Home > F. Politics & the Velvet Revolution > U.S. Politics in 2014: Poverty, Pills, and Marriage

U.S. Politics in 2014: Poverty, Pills, and Marriage

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File:U.S. Distribution of Wealth, 2007.jpg

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RT has long been of the opinion that the best way to address political issues is to determine what the worst problem a country faces is and then fix it.

Having just perused the above pie chart, he humbly submits that poverty is the worst problem in the United States.

Now, he is also of the opinion that things have been getting somewhat better on the financial equality front in America, primarily because of the administration of Barak Obama and, in particular, the Affordable Care Act, which came into full force at the beginning of 2014. The ACA should inject a considerable sum of money (and healthcare) in just the place it’s needed: the bottom 40%.

He’s eagerly awaiting the chance to test the ACA’s prescription provisions; he’ll have the chance in the next couple of days and will report back.

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In other news, RT is plain boggled by the rapid advance of the liberal agenda in certain areas. In particular, he notes the Federal ruling in Utah striking down the state’s ban on same-sex marriage. Until this ruling, RT thought that same-sex marriage would be legalized in mostly in the northern and western states that have already extended some form of recognition and protection to same-sex couples. But now we have a judge legalizing gay marriage in Utah, one of the most conservative states in the country. This is just as bold and radical as it gets: despite the historic and necessary role of federalism in the United States, despite a 2004 Utah referendum that amended Utah’s constitution to ban same-sex marriage, despite the doctrine of the Mormon Church, the founding institution of Utah, the law must go: it violates the right of gay couples to due process and equal protection under the law.

RT was moved by the photos of gay couples waiting at county courthouses to get married. They have waited long enough. This is one of the moments when RT is proud to be American. This is what makes America a leader of the free world, not its vaunted military strength. We have a right to call ourselves a leader because we have the courage to strike down laws that persecute and discriminate against minorities, be they cultural, religious, racial, or economic.

And then, as if all this isn’t enough, another Utah judge strikes down Utah’s ban on cohabitation of consenting couples. This doesn’t legalize polygamy, but it comes close by permitting multiple individuals (as long as they have only one marriage license) to live on the same premises. RT will freely admit that, while he knows several gay couples, he knows no polygamous family. As a single man, never married, he has no idea of what taking care of many children might be like. But as long as the union is consensual and no other laws are being broken, he is willing to give the institution a chance. Fair is fair.

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And by the way, just what more should we be doing to help the bottom 40 percent get a bigger slice of the pie? RT senses another post in the offing…

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Pie Chart: U.S. Distribution of Wealth,2007; Source: Edward N. Wolff, Working Paper No. 589: “Recent Trends in Household Wealth in the United States: Rising Debt and the Middle-Class Squeeze—an Update to 2007”, Levy Economics Institute of Bard College, pp. 44, March 2010. WikiCmns; CC 3.0 Unported.

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  1. January 5, 2014 at 9:27 am

    Let all right-thinking fairminded citizens of the world hope that all this isn’t a false dawn come the next election.

    • January 9, 2014 at 5:06 pm

      cg: thanks for pointing out the back-and-forth nature of political advance. as it turns out, in the time since i wrote this post, the supreme court has issued a stay on the Utah judge’s ruling until it can be reviewed by the 10th circuit court. no more marriage licenses (but the ones that were issued remain valid). i think we’re looking at the beginning of a prize fight over the fate of gay marriage in conservative America. & it will be interesting to see whether or not the ruling concerning cohabitation in Utah is challenged. RT

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