Commenting On Commenting


Pic of the day: The toil-worn cottar frae his labour goes, by William Miller

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Every individual should have the opportunity to develop the gifts which may be latent in him. Alone in that way can the individual obtain the satisfaction to which he is justly entitled; and alone in that way can the community achieve its richest flowering. For everything that is really great and inspiring is created by the individual who can labor in freedom.

Albert Einstein

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I like commenting on occasion on matters political, sometimes even on more satirical matters.  Sometimes I do it on newspaper websites, sometimes on facebook, sometimes on semi-random sites where I see stories and comments that get my dander up.

I ran into another one of those today.  It was a simple graphic from the website I Acknowledge Class Warfare Exists.  It reads “How rich people get rich.”  There are two hand drawn pie charts.  One is titled “How rich people get rich(according to rich people)”  It is an equally divided pie chart.  In the pink section it reads “Can do attitude“, there’s a  light yellow section which reads “Gumption” and a darker yellow area which says “Hard work.” In the second pie chart is titled “How the rich get rich (for real)” and is equally divided into 2 areas.  The white one reads “Luck” and the green one reads “Merciless exploitation of the working class”

I thought it was cute, and while not 100% accurate, nonetheless is pretty damn close, as least as far as I see it.  If you don’t that’s fine by me.  I said as much in a comment, though I was more effusive in my writing there.   What I actually said was:

There are plenty of poor people with all of the gumption, hard work and can-do attitude and more than rich people, and they’re still poor. All the “can do” attitude in the world won’t make you successful. Gumption doesn’t mean a thing without help on the way up, it’s the same with hard work. No one makes it alone or simply by the sweat of their brow. No one. I dunno about exploitation of the working class though. “Exploitation of everyone around them, and if you lose, oh well, too bad” is probably a better way to put that. They’d cut their mother’s throats and giggle while they did it to get a larger slice of the pie. It’s that Ayn Rand “Me first gimme gimme” social darwinist bullshit that those devil worshiping right wingers cling to, ya know? Just saying…

You know me, short and to the point… or something.

I got the funniest response to it.  Some oddball called me a marxist, which I find pretty funny, because it’s untrue, unless of course you’re talking about Groucho or Harpo or Zeppo, who always seemed to me to get the short end of the stick.

But I digress.

Oddball also spouted some weirdness about minimum wage, and said he sensed (in me!)  envy lust and greed!  I looked at the page and had to shake my head, blink and stare at the screen like it had just presented me with a lifetime supply of headcheese.   Lust?  Greed? Envy? Where in the great googly moogly does he get that?

I called him insane, and told him to stop doing drugs. I’m hoping he continues the conversation.  I’d hate to see him walk away before I had a real chance to explore just how crazed this monkey is.

I say all that to say this.

Why is it that people think that poor people don’t work hard, that they don’t want to succeed?  That was much of the attitude of those who disliked the graphic, who disliked what was said in agreement with the graphic.  It is hard work that built this nation.  It is hard work that defines much of the working poor, and the poor are almost all working poor.

My father was poor most of his life, even at his most successful I don’t think he ever got as much as he deserved for all the efforts he put in where ever he worked.  My mother is much the same way.  And the apple does not fall far from the tree.  Both my younger brother and I work hard and just aren’t making ends meet, at least not the way we want regardless of how much work we do.  My older brother is moderately successful, but owning a house and raising kids eats all his money.  He ain’t rich by any stretch of the imagination.

Most of the people I know are working class.  And we all work hard, most of us live paycheck to paycheck, and do everything we can to keep ourselves afloat. Don’t tell me people like me are leeches on society, which is a charge I’ve heard leveled.  Or that we don’t work hard, when it is plainly obvious that we do.

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That’s it from here, America.  G’night.

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