Culture War, Class War, Chapter Nine: Creating an American Life
Power vs. Passion, Money vs. Authenticity – Opposing Ways of Changing America
Opposing Ways of Changing America – Passion vs. Power, Authenticity vs. Money
In the last half century, Americans have experienced unprecedented changes in their lives, their lifestyles, in what it means to be alive and a human in America in these times. Rarely have societies experienced this kind of change. What is even more astounding is the way the changes send us shooting dramatically in one way and then in the other direction.
Of course it is amazing that people are able to manage these kinds of change. But we don’t do this easily.
Let us look at the side-to-side careening of American life in that time and where we are today in that.
Creating an America Worthy of its Name
In introducing “Obvious Truths,” I talked about how politicians and leaders can only do so much and that the effects of their words are often fleeting. I said that social change that’s either reinforced or carried forward, or even initiated, by something like music or something that affects your feelings, can be greater and longer lasting. The powerful feelings that are stirred this way can affect people for their whole lives and even have influence for generations. I mentioned that these emotional influences reach more deeply into people because feelings exist at a deeper level of the brain undergirding words, thought, or even reason.
Finally, keep in mind that this is titled the rise and fall of “obvious truths.”
Obvious “Truth” – “Money Changes Everything”…. Really? … Only?
So I’m gonna start looking over what has transpired so far. I said at the beginning there was a title, one that pointed to the power and grandeur of these social movements. I wrote at the time that if the title’s claim–casting ordinary folks, along with revolutionary art, as the instigators of grand movements…the people of the Sixties and the music of bands like the Beatles, for example—sounds silly or trite to you that you are operating out of social prejudices we all carry from childhood, like most people do, particularly around status.
And by that I meant we have a tendency to assume that it is money that changes everything and that ordinary folks have little power without it.
For example, we assume that artists and musicians can’t affect anything. They more often arise from non-affluent beginnings; we have the term, starving artist, for example. Their power in society is considered to be as minimal as their finances.
“Real World” vs. “Flaky”
But this is not true—that is what I’m getting at. For, has the power of people been created with money, solely? Well, I think there’s a tendency to think it is.
Sergeant Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band
Not long ago, America and I went through such a change arising artistically from the masses. The Beatles affected us in such a great way that we were changed forever and society’s traditional momentum in a direction benefiting its moneyed royalty was stopped and even reversed. Their music and that of those like them changed the world in terms of the way we saw peace. The way we saw love. The way we saw drugs. The way we saw tolerance of other people…the way we looked at other people.
Status and Money, More Than Ever, Determining What Is “Real”
But I’m not going to go too far there, because that’s all coming up, too. I’m just saying that we do have these preconceptions about status and money that affects what we think is more important or powerful. It affects what we think of as “real” and “real world” versus what is considered silly or superfluous … “flaky” … “kumbaya.”
I was talking earlier about how, these days, it seems like only people with money have power. Everybody knows that and assumes it can only be that way. This is so because many people today have not had the experience of seeing it being different than that.
The Exception That Reveals the Rule
There is one exception and as it happens this exception does reveal the rule.
The Blue Meanies Dissed, Dismissed
For Obama’s rise to the presidency was startling, shocking even, because it was a unique phenomenon for this time. It was a grand and sweeping phenomenon because people got a chance, for the first time in a long time, to see that ordinary folks getting together could effect massive change…without the power of gobs of money. We can recall how his campaign was largely done over the internet and with small contributions. People could feel again, some for the first time, that they had the power in their passion and numbers to throw off the shackles of the filthy rich. Unbelievable.
Stolen Elections, Complacent Electorate – Creating an America That Is Not
Creating an America That Is Not – Stolen Elections, Complacent Electorate
Creating an America That Is Not
Obama’s success was astounding, but look what it took! Look at what had to happen before a Democrat, Obama, and the first African-American ever, could win the presidency. It only came about after a long time of national suffering, disgrace, war, loss of life, incompetence, cronyism, scandal, atrocity, erosion of rights, squandering of money, tragedy, and more. Bush was in the presidency for a full eight years; he actually got to steal a second election.
