As a member of the "Depression Generation" I have loved my country as one loves a husband; for better or for worse, in sickness and in health, until death do us part. Now there are those who tell us that our nation is as severely ill as it was at that time.
I recall, one summer evening, following my father outside as he searched the scorching sky for signs of a rain cloud. "What happened to all the rain, Daddy?" I asked this man who persisted in stirring the dusty soil, planting seeds, and praying for a crop. I shall never forget his reply:
"There is as much rain in the world as there ever was. The problem is that it just isn't falling where we need it."
Now, as our nation is suffering from the damage caused by the fiscal policies of the last few administrations, our efforts at correction are met by the cries of "the money just isn't there!" To paraphrase my father, there is as much money as there ever was. The problem is that it is not distributed where it is needed. It is lying in offshore banks, invested in foreign businesses, and safely tucked away in the pockets of those who gained control of it by means of greed, graft, and corruption. These are the very people who, we are told, provide the jobs, the very livelihood of all of us. Therefore, we must not ask them to pay a greater price for the luxury in which they are proud to live for fear that they may withhold their efforts to provide for our needs.
History is replete with examples of other nations that have suffered from maldistribution of wealth -- nations with peasants struggling beneath bundles of sticks being felled by the drivers of golden carriages careening down the road carrying a rich man to a fancy ball. Those nations no longer exist, and rightly so. Even so, our official deference to those who hold our money under their control has reached a critical point and the future of our country is at stake.
The United States was founded by the efforts of brave people who were willing to lay down their lives for their freedom and opportunity for a better life. Their blood still flows in the veins of those who now find themselves with no work, no income, and no ability to provide their children with the necessities of life while those who are living in splendor from the fruits of their labor complain that "there is no money."
These, the productive people of our society, found the money to "bail out" the bankers and were repaid by having their loans denied as all the money found its way into those same offshore banks and foreign corporations. Then these same people were asked to bail out the automotive companies. No new jobs have yet been created as those companies "compact their operations."
Now the sorely needed "health care reform" is being so constructed that the people will "bail out" the insurance companies by means of allowing the insurance companies to continue to drain off a third of the national cost of health care to stash in the offshore banks and foreign corporations. People who barely have money enough to buy food will be required by law to further contribute to the added wealth of the people with the "golden carriages."
One day, (though I pray not in my lifetime), the people will awaken and will rise up as they realize there is still as much money in the land as there ever was. It is just not where it is needed. When that happens, one can only hope that they will have the wisdom to take back their "government of the people, by the people, and for the people," and thus prevent the brave experiment which is the United States from fading into the dusty history books.