[Teamsters union president James] Hoffa riled up Fox News and the right wing Monday with a Labor Day speech in Detroit in which he called Republican members of Congress "sons of bitches" and said union workers are ready to "go to war" with the tea party next year and "take out" Republicans at the ballot box.
Hoffa said he'd say the exact same words all over again.
"I would because I believe it," he said. "They've declared war on us. We didn't declare war on them, they declared war on us. We're fighting back. The question is, who started the war?"
If Mr. Obama would talk like this, he'd win in a landslide next year. This is what Liberals/Progressives want to hear. Obama should have been saying this the minute they tried to break the unions in Wisconsin.
The Republicans have declared war on unions and the middle class (the majority of Americans, by the way) and the President should be standing up for them, not working to pad the pockets of the rich by caving in to the Republicans at every turn.
Let’s get it over with and rename the holiday “Capital Day.” We may still celebrate Labor Day, but our culture has given up on honoring workers as the real creators of wealth and their honest toil — the phrase itself seems antique — as worthy of genuine respect.
That the language of Lincoln and John Paul is so distant from our experience today is a sign of an enormous cultural shift. In scores of different ways, we paint investors as the heroes and workers as the sideshow. We tax the fruits of labor more vigorously than we tax the gains from capital — resistance to continuing the payroll tax cut is a case in point — and we hide workers away while lavishing attention on those who make their livings by moving money around.
Yeah, the "job creators". Just like WMDs in Iraq. Just another excuse to loot the Treasury on behalf of the rich and the corporations while the rest of us are left sucking wind.
If Obama keeps on his current course, even if he is reelected, he won't have much of a country left to govern by the end of his second term. Being "above the fray" (if not actually beholden to big business) ain't gonna cut it anymore. The road down which we're headed affects us all, regardless of party affiliation and regardless of wealth or the lack thereof, in a very bad way. Regardless of ideology, it's time for Mr. Obama do what people like Krugman and Stiglitz and the "professional Left" (and history) have been telling him to. He's done the opposite so far and it's obvious where that's gotten him. It's time for him to do the right thing, not what his people are telling him is politically expedient (that doesn't seem to be working either).
As some of my southern friends like to say, it's a "come to Jesus" moment for the President. It's time for him to figure out who America really is, the top 2% or the rest of us who bust our ass to buy the crap that keeps them in the style in which they're accustomed. It's time for him to stop trying to curry the favor of rich white guys because they're never gonna let him in the club. [Dr. King rolls over.]