I’ve been saying it. Now here is another writer, William Rivers Pitt, whose career has been seriously set back by the economic hellhole this country dropped into for the past two years. Read his whole column from Truthout at www.truthout.org/do-right-thing5882. It’s a terrific read.
The best part about my night job is that most everyone who goes there to drink works very, very, very hard for a living. A great many of them smoke, and since Boston banned butts in bars more than seven years ago, I get to spend a great deal of time talking to the customers out on the sidewalk when they come out to light up. Given the nature of my day job, these conversations invariably turn political, and so, in a very weird and interesting way, I have become something of an informal pollster on the issues of the day. It is a wildly unscientific process, to be sure, given that the people I “poll” are at least partially if not fully in the bag, and that our conversations tend to last only as long as it takes them to choke a butt, but it has been a revelatory experience nonetheless.
The short version of my “findings” boils down to this: people are pissed off and scared. They work too hard for too little, and just spent the last year watching fat cat pols in DC dicker and dither over a health care “reform” bill even the experts don’t seem to fully understand. They’ve watched their jobs, futures and family security explode like the Hindenburg, only to open a newspaper and read about scumbag CEOs and thieving brokerage houses raking in millions in bonuses and billions in profits as a reward for stealing everything but the spoons in the sideboard. They want the heads of these people to roll, and they want jobs, and they want their futures back, and if the politicians who have thus far failed to get this done were on fire in front of them, they wouldn’t piss on them to put them out.
So, screw my writing, my political analysis and my cushy little no-collar perspective. This is the bouncer talking, and these people in Washington had better listen good. This push for financial regulation and reform that’s about to happen had better be the real deal, had better have some big sharp teeth, and had better include putting some fat Wall Street fillet-mignon asses in prison for the havoc they have wreaked on the lives of millions of good, decent and diligent workers who deserve better.
George W. Bush and his people got a walk for the flagrant crimes they committed, and we’ve watched these Wall Street criminals thus far escape equally scot-free, and I am here to tell you, the view from the sidewalk is nothing but livid little people who wonder what it has to take before someone goes to jail for being a crook.
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