Letter: Moving up

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  • RedShirtCalTech Pasedena, CA
    May 22, 2014 11:21 a.m.

    To "mark" actually it doesn't. It says exactly what I have stated. I can't put in the whole quote becuase it takes more than 200 words. But towards the end Obama starts to use income inequality as a rally against the rich. He tells how the poor can never expect it to make it to the top, and how those at the top are almost guaranteed to stay there.

    I do see why you and your ilk love that speech because it was written for people with socialist tendancies and for those that hate the rich (except for liberals that are rich).

    I only get 4 posts, I don't know what you are talking about.

  • mark Salt Lake City, UT
    May 22, 2014 9:40 a.m.

    Yeah, that's a great speech. What a great President. A quote from it:

    Understand we’ve never begrudged success in America. We aspire to it. We admire folks who start new businesses, create jobs, and invent the products that enrich our lives. And we expect them to be rewarded handsomely for it. In fact, we've often accepted more income inequality than many other nations for one big reason — because we were convinced that America is a place where even if you’re born with nothing, with a little hard work you can improve your own situation over time and build something better to leave your kids. As Lincoln once said, “While we do not propose any war upon capital, we do wish to allow the humblest man an equal chance to get rich with everybody else.”

    This says the opposite of what you claimed President Obama said. You were just making things up.

    So you do want to argue about what health insurance is? If you were only meaning Medicare Medicaid, yes, they are Nationalized.

    Only 4 posts. (Unlike you) Wish I could address the GM nationalization claim.

  • RedShirtCalTech Pasedena, CA
    May 22, 2014 8:43 a.m.

    To "mark" just because you refuse to accept the truth, doesn't mean it didn't happen.

    If the government didn't control GM and Chrysler, why is it that Obama could fire the President of GM? See "Obama Takes The Wheel In Detroit" in Forbes. They saw that the Government took control of GM, why can't you?

    You should read up on Medicare and Medicaid. According to their web sites, they are Health Insurance providers. Medicare offers health plans, just like private insurance.

    As for Obama, go to the Huffington Post article "Obama 1998 Loyola Speech Leaked: 'I Believe In Redistribution'" and listen to Obama declare his belief in redistribution of wealth. For income inequality read "President Obama on inequality (transcript)" at Politico.

  • mark Salt Lake City, UT
    May 21, 2014 3:19 p.m.

    "under the control of a national government". Lets see, GM was put under control of the Federal Government during their bailout, banks were controlled during their bailouts, Medicare and Medicaid are nationalized health insurance."

    You know, you just like to cut things as thin as you can, don't you. Do you think anybody buys what you are selling?

    No. GM is not, and was not, under the control of the federal government. No, the banks were not, and are not, under federal control. Or, if they are, will you please tell us what CEO, or board member, the Feds have forced into position?

    Yes, Medicare, and Medicaid, are nationalized health care plans. But that's not what you said. You said "health insurance". Medicare and Medicaid are not "health insurance". Or do you want to argue the definition of health insurance?

    By the way, you still have not provided a quote saying that President Obama said that it is terrible if everyone does not earn the same. So, again, you were just making things up. Again.

  • RedShirtCalTech Pasedena, CA
    May 21, 2014 1:26 p.m.

    To "mark" do you know what it means to nationalize a business or industry?

    Since you obviously don't know what nationalized means, here it is: "to be
    under the control of a national government". Lets see, GM was put under control of the Federal Government during their bailout, banks were controlled during their bailouts, Medicare and Medicaid are nationalized health insurance.

    Let me say this more clearly. We have nationalized some businesses, and are moving towards Fascism by allowing the government to micromanage some industries. Fascism is the first step towards Socialism.

  • mark Salt Lake City, UT
    May 21, 2014 11:41 a.m.

    "how many corporations are able to fly their CEOs around on a 747?"

    What's that got to do with what you said? And I have no idea, I imagine quite a few if they wanted to. So what? I do know that the President of The United States should fly in Air Force One. There are many reasons why we supply that plane for the presidents use.

    As far as President Obama saying it was terrible to have any difference in income, obviously you can't provide a quote where he was saying that. So you were just making stuff up. Again.

