Stevieslaw: Our Tragic Loss of Faith

Our local paper, the CDT, picked up a story today by AP writers, Joan Lowy and Tom Krisher, that the Republicans are packing the “must pass” transportation bill with “industry-sought provisions that would block, delay, or roll back safety rules.” This would preserve the high rate of accidents for trains handling crude oil, promote more frequent Amtrak derailments and permit the auto and trucking industries to ensure that our highways are even less safe. Who could possibly be opposed to that! It is almost as if representatives of our major industries actually occupied Senate and House seats—but, of course our democracy doesn’t work that way.
What’s new about that? Well perhaps nothing. But it strikes me that we are more and more electing representatives who do not even try to hide which side they are on. Sure, they substitute “jobs” for “obscene profits,” in their press releases and then go on to support corporate welfare for Walmart and the like, but is there anyone out there who cannot figure out that “no tax increases ever” will equate to shitty schools and impassable roads and bridges or that fighting for coal over climate will, sooner than later, bring the wrath of the heavens down on our heads.
The truth is that in rolling back safety rules or ensuring that multinational corporations have every advantage, we sadly show an incredible lack of faith. I am ashamed of us. Do we really believe that Exxon-Mobil—to pick a single example, will have any trouble finding a way to make unbelievably large amounts of money from say, green energy? Have faith! They will be as right as rain.
The poet, Ogden Nash, once wrote that it was “always when for Professional men.” We might well substitute “it is always when for multinational corporations,” but sadly, it doesn’t scan.

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