The Blue Meanies – Stolen Election
It is clear that Bush’s first term was not won fairly. Even putting aside the intimidation of black voters in Florida and similar unfair and illegal practices perpetrated by Republicans, we still have the fact that Bush was given the presidency by a decision of the Supreme Court. Our history records how vote counting was stopped before the outcome could be determined; the Supreme Court decided on a winner, Bush; and subsequently the vote tally came out that Gore had actually won the presidency! These are simply the facts, the things not in dispute.
The Rule Itself—Money Changes Everything.
The facts of Bush’s second election are less well known; in fact they are more assiduously covered up. Still, in the vote tally against John Kerry it should not have even been close…but for more obscure reasons.
There is plenty of documented public evidence that the electronic voting machines were fixed, making the outcome fraudulent. The machines were owned by Diebold Corporation, a firm solidly in the Republican camp, the head of which promised the Republicans, before the election, that he was going to get Bush elected. I mean, seriously. Isn’t that pretty much an admission that the voting machines were going to be fixed?
And in fact this is what they discovered to have taken place.
Now, is this not the kind of thing that in the past would have brought people out into the streets? [Footnote 1]
Anyway, it was confirmed, to some extent even prior to the election, that even a person walking by with an iPhone or something similar could hack into these electronic voting machines and change the votes. That is, if they had the correct access information. And the only ones who had that and therefore could decide the vote tally were the Diebold Corporation in league with the Republicans. Is it any wonder Bush “won”?
The Battleground for America
“Only people know just how to change the world.” – J. Lennon
So the two things of relevance in this example are that in previous times this would have brought people out into the streets, would have caused people to rise up in outrage against authority when it was found out.
The Duty, and Failure, of the Press
Which brings out the second relevant point: The public’s power could be stirred only by these facts coming out and becoming widely known. This information did come out; entire popular books were written describing how and that it was done. It came out in the broadcast media as well.
It is unlikely that you know that, however. That can only be because it wasn’t told enough in the media, that it was downplayed in the media, covered up, or the media directed your attention away from it. And that is the problem I’m getting at.
Changing America by Changing its People
But you see there’s another thing that happened. Even with a responsible media you have to have a citizenry that is open to this kind of information and able and willing to process it and draw conclusions from it. That is what I will be addressing now.
Your Mind Made Fertile for the Planting of Lies
Creating a (Not So) American Life: Your Mind Made Fertile For the Planting of Lies
Going back, I was saying we all have these prejudices regarding what is deemed powerful and important. We all have stuff from childhood that makes us shrink before authority, cower before money, status, and power. We all have irrational ideas magnifying the power of our oppressors, telling us to obey, to not question, to go along with that which others would have of us but which is not in our own interest and in fact brings suffering into our lives. And on top of all that, these early imprints and social teachings would have us rationalize our subjugation and deny our felt experience ever fending off inner and outer information, clues threatening to our precious conscious untruths and instilled self-sabotaging beliefs and notions.
Thinking About There Not Being Enough Time to Think
But you know sometimes you have a chance to kick back and not be caught up in the struggle to survive. You have a chance to reflect on your circumstances, your prejudices, and to re-evaluate matters. You have leisure time in which to do more than survive, to actually re-create, re-new yourself, and to grow in wisdom so you are not so blinkered by the blinders of the comfortable ignorance of grade-school propaganda and other early conditionings, prejudices. So society benefits both through your productivity but also through the fact that you have leisure time to become a wiser social actor. You have this leisure time….
Or, do you?
Well, not too long ago we had more leisure time, let’s put it that way. We had more leisure time; we had more time to pause and reflect. So some things might occur to us that were different than what we originally thought…than our preconceived notions; we might actually change our mind about things if we thought about them. I am not saying that was what everybody did all the time or anything like that. I am saying it could happen, and it happened more. So I’m saying that a lot has changed.
