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Occupy Wall Street protesters are right

November 2, 2011
Lehigh Acres Citizen

To The Editor:

From the letters to the editors in the media that I have read, it's easy to tell what level of the financial ladder the senders are from. It's obvious that they never have been at the dirty end of the stick during hard times.

My wife and I grew up during the Great Depression and World War II. We knew what hard was like: a bank manager earned $24 a week. The WPA worker earned $12 a week. But read was only 5 cents, so it evented out.

Almost every family had a vegetable garden and shared whatever they could. Nothing was thrown out nor wasted. We learned to conserve, compost, save and make do. Today's unemployed has learned to do the same. Let's hope they don't forget.

I blame today's problems on Wall Street and the Big Banks. Greed encouraged them to put $10 an hour laborer into a $250,000 house with no down payment or search to see if the buyer was able to make payments.

Then these worthless mortgages were bundled and sold to unsuspecting investors who wanted to secure their nest egg. These big banks and Wall Street didn't care as long as they got their money. It was unconscionable.

Growing up with the "great generation" and penniless, I swore that I would never be broke again, so I always held down a second and sometimes a third small job. Eventually I became a capitalist, but I never forgot.

I'm not a left wing radical, nor am I a socialist or a libertarian. My parents raised seven children with a strong sense of right and wrong and led by example. I just don't know what I would do today if I couldn't find work to feed and shelter my wife and four children.

I guess I would try the Canadian oil sands or the oil fields of Texas or Montana. If that didn't work, I would have to do something desperate. I don't want to hurt anyone but my family has to eat.

The unemployed have it much harder today. They don't have the CCC, WPA or other federal agencies that we had help from. The Republicans and Democrats are locked in a struggle that is strangling our great nation and reducing us to a Third World nation with a monumental debt.

We now have municipalities that are bankrupt or close to it with teachers, police and firefighters laid off.

Since Washington won't (or can't) settle our economic problems, we will have to do it ourselves by voting for people who don't belong to either major party.

That way we have a clean start with a more bipartisan Washington that will start us on the road to recovery, hopefully.

Surely, you have noticed that the protesters have been peaceful and haven't caused property damage.

That is a statement to the multiple grievances that those people have against their elected leaders who have lied, cheated and made deals that furthered their own goals while the country paid the price for their schemes and deals. Remember, on Election Day you're the boss. Let's fire all of them. Your vote does count.

Steven S. Clar

Lehigh Acres



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