"A tourist who was interviewed last night from Cairo spoke for millions of his fellow Americans when he said he couldn't imagine living in a country like Egypt. It is hard, isn't it?
Imagine: A government run by and for the rich and powerful. Leaders who lecture others about "sacrifice" and deficits while cutting taxes for corporations and the wealthy. A system so corrupt that rich executives can break the law without fear of being punished. Increasing poverty and hardship even as the stock market rises. And now, a nation caught between a broken political system and a populist movement that could be hijacked by religious extremists at any moment.
No wonder they're upset! Why, we'd be marching in the streets too.
Here's the reality: Income inequality is actually greater in the United States than it is in Egypt. Politicians here have close financial ties to big corporations, both personally and through their campaigns. Corporate lawbreakers often do go unpunished. Poverty and unemployment statistics for US minorities are surprisingly similar to Egypt's.
And remember the ratings agencies that told us everything was fine with our country's banking system, right up to the moment it collapsed? Just two months ago, Moody's reassured investors that the Egyptian government had a "stable outlook" for the foreseeable future. Sure, the analogy only goes so far. But why is it so much easier to see what's wrong on the other side of the world than it is here at home?"
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