Who We Are…What We’re About

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Almost 30 years ago (wow, has it really been that long? Missed a lot of good TV shows over that time) :), I first conceived the idea for a grass-roots, middle-class oriented, conservative political organization. It was a few weeks after Ronald Reagan’s smashing 1984 re-election. I talked the idea up with some friends and GOP and conservative operatives, but Al Gore had not yet invented the internet and the costs of creating a grass-roots political organization – TV advertising, mailings, organizational structure, etc. – were prohibitive. Heck, even venerable publications like National Review were not sure they could stay in business, despite it being the heyday of conservative politics. So, I mothballed the idea and continued with my financial services career over the past 3 decades, the link between the financial markets, economics, and politics never being lost on me.

Today, we live in a world of multiple 24-hour news channels and instantaneous communications via PCs, smartphones, and tablets. Others can debate if something was lost from when I grew up and kids still went out and played baseball, street hockey, stickball, Ringolevio, and other games instead of sitting at an LCD monitor reading and typing or an HDTV playing video games. Maybe the adults I grew up with would say the same thing about fireside chats during the years of FDR, radio serials during the 1940’s and 1950’s, and black-and-white TVs with only a few channel choices to make your viewing decisions very easy. As my uncle says, it is what it is. But the low-cost of information in cyberspace now makes an organization and social gathering place like the Middle Class Alliance technologically, logistically, and financially possible. So, here we are!

The goals of the Middle Class Alliance are to provide a forum for economic, financial, and political ideas that affect – ta-da – the American middle class. By creating a critical mass am among both sides of the 30/70 divide – the 30% of Americans who follow politics and financial matters closely and the 70% who do not – we will hopefully create a potent political force including making our voices heard on issues decided solely by unaccountable liberal elites.

Too many of our elected officials – an overwhelming majority, I would venture – are financially and economically ignorant and are quite frankly unqualified to serve in office and to vote on matters of economic and financial interest. And aside from the small numbers of people who actively follow political, financial, and economic matters and perhaps read and watch financial and economic news, too many voters from both sides of the aisle are ignorant of basic economic and financial concepts when they go into the voting booth.

And the situation is worse for our elected officials, if you can believe it.

We don’t allow people to practice medicine in this country without going to medical school, serving an internship and being licensed.

We don’t allow people to practice law in this country without going to law school and passing the bar exam.

Heck, you can’t even perform a DMV inspection for a car without being properly trained and certified.

Yet…we allow people with no knowledge of public or private finance, economics, or financial markets to vote on multi-billion dollar and multi-trillion dollar spending and taxation programs. The end result? Detroit, among other things.

The Rich have their money and their access. The Poor have the attention – some would call it a stranglehold – of most of the media and centers of government and at least 1 of the 2 major political parties. So, who is looking out for the Middle Class? The Middle Class Alliance is going to focus on people not poor enough to be the beneficiaries of the smorgasbord of government welfare and entitlement programs, but not rich enough that they never have to not worry about paying their mortgages or bills. The Prime Directive, to borrow from Star Trek, is to protect, defend and advance the political, economic and financial interests of the Middle Class.

One of the unique additions to the MCA is our Financial Freedom Forums (FFF). These are our message boards designed to help and assist and promote discussion of investment and financial matters, everything from your stock portfolio to your 401(k) to health insurance needs. We are the only political website with a dedicated section promoting financial and investment advice and give-and-take. This is an outgrowth of my own history of work and love affair with financial markets and my belief that if the economy or financial markets go to pot, not much else will matter for most people. The FFF are populated by investment and financial professionals vetted by the MCA who can give you the experience and wisdom they have acquired. As always, YOU are ultimately responsible for your own investment decisions but you can use the FFF to see what others think about a particular stock or the overall markets or your portfolio asset allocation.

Financial markets are neither liberal nor conservative. They want sound decision-making, which I believe is much more often the province of the latter than the former. Unsophisticated media analysts like to always talk about ‘moderation’ or being in the ‘middle’ as the quine e sine of politics. The right is extreme, the left is extreme (actually, not according to the media but that’s another story for another column)…the middle is where it’s at. Like the porridge that Dorothy ate: not too hot, not too cold…..not too right, not too left.

Well, if that is true then an organization which focuses on the middle class – not The Rich and not The Poor – should appeal to all kinds of people. The policies that help the middle class are the same ones that can lift The Poor into middle-class status, as has been shown in America for almost 250 years. And those same policies are not necessarily antagonistic to The Rich, because free market capitalism requires a hierarchical structure and the support for private property rights. Economics and finance are not zero-sum games. A wealthy person with a $20 million condominium in Manhattan does not mean you can’t have a nice house in the suburbs. Celebrities who have palatial estates in The Hamptons do not preclude you from having your own summer house on the Jersey Shore (or even in the Hamptons, if you can afford it, unlike George Castanza.)

This website is run by volunteers – nobody is getting paid or making money (any sympathetic billionaires who want to make our lives easier, feel free to hit the PayPal button :)) – and many of us are working part-time, unemployed, or retired. So nobody is doing this to get rich or make money. We believe in the cause and if down the line we can pay our bills from this endeavor, great. We’ll see where it takes us.

This website is open to all. Our conservative and libertarian bent will no doubt grab the bulk of our supporters from those groups. But the apolitical and even liberals are welcome to participate. Disagreements and heated rhetoric will be a continuing staple – even among folks who agree in large part – but the Administrators and Moderators will give individuals a wide berth to post what they like in the Message Boards. While we have the standard TOS disclaimers, the bottom line is that you should attack ideas, not individuals. Foul language can be funny at times, but also offensive. Don’t post something that you or your children or grandchildren would be embarrassed to read a few hours or days later. Instantaneous posting of streams of thought today like on message boards, Twitter, and Facebook are probably more dangerous than decades ago when it took time and effort to type out or write a letter. We recognize that. Use your best judgment, and 99.999% of the time you should be fine. A website death penalty will NOT be imposed for an occasional breach of etiquette but we want the Middle Class Alliance to be a quality site with informative political, economic, and cultural discussions, not a site where gratuitous vulgarity is the norm. Capisce?, as my father used to tell me (more than I sometimes wanted to hear).

For those of you who like to post lower in quantity but higher in quality, we encourage submissions for articles. Any current political topic is fair game, but the topics we want most to be concerned with are – naturally – those affecting the middle class. Topics involving taxation, government spending, healthcare/Obamacare, so-called ‘affirmative action’ and ‘diversity’ programs, and crime are the kinds of issues that are either ignored by the mainstream media – and conservative press – but have salient appeal to working-class and middle class Americans. Go for it!

The founders of the Middle Class Alliance believe that there is a market in American politics for a middle class-oriented grassroots site that represents law-abiding, tax-paying American citizens. We hope you can help us prove that as fact in the coming weeks, months, and years.

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Updated 11-02-2013 at 08:39 PM by CorvetteKid



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