    "They have nationalized GM, a large portion of the banking industry, and health insurance."

    None of these industries are nationalized. Perhaps you should look up nationalized while you are at it.

    "Right now we are pushing the boundary on the collectivist idea of Fascism, where the industries are not nationalized but are micromanaged by the government."

    Oh wait. Now you say they are not nationalized. Make up your mind. Beautiful.

  • RedShirtCalTech Pasedena, CA
    May 21, 2014 9:18 a.m.

    To "Shaun" not an entire industry, yet. They have nationalized GM, a large portion of the banking industry, and health insurance. Right now we are pushing the boundary on the collectivist idea of Fascism, where the industries are not nationalized but are micromanaged by the government.

    To "mark" how many corporations are able to fly their CEOs around on a 747?

    You are missing the point. Obama gave us his "Promise Zones" in an effort to overcome income disaprity. If the income disparity is so important, why does he continue to accept and keep nearly all of his $400,000 salary that puts him in the top 1%. Unless he is a hypocrite, why isn't he helping those that are behind him?

  • Confused Sandy, UT
    May 21, 2014 8:31 a.m.


    Coming from a family that was too poor to know it... I understand about your grandfather and his work ethic.

    Here is the rub...it is really hard for 'some' poor people to understand.... you make decisions in your life and their ARE consequences for those decisions.

    In my family, I am the only one out of 5 children that broke out of poverty. WHY? because I choose to get an education even if it darn near killed me doing it. Instead of wasting my money on smokes, booze and parties, I worked full time and spent my money on getting an education.

    I am not saying all poor people are lazy or anything like that, my siblings are hard working people (my father taught us that), but their decisions is what held them up from getting out of their decisions, not some evil "rich" entity.

  • pragmatistferlife salt lake city, utah
    May 21, 2014 8:07 a.m.

    "If what I said is wrong, then prove it. How are your comments not similar to the central idea of Communism?"

    The central idea of communism is to have a state owned and planned economy. Show me where I proposed that. Your little, each according to his needs....etc. is a simple bumper sticker used as propaganda and is in no way a guiding principle of Russian history, past or present.

    I believe American reality is that when a board of directors for any corporation sits down to plan it's strategy for success, the only government considerations are the rules of law that pertain to their particular business...you know the government is kind of like a referee making sure the rules are adhered to..where have I seen that analogy before?

    The difference is once again reality. The world today doesn't look anything like the world of Adam Smith. You're dreaming if you think we would have the technological world of today without the massive expenditures of the federal government developing technologies for NASA and the military.

  • mark Salt Lake City, UT
    May 20, 2014 9:57 p.m.

    Really, Redshirt? There is absolutely nothing in pragmatist's comment that says what you are saying.

    Also, can you provide the quote from President Obama where he says this? "Why listen to Obama tell us how terrible it is to have any difference in income. . . " Show us where he said it was terrible to have any difference in income.

    Or are you just making stuff up again?

    By the way, the president does not fly in a private jet. Air Force One is paid for with tax payer money. And there is no way I would want the president of this great country flying any other way then in a plane like Air Force One. And I also would not want him living any other place then the White House for his years of service. Oh, and ex presidents getting paid to give speeches, that's the free market. It's the free market you are criticizing.

  • Shaun Sandy, UT
    May 20, 2014 7:21 p.m.

    @redshirt. I think you should actually look up socialism and communism in the dictionary. The U.S. Government hasn't nationalized one industry. The government doesn't control the means of production, the distribution or exchange of any industry.

    However the lovely conserative state of utah does control two out of three of above when it comes to liquor in this state. So I guess the republicans in this state are really socialist.

  • RFLASH Salt Lake City, UT
    May 20, 2014 4:32 p.m.

    Wow! Who made you the judge? There are poor people that are also good! Being poor does not mean that somebody is lazy or pregnant out of wed lock or some other way in which you choose to judge!
    My grandfather worked himself to death, literally. He fell dead of a heart attack at work. They were among the poorest people in town, but he was a good man! I feel insulted when I hear people talk this way! Somebody who probably has no clue what it might be like to be poor! Sure, we all need to stand on our own two feet and we all need to do our part, but there will always be a need to help others. There are so many reasons people may be poor. I live by myself. I have had major illness! I survived it, but I realized how easy it could be to end up on the street! There wasn't a thing I could do! No., I didn't take government help! We do need programs! Well, you can always turn your head the other way while you pass judgment! Whatever makes you feel good!