Well, you don’t think we have less leisure time? If you are much younger than me, you probably don’t know. But I am old enough to know that I have never seen Americans so busy…so busy and so preoccupied.
Climbing Down the Ladder of Your Todo List
Backing up, so imagine you or somebody like you is saying, “Ah, naw naw naw, naw, y’know, musicians, ordinary folks, they can’t do anything; they’re not politicians, they’re not powerful, they’re not rich!” Ok? But this person or you may not have had occasion to actually pause your life…to step back from the twenty-four hour climbing down the ladder of your todo list to success. Y’know?
How long is your todo list by the way? Busy, busy all the time is now required for survival concerns. There was a time in which you might be really motivated…you’d see people that were really striving …trying hard to be a big success or something like that. But it wasn’t required.
Forms Fill Up Free Time…”Fax It Over, I’ll Look At It.”
There is also the increased paper load, the mountains of red tape, which is also filling up the supposed “free time” of the average American. Man! What the hell is with that!?
Now they can blame it on computers; they can say it’s because we have more information and they can store larger amounts of it electronically, and they can put more… aw, c’mon, it’s people deciding that you have to fill things out and that you have to get and give more and more and more and more information, this is a lot of time!
Did you ever buy a house? You sign that Sisyphian hill of documents? I can only just imagine the day when there was just a deed, signed over. I’m not that old.
So, with exorbitantly more paperwork, there’s less time for thought, less time to think. We’re busy, and we’re nervous. Why? We got a lot of red tape, we got a lot of things to do. We’re under stress…
Taxes to Twist You With
And part of that paperwork … probably the worst part, if you’re like me, is due to the complex and contradictory tax codes. Part of the leisure time lost disappears into the black hole around tax forms. Seriously, I am old enough to have seen taxes get more contradictory and complex over the years. In fact the tax codes are rather convoluted abominations twisting themselves to benefit corporate special interest, with little or no rationale even presented to explain why these special interests should be benefited. And this sort of corporate special interest input into tax codes has just exploded over the years.
In the previous times, such things as a benefit to any special interest were usually presented to the legislature, and the public, in a particular way to justify them. You can just imagine like, in some kind of bargaining session in Congress, they would say, “Well, if we provide a break here, that’ll result in benefits over in this sector…” Or they might say, “…and it benefits our economy as a whole, which will…” and they might add a few elements into the equation before the inevitable, “it’ll benefit the average American or be a boon to our society as a whole.” And the reaction, we imagine, would be like, “Aw, yeah, yeah…ok.” Then it’s good; it’s approved.
Crazy-Making Social Processes Aid Manipulation
But over time, even this linking to the common good was not necessary, so the tax codes got exceedingly more convoluted and hopelessly contradictory, essentially lacking any reason. We all know that. It’s a dead document, so to speak, which would never, ever, ever be able to be brought back to rational health, so riddled with myriad kinds of cancers which are special interest convolutions of its elements so that it would be impossible to excise them all.
You have probably all heard the story. You call up the tax adviser, you have a question about how to fill something out…how to do something. And you’ll ask one person and they’ll tell you one thing; and then you call back and you get a different person and they’ll tell you something entirely different; then if you call again, somebody else will tell you something again … all different. Well, this is crazy-making.
And that crazy-making takes up your time; and it makes you worry more…and, well, it works itself into your time to ponder things, especially important things.
The Planting of Lies – The Rise of “Obvious Truths”
So, the tax code is hopelessly brain dead, and everyone knows it. Any former link to fairness, reasonableness, or coherency has been severed; it has become a coffin into which anything can be thrown and in which any corporate wish can be granted. So the country has now turned completely into the hands of the corporations, ok?
The Money Changing Everything
And with corporations firmly backing Republicans, the Democrats in every election that I can recall, especially in the presidential elections, always were way underfunded and the GOP overfunded because the Rich-publicans were carrying the wishes of those corporations into the board rooms of Congress along with their huge amounts of money.
Corporations invest in America (government).
