You have expressed my thoughts eloquently. You know, of course, that you would be labeled a Marxist or a Communist or charitably, a Socialist. Perhaps your next letter could be about the meaningless of labels - how we bastardize terms to suit our biases.

I would call you a humanist. A person who thinks every human has value and should experience the basics of a decent life. Especially when there is plenty of money to do it all - easily.

One sad and ironic aspect of all this is that the Oligarchs could prosper quite fully if all Americans were engaged in productive work and had the basics of life covered.

We are the richest nation to have ever existed on the Earth. And yet, we operate as if this were still a "Gilded Age" where a handful of people control the resources of the nation. And millions grovel, scrape by and suffer until they are shot, overdosed or bankrupted. At best, they are aged out of the workforce. Because elders are now disposable - often lucky to be warehoused.

It is time for a revolution where the issues you describe so well become the platform. It's going to take a new movement. It will need a name.

Despite your attempt to disassociate from the political extremes, I must suggest that our ideas of social justice and fairness do...historically and philosophically...have their origins on the left. Not a communist or totalitarian left. But as you aptly refer to, a Nordic left. They would consider themselves centrists, I suspect. Because they put all people at the center of their organisational chart. While they believe in a people first approach, they also foster very strong business sectors.

You refer to Elizabeth Warren, she was my candidate in 2020. I think she has been a champion for the people. If she had been a man, I think she would have clinched the nomination. But adamant women are a turn off in our still macho society. Men can bellow and be admired. Women raise their voices with indignation and they are "shrill".

The only label I can come up with for this movement is Democratic Socialism. A nation where nobody starves, everyone is educated equally and healthcare is a human right. A level playing field from which the hardest working people can claim even greater success. A level playing field where wealth is not hoarded but used to improve the lives of everyone. A level playing field where the "dignity of work" is recognized.

A level playing field where we recognize the value of ALL jobs. A world where if you work hard at a full time job - whether collecting trash or waiting tables or teaching kids or nursing the sick or designing a new car or coding the next video game or providing legal services to the poor or any job that keeps this engine of society moving - you are valued for your participation. If you work hard, you thrive. If you work hard, you are not a burden - but an asset to society. No matter what your job. Because we need you. And we value your contribution.

None of this is hard to accomplish if we leap over the first hurdle. And that is to make the masses aware that they are being bled by the wealthy. We live in Massachusetts. During the last election, we had a non-binding ballot question: "Would you like to see the state establish a universal healthcare system and make private health insurance companies illegal". The question passed.

I think Massachusetts and a few other states will become laboratories where new social structures will be created. And I think universal health care may be where it should begin. In the future, we will look back on the private health insurance model with the same disgust we have for slavery.

Well, that's what happens when somebody like you writes a brilliant letter and I have a strong coffee.

Do I have your permission to cross post this? I don't have a huge following. But it is growing and I know several people who would enjoy your eloquence.

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Well, I for one thoroughly enjoyed yesterday. The baboons strutted and beat their chests, and Kevin McCarthy got the humiliation he so richly deserved. And we got to see George Santos in inaction. That’s not a bad day’s entertainment.

Finally and fully, there’s nothing to fear from the clowns still hanging around after the Trump morass. They’ll be annoying for two years and will then be swiftly punted from office.

I’m actually very optimistic for the future (the climate crisis notwithstanding). Once again Americans skidded right up to the edge of the abyss, leaned over and peered into it, nearly toppling in in the process, and then pulled back. I used to think that Winston Churchill’s observation, “The Americans always do the right thing. But first they explore all other options.” was amusing, if a bit overstated. Now I believe it’s like the First Commandment of your country.

You know of course that I’m fully in agreement with the points you made in this excellent article. Your outline of the fiendish escalation and intertwining of America’s biggest problems and worst injustices is deadly accurate.

But the old Overton window groans and creaks and then it shifts suddenly. That which couldn’t be said becomes worthy of consideration. And when that gets cracked open, big change is possible.

It’s not going to be perfect, but I think America is going to be a worthy project again.

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Thank you for your thoughts. So much needs fixing including the military with its obscene budget. Why do we need military bases in 80 other countries (I think I remember that number from D. Sjursen’s book)? I also think it is dangerous to have that big of a military plus many thousands of sworn officers in police forces all over the country including university campuses. Police forces that act like soldiers looking for enemies. We have about 240 land miles in Milwaukee County (WI) and over 2000 sworn officers in that space alone. People are handcuffed and treated like major criminals for minor stuff like shoplifting. Meanwhile the police budgets take up the major portion of municipal budgets in the same way the U.S. military budget soaks up the great portion of the non-leveraged U.S. revenue. Do we really have a functioning democracy when this exists?

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