  • Redshirt1701 Deep Space 9, Ut
    May 20, 2014 3:35 p.m.

    To "pragmatistferlife" actually it is capitalism that created the US and civilized society. It is the totalitarian governments that have suppressed societal advancements.

    I am not advocating unfettered capitalism, that is usually called anarchy. I am proposing that we follow capitalism as Adam Smith laid out in his books The Theory of Moral Sentiments and The Wealth of Nations. If capitalism is allowed to operate as it should, you would have government acting only as a referee, not coach and competitor.

    If what I said is wrong, then prove it. How are your comments not similar to the central idea of Communism?

    To "Open Minded Mormon" since you keep believing the lie, lets bring out the truth.

    Joseph Smith, Brigham Young, Heber J. Grant, J. Reuben Clark Jr, John Widstow, David O. McKay, Spencer W. Kimball, Ezra Taft Benson, Howard W. Hunter, and Marion G. Romney were all called as Prophets and have made statements during GC that Socialism and Communism are of the Devil. Do you know something about God's plan that these 11 Prophets didn't?

    The military isn't communist either. Generals makes more than enlisted people.

    Do your kids really own part of your house?

  • pragmatistferlife salt lake city, utah
    May 20, 2014 2:54 p.m.

    RedShirt, I have no idea what you are referring to.

    "You want people to be paid a good wage, regardless of their skills". 10 dollars an hour is a good wage? Any and all full time labor should be worth at least that.

    I know you will misconstrue this but capitalism left to it's own devices does not create a civil society, nor does it create a meritocracy. minimums and regulations on capitalism is what creates a civil society and a society where merit and work is rewarded.

    Success comes from talent, opportunity, and hard work. Unfettered capitalism destroys broad based opportunity simply because wealth and opportunity tend to centralize left to themselves.

    So your assessment of what I said and what I think is absolutely wrong.

  • Open Minded Mormon Everett, 00
    May 20, 2014 11:31 a.m.

    Deep Space 9, Ut

    Is that the world you want to live in? Do you want to live in a society where you can be the most brilliant person and come up with ideas that benefit everybody and you are paid the same has the person who empties the garbage can in your office?

    11:00 a.m. May 20, 2014


    Why not?

    It works for Families, The US Military, and the Kingdom of God?

  • Redshirt1701 Deep Space 9, Ut
    May 20, 2014 11:00 a.m.

    To "Happy Valley Heretic" yes, that is the "from each according to their ability" portion of the statement. That means that you can't just sit around. You work before you receive.

    The problem is that you are not working for what you receive. That is the whole point of the Communist saying. You do what work you can do, and you are given the same care, food, clothing, housing, electricity, and essentials as somebody else who works harder for you.

    Is that the world you want to live in? Do you want to live in a society where you can be the most brilliant person and come up with ideas that benefit everybody and you are paid the same has the person who empties the garbage can in your office?

  • JoeCapitalist2 Orem, UT
    May 20, 2014 10:18 a.m.

    Happy Valley Heretic: "...the more money the wealthy have to buy congressmen to change tax laws, regulations, and defend their interests in other countries, the easier it is for them to accumulate and store money instead of circulating it."

    You hit upon the fundamental problem in America today. Wealth buys power and influence in government! But the solution to this problem is what most divides true conservatives from progressives. Progressives want to take away the money from those who can currently use it to buy influence (they also want to take away the money even from those who don't use it to buy influence). Conservatives want to take away what the money will currently buy.

    If we had a small, sensible government that didn't have such enormous discretionary power to sell to the highest bidder, then rich people could not game the system by buying influence. Unfortunately, the progressives want to give that government even more power under the guise that it would be used somehow to "fight the rich people". They then act surprised when that power is used to further widen the gap between the rich and the middle class.