But these payoffs were small investments to corporations, relative to the benefits they would get in the changes in government policy which affected them. Republicans were…It was obvious…it was all on public record…were getting huge amounts of money going into their campaign coffers and were way overfunded. One hell of a lot of money was put toward putting and keeping Republicans in office. It was not even a fair fight.
Democrats not wanting to be totally disarmed
So with no hope then…and this is what I saw happen…Democrats, who were still wanting to work for a better America and therefore better government, were forced into a choice of either continuing to rely only on contributions from the American people–as for example unions, keeping them woefully underfunded, and therefore losing…or to accept what was being offered them also by corporations.
So you began to have some Democrats making compromises with their principles and accepting some corporate money. Though even then it remained true that for the most part Democrats are funded by unions and organizations dealing with issues, like education, health care, seniors, jobs, and so on that affect the average American.
Now, this is where I get to one of those Big Lies, one of those concocted untruths that end up everyone just knowing to be true.
Obvious “Truth” – Politicians Are Like the People We Want Others to Think We Are Like (But Aren’t)…Like Who We Pretend to Be
To make this point, I need to back up to that thing related to convoluted tax codes and corporations. I was saying that eventually it was getting to where a huge increase in that problem could be attributed to corporations not even having to justify that the paybacks they wanted were good for America anymore. How did this happen?
Breaking news—Politicians are human.
Well, we have the situation mentioned where eventually Democrats were virtually required to accept corporate money or else they had no chance to win election. Naturally then, they had to produce at least a little for their benefactor corporations as well.
People can still be good, even if not Mother-Theresa good.
It is crucial to keep in mind the fact that Democrats were not getting near as much money from corporations as Republicans, by and large, and they remained largely staying afloat through contributions from unions and from organizations of masses of people pushing issues of overall social benefit. So Democrats were backed for the most part by actual people not corporations; still they had to produce something for the overlords.
Alright, so it happened that Democrats would seek to strengthen their overall hand to accomplish beneficial things for society by tossing occasional bones of tax concessions to their corporate backers. They would go to their gop counterparts and would want something in the tax code, for example. And the Republicans would say, “Well you want that? Well, I’ll give you that, you give me this.” So it could not help but happen that taxes and public policy got more and more convoluted in conforming to these complications and outright contradictions. We saw this increasingly over the second half of the Twentieth Century.
Obvious “Truth” – Both Parties Funded by Special Interests
But Republicans were always seen as the ones who were representing various corporations and what were called the special interests–defense, big agriculture, big oil, the Chamber of Commerce, insurance companies, and so on.
But then this is what also happened: This huge lie was created, becoming a big part of the Matrix, the Matrix of confusion that was being put out to cover up truth. This lie was impossible to make out, blocked out by an omnipresent media saying all the same thing, in rather like this monotone voice almost like Pravda in the old days of the Soviet Union. I saw this happen too. You no longer had differences of opinion you just had the same thing being said.
Anyway, this Big Lie, firmly woven into the fabric of the Matrix as to be both invisible and therefore unchallengeable even by rational arguments…this lie, and I’m sure you’ve heard it is that: Well, both parties are funded by special interests!
Democrats funded by a special interest—people
Now, of course, you know you’ve got Big Oil and Big Coal, and you’ve got the Pharmaceuticals and the Defense Industry and they’re funding the Republicans, and they would come back and say, “Special interests?! Well you Democrats have them too. What about your unions? You’re being funded by them!”
Well let’s just take the unions for starters, ok? Seriously, the unions as special interests? The unions?
Republicans funded by non-people—corporations
Ok, let me step back. We got corporations, which are a few people getting rich and it’s not even benefiting people. They’re not even including the people who work at the corporations, because they’re union people, maybe, or else they’re non-union people but they’re certainly not making any money off of what the corporations are getting in laws and benefits from their paid-for Republican representatives.
Obvious “Truth” – Unions Are a “Special” Interest
So, what is a special interest now? Ok, so, is the American public a special interest? Wait, I thought the government was supposed to be for the people. Now if the people are workers, primarily; and at one time there was a lot of them that were union workers, ok? But even if they’re not union workers, aren’t the unions aiming for benefits for their membership that also carries over to the non-union workers? If the unions are able to get medical benefits, for example, which is one big thing that they pushed for, well then it became common for all workers to get medical benefits.
