NBA Hall of Famer Charles Barkley offered his opinion on the presidential race by saying “all politics is rich people screwing poor people” and that “poor people are too stupid to know they’re just chess pieces in a game”. Barkley said “I’ve always voted Democratic. Always. I don’t know why. I’m trying to figure out exactly what they’ve done for us.”
He went on to explain “The Republicans always do a good job of dividing and conquering. They do a really good job of making black folks, poor white folks and Hispanics not like each other. Everybody wants to talk about black and white, when the situation is really about rich people against poor people. All they talk about is immigration, the notion that illegal immigrants are ruining our country by taking jobs. We’re shipping all our jobs out of the country. That’s, to me, worse than a few Hispanics who come here to work their behinds off. If you’re a poor white person and your life sucks, it’s easy for you to blame Hispanics cos you don’t want to look in the mirror and say: ‘I’m the reason my life sucks.’
The Republicans do a good job exploiting that. “All politics is rich people screwing poor people. Poor people are too stupid to know they’re just chess pieces in a game. All the poor white people, all the poor black people, all the Hispanics, they’re in the same boat. They’ve got no economic opportunities. They spend all their time blaming each other because rich people throw words at them like illegal immigration and racism and things like that. If poor people ever get smart, and realize: ‘We should band together, rise up, instead of fighting each other,’ we probably can make a difference.
Barkley’s viewpoint stands very much in contrast to NFL’s Peyton Manning who owns dozens of Papa John’s restaurants. In the light of a nationwide campaign to force fast food companies to pay a living wage, a campaign supported by the majority of the American people, Papa John’s obnoxiously insists that it is proper for it to pay its workers minimum wage. Keep in mind that a typical fast food worker today is 29 years old with two children. Manning made $245 million playing pro football and tens of millions more as the most avid corporate endorser. His message to his employees is: “I’m on my way to becoming a billionaire and you should help me get there by working for less than it takes to survive.” Peyton Manning’s message is very simple: “Fuck you.” Manning is a proud and very self-aware member of the one per cent.