Very cogent, very well stated, ty O'Tink...your views so welcome because of a (tendency) conservative perspective you bring...the liberal mayor's link along with your report on his progress, are concerning...
Here is where I currently am, if you would be so kind...now that I have housing and thus more leisure to retrospect...I was assuming my experience was rather unique, 'old folks falling into the hands of ONE rogue corporation, an anomaly'...but in amazement, the Internet seems to indicate a possibility my experience is now something of a national standard, and typical.
So, probing deeper: The idea that indeed, it is a liberal elite (like NYC mayor) who advocate and obtain redress for the suffering and misery of the underclass. Perhaps in the American Revolution, that is the role filled by Washington, Jefferson and company...the Enlightenment ideals, certainly liberal for their time?
But now, I am reading, it may be that the current liberal elite has caved; either that or they are for some reason rendered ineffective...your NYC mayor mouths the proper liberal rhetoric, as did Obama, but none of them has been able to obtain amelioration for the underclasses...(the graph above)
* * *
Okay, to the crux: There seems to be an historical pattern that without an effective liberal class, you "vomit up" (the term I saw) unsavory folks like Napoleon, Lenin/Stalin..more currently Radovan Karadzić, Slobodan Milošević, Franjo Tuđman..(.this pattern I FIRST learned from you actually, ty!)
So, my current question (with no clear answer): Can we the common folk, you/me/Marianne/Rooster and ALL our ilk, just see deeply and somehow common people hold our own focus, stand our own ground? And I don't even fully understand what that focus would be...CERTAINLY we cannot give up the dynamic free enterprise aspect of capitalism...but how? Because it is also true that most people cannot do what I did, "throwing yourself under the train" to make a point...for most at age 70 it would be certain death.
***And I did just now go back and look at your ultimate irony...whew!