Is it a “special” interest if it benefits virtually everyone?
Ok…that’s a special interest? I thought special interest was something that was against the interests of the American people and it was only going to benefit a certain small segment, a certain handful of people. That’s why it’s called special, isn’t it? But there’s the Republicans saying, “Oh, they’re unions, workers benefits are for unions.” And I just wonder if the unions are just a handful of people, who the hell is making all the stuff in America, who’s building the buildings, who’s…? Geez! I think you got the point.
For, I’m sure you’ve all heard it, and I’m sure you’ve all accepted it that “unions are special interests.” But I just don’t get it how…well maybe I don’t have a high paying job, or anything like that. But I work…doesn’t everybody?..I’m a working person and unions aren’t against me. I just wish there were more unions, so that whenever I would have a job or something like that I could have one to represent me against the powerful corporate owners.
Put out to cover up and confuse
So here, quite clearly, we have one of those obvious “truths” put out to cover up and confuse clear thinking: Unions are a special interest.
Obvious “Truth” – Education Is a “Special” Interest
But what else is a “special interest” for Democrats? Oh, it’s the teacher’s union or stuff like that, or, education.
Oh, great! So, what is that again? So education is for who now? Ok, now that’s a special interest. Mmmm hm. That’s a special interest? Does that mean that there are like only a few people that have kids that need education?
Education is a “special” interest…it is only for those who own brains.
I’m starting to get sick here. I don’t quite get it. I mean I’ m getting confused, you know what I mean. This is what I’m talking about, this is that irrationality: Special interest, education? Aw, c’mon, c’mon, I want to say.
An America without people is an America that doesn’t need education.
I mean, c’mon, aw, c’mon, somebody, somebody point out that education is not a special interest. It’s… Jesus! We won’t have an America in the future unless we have kids!
Don’t need education…it doesn’t matter if stupid people make our corporate and governmental decisions. *sarcasm*
Not to mention how can it be a special interest if were we to give more money to education, we would have better educated people growing up…these people would even benefit the corporations by being better corporate employees. They would, in fact, benefit all of society by making better decisions.
I kind of think we have an idea of what a big difference intelligence makes… what a big difference it is when you have intelligent people running things and when you don’t.
We kind of know how that works (stupid people running things).
For didn’t we have a kind of a little contrast there; didn’t we have a kind of a little experiment in that recently? I believe it had to do with C-student Bush…if you remember some things like Katrina and things like that…or maybe what hits you is something about a huge costly war that…well, it was gotten into on false grounds, illegally, we were lied to…but the whole matter and even the conduct of it, wasn’t it all rather…stupid what happened?
Bush gets presidency—kind of like he won the lottery.
Such things that happened under Bush are incompetencies that never happened before. Never! Not even under Republicans. We got Bush here, taking more time off from the presidency than any president in history…it was kind of like he thought he won the lottery or something. Didn’t even bother to look like he had a job to do. Wasn’t his first press conference something like ten months after he was sworn in?
Obama gets presidency—kind of like he got a job!
Now, contrast that with Harvard Law Review editor Obama. How many press conferences did he have after taking office? How frequently have you seen him on the job? He’s handling some of the biggest problems this country has every had. And people are impressed that he can do it. And there’s so much of it. So, isn’t intelligence kind of a good thing for us all?
Anyway. You get the point. Education a special interest? Seriously now.
Obvious “Truth” – The Sick and the Elderly Are “Special” Interests
How about medical care? Health and life are not for the common good. God, no, we don’t need medical care, that’s a special interest, that’s just for them people who get sick…and I’m starting to get sick here, I mean, y’know, for people who get sick? C’mon!
Health care is a special interest…it’s only for people who have bodies.
