Wednesday, January 15, 2014

congressional millionaires

"[A]t a time when lawmakers are debating issues like unemployment benefits, food stamps and the minimum wage ... as well as considering an overhaul of the tax code,” the Center for Responsive Politics reports that "for the first time in history," a majority of American senators and representatives are millionaires.

I am sure there must be some conscientious and good-hearted millionaires out there somewhere, but the evidence I can quickly summon up suggests that the well-heeled are notably cavalier, whether intentionally or unintentionally, when it comes to those who have less or have needs that Neiman-Marcus can't be bothered with.

And sometimes what is merely cavalier can turn downright grudging. Anyone who has ever hung out with a well-to-do person may be familiar with a sense of protective distance that seems to emanate from that person. Honesty and openness -- even conversationally -- seems to take a back seat to the fear that someone might somehow wrongfully deprive them. It is like talking to someone living in a bubble.

The rich representing the un-rich... it's a curious notion even when it's not ludicrous.

Is this democracy? Is democracy a myth? I really don't know.

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