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Letter to the Editor: Free markets, minimum wage

Published: Friday, Aug. 1, 2014 11:28 p.m. CDT

To the Editor:

Having taken a lot of time reflecting on today’s job market, and the lack of job opportunities, I have come up with this.

Giving credit where due, here is part of Emma Lazarus’ offering in a sonnet engraved on our Statue of Liberty: “Give me your tired, your poor, your huddled masses yearning to breathe free ... .” This great country was built through the effort of these masses, which, in truth, are us. This country was made great through our efforts, providing a beacon to those in need, a refuge where individualism was not only tolerated, but encouraged. We were the leader, as well as the Ugly American; no good deed goes unpunished. We could be proud, and hold our heads high, until – that is – avarice won the day.

All that we worked for as a people, all that opportunity, has been uprooted and sent across the seas, and plopped onto the shores of those tired, poor, huddled masses yearning to breathe free. Now they have jobs, but little or no opportunity. They are overseen by those same all-powerful governments they sought to escape by coming to America. Forget minimum wage, they are fortunate to make what we think we deserve hourly, in a year. They cannot complain, lest they lose all.

We have allowed our “greatness” to go to our heads, and have thus lost the drive that made us what we were. Pride has come before the fall, and fall we have, and there is great potential to fall much, much further. Our leaders feed that fantasy in order to remain at that Horn of Plenty that has become public service. We thrill at receiving the government dole, be it grants or welfare. The “government” has lots of money, we are encouraged to think, never mind the facts that this money comes from us, taxed from our hard-earned dollars. We have allowed our leaders the privilege of borrowing what they cannot tax; bringing us further into debt, a debt so huge that future multi-generations will continue to pay. The least palatable part of this debt is in the hands of those same oppressors, those whom the teeming masses sought to escape.

And we, the people, are not enraged about this. We are encouraged to take ourselves further into personal debt, as we while away our time playing games and enjoying life.

Jim Ledbetter

North Aurora

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