And, it’s like, “Oh, no, no, it’s not just for those people who get sick, it’s those people who have to pay medical bills.” Oh, I see, then that must be just for…. Who’s gotta pay medical bills, again? Well none of us have to pay medical bills, it’s all free, right? Nooo, it’s not.
The elderly are a special interest…it only benefits those who are affected by time.
And is it really necessary to point out that seniors and the retired are not a special interest? I suppose if you’re thinking the current group is the last humans ever to reach an advanced age it would limit their numbers some.
So unless we all suddenly stop getting older, help to the elderly and the retired is help to us all; it is not special. Am I not right?
Obvious “Truth” – Democrats and Republicans Are Equal
So, where do you hear anybody pointing this out? I don’t know but if you’re hearing the same media and TV coverage that I am, you’re hearing that they’re equal. The Democrats and Republicans are equal because they’re equally funded by special interests, and the special interests…. What are these special interests again? Well, sometimes it’s like, “What are those special interests?” “Well, it’s the union, and the education, and it’s the medical care.” Oh, geez, just listen sometimes.
Obvious “Truth” – Corporations fund the elections of both Republicans and Democrats.
And by the way, I said this was the rise and fall. The idea that both parties are funded by huge corporations, what they call large donor contributors, was blatantly revealed as the lie it is during the 2008 presidential election.
Remember, contrasted with Republican McCain’s funding from those real special interests–that related to Big Business and Defense…what Eisenhower termed the military-industrial complex…Democrat Obama ran a campaign in 2008 where the donations were voluntarily capped at an unusually low level. The upper limit was set at $1,000, which meant that his backing would have to come from numerous small contributors not special interests benefiting only a group. And, amazingly, he received a record amount of money to support him. It was said he had all kinds of money more than McCain, even though McCain was backed by corporations.
Then I must be a corporation, because I gave to Obama.
Now, how did that happen? Well it could only have happened because the masses of Americans wanted to give, even if it was $5, $10, or whatever…whatever they had. It required that donations come from a huge number more of people than contributed to McCain. I gave. My wife gave…several times. Didn’t you give, too?
For a change, in recent memory, this demonstrated that strength I was talking about before–that strength that’s of so many people feeling the same way, therefore acting in solidarity with each other. Surprisingly this happened despite them not being in face-to-face contact with each other, in general. This was one of the interesting things about this development: that it was largely accomplished just through the power of the internet.
It’s the Internet vs. the Matrix.
So the internet kind of brought folks together in solidarity of purpose the same way maybe a rally or demonstration in the past would have brought people together.
It was significant that most of this happened from the actions of people sitting alone in front of computers, not buoyed up by the effusiveness of a demonstration. It showed an unexpected power of social media.
In the past, face-to-face, like demonstrations, were where people connected with people like them.
Remember, in demonstrations in the past…and I’ve been to them…you would go and you would share your feelings of outrage and hurt, you would be affirmed in the importance of your concerns and be instilled with hope of a change in them, most of all you would have your sense of what was going on expressed out loud. Previous to that, you may have been reading the newspapers, say, and feeling, this is wrong, this is an outrage. This would have motivated you to attend a demonstration, and there you would have found other people who were feeling the same things. So you would be confirmed in your beliefs that it was wrong.
In the past, face-to-face, like demonstrations, were where people learned and grew in understanding.
Now, social media and the internet provided a similar thing where you could express your concern and rage and find others who felt the same way you did and so confirmed your beliefs, and even expanded on them with more information. So you could grow in your understanding of events and in your knowledge of what you could do about them.
This function of developing your insight and your effectiveness was provided by the rallies and demonstrations in the pre-electronic eras. The point is that over the election of Obama people connected again; and it was people not loads of military-industrial money that got him elected.
Bush brought us all together…
Well, that’s one thing that Bush gave back to America. He united us. He united us around at least one obvious rallying standard. He made our minds finally clear that…it’s true he’s an idiot! It’s true Republicans can’t handle government. It’s true that they will claim to be fiscally responsible and yet…what happened? Well the largest economic collapse in American history second to the Depression…and it was the largest collapse in the economy of the world. (So, thank you, George W. Bush!… See Footnote 2 as well.)
