The mortgage crisis meltdown rages on, and the loansharking sub prime lenders get bailouts, the CEOs of loansharking sub prime lending corporations get bailed out, and the homeowners stuck with these predatory mortgage rates get bailed out. That leaves the rest of us.
We--meaning I and most of the people I talk to every day, work with-- are renters.
Yeah renters. Remember us? We recognized that our low paying jobs don't pay enough to take on a house, property taxes, maintenance, insurance. So we didn't buy one. We pay rent. We pay the landlord's mortgage.
We work hard for our money. We take care of our apartments, because they are our homes. Our apartments and rented houses are where we raise our kids, visit with family and friends, celebrate birthdays and holidays, cook our meals. Renters are actually people, just like the people who bought--or tried to buy a piece of Bush's "ownership society."
We renters decorate, paint, and keep our living spaces clean and neat. We pay our rent, sacrificing other things we may want or need to keep the landlord happy and well fed....
So what happens when there is no more paycheck, because a company closes. Three Rite Aid drug stores closed here in the past month. A downtown bank branch closed. Everywhere there are empty buildings with boarded up windows. Both residential and business.
What happens when there is still a paycheck but it's cut in half? Do we pay half the rent? Yeah, right--try telling that to the landlord.
This is the game businesses are playing on us. Fire us without firing us. Cut hours to the bone. Double up the workload on the workers who still have jobs. In one mid sized retail chain, while hourly workers over age 50 have all been hit with reduced hours since January, this company has been hiring new workers. Go figure.
So I want to know, President G Warbucks Bush, and members of Congress: Where the $@*! is our bail out?
How are we going to pay our rents and stay off the streets? Where's our reward for being responsible enough to educate ourselves about mortgages before jumping on the bandwagon-- and correctly concluding that we can't afford a house right now, so we opt to rent.
Your $300-$600 economic stimulus ain't gonna cut it. We already lost wa-a-ay more than that in lost wages this year.
And amazingly, in this crashed and burned economy you're not even extending unemployment benefits for those workers who've lost their jobs. How do you people in Washington sleep at night? What lies do you tell yourselves to justify the way human beings have to live--if you can call it living--in this country? What drugs are you people on?
Have you been on a New York subway train lately? Did you see the people sleeping on the concrete floors in the winter? No, they're not all drunks, addicts, or crazy. Talk to them sometime. You'll learn something.
Have you visited a food pantry lately? Have you ever in your lives taken a bus? Ride the bus all day in a medium or small city and listen to the bus riders talk about their work day. Listen to the bus drivers. It's a different planet from the one y'all live on. Come on down to Earth.
Don't come empty handed. Show us the money.