  • Happy Valley Heretic Orem, UT
    May 20, 2014 9:58 a.m.

    @redshirt. Actually he said "you work for it. " on ninety percent of his statements only on the ACA did he say "your ability to pay" which is still better than the "emergency room" plan put forth as a complete solution to Healthcare by the GOP.

  • Redshirt1701 Deep Space 9, Ut
    May 20, 2014 9:45 a.m.

    To "pragmatistferlife" but you should realize that your entire post at 8:31 can be summarized the way that I did. You want people to be paid a good wage, regardless of their skills. Then, you want them to get what they need, regardless of their ability to pay.

    You may not live by euphemisms, but what you believe can be fully summarized by one.

  • pragmatistferlife salt lake city, utah
    May 20, 2014 9:20 a.m.

    RedShirt, No

    I don't live by euphemisms. The world is much more complicated than that.

  • RedShirt USS Enterprise, UT
    May 20, 2014 9:14 a.m.

    To "pragmatistferlife" so what what you are saying is that "from each according to their ability, and to each according to their need."

  • pragmatistferlife salt lake city, utah
    May 20, 2014 8:31 a.m.

    "Let's stop the envy, encourage individual responsibility and hard work as a way to make our lives better instead of expecting the government to give people everything and make them rich."

    Here's the height of misinformation combined with political ideology.

    Mam, asking for 10 dollars an hour for your work is not asking for "everything", and is not asking to be "made rich".

    The vast majority of food stamp recipients work.

    Unemployment insurance does not go on forever, and doesn't make you rich, and actually doesn't give you much of anything.

    The point of the ACA was everyone plays, everyone pays (to their ability)...personal responsibility

    Social Security..you work for it.

    Medicare..you work for it.

    If you think there are better ways to build a social safety net, and a civil society fine let's talk, but quit with the nonsense that social safety nets are based on envy, and a desire for the government to do "everything for everyone". It's wrong and non productive.

  • Twin Lights Louisville, KY
    May 20, 2014 8:09 a.m.

    Individually the letter writer is correct. We must rely on our own devices to improve and progress.

    As a nation we cannot rely on govt. to make a middle class. In as much as govt. can do something here, it can do so only in partnership with the business community.

    Prior to the 1980s there was a general understanding by business as to what was fair compensation and what the owed the communities where they were located. Much of that has gone by the wayside.

    The result has been increased pressure on the middle class. This has now been for over a generation - it is not due to any one administration.

    For a capitalist economy to work well, there must be relative peace and predictability internally. It was, in part, the labor unrest of the late 1800s and early 1900s that made business realize that the "deal" with workers needed to be better. We have lost that collective memory. Hopefully we will get it back without violence.

  • Happy Valley Heretic Orem, UT
    May 19, 2014 9:11 p.m.

    You bring up a good point Fred44, and may I add that the 1950's was a time conservatives think of as the "Ideal America." With a single income earning enough that Mom can stay home, even with a mortgage and 2.5 kids.
    What they fail to remember was, what economic model made these things possible...High corporate taxes, and most industrial countries in ruins thanks to WW2 made for little competition also. But the high corporate taxes allowed those companies to share more profits with their employees and in research and development, instead of the government.
    It worked well

    But alas the greed and envy of the super wealthy (which knows no bounds) caused them to push voodoo economics, through an aged actor as a "Trust Me." Given the chance or "Freedom" to do so, the wealthy man will still treat his business and employees well.

    30 short years later and reaganomics has nearly destroyed America not by itself, but the more money the wealthy have to buy congressmen to change tax laws, regulations, and defend their interests in other countries, the easier it is for them to accumulate and store money instead of circulating it.

  • Utefan60 Salt Lake City, UT
    May 19, 2014 7:43 p.m.

    Marxist. Oh the Tea party knows about this wealth issue. They pander to it and get their funding from it. You and I have paid into Social Security and yes even been taxed for The Affordable Care Act, which we deserve to have available to us. But heaven forbid we attack the wealthy! They are God's chosen ones....or they would not be rich.

    Hard work had nothing to do with the inherited wealth of the Koch brothers!

