ROSE NOLEN: If political leaders met real people, a lot might get fixed

Monday, October 24, 2011 | 4:25 p.m. CDT

Whether I like it or not, my brain has been programmed for fall.

Toward the end of September, my energy level begins to decrease, and I settle down and begin to think of all the reasons I have for staying at home.

It's not that I don't want to go outside and participate in ongoing events. It just suddenly seems a lot easier to lie down, cover up and read a good book.

Fall is the favorite time of year for a lot of my friends. It's their favorite time to take vacations.

For some reason, they like to go to places like Florida or California where the sun is always shining. It always seems to me that they are running away from the sun to meet up with it someplace else. Obviously, I'm missing something here.

In any case, it's good to know this year's Social Security recipients will be getting a 3.6 percent benefit raise.

Two years have gone by since we last received a cost-of-living adjustment. Food, medicine, gas and everything else have gone up, so it will be good to get a little more jingle in our pockets.

Certainly, the raise won't be that much, but most of us are at the point where every little bit helps.

I once thought that if ordinary people could sit down with congressional leaders and explain what it's really like to live on a fixed income, it might make a difference.

That thought came about when I believed our political leaders were actually on the side of the people. Now that I can see they are openly attached to big business, I realize that average Americans have no place to go to tell their stories.

Political leaders are aware of our plight; they just don't care. Even though the Occupy Wall Street protestors have no concrete plan so far, they are the closest thing we have to a movement to change the course of our lives.

Only those in pleasing financial situations could possibly see hope in either of the two political parties. Both the Democrats and the Republicans are broken. They have abandoned the people and teamed up with the monied interests.

It's going to take a while before the protest movement takes shape and becomes a powerful force for change. Fortunately, there are still lot of smart people, young and old, who can look at our resources and find a way to level out the playing field.

The question is not how did we get into such a worrisome situation, but how do we get out?

Actually, I think it is only a matter of time before the smart people figure the problem out and find a solution.

We have been trained to believe that the federal monetary system is so complicated that we couldn't possibly understand it. In reality, more and more people are beginning to understand it, and they are going public with the information.

Mr. and Mrs. America just need to keep their ears open and remember Watergate.

When they do, I'm ready to talk. And listen.

You can join the conversation with Rose M. Nolen by calling her at 882-5734 or emailing her at

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Robin Nuttall October 25, 2011 | 9:15 a.m.

Yes. Exactly. I am a lifelong Democrat, but I am totally disgusted with the entire system, on both sides. It now costs so much money to be elected that politicians are forced to fundraise from day 1 of their time in office, in order to fund their re-election. I think that once someone has worked with the reality of spending millions just to get elected, it's very hard to then relate to people for whom a thousand dollars is a very large sum of money. It skews perspective, permanently.

And I don't care what they say, it is ludicrous to think that politicians are not influenced by those who give them the most money. Of course they are! If they did not favor those who donated big money to them, they would lose elections and not get donations any more. To try to pretend otherwise is just stupid. And if what big money contributor wants conflicts with what is best for ordinary folks or the environment? Oh well. Too bad. Big money wins.

I think we need at least a 3 party system. And I think we must put limits on how much any candidate can spend on a campaign. Give them all equal amounts of money; say a million dollars. Give them six weeks. During that six weeks they can spend their money however they like and campaign however they want. At the end of that six weeks have an election, and be done. Period.

(Report Comment)
frank christian October 25, 2011 | 12:12 p.m.

Ms Nolen - You and Robin N. are off base - out in left field as usual.

When "liberal Democrat" is the proper name for the culprits you decry, you write "they", as in "they both do it". A far cry from those that "do it" and those trying to correct the mess delivered to us by the first named. "We have been trained to believe that the federal monetary system is so complicated that we couldn't possibly understand it." Actually, "we" have had no training regarding the "federal monetary system". Our training for the past 40 years has been to expect all good things to come from a benevolent government. When somehow they do not, we get sermons from some (you two) and a silly effort of inaction called Occupation of Wall St. Every indication from the protestors shows that if they had their way we would stay on the same trail, with the same leaders. Why try to remember Watergate? You apparently can't even remember the real estate mortgage meltdown.

Robin there are many people with honesty as a prominent trait that could run for offices in our government. Obama, Clinton, Carter, Pelosi, Reid, Frank, Dodd etc. are not among them. Look around.

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