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08:56 PM on 08/14/2011
The only way to save them is to get rid of the GOP. No other way.
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Grant Kissell
08:55 PM on 08/14/2011
I am fully confident that President Obama's progressive policies will revitalize the middle class (snerk snerk snerk)
Vinkaye
science matters
09:17 PM on 08/14/2011
I am fully confident if President Obama actually had any Progressive policies... he probably could start to revitalize the middle class!
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mjeffn
Freedom's just another word 4 nothing left to lose
09:38 PM on 08/14/2011
F&F
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Carmen Madonna Campos
dude! it's me!!!
09:56 PM on 08/14/2011
true dat!

they have no idea that Obama is a moderate Republican.
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08:55 PM on 08/14/2011
The simple answer is that America’s Middle Class cannot be saved. They aren’t concerned about saving themselves so why in the world should someone try to save these clowns so that they can run down to the polls in the next election and vote against their own self-interest? Move on.
09:05 PM on 08/14/2011
Maybe you can tell me what my self interests are since you seem to know what everyone's are.
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09:24 PM on 08/14/2011
You see... this is exactly why these clowns can't be saved... they have no clue what their interests and concerns are but they can tell you in a minute what they are for the rich.

He has to ask someone. It is sad when they don't know that the middle class has been voting for and enabling politicians who are more interested in addressing and protecting the interests and concerns of the the upper class even at the expense of the middle class.

Nevermind, i'm breaking my rule of not responding to silliness...
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mjeffn
Freedom's just another word 4 nothing left to lose
09:40 PM on 08/14/2011
Just a guess but, god, guns and greed.
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R307Johnson
Forget about it!
09:55 PM on 08/14/2011
Do you think we actually went to our company CEO and asked them to send our jobs to India while laying off over 3000 of us? Have you heard of any company other than McDonalds that is hiring by the thousands recently? Do you think we actually enjoy the loving rejection we receive in those "but unfortunat­ely" letters from job search. These letters that tells us "we have hired someone more qualified for the position”. Most of us held that position for several years and are EXTREMELY qualified but are not hirable only because we have been unemployed for several months or have some gray (signs of experience as well) in our hair. Do you think trying to balance a household budget on less than 1/3 of the income that you had a year ago is an idea of happiness? Do you think your job and income are as secure as you are hoping it is? Just stop and really think if you were in our shoes, then keep up with all the bashing. IT WILL CATCH UP TO YOU!
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01:40 AM on 08/15/2011
First, you made some pretty wild assumptions about how I maintain my financial and job security in addition to my standard of living. You really shouldn’t define others by who and what you are.

Next; Why is it so difficult to understand that the governance mechanisms in place today, both State and Federal, are not favorable to a middle class?

Next; Why is it so difficult to understand that "middle class” voters are helping to elect individuals to make up those governance bodies? (Do you recall what just happened in Wisconsin last week?)

Why, why, why is this such a difficult construct? Why? And why did it elicit the type of response that you posted?

If middle class voters are helping to elect these clowns to office then why is it so difficult to understand, that they are contributing to their own suffering and demise (synomous with "voting against your best interests")?

Your response confused the living H out of me.

I can almost see why the middle class in this country is being destroyed. Its almost too easy.......
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rjlwis
08:52 PM on 08/14/2011
"The rich and the rest", pretty much describes what it's like today. Yet foolish people support political leaders who do not have their interest in mind. Like the old saying goes: There's a sucker born every minute!
Vinkaye
science matters
09:18 PM on 08/14/2011
Look around... there isn't a political leader who does have our interest in mind, with the exception of Bernie Sanders!
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mjeffn
Freedom's just another word 4 nothing left to lose
09:40 PM on 08/14/2011
Wish I could fan you again.
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gavrielle
08:43 PM on 08/14/2011
What a delightful article. Couldn't happen to a more deserving group. "Social safety nets? We don't need no social safety nets! Let 'em pull themselves up by their bootstraps like we did with hard work, government backed housing loans, wage gains and workplace protections that came from those nasty unions we despise. We are all going to be multimillionaires someday, so we don't want the rich folks taxed - not even after they're dead. Just 'cause it might be one of us someday!"

It's that shell shocked look of complete and utter surprise I love seeing on the faces of the formerly middle class when they realize they've fallen off the ladder of success and there's no way back up. A few make good with less, but it's always very amusing to watch. I especially enjoy seeing the yuppies crawl into Aldi's or Save-A-Lot food stores. One very excited man in a business suit explained to me how the shopping cart system at Aldi's worked. He thought putting a quarter in, unlocking the cart and getting your quarter back when you're done shopping was ingenious. I didn't have the heart to tell him it was because the store didn't want him to steal it. Poor people need their quarters and you can swipe a shopping cart from somewhere else if you really need one.
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23000Days
Life: Tragedy for feelers, Comedy for thinkers.
08:43 PM on 08/14/2011
This article is way too heavy on history, both psuedo and otherwise, and way too light on solutions.

