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It's been a tough four years, watching as my company has gone through bankruptcy restructuring for the second time in less than ten years, and feeling the pinch of salary freezes, cuts in benefits, etc.  

I've voiced concerns, but never pushed too many issues.  I need my job, and upper management follows the dictates coming down from our board and the venture capitalists who own us.  

When I received a memo offering me guidance in voting, however, I had to vent my anger and frustration.  Again, because I value my employment status, it won't be sent to the CEO.  It was simply an exercise in steam-letting.  Without further ado, my memo to the CEO follows.

In your memo of November 5, you wrote, “We will not advocate for specific candidates or tell you who we think that you should vote for.  Instead, I would ask that you make your own informed decisions.”

Yet you then state, “I hope you share their views” when referring to lawmakers who “have voted to promote policies aimed at growing our economy and helping our business grow and expand.”  You offer links to the U.S. Chamber of Commerce and the National Association of Manufacturers.  Both are highly partisan, politically fuelled and strongly anti-union.  I understand your perspective, but I respectfully decline to “share their views.”

I consider myself well-informed on many issues, not just those that affect the manufacturing industry.  I also value my right to vote with my conscience and my intellect; and when I cast my vote, I honor those who have come before me, and who have fought and died for that right.

But limiting the discussion to manufacturing, I would urge you to consider the findings of the Keystone Research Center and Iowa Policy Project here:

There is a further, in-depth discussion here:

What is the bottom line of this study, that’s of particular importance to me?  A couple of key points resonate:

“Democratic administrations have sustained American manufacturing employment better than have Republicans—in good times and in bad, across a long history of secular decline in U.S. manufacturing as a share of the overall workforce.”

“Wages fell under both Democratic and Republican administrations, but, on average, they fell twice as fast (using measures one and two) when Republicans were in the White House.”

So, if I follow your logic, and vote for lawmakers who “expand and grow” manufacturing, my choice is clear, isn’t it?  It’s a moot point, however, as I’ve already voted, exercising my right, my conscience, my intellect, my pocketbook—and this time, even my vagina.

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