Crossville Chronicle, Crossville, TN


June 11, 2013

We the People: Your vote — use it or lose it

CROSSVILLE — A powerful faction within the Republican Party is determined to downsize our federal government. They want to reshape programs that originated to protect common folks like us.

Corporations and private “investors” see huge profits to be made by “privatizing” public programs such as Social Security, Medicare, public education and the U.S. Post Office, turning them over to “private” businesses.

Most of these programs are not “entitlements” and have been paid for in advance by tax payers. These programs were enacted to “share” America’s wealth and protect the masses from the powers of the very rich. A responsible capitalism should provide decent “social” programs, but the current crop of politicians and their wealthy masters seem to want a vicious free-for-all, with the poor, elderly and those with health problems being left to die penniless in the street.

We are in danger of losing our public benefits because “We the People” have little true representation in Washington. Mismanagement by an earlier Congress, including a loan of solvent Social Security funds to the general budget, the costly Vietnam war and the height of ignorance or planned deceit by invading Iraq — all were very profitable to those who were “invested.”

Vice President Dick Cheney’s Halliburton $39.5 billion from Iraq alone, and then moved its headquarters to Dubai. The outright thievery by Wall Street during the Bush years benefited the already wealthy. “Big Business” now respects no laws (regulations), wants no controls and expects no punishments! Irresponsible predatory capitalism is a public danger.

Some were taught that it isn’t polite to discuss politics. But politics affects everyone, and it needs to be discussed and understood. Americans who don’t pay attention or else accept lies from those paid to tell them “how” to vote, Americans who don’t even “bother” to vote at all, are now in danger of losing even this Constitutional “entitlement.” Many have already lost their ability to vote in recent elections because of long lines in certain districts. This disenfranchisement of voters who live in the “wrong” districts will continue. Redistricting, gerrymandering and voter suppression are all being done to eliminate the power of “We the People”! Some actually think these dirty tricks are clever politics and admire the effort. They won’t when it finally reaches their neighborhoods.

Voting out of lifetime habit, not knowing issues or which candidate actually represents the people is almost as bad as failing to vote.

Corporations and the very wealthy are buying our politicians over and under the table, making our elected representatives their minions. If you don’t believe this is happening, look around! The current Republican leadership has attempted to privatize Social Security for years. Now they talk of vouchers for senior’s health care. Our post office may close, and too many prisons have been privatized, with each prisoner now costing $40,000 a year! The public school system and teachers are being threatened and underfunded purposely so for-profit charter schools can take over. Families should realize how that will affect the cost of educating their children.

Every voter must learn which political party and politicians represent them and which only care about the greedy, those who want to make even more money by selling out America and the average citizen.

• • •

This column represents alternative thoughts to other published columns in the Crossville Chronicle. “We the People” is published each Wednesday. Opinions expressed in “We the People” columns are not necessarily those of the Crossville Chronicle publisher, editor or staff. For more information, contact John Wund, editor, at

Text Only
  • Lion and the Lamb: A promised land?

    Back in biblical times there was a group of people who believed that God had promised them a segment of land on this planet that would be theirs forever. Who could have known back then that this ancient promise and territorial justification would be used by their descendants today to claim the same segment of land?

    July 29, 2014

  • We the People: Bring back the American dream

    Our economy continues to expand. The stock market is at record levels, yet many ask why so many of us are struggling?  Barely half of us believe the American dream is attainable.

    July 29, 2014

  • Tidbits: Taking a low-tech break

    Feeling increasingly strangled by my electronic leash, with phone, text messages, email, social media and a variety of other forms of communication always at my side, I took the weekend off.

    July 28, 2014

  • Stumptalk: Governing before and after mass corruption

    Laws in America were originally written simply. Every citizen could read them quickly and understand their meaning. The founders wrote the Declaration of Independence, the Articles of Confederation, the Northwest Ordinance and the Constitution of the United States, none of which was longer than 4,500 words.

    July 28, 2014

  • We the People: The last dance

    Charlie Hayden’s last recording session with his early partner, Keith Jarrett, was in 2007.  The songs they played were mostly melancholy.  The second album coming from that session includes Weil’s “My Ship” and Porter’s “Every Time We Say Goodbye.” The dark ballad “Goodbye,” by Gordon Jenkins, was the final track.

    July 22, 2014

  • Lion and the Lamb: Living in a pressure cooker

    The Gaza Strip, a small Palestinian territory about the size of Washington, D.C., has been in the news almost every day.  Its key location at the eastern end of the Mediterranean Sea has attracted a number of occupying powers over the years, and it has  been at the center of much Middle East history.

    July 22, 2014

  • Tidbits: The excitement of election day

    On March 12, 1996, there were 427,183 votes cast in the presidential primary election. Among those votes was mine, the first vote I cast in an election, just two days after my 18th birthday.

    July 21, 2014

  • Raising the minimum wage

    My first job from which FICA was withheld was a minimum wage job, seventy-five cents an hour. And yes, even then no one could live on that little money. However, I was a high schooler living at home where my father provided room and board. The job gave me pocket money to buy gasoline, to take my girlfriend out for movies and burgers, and to buy tickets for baseball games.

    July 21, 2014

  • Lion and the Lamb: Children on the move

    The news this past week has focused on the humanitarian crisis developing on our southern border. Thousands of unaccompanied children from El Salvador, Guatemala and Honduras seeking to escape from the violence, human trafficking and extreme poverty in their countries have been entering the United States.

    July 15, 2014

  • We the People: Memo to gun rights groups

    The recent incident in California helps us understand why we cannot rely on mental health services alone to solve the problem of gun violence.

    July 15, 2014

Marketplace Marquee
Must Read
Section Teases
Seasonal Content
AP Video
Texas Scientists Study Ebola Virus Smartphone Powered Paper Plane Debuts at Airshow Southern Accent Reduction Class Cancelled in TN Raw: Deadly Landslide Hits Indian Village Obama Chides House GOP for Pursuing Lawsuit New Bill Aims to Curb Sexual Assault on Campus Russia Counts Cost of New US, EU Sanctions 3Doodler Bring 3-D Printing to Your Hand Six PA Cops Indicted for Robbing Drug Dealers Britain Testing Driverless Cars on Roadways Raw: Thousands Flocking to German Crop Circle At Least 20 Chikungunya Cases in New Jersey Raw: Obama Eats Ribs in Kansas City In Virginia, the Rise of a New Space Coast Raw: Otters Enjoy Water Slides at Japan Zoo NCAA Settles Head-injury Suit, Will Change Rules Raw: Amphibious Landing Practice in Hawaii Raw: Weapons Fire Hits UN School in Gaza Raw: Rocket Launches Into Space With Cargo Ship Broken Water Main Floods UCLA
Hyperlocal Search
Premier Guide
Find a business

Walking Fingers
Maps, Menus, Store hours, Coupons, and more...
Premier Guide
Weather Radar
2014 Readers' Choice
Graduation 2014