One can define most anything in ten words, or one thousand words. This one uses the latter. The points are lost in the blather.
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frank day
Obama cares about all of U.S.
08:48 PM on 08/14/2011
They should have started by defining "middle class", a nebulous term at best.

btw, love your micro
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Transit
"Hunger is the best pickle"
12:26 AM on 08/15/2011
But drawing attention to the actual state we're in regarding the wealth and income in this country is a start. Better than all those fairy tales and false promises you get from both potical parties.
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Exfl
A centrist until the center moved.
08:31 PM on 08/14/2011
Plutocrats are extremely rich, but not extremely smart. If they were smarter they would realize that it is the purchasing power of the masses that has laid their golden egg. As wealth becomes concentrated among only the few, the demand for goods and services slows, productivity is reduced. and everyone (including the plutocrats) becomes poorer.

Ultimately, the rich can only stay rich if large numbers of people can afford to purchase computers, cars, shoes, homes, upscale clothing and all the other vast products of a consumer society. The wealthy are better off if the masses have disposable income for vacations, movies, music etc. Today those who do have jobs work too many hours and feel to uncertain about their future to spend the money that stimulates the economy, and those without jobs have too little disposable income to do so.
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Exfl
A centrist until the center moved.
08:32 PM on 08/14/2011
If the rich want to stay rich, they should do the following: (1) employ tariffs to even the playing field where foreign products have a price advantage due to environmental degradation or exploitative labor practices (2) phase in a minimum wage indexed to inflation and pegged to the minimum wage in 1984 (a Reagan year). (3) replace the current employment-based health insurance system (and Obamacare) with a tax-based single payer system public-private (public utility model) that is not tied to employment and that pays only for evidence-based care. This system must cover everyone (healthy and sick, unemployed, employees, start-up entrepreneurs, etc.). (4) reduce the work week to 4 days of 9 hours (36 maximum). The rich may see this as an initial loss, but in reality the increased leisure time and the reduction in both health insecurity and income insecurity will encourage spending. As the masses spend more this will create jobs and dramatically raise all boats including both the dinghys of the working class and the mega-yachts of the plutocrats.
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SarcasticFringehead
File under "Futile"
09:17 PM on 08/14/2011
Some excellent ideas here.

Of course, the best possible thing that could be done would be campaign finance reform and public funding of political campaigns.

This is a dead idea, unfortunately, with the Supreme Court stacked with right wing conservatives who consider corporations as having the same rights as people.
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madisonhack
I prefer not to......
08:49 PM on 08/14/2011
The U.S. has become a service sector economy and we aren't the customers for the world's products any longer. We went from being the leader of the free world to somewhere around 11th as the best places to live. That transformation occurred over the last 30 years making us quite "exceptional" for that one feat, all in and of itself.
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TexasPatriot1776
Conservative Intellectual
08:30 PM on 08/14/2011
how about this: just get a job. and stop complaining about my rich friends.
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Exfl
A centrist until the center moved.
08:33 PM on 08/14/2011
Are you hiring?
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SarcasticFringehead
File under "Futile"
09:14 PM on 08/14/2011
Your "rich friends" don't want to be your friends -- they want to be, and are, your Overlords.
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AnathTheGoddess
A legend in her own mind.
08:29 PM on 08/14/2011
“Those who do not learn the lessons of history are doomed to repeat its mistakes.” - American philosopher George Santayana.

I didn't have to read to far for that quote to come into my mind. Those analysts mention both the Gilded Age & the Roaring Twenties. At the end of the Gilded Age, the economy sunk into a deep depression. At the end of the Roaring Twenties was the stock market crash and the Great Depression. Take heart though. The Gilded Age was followed by the Progressive Era, while the Great Depression was followed by Roosevelt & the New Deal. So, who knows what we may end up with.
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Mr Hoodoo
"I Wish I Could Talk In Technicolor"
08:25 PM on 08/14/2011
"How To Save America's Middle Class"

Simple.

Don't vote GAWPBaggistani. Vote right-wing and you vote against America and her Middle Class (not to mention the lower income folks). Vote for the right-wing and you vote FOR cor-PIRATEfascism evangetalibaism and the the greedy top 1% only.

Wanna vote for America and her Middle Class? Vote Democrat at least. Progressive at best.
nothingchanges
too soon old, too late smart
08:23 PM on 08/14/2011
How to save the American Middle class?

Hey, no problem......no problem at all.

Dip their heads in a bucket of water, baptize them in the name of the Religious Right, and say unto them.................Go in peace, thou art now "SAVED".

The 1%, and the Republican Party are BOTH minorities, and they BOTH get exactly what they want.
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TexasPatriot1776
Conservative Intellectual
08:23 PM on 08/14/2011
don't worry, when Rick Perry is President, he'll kick this economy in A 5 5 with his pointy boots.
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09:05 PM on 08/14/2011
Rick, the secessionist ?
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Winthorpe
Need a fourth for squash
04:56 AM on 08/16/2011
We're all good with him becoming president -- of Texasistan.
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china6
08:19 PM on 08/14/2011
How to save the entire country, get rid of Obama
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Mr Hoodoo
"I Wish I Could Talk In Technicolor"
08:26 PM on 08/14/2011
Yeah? Hmm...

And who would you replace him with?
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First Blast
res ad triarios venit
08:09 PM on 08/14/2011
None of the clowns at the straw poll mentioned the word "middle class' even once. They could care less.
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08:07 PM on 08/14/2011
They can own America - as one big plantation colony - and we are all the squatters/chattel.