The Pew Research Center report cited in Larry Kaufmann's "The Occupy Movement Has It All Wrong" (12/16/11) says 81% of households in 2006 had higher real incomes than their parents had in 1968. Letters from two readers (12/30/11) say this is only because more women now work, raising the incomes of two-income households. But women have always worked. Pioneer women worked. The difference is now more women are paid for their work, so it shows up in data.
Before women worked outside the home for pay, the complaint from them was that they were denied the job, er, careers that men had to fulfill their lives. Remember Betty Friedan and The Feminine Mystique?
In Larry Kaufmann's opinion piece, the underlying message seems to be, "If you want money, then become upwardly mobile."
The viewpoint that gets buried in this perspective is that everyone deserves a living wage. There are many lower-income jobs that are a necessary part of keeping a system running, such as those that produce food, shelter and keeping water pure enough to drink.
It seems only fair that those who provide basic needs for others should, in return, have their own basic needs met.
Ald. Lisa Subeck, in justifying her public demand that Ald. Brian Solomon step down, stated: "It was important we didn't stay silent, because it's important to say he isn't above the law" ("Next Steps in Solomon Controversy?" 1/13/2012). Subeck is wrong for two reasons.
One, the state department of Justice, the Dane County District Attorney's Office, and the city of Madison all investigated the allegation that Ald. Solomon sexually assaulted and harassed an assistant city clerk. Not only was Ald. Solomon not found guilty of any misconduct, he was not even charged by anyone. Therefore, what is the basis for asking him to step down to show he is "not above the law"? It seems to me that Ald. Subeck and her gang of seven are acting above the law when making their demand since they have neither the legal authority nor knowledge to determine whether Ald. Solomon is acting above the law, and those authorities who have that responsibility have spoken in the negative.
Second, why is it important to keep this issue alive? What does it do to help the alleged victim put this controversy behind her? The gang of seven would do well to concentrate on promoting job growth, lower taxes, better services and safer neighborhoods.