  • Fred44 Salt Lake City, Utah
    May 19, 2014 6:48 p.m.


    I still take exception with your statement that many are envious. That is a favorite justification for the wealthy and their apologists to deflect attention from a system that is rigged to advantage the wealthy at the expense of the rest of the country. I find it interesting that no one wants to talk about the failure of Reagonomics over the last thirty years or that the republicans only solution to our current problem is more of the same policies that have led to the upward wealth redistribution for the last thirty years.

    To your statements about your father. If I understand your point we should compare the current middle class and lower classes to those of previous decades and even centuries. Shouldn't we all share in some of the improvements that have occurred in the last 50-100 years or should that just go to the wealthy?

    Here is the comparison I would like to make. I would like to see salary differential between management and workers return to the level that it was when your Dad was growing up. Then we could all share in the improvements in technology, and the economy.

  • KJB1 Eugene, OR
    May 19, 2014 5:24 p.m.


    I don't have cable television or a single video game in my apartment. I also don't have a dishwasher or air-conditioning. My television set was a hand-me-down. My computer was bought used for less than $100. The most expensive piece of clothing I own is a pair of running shoes I bought on sale for $50.

    And I think this letter is bunk. I suppose it's easier to accuse poor people of being greedy than it is to look at the truth of how our economic system is increasing stacked, right?

    Oh, and Internet access is becoming more and more essential to function in society and, for an increasing amount of people, their cell phone is their only phone. Welcome to the 21st century...

  • Shaun Sandy, UT
    May 19, 2014 5:08 p.m.

    Three things are a fact in this country.

    Money always wins and the people who have vast sums of it will get what they want.

    If less regulation means these people will make more money at the expense of this country and the economy they will not blink a an eye.

    Everything in this country could be fixed in this country if money was left out of politics.

  • Kora Cedar Hills, UT
    May 19, 2014 4:09 p.m.

    Fred44- I never said everyone was envious, just that many are. When my dad was growing up his family was solidly middle to upper middle class. He owned 2-pairs of shoes as a kid, one for church and one for school. He had a basic bike and few toys. He played outside with his friends. The family had 1-TV with 3-channels, and cable TV did not even exist. No internet or cell phones. The kids shared bedrooms, at times 3-kids in one room. They always had food and necessities. They had a washing machine, but no dishwasher. my dad expresses that he had it pretty good growing up Today, most would say living like that is poverty. If it was not poverty then, why is it now? How have the "necessities" of life changed? Why do parents and kids NEED $100 tennis shoes, video game systems, cable TV, multiple TVs in the home, high speed internet, smartphones, daily Starbucks, or most of the crap we have?

    It seems that most of these are wants. And it seems that just having the necessities is not enough, but not having many of life's wants is poverty for many.

  • Frozen Fractals Salt Lake City, UT
    May 19, 2014 3:56 p.m.

    1928 and 2007 were the worst years this past century for wealth inequality, and immediately afterward the economy tanked and was slow to recover. A lot of the current slow recovery is due to lack of demand. Increasing inequality reduces the purchasing power of the poor and middle class and without sufficient demand, jobs aren't created. So there are economic system issues here.

    "Obama is your biggest threat. He has turned this once great united nation into groups of competing minorities who like suckling pigs are all fighting among themselves lest they lose their places on the government teats!"

    So what are you saying? That minorities are moochers?

    "I call it Economic Relativism: many people will consider themselves poor regardless of what they have as long as others have a lot more than them. "

    That does exist though interestingly, at the same time, there's some of the reverse as well. An example of this is how polling finds only around a quarter of Americans believe they are in the 47% that don't pay any federal income taxes when in actuality it should obviously be around 47%.

  • Esquire Springville, UT
    May 19, 2014 3:26 p.m.

    The point of this letter would be great - in a world that doesn't exist. Give us a level playing field and stop giving special breaks to those who already have, and I would bet we could get close to your ideal world.

  • RedShirt USS Enterprise, UT
    May 19, 2014 3:13 p.m.

    To "Ford DeTreese" if you want to see a sad buch of whiners, look at the DNC and their liberal supporters after the 2000 and 2004 elections.

