh Oh, It looks like Barry's telling too many lies. Wonder if he ever knew what "truth" meant?

By: bfra on 9/29/12 at 1:31


By: Ask01 on 9/29/12 at 4:23

Truth be told, Loner, a 75% tax on the rich, while enticing, is probably excessive just as the, as you so colorfully expressed it, decapitation frenzy during the revolution.

I believe, however, those holding the wealth and manipulating job creation, or more aptly, job reductions, need to be reminded from time to time of the desperate measures to which people and governments can be driven during stressful periods.

The loss of employment in America, particularly when such can be laid at the doorstep of major corporations and the wealthy, who have outsourced those previously American jobs overseas, exacerbated by rantings of the privileged against those forced to rely on aid because they have been downsized and unemployed through no fault of their own are triggers which could result in all manner of sanctions and uprisings.

The bottom line, I believe, is these events, recent and in the past, should serve as a cautionary tale about greed and snobbery and the possible price to be paid.

Just my humble opinion.

By: Ask01 on 9/30/12 at 9:48

Another poster, with obviously limited comprehension capabilities, had the audacity to question how I, as a veteran, could accept a Commander in Chief whom he, not I, does not recognize as a bonafide, legally elected President Of The United States.

First, my status as a retired veteran does not totally define who I am to the exclusion of all else. My experiences contributed to who I am, instilling certain heartfelt attitudes about work ethics and duty, honor, and loyalty which sometimes seem odd to others, and I am proud of my time in service, though such makes me no better than any other citizen.

One concept I have retained is the idea of chain of command, and the need to recognize and adhere to this process to maintain order and discipline.

At this point, to the best of my knowledge, the Secretary of Defense, and the individual service secretaries, the civilian command component of the military, along with the Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff with the backing of the individual branch Chiefs of Staff, the military commanders have, in the absence of competent believable evidence to the contrary, recognized Barack Obama as the duly elected Commander in Chief.

As a retired military member, I am still subject to the orders of these command level authorities, and until I receive official, authenticated notification they have determined the situation to have changed, I still recognized the president as CIC.

The actions, by the way, of a few scattered individuals who have elected to act on their beliefs is not nearly enough proof to back up claims of the paranoids mental deficients.

I believe, unless the troll has something new, not merely rehashed nonsense, the conversation has indeed finally reached a teminus.

By: bfra on 9/30/12 at 9:57

Ask01 - Your comment is very true, however for someone with no morales, ethics or sense, it is way over his head. Wish your remark about a terminus reached could be true.

By: yogiman on 9/30/12 at 10:36

I don't think I'm in over my head, bfra. I think you, and your co-posters,, are showing your ignorance in accepting someone as your president who refuses to identify himself to prove he is eligible for that office. You're going to learn pretty damn soon and unless you're a fellow communist of his, you'll wonder; What in the hell happened?

By: bfra on 9/30/12 at 10:46


By: yogiman on 9/30/12 at 11:32


I salute you for being a veteran, especially a retired veteran. And being a veteran of 7 years, it's hard for me to understand you accepting Barack Obama as your CIC when he has refused to identify himself. He's refused to prove he's Constitutionally eligible for that office from day one but you readily accept him. I'll challenge my "comprehension capabilities" any time you wish.

He refused to honor our National Anthem with a salute. He refused to wear a lapel pin and clasped his hands over his crotch. And he's a loving American citizen?

Why has he spent millions in attorney's fees to keep his records secured? Where does his school papers show he was a citizen of?

If Barack Obama (Sr.) was his father, he would have been born as a British Subject in Hawaii. At best a dual-citizen, but not a natural born American citizen with a Kenyan father.

If he was born in Kenya as he advertised for 16 years, before he became a presidential candidate in 2007 and changed his birth place to Hawaii, he would have been born as a British Subject. By the laws of of 1961, his mother could not pass her American citizenship down to him in Kenya at her age.

I don't know what your rank was, but many officers have raised the question on him. So why does he refuse to identify himself?

Ask01, why do think the Electoral College voted him in office without affirming his Constitutional eligibility? Why do you think the Senate approved their vote, also without affirming his Constitutional eligibility?

Why do you think the Senate approved to Supreme Court nominees in office without question when they were known to be known as communists?

I'll agree, someone on this site has mental inefficiency, but it sure as hell ain't me. Let's see what happens in the next 29 days if we have an election.