I'd like to say I'm rich and, if I'm talking about friends and family then I am able to say I'm rich. However I would also like to say I'm rich monetarily and in that sense of the word I cannot.
I wouldn't say I'm poor either; I am able to provide for my family, have health care and can afford to take one vacation every year. Although due to the current cost of living I'd have to say I rank in the 'lower middle class', if there still is such a thing. I realize that in this time in our country I count myself lucky to still be employeed. That said I don't agree with protesting a message of occupation, not showing that ingenuity we are known for and sitting around waiting for the government to fix a system which we helped create. If you don't like this system create something that will thrive within it, help put people to work, maybe create an industry against lobbyists. After watching the demonstrators for over a month I now find myself wishing for the 99% protest group to do what for so long now I've wished our government would do, make at least one decision for the benefit of all...
As for myself, like most people I am helping me and my family. Despite working hard, continuing my education, and remaining a dedicated employee I make less money now than I did four years ago. How is this possible you ask? No, I was never demoted, I have an excellent work record and last year I received an increase in my annual salary. The reason for my current state is that due to the stock market, real estate crash, a poor economy to shield employees from layoffs my private sector employer had a three and a half year rate freeze. I can't blame them corporations look at the bottom line. What didn't freeze were the taxes or the benefits payments. I don't think government officials take into consideration when creating new legislation, approving rent hikes, or enforceing old tax laws is that 'we' the people of America, keep working toward something better, continue hoping our government will divide its party lines not to agree on every point but to agree to free America from the idea of the 'trickle' effect. This no longer has as great an effect as it once did for Americans; corporations have trickled to India, China, countries where labor is cheaper and the employment laws are lax. WE must offer incentives for corporations to see how creating jobs for Americans would benefit their bottom line. It is a sad truth as I see it, but a realistic one.
I won't write about the Banks, mortgage brokers or hedge funds, as far as I am concerned that issue is up to Attorney General and Federal Trade commision, not up to, rather the duty to the public for them to seek out truth. Big business documents come two by two and they choose which is more favorable for them.
I am not one of the 99% as they see us, I don't want a 24/7 party, I don't dislike people with alot of money. However I want people to realize the value of our civil service workers, teachers, emt's doctors, police officers, etc... Rich get things for free so do the poor, what do I get? I get a steady pay check for myself and my family, a chance to retire most likely without social security by the time I'm 67 and a dwindling hope for the American Dream. I don't owe the companies I work for anything, and I'd like to think our government feels the same.