    But the letter writer does make a point. Why listen to Obama tell us how terrible it is to have any difference in income, while he flys around the country on a private 747, lives in a tax payer supported mansion, and will make millions of dollars consulting and speaking when he leaves office.

    The emphasis on income inequality isn't being used to raise awareness, but as a divisive tool to get the rich and poor fighting and ignoring the President and Congress.

    To "marxist" the problem is that if we followed what your ilk would have us do, it would result in an even greater polarization of the economy. Rather than some rich, most middleclass, and some poor, we would end up with the wealthy party elites, and the poor. Things would be worse if your ilk had their way, and that is a lesson from history that few care to learn.

  • Badgerbadger Murray, UT
    May 19, 2014 2:49 p.m.

    Ford DeTreese

    You might recall that Obama, in his first inaugural address, promised to heal the planet. It seems to me that he claimed responsibility for all those things himself.

    I am still waiting for holy Obama to make good on curing my toenail fungus, but I can afford to wait. The girls being held by Islamist Extremists can't wait for him to talk nice to the terrorists. They are already being ravaged.

  • 2 bits Cottonwood Heights, UT
    May 19, 2014 2:49 p.m.

    embarrassed Utahn!

    Re: "Hooray for President Obama!"... "America's Most Effective President"... "I love this President".... "Looking forward to 2016"...

    The Obama Worship is well noted. But you know he will be out of office in 2016... right? So why are YOU looking forward to 2016? I know why I am looking forward to 2016, but I don't see why an Obama worshiper would be looking forward to him being out...


    Re: "the Koch Brothers, are trashing pensions"...

    How in the world are the Koch Brothers trashing pensions? By donating to political campaigns??

    If they trash pensions by contributing to political campaigns... did the people who contributed to Obama's political campaign trash MY pension??

    Most of the recent recession happened when Obama was President. And he voted for TARP and the other bailout stuff that happened when Bush was President... And his party setup the Mortgage Bubble (which caused the recession).


    Re: The rest of the letters that showed a distinct jealousy complex (the system is rigged for the rich, etc, etc, etc)... that's just bunk. Look at how many people have made it in the USA... was Bill Gates born rich?

  • Fred44 Salt Lake City, Utah
    May 19, 2014 2:33 p.m.


    Who is jealous, who is envious? Why are the ultra rich and their advocates so sensitive? It must be really tough to be a rich person (oops I guess that makes me jealous and envious). Speaking as someone who works 60+ hours a week to remain in the middle class, I am perfectly happy with my place in life. I am not jealous nor do I envy the wealthy. I have earned what I have and I am fine with that.

    Under President Ronald Reagan (whom I voted for twice) we established "trickle down" economic policies, with the idea that by lowering the taxes on the ultra rich all would benefit through the trickle down effect. In 1980 I believed that would happen. We have thirty years of evidence to show that it did not and is not happening. I believe that President Reagan himself if he were alive today would say it was a failure. That model has tipped the wealth even farther to the richest of the rich. Sorry but that is not good for the country. We need a new plan, one that gives the wealthy tax breaks for creating jobs, not just for being wealthy.

  • lost in DC West Jordan, UT
    May 19, 2014 1:52 p.m.

    What breaks?
    They already over 70% of the individual income taxes.

    Open minded/airnaut,
    Sorry you spent more than your house was worth. Sorry you invested poorly. I know, it’s easy to blame someone else when you make a poor decision. That danged bush!!!!

    Wall street got a free hand-out from the government? Too much MNSBC for you! Commercial banks paid very high dividend rates on the preferred stock the government bought from them and the treasury actually made money – we’d have made more if geithner had not sold out too soon.

    Your accusation? FAILED!

    That kiosk? Yep, unemployed folks lining up to push the BO button. In a few years, he will slip down down down. It’s just a popularity poll for those who see it, nothing objective to it at all.

    Trashing pensions, really? No, it’s a dem plan pushed by the unions to rob IRAs and KEOUGHs to pay busted union defined benefit plans. TOO MUCH MSNBC FOR YOU!!

    Ford DeTreese
    What??? Where did you come up with that? Typical lib, make a straw argument when you have no cogent argument.

