What's the matter
with the middle class?
Contributing to the decline of the middle class - households with gross annual income of around $50,000 - is its failure to fight for itself politically. Roughly half of the middle class now oppose public policies that would actually help them and support public policies that would actually hurt them -or both.
While they or their family members often are exploited at work - working long hours for low pay and receiving few or no benefits - they oppose labor unions trying to improve their working conditions.
Before the Affordable Care Act, private insurance companies could deny them health coverage because of pre-existing conditions, but they oppose "Obamacare," which outlaws such practices.
When disasters strike, they turn to police officers, public health officials and firefighters for help - but they support the demonizing of public-sector employees.
And finally, when the country's wealth has never been more concentrated at the top income levels, they support tax cuts for the rich that would inevitably mean higher taxes and fewer government services for themselves.
The wealthy, especially the top 1 percent of them, strongly support what is clearly in their own self interest. The middle class should do the same - support public policies that directly benefit them, such as having the rich pay their fair share of taxes, strengthening labor unions and providing needed social services and investments.
To the extent that they are successful, the results would not only rebuild the middle class and bolster the economic recovery, but also make our society more resilient and just.
should be left alone
Regarding the Sept. 6 letter, "Smoking minority controls Boardwalk":
I no longer smoke. I was diagnosed with chronic obstructive pulmonary disease seven years ago, and after numerous attempts finally won the war against my tobacco addiction.
Since that time, areas where you can smoke in public have become almost non-existent.
But at this juncture, smoking is still legal, and no doubt the influential tobacco lobbyists will continue to maintain that status.
So how much regulation is too much? Certainly the smokers on the Boardwalk don't create enough of a hardship for the nonsmokers to cause the creation of one more Big Brother rule.
Cape May Court House
Romney's actions legal
- but not presidential
Mitt Romney stows his money overseas to avoid paying taxes.
He also based his career at Bain Capital on foreclosing on businesses he purchased and firing or lowering the wages of the workers at those companies.
Both actions are legal. However, neither action presents an appropriate background for a president of the United States.
Romney's attitude toward the laws and workers of this country illustrate a certain callowness unacceptable for the chief executive of this nation.
Only one man is running for president. People are voting either for or against President Barack Obama.
Egg Harbor Township
the nation's diversity
While watching the Republican and Democratic conventions, as I panned the audiences, I noticed a distinct difference between the two.
The Republican audience was mostly white, but the Democratic audience had an array of colors. A variety of colors excites most. I think the Democratic Party mostly represents an inclusive America, whereas the Republican Party seems to represent a select few.
America is so much more than black and white. The U.S. is an amalgamation of people, cultures and religions. There are so many hues and shades to our rainbow. So let's embrace it and come together in November, and vote for the guy who represents the colors of these United States.
ANDRE MARIA JOHNSON
Full parkway exit on pike
was planned back in '59
Regarding the Sept. 2 story on the possibility of a full Garden State Parkway interchange on the White Horse Pike in Galloway Township:
Back in 1959, my good friend, Joe France, and I were both working for the Garden State Parkway. We were interested in buying the Lucky 7 Motel-Bar. This was located on the White Horse Pike alongside the parkway overpass. The reason we wanted to buy this property was because the talk in the Red Bank parkway headquarters was about building an on/off exit at that spot.
So, Galloway Township residents, that is how long this has been going on. It might get done before I pass on, as my good friend Joe did recently.