Obvious “Truth” – Republicans/ Conservatives Are Fiscally Responsible
So this financial “meltdown” is coming from the people who are supposed to know so much about economics. But at the same time, like McCain said, “I don’t know too much about economics.” He don’t know too much about economics! Who does McCain think he is, the Herman’s f-ing Hermits!? Anyway, McCain kind of spilled the beans there. Some of the actual truth came it: About conservatives and fiscal matters…Republicans “don’t know too much” about it.
Coming Up – Watch Black be Made White, White Be Made Black!
Oh, Those Rascally Magical Republicans!
OK, that’s it for Part One of “The Rise and Fall of ‘Obvious Truths,’”—Chapters Eight and Nine in this book.
Part Two is available here too—Chapters Ten through Thirteen. And in Part Two I go more into how they were able to get American people—including the media and the pundits and everybody—to accept this obvious unreality which is that both parties are funded by “special interests”; and you probably believe that yourself.
Oh, The Things They Do
But I think if you hear what I have to say, I think I’ll convince you of how amazing it was that they were able to pull that off. I think it will shock you to see how they could get so many people thinking irrationally about something that is so obviously not true. And there’ll be other things like that too.
Watch ‘em turn black into white!
There’s a pattern I’ll be talking about where…it’s like black is made white, white made black, where things are turned around. For example Republicans might have a proposal to help with the health care problem, for as they say, and we all know, the costs of health care are high and people are not getting covered. But their proposals end up accomplishing the exact opposite of what they say they will. And they know they will do that even when they propose them.
It is a matter of record that these sorts of swindles have been proposed and pushed by Republicans fully knowledgeable of what they were accomplishing. These things happened; we see they continue to happen. Taking health care again: Obviously we were left a very, very bad health care problem by Republicans. The point is that right from the beginning—you can go back to Nixon on this—they knew what they were doing. They knew how it would turn out, and there’s proof of this. We have their very words…
A glimpse ahead
The last thing to be disclosed in this series: the Why. The actual events that led these people to decide on this path toward us all, and moved them to increase and add and elaborate those initial moves to the levels of the most comprehensive totalitarian controls over a people ever attempted, let alone succeeding, as far as we know right now.
Continue with Culture War, Class War, Chapter Ten: Erosion of Reason, Self-Confidence
Return to Culture War, Class War, Chapter Eight: Creating an American Mind
1. Helen Caldicott compares our complacency in the face of dire happenings–such as Fukushima–to the parents who respond emotionless when she has to tell them their child has leukemia. She says, “Get mad. Get emotional.” She urges us to take back our governments from these mad perpetrators of the darkest doom imaginable. And, in the least, occupy! She proclaims,
It’s time you took your country back…. Use your bodies like they did in Wisconsin. Do a Tahrir Square here. Take back New York. Take back the Congress. Invade the Congress! Those people belong to you. They are your representatives, and you are their leaders. But you’ve got to have some guts! And stop being so goddamn polite all the time! And don’t need approval. Step up to the plate….
We’ve got to be emotional…. It’s time we used our emotions and become incensed! Otherwise we’re not going to make it.
2. You might want to step back and enjoy the humor in this as I did. This is my little, oh, “thank you note” to George W. Bush.
It is a satirical piece. A supposed admirer-fan-chum of George W. Bush encourages thank-yous for Bush’s “accomplishments,” which, described glowingly by the fan, sound quite the opposite to the listener. The fan has the most admiration for the great caper Bush “pulled off” at the end.
This comedic monologue combines the actual facts of recent history with a simple, unspun speculation of them, coming from the mouth of a fawning admirer who, for that reason, is allowed to elaborate on the shady dealings. So Bush, it is intimated, basks in the glory of having his ideas for illegal dealings praised as clever and awesome, or even cute.
This is political satire that will have you laughing from the total incongruity and irony of the monologue, but it will also leave you more informed and thinking. This is provocative, funny stuff.