  • Ford DeTreese Provo, UT
    May 19, 2014 1:35 p.m.


    Yes, and I'm sure Obama is responsible for global warming, grade inflation, the kidnapping of 300 Nigerian schoolgirls, the Japanese tsunami, Typhoon Haiyan, GM's quality problems, MERS, the capsized Korean ferry, and toenail fungus. Probably everything else too. Never seen such a sad bunch of whiners who can't come up with any constructive ideas as the tea party and its little sister, the GOP.

  • Kora Cedar Hills, UT
    May 19, 2014 1:34 p.m.

    I agree with the letter writer. We need to get beyond jealousy and envy. This is part of the class warfare that is pushed by the left. Individuals who are doing pretty good start to believe otherwise because they are told how much more others have and that it is unfair that others are "so much better off".

    Unfortunately you could bring everyone in this country up to the upper middle class standard of living, but if you elevated the rich by a proportional amount, many people, at the urging of the left, would still think themselves poor because of the "evil" income gap.

    I call it Economic Relativism: many people will consider themselves poor regardless of what they have as long as others have a lot more than them.

    FYI, pensions were trashed by themselves. They are unsustainable, and driving businesses and governments into bankruptcy. Every major city going broke is doing so because of guaranteed benefit pensions.

    OMM- I believe it was Obama who advocated to bail out GM, one of the largest businesses in the world. The most conservative Republicans, like myself, opposed TARP. "Too Big To Fail" is a liberal mantra, not conservative.

  • Mountanman Hayden, ID
    May 19, 2014 1:34 p.m.

    Ok, Marxist please explain how the Koch Brothers are trashing your pension! Was it that they donated money to conservative political candidates? What about those evil rich people who donate to the Democrats? Are they trashing your pension too? What you may not comprehend is what is really trashing your pension is the government printing money out of nowhere, out of control spending and borrowing which is devaluing the dollar! By the way, I am not a tea party type but I know the liberal Democrats have it all wrong and at least some of the TEA party values are our only hope!

  • Kent C. DeForrest Provo, UT
    May 19, 2014 1:25 p.m.

    Must be a pretty slow day for letters.

    "Most people do not make it to the top. If they did, there would be no top. . . . If the bottom can make it to the middle, that is a really good thing."

    But by the writer's own logic, there's not enough room in the middle for those on the bottom. If there were, then there would be no middle.

    This is a silly argument. There are always a top, middle, and bottom. These are relative terms. The problem today is that the playing field is slanted so that the few on the top have most of the money roll their way. Think of it as reverse gravity. Those on the bottom are losing wealth and opportunity fast. Those in the middle too. Yes, some will move up or down, but it is getting harder to move up.

    The game is rigged. It's like the NBA giving Tim Duncan (and only Tim Duncan) a broom to swat shots with or making everyone else shoot blindfolded. If we want a better, more humane society, we need to change a few rules.

  • marxist Salt Lake City, UT
    May 19, 2014 1:12 p.m.

    Also, that the distribution of wealth is top heavy is not the point. This has always been the case. What is amazing at the present time is how positively ENORMOUSLY top heavy it is. I don't think you tea party types comprehend this.

  • marxist Salt Lake City, UT
    May 19, 2014 1:07 p.m.

    Re: Mountanman "Please explain how 'rich' people are attacking you! " I think I did. To quote myself:

    "Super wealthy interests, exemplified by the Koch Brothers, are trashing pensions and advocate for the elimination of social security and medicare."

  • Mountanman Hayden, ID
    May 19, 2014 1:03 p.m.

    Marxist. Please explain how 'rich' people are attacking you! How are they eliminating your SS or any other benefit you feel you have earned? Obama is your biggest threat. He has turned this once great united nation into groups of competing minorities who like suckling pigs are all fighting among themselves lest they lose their places on the government teats!

  • marxist Salt Lake City, UT
    May 19, 2014 12:57 p.m.

    The problem is that middle income people like me are under attack by the super wealthy. I'm perfectly content to be in the middle, but if trends continue I will be forced into the kind of poverty which used to bedevil seniors. Super wealthy interests, exemplified by the Koch Brothers, are trashing pensions and advocate for the elimination of social security and medicare. These are benefits which we seniors have earned. I will not stand by and have my future destroyed. I will speak out. This is not envy! It is self-protection.

