Hard work should be rewarded / by kevin murray

America, sells itself as a nation of meritocracy, and to a certain degree in many different ways, it is.  However, income growth and income distribution, clearly shows that over the last few decades, that the rich have been getting richer, and that the concentration of wealth in America, the world's richest nation, has been getting concentrated into fewer and fewer hands, which is something that our progressive tax system as well as our equal opportunity playing field should actually be mitigating, but, in fact, this has not been occurring.


The most important thing, isn't necessarily that there should be a more even distribution of income in America, though, that would be nice; but rather, within America, that there should be a firm mindset, which stipulates that if you work hard, that you should receive whether directly or indirectly a wage, benefits and services package, that clearly reflects that hard work is fairly rewarded; rather than that those that work hard, but apparently are in the wrong profession, don't get much of anything, and must thereby struggle mightily day by day.


To demonstrate, how upside down this world is, companies such as Apple, are given special consideration for parking their profits overseas, so that, when a deal is struck, it is to their advantage; so as reported by cnn.com, Apple will just pay "…a repatriation tax rate of 15.5% for returning money to the U.S. from their overseas cash pile," saving them billions for not having to have paid the corporate tax rate which had been 35%.  So too, many of the richest and biggest corporations, such as WalMart and Amazon, amongst so many others, get special property tax rates, as well as special tax set asides from States, governments, localities, and counties, so as to essentially not pay their fair share of taxes.  In actuality, everyday, in every possibly conceivable way, the largest and most profitable corporations headquartered in America are able to through the usage of the best accountants, the best lawyers, and the best lobbyists, essentially receive special privileges and basically welfare from all sorts of governmental agencies and institutions, whereas, the standard laborer, can't even get a break.


In point of fact, whether a living wage as currently envisioned is instituted or not, isn't so important; what is important, though, is that the overall package for those that work hard and are putting forth an honest day's work, should be that they are all entitled to in one way or another: decent healthcare, decent housing, decent transportation, decent education, and a decent life; demonstrated by a pay and benefits package, subsidized by the government, if necessary, and created for that express purpose.


If, on the other hand, the United States, is not prepared to see that each of their citizens that are playing by the rules, and are doing their part to be productive, are rewarded for that hard work; at a time, in which America has wealth that is unprecedented in the annals of history, than there isn't any real hope that this will ever happen.   This should be a country that lives up to its credo, of justice, liberty, and equality for all, but obviously does not, for these words ring hollow; so that, America in fit, form, and function, is really a country run by the elite and the privileged, selling the illusion, that all is fair, whereas, the truth is, this fair is all so foul.