cross posted at the demise

This is the thanks they get? Our teachers and our librarians, civil engineers and school crossing guards, trash collectors and public safety protectors, public prosecutors and public defenders, snowplow drivers, accountants, file clerks, telephone operators, translators, healthcare workers, those who care for our sick and elderly and our forgotten.

Acme Arts Collective and its member artists are cooperating on this Thanksgiving day to publicize the attack on public employees carried out by both the Democrats who control the statehouse in Illinois and the Illinois Republicans who have conspired with the oligarchic predatory class to demonize Illinoisans who selflessly choose to serve the public as teachers, police, firefighters, public safety inspectors; your neighbors who’s energies have educated your children, saved the lives of your parents and grandparents and, yes, worked thanklessly to attend to the waste that is created daily by the vast mechanisms in modern America that shift wealth from the poorest to the most wealthy.

Our friends and neighbors who chose to give up the comforts that would have otherwise been accorded to them in our unfair two class system should they have decided to ‘make money in the private sector’ and cravenly given their energies to gamble and steal in the fashion of modern America’s felonious financial sector are now being attacked in a organized and systemic fashion by the multi-headed Cerberus that is the financial/political/media industrial complex. The protectors of the rich and un-civil at the Civic Committee of the Commercial Club of Chicago, the unfair-taxation-matrons at the Illinois Chamber of Commerce and the ALEC lap-puppies at the Illinois Policy Institute have banded together with the politicians from both parties who bear responsibility for Illinois’ pension ‘crisis’ in a greed induced blitzkrieg to steal pension benefits from poor, old, sick, infirm and literally helpless Illinoisans who spent their lives working to make the civic space of Illinois function for the past 30 years.

That is correct, the richest industrialists, the most bought off press and our hopelessly sycophantic to business interests politicians and weasley wealth protecting “not-for-profits” who run Illinois have banded together for the single purpose of taking food out of the mouths of our neighbors and taking medicine away from our friends who are disabled, infirm and diseased for the simple to understand single purpose – because they are greedy.

Lets break it down -

The Industrialists:
These are Illinoisans who exploit the value added to our state by public employees every single day. Their employees were taught how to read, write and reason by your neighbor, a school teacher. They ship the plastic widgets that they sell to make themselves fabulously wealthy on roads that were built using public funds that created thousands of middle class private sector jobs, and are kept safe by public sector engineers, safety inspectors and police. But these unpatriotic parasitic wealthy Illinoisans refuse to pay their fair share of income taxes to support the intellectual and physical infrastructure in Illinois that they themselves have used to become wealthy and, instead, are conspiring to ensure that old ladies do not have life saving medications.

The Media:
The Editorial board of the bankrupt Chicago Tribune, who themselves amass outrageous pension benefits that ensure that they will each receive pensions of hundreds of thousands of dollars a year when they retire, have banded with private sector companies to make certain that the school teachers and librarians who read the Chicago Tribune will have to choose between medicine and food in their retirement. Acting as the water-carrier for wealthy individuals and corporations, the Chicago Tribune has led a greed inspired propaganda blitzkrieg against the poorest among us who gave their entire working careers to serve the public. The Chicago Tribune does not think that it is fair that the average retired state employee who receives a pension lives on $20,000, but thinks that giving a combined $42.5 million in bonuses to a group of its employees just last year amounts to being a ‘productive business enterprise’ …did I mention that the company is bankrupt?

The Politicians:

 In this great country (which has been the spawn of many courageous citizen politicians, from Robert La Follette to Smedley Butler) it is an embarrassment that Illinois political culture has become nothing more than a pay-to-play indictment waiting to happen. Unlike the public servants who did their jobs for their entire careers who today’s politicians want to steal from, the politicians in the Illinois statehouse, and again embarrassingly both the controlling Democrats and the Republicans, did not do the single most important thing in their job description for the past 30 years; they failed to raise sufficient revenue to run the state because they were scared to raise taxes on their patrons, Illinois’ wealthiest citizens.

We say : ENOUGH!
End the tax breaks for the wealthy.
End the financial hand-outs to the wealthy in the form of sweetheart deals and no bid contracts given to the politically connected dollar donating wealthy.

We demand that public servants/our politicians do their job and raise sufficient revenue to run our state.

We demand that public servants/our politicians stand up for Illinoisans who chose give their energies, talents and intelligence to all of us as they chose to become public servants.

We demand that public servants/our politicians pledge to not cut pension benefits of old, infirm, disabled public employees.

Public employees’ strength and energy made the wealthy wealthy, it is time for them to pay our public servants for the hard work they do every day for all Illinoisans. Tax the wealthiest Illinoisans to pay for their fair share of the services that they have utilized to become wealthy…It’s only fair.

Its time for every Illinoisan, in an honest expression of thanks and support for our teachers, librarians sanitation workers, civil servants of all professions take action and contact our state senators and state representatives and demand that public workers be provided the benefits that they have paid for out of every paycheck and earned through their work supporting all Illinoisans.

Tell our politicians succinctly and with conviction; “Raise taxes on the wealthiest Illinoisans to pay our teachers, police, firefighters and all of our public servants who we all rely upon everyday.”

Photo by Tax Credits, used on Creative Commons license