  • Schnee Salt Lake City, UT
    May 19, 2014 12:51 p.m.

    @embarrassed Utahn
    "guess who has a commanding second place behind another great Democrat Franklin Roosevelt??? Go ahead, guess."

    Since you asked, Obama. It shouldn't be Obama though. He only scores that high because of recency bias. I'd think he should be somewhere in the teens.

  • embarrassed Utahn! Salt Lake City, UT
    May 19, 2014 12:35 p.m.

    Hooray for President Obama!

    There is a kiosk in the Smithsonian American History Museum where you can vote for "America's Most Effective President"
    and guess who has a commanding second place behind another great Democrat Franklin Roosevelt??? Go ahead, guess.

    I love this President and apparently a lot of other people outside the Zion Curtain do too.

    Looking forward to 2016 and the next election.

  • Thid Barker Victor, ID
    May 19, 2014 12:32 p.m.

    You nailed it Patti but don't expect liberals to agree! They have succeeded in electing "leaders" who force some Americans to work for that which they will not receive so other Americans can receive what they did not work for. In America we used to call that slavery but liberal Democrats call it "social justice".

  • RedShirt USS Enterprise, UT
    May 19, 2014 12:23 p.m.

    To "Open Minded Mormon" yes, the US failed when it bailed out the banks. However, you have made it quite clear that you want to give the government more power so that they can control the economy that much more. If you thought losing $500,000 was bad under Bush, wait until the government decides that they need the rest of your retirement savings to pay for Obamacare and Social Security.

  • The Wraith Kaysville, UT
    May 19, 2014 11:58 a.m.

    Contrary to the popular myth there is not a culture of entitlement and dependency. I'm still surprised that this story, which is demonstrably false, has been so successfully sold to America. What has developed in this country is sense of defeatism. A sense that no matter how hard one works there is no hope, no way out. The vast majority of Americans, even those getting forms of welfare, are hard working people who would love to make a better life for themselves. Sadly most lack the ability to get the training or education they would need to do that. Sure there are those that scam the system but that's not a reason to cut off everyone else.

    Meanwhile we have corporations getting billions in government aid. An insurance system with legal protection against anti-trust laws. A banking system that knows it can do whatever it wants, even flout it's ability to cheat and defraud the American public and get away with it. The right and the left were very successful at distracting people that we missed them turning the country into an oligarchy.

  • Open Minded Mormon Everett, 00
    May 19, 2014 11:57 a.m.

    I would have a better time believing Patti if I wasn't everything Patti said :

    Middle Age white guy,
    College educated,
    LDS returned Missionary,
    USAF veteran,
    30 year Aerospace engineer,
    married 30 years,
    4 kids (2 LDS Missions, 2 Temple married, 3rd Mission Prep, 4th High School),
    always active in Church, always working for the man.

    I lost over $500K, my life's savings, and retirement in the Bush economy- Housing Meltdown.

    BUT --
    WallStreet, Bank of America, and all the rest of Corporate America who got a "free hand out" fromt he Government, is making insane record level profits with MY hard work and investments.

    Your example therefore -- FAILED.

  • Hutterite American Fork, UT
    May 19, 2014 11:29 a.m.

    We tend to give those at 'the top' too many breaks, the rationale being we'll be among them someday.

    We won't.

  • John Charity Spring Back Home in Davis County, UT
    May 19, 2014 11:21 a.m.

    This is perhaps the most correct letter to appear in this paper in a long time. The principles of responsibility and self reliance are largely ignored in today's society.

    Unfortunately, the current left leaning administration is affirmatively creating a lazy and envious society. Specifically, it has created a culture of entitlement in which the masses have no incentive to act responsibly. The masses feel that simply because they exist, the government is required to satisfy their every want and need. The masses cannot stand the fact that those who work hard are better off.

    We must return to the principle that a man must work for his bread, and if he will not work, he will not eat. That is the way to instill a sense of financial responsibility and reduce envy.