Friday, November 30, 2012

White, Working-Class Males of America, Unite!

Okay, I get why white, working-class males in America vote overwhelmingly Republican: They are an easily manipulated group of undereducated, somewhat disappointed, disillusioned people who, because of religious beliefs and general guy-based longings for guns, power, and pliant chicks, are fodder for the Tea Party and the "epistemic closure" crowd of Limbaugh, Beck, Hannity, O'Reilly, and Fox in general.

Good. Now that I've thoroughly insulted my target audience for this pitch, I'd like to suggest that our white, working-class stiffs have got it all wrong (there you go again!). Here's what they should consider:
  • They can remain essentially conservative and still come over to the Democratic side. For example, fiscal conservatism in not antithetical to Democratic Party ideals, nor is conservatism antithetical to environmentalism.
  • Progressive income tax structures are good for the lower middle classes in which most of this group resides (if not identifies with). Government expenditures favor the advancement of the working class, and progressivity has little impact on their tax brackets.
  • Unions, long a target of conservatives, favor the working class, and even if white, working men hold hopes of moving up to management, there is little proof that unions harm the lives of the management classes in any way. In fact, rising wages among blue-collar groups lifts all groups.
  • Republicans favor cutting Social Security, Medicare, and Medicaid and have worked to resist health-care reform, all of which is valuable to working-class males. Despite denials to the contrary, we can avoid cuts to these programs in ways that will guarantee them to be helpful now and to be there in the future to support everyone's retirements. Democrats fight to save these valuable programs, and progressives even seek to expand them.
  • Republicans have never made much of an attempt to control the national debt and have generally run up bigger deficits than Democrats. This is historically accurate. The Clinton administration is but one example.
If I could offer white, working-class males two charts that should let them know why low taxes for the rich and a continually eroding social safety net are not good for the average American, here they are:

Thanks, The Big Picture. Click charts for bigger images. And:

Thanks, Mother Jones.

So, white, working-class males of America, unite with your brothers and sisters of all creeds and colors who work for a goddam living, okay? Fight for your rights, that is, right up until you're filthy, stinking rich and then cross over to the dark side. That's fine. That's your right. But for now -- until your vastly improbable great leap forward -- your bread is buttered by the Democrats and the progressives that want to work with you to increase your slice of the pie right now. Capiche?

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