It's time to make a stand

Although free enterprise, separation of church and state, individual liberties and human rights are the symbols of freedom in America, globalized free trade is not workable unless all partners adhere to the same principals and standards. As things stand, "free (not fair) trade" erodes America's standard of living. Americans are forced to compete with near-slave laborers to keep jobs in America and are forced to compete with illegal immigrant workers who work for low wages, pay no taxes and get no workers' benefits. And they tell us migrant workers and free trade are good for America.

Take note! The Federal Reserve recently announced everything is "hunky dory," the stock market is at record high, growth is steady, unemployment is low and consumer spending is up. But at the same time, the Commerce Department reported the total trade deficit is $836 billion, the largest in the history of the world. America's national debt equals the rest of the world's combined. Home foreclosures surpassed $1.1 million in the past year, for the second year in a row Americans spent more than they earned, accumulated more debt and are savings less than at any time since the "Great Depression." Over 30 years, the cost of housing has multiplied nine-fold while wages have increased two fold. Hunky dory? My behind.

Free enterprise and free trade that are manipulated to grow profits by suppressing wages is not in the best interest of America as a whole.

It is time to rise up and defend mainstream America, the ones who fight the wars and keep the wheels of hope and democracy turning.

Ellis Baumgarner