No light at the end of the oil pipe line

It seems like wherever you turn, the prospects for the future are anything but hopeful. Bush and co. are forecasting doom like a melodramatic fairy tale. "Evil people" are going to take over the world ladies and gentlemen, so keep your kids inside and fly those flags with pride!

Sadly, they are in part correct. The threat of global crisis and war is constantly looming in this unstable epoch we now live in. The chaotic anarchy of the "free" market, coupled with America's imperialist bullying, has left many regions of the world devastated. Economic melt downs occur frequently, burning like fire through Latin America and the confidence of consumers around the world. All to the constant sound of a growing gap between the world's rich and poor. This is what they call "war time democracy."

As the fault lines of capitalism spread, they have now finally reached the shores of it's number one promoter: America. Bush refuses to accept the obvious, that war and internal unrest is a reaction to material conditions. When countries are plummeted into poverty, they will fight to gain what they need to survive. When underdeveloped nations grow tired of sewing shoes for Nike, they will boil like a pot of water. Any intelligent human understands the solution is not to turn up the heat.

Here in America poverty levels have increased for the first time in eight years, a clear indicator that the recent economic crash has slammed home on workers, regardless of race, location or gender. The number of poor Americans has reached 32.9 million, from 11.3 percent in 2000, to 11.7 percent, an increase of 1.3 million people. But what does it mean to be "poor" anyways? The official poverty levels are $14,128 for a family of three, $11,569 for married couples, and $9,039 for any individual. (According to Bush anything more than nine thousand dollars is enough to live happily on – let's see him and his CEO buddies try it!) The number of poor families rose to 6.8 million, up from 6.4 in 2000. Poverty stricken families rose to 9.2 percent from 8.7 in 2000.

All this while the wealthiest fifth of the population received half of all household income last year, up from 45 percent in 1985. The poorest fifth? Only received 3.5 percent of total household income, down from 4 percent in 1985. Here, in the Land of Opportunity! What are we to conclude? That those hardworking Enron officials really 'earned' their incomes? And the rest of us, we just must be lazy. It's our own fault! After all, anyone in this system can "make it."

If only that were true. The truth of the matter is our government is not capable of providing for its own people, never mind deciding what is best for workers and youth around the world. Bush cares about the same things that Saddam does. The same thing that Osama Bin Ladin does. The same thing that the bosses of the West coast dock workers do. Wealth and power. Saddam Hussein can't run his country, and neither can our current "president."

The only solution is an international workers democracy. Together, workers of the world can decide how to allocate wealth and how best to eradicate poverty. Together we can rid the world of this monstrous system which damns so many to a life of poverty, with no hope in sight. We can create a system where our jobs, healthcare and quality education are guaranteed. We can create a future devoid of war. Perhaps Bush was right. You're either with us, or you're against us. So raise your fists or your flags, because the gap is widening, and poor people can only toil for so long. The pot has already begun to boil with revolutionary activity in Argentina, and civil wars in many places around the globe. How long until America realizes it's not exempt from the rest of the world?


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