Wednesday, November 29, 2017

Will Greed Trump Our National Values?

How far can greed take you?

Are you willing to give up truth?

Are you willing to give up compassion and aid to the needy and infirm?

Are you willing to stoke bigotry?

Are you willing to weaken the foundations of government?

Are you willing to disengage from international protocols?

Are you willing to abandon decency?

Are you willing to forego civic and social values?

Are you willing to live with fewer environmental protections, with fewer consumer financial protections, with fewer worker protections, with fewer food and drug safety protections, with fewer civil rights for all?

Are you willing to live with brinksmanship rather than diplomacy?

Are you willing to discard the promise of the Statue of Liberty, willing to extinguish its beacon of opportunity extended to all who yearn “to breathe free”?

These are all relevant questions in the Age of Trump.

Lest we forget, Bill Clinton’s presidential campaign in 1992 set the template with its sharply pronounced slogan, “It’s the economy, stupid.”

Under Trump the stock market keeps going in the direction set by Barack Obama—up.  Consumer confidence has skyrocketed. Unemployment remains low. Productivity is above 3% two quarters in a row. 

People, especially the rich, are feeling flush. You might say even greedy. They want “more.” 

But at what cost to our national id? 

Can more value in our asset bank trump our national values? Can more money make us proud to be Americans at the risk of losing what it has meant to be an American? 

I surely hope not.