I am a retiree after teaching for 35 years. During that time, I contributed to both Social Security and our state pension plan. Already, our pensions have been cut and future COLAs ended. If Social Security and Medicare takes a hit, I will be slipping farther down the economic ladder. But more importantly is the impact the descent of our great country into a plutocracy will affect my two grown daughters and my grandchildren. Avoiding the fiscal cliff and saving the middle class is essential for every income level. Nobody makes money in a vacuum. And the growing separation between the worker bees who have enabled the 1% to accumulate ridiculous and unnecessary wealth will ultimately end badly for all of us. We all deserve better, even those who think protecting the very wealthy is going to make this country a better place to live.