Monday, June 11, 2012

Why We Vote Against Ourselves

If you followed the Walker Recall election then one thing you could be sure of was that the Union Busting Governor would not get the vote of Union households and that teachers also would vote en mass to replace him. Well, Union households to the tune of one in three voted for him! And teachers while we have no statistics, must have voted for him also. The voter Exit polls came along the lines of older men voted for him and women voted against him. But his election was decisive and carried along the lines of independents Unions, teachers...the very people who demanded his ouster! What is up?

It would seem we don't see ourselves as we are. Take Republicans. They are clearly clearly on the side of the rich. They are supported by Big Business. They always have. They are supported by Wall Street and the Banks. They are supported by billionaires. They believe in being rich. They believe in rich people. They push legislation that will support the rich. If you are rich, then you should vote Republican, because they will help you. Yet. People who are middle class. People who depend on the very programs the Republicans want to do away with will vote for them. Why?

Middle class people still have a problem. They don't know they are middle class. They have confused having a new car or a large home with being rich. Rich people make a million dollars a year after taxes! I dont know anywone who makes that. This all goes back a way to when the middle class suddenly went to college and bought homes in the suburbs. They thought, well, this is the way rich people live. They had access to easy credit. They were told that paying taxes was bad because people wanted to take their money. No. They don't want to take middle class money, they want to take the money of the rich. But this is the confusion.

Democrats are the party of the middle class. They are the party of the poor. For good or bad. People don't like to see themselves as poor or maybe even middle class. Maybe the Union households didn't want to think of themselves as being like the people demonstrating in the street against Walker. They identified more with the powers that be that said we are more powerful than Unions. People want to be on the side of the winners. Maybe that is advertising.

So when you pull that lever, it may be  hard to see yourself as you are. Are you more like the rich or the poor? And if you are middle class, then who will really help you? Maybe we like to see ourselves as we want and are not willing to look into that mirror. Perception is reality.


Books by William Hazelgrove