Town Talk Forum
We heard a report on CBS News Sunday Morning about what is happening to over 500 people who are going to be losing good paying jobs at the Kellogg cereal South Plant there in Battle Creek - some people who have worked for twenty years and more. And we were furious to hear the smooth way the CEO spoke about "needing" to close this plant because it isn't making profit; the company "has" to go where there is cheaper labor! And the people - the fathers and mothers and grandparents - whose lives will be hurt by this are being treated with colossal coldness.
Cereal is needed by people. Children are hungry in America. And every person should be able to work with good pay, good benefits, to meet the needs of children, women, men. This is a basic right.
We want people to know what Eli Siegel, the great American economist and founder of Aesthetic Realism, explained: The economic system in America is not true to the spirit of America, its land, and the people living on it. It is based on owners and stockholders using the lives and work of real flesh and blood people to make profit for themselves - while they do not do the work.
In a series of lectures beginning in May 1970, Mr. Siegel showed that the profit system, after hundreds of years, has failed. "The inefficiency of ill will in economics," he said, "is now becoming apparent all over the world. It is apparent in Ohio, Oregon, Louisiana" - and Battle Creek Michigan. Kellogg's "cost cutting" means fathers are going to have to find jobs which will pay less, likely more than one job, so that they can try to make ends meet. This is WRONG!
As a Midwesterner, where I, Barbara Allen, taught school in Chicago, I saw children hungry every day. Now, 30 years later in New York, my husband and I see more and more children and adults hungry and homeless. No matter how many times the press barrages us with statements about our "healthy" economy, we do not have one.
"There is a just way every human being deserves to be seen," writes Ellen Reiss, the Chairman of Education at the Aesthetic Realism Foundation, "and economics for centuries has been mightily out of keeping with that just way .... For a man or woman who could be useful, who could do or make things that others need, to be out of work because no one can make a profit from that man or woman - is ugly, brutal contempt." [The Right of Aesthetic Realism to Be Known]
The only solution is for America - every American - to study how to see people fairly, not with contempt. And fairness includes the right of people to own their jobs. Only then will unemployment stop completely - will the profits of our industry go to the people who do the work, and not into the bank accounts of the wealthy.
There has been a press boycott of Aesthetic Realism - now nearing an end - which has hurt people, including ourselves, for decades. You can learn more about Aesthetic Realism at www.AestheticRealism.org.