I am a chump. I am – correction: I was – a middle class, progressive, working parent and home owner. I am no longer working, and I am no longer middle class, and I fear soon I will no longer be a home owner, if those two things don’t turn around right quick.
My husband and I have always paid our bills. We have private health insurance, we volunteer within the community, and we pay our taxes. I have been applying for jobs for over two years since I got my Masters degree, because I have been underemployed. Before I became unemployed I worked for a program for kids on Medicaid, providing services that I cannot afford for my own kids because we have private insurance. Chump.
There’s a good chance we won’t make it financially next year. Our health insurance costs multiple hundreds of dollars a month, and we have an HSA; but we still can’t afford to take our kids to the doctor, because we can’t pay the $5,000 deductible. Our insurance premium will go up 15% next year. My daycare costs almost twice as much as my health care. We don’t qualify for any assistance of any kind anywhere. Chump.
Do you realize how much better off we’d be if my husband lost his job and we walked away from all our financial responsibilities? We’d qualify for public assistance and my kids would be able to participate in more activities. I picked up a job application today that asks if I have relied on public assistance in the past year or so because the company will get benefits from the government if they hire people who have. Well, I haven’t, so you know where my application will go. Chump.
What was it Rick Santeli looked up and yelled? “Are you listening, President Obama?” Until this morning I was a staunch Obama supporter. I volunteered for your campaign in Iowa, starting before the caucuses – made phone calls, went to meetings, manned a voting center during the 2008 elections. I have stuck up for you to strangers, friends, family, my husband. I had my children chanting “OBAMA! OBAMA!” – ok that was ‘cause they were so cute doing it, but you get the point. I even still wear my Obama sweatshirt out in public, withstanding the stares – and glares- I get everywhere I go. I have been a true believer. Chump.
Until this morning when I woke up, checked my favorite news app, and my heart stopped. The headline was that the Whitehouse had given in on the tax cuts for the rich. The article went on to explain that David Axelrod had come out with statement that you had to give in a little to keep my tax cuts in place. ‘Well, at least there’s that,’ I thought. Until I saw that the Deficit Commission Report had recommend taking away the mortgage tax credit and the child tax credit. Not to mention that if the tax cuts don’t expire for the rich, I will end up paying more for the deficit. Chump.
I forgave you when you folded so easily on the public option in health care, and I trusted that you knew what you were doing letting the Republicans act like toddlers throwing tantrums, telling lies, disrespecting the office of the President, and coming out with the whole ‘Party of “No”’ thing. But this is enough. You can tell that even Mr. Axelrod is getting tired of the, ‘Well, we had to make some concessions because that’s how the world works. . . ‘speech. Making concessions is only productive when the other side is working for resolution too. But right now it feels like I am working much harder than all of you, Chump.