And the audio only version of the above:
A Big “Thank You” to George W. Bush,
with Admiration for the Great Bush-Paulson-”Filthy Rich” Caper
by SillyMickel Adzema
About the audio and video above.
[From February 2, 2010] Yesterday the airwaves were abuzz re: the CEO of Goldman Sachs taking $100 million in bonuses and thumbing his nose at Obama in doing so. Other reports this week are confirming the sleight-of-hand and shadiness surrounding the TARP bailout of the banks: Specifically, that TARP money handed out by Paulson was not recorded, let alone accounted for or monitored; and therefore it cannot be traced or even determined whether it went to benefit American corporations, let alone Americans, and not foreign corporations or even private interests or parties.
With these recent developments coming to light, along with the tea-baggers and Republicans continued blaming of Obama for everything from being born, daring to take the oath of office with unpresidential skin pigmentation, to daring to reverse the direction of the country from the cliff that Bush had so clearly left us heading for, it seems it’s time to revisit those days of yore, those nostalgic last glimmerings of a time when we had a government solidly on the side of the people, that is, helping them in keeping them comfortably distracted from the sight of the truckloads of loot being removed from the Treasury to the coffers of the filthy rich and the huge, oftentimes, foreign or international corporations.
Let us return, then, to December, 2009, and President Bush’s last couple months in office, and recalling those halcyon days, render our gratitude anew:
And the text of the “Oh, Thank You..” audio and video:
A Big “Thank You” to George W. Bush,
with Admiration for “The Great Bush-Paulson-’Filthy Rich’ Caper”
C’MON EVERYONE, JOIN IN NOW!: “Why, Thank you, George Bush!”
…………….This is my little, let us say, oh, “thank you note” to George Bush for all his “hard work.”
Also, in appreciation of the “Paulsie Scam,” which we will be dealing with forever….
luckily it’s been arranged that won’t be too long.
“Thanks George W. Bush for all your efforts and “hard work” which have led,
your decisions and your Administration solely to blame –
thank you for being “THE DECIDER!” by the way –
to leave us in the midst of so many dire and rapidly expanding problems, so that many people are not just wondering if they will have a job or money, but that even if this planet will make it through another fifty years.
So, hey, thanks for all the hard work and for relieving us and all our grandchildren of any money, and….
oh, I see, there probably won’t be any planet for the little dears to live on.
And everyone dead and all….
Why, gosh, Mr. W., you’re so smart, you probably knew that!
So that’s why you and your cronies went so far as to commit grand larceny even at the end, scraping out the last of any money in the Treasury — wasn’t much left for Obama to do with anyway, after your eight years of partying on high with your Halliburton and your god-only-knows faceless “filthy rich,” gang.
Must’ve felt like the ol’ times, eh, except for the cocaine. . . Er, I mean, I didn’t mean to presume, I mean, you can have cocaine, who am I…
Oh! What a relief, glad to hear you did not partake like the others. It’s just that….
I mean George, friend, my Man here, c’mon there were some pretty weird dancing and stuff and things — right at the end there — that had me wondering and worrying…
Oh, I get it, no cocaine, but wink, wink, you’ve got your ways you say? Hmmm?
Finding things better than cocaine and getting away with it?
Well, he he, I’m not about to judge. I mean if we can have Rush Limbaugh asking for drug users to be hung up by their finger nails, even as he’s got a constant drip for a codeine fix, and he gets away scot free, why shouldn’t you have your fun? You always said it was haaaard work.
But I gotta get back to that stunt with the Treasury at the very end. I mean many, many a lesser, “criminal,” shall we say, mind would never go back again and again, let alone in broad daylight and in front of the entire world! Gad!
Was this all your idea to totally take everything while you could? Somebody else’s?
Anyway, it was brilliant. First, you enlist the support of that guy Paulson. Er, now that I know more about him, being worth $700 million, like and, getting bonuses of $37 million in 2005 and then 16.4 million the next year before he came into office with you…..
Why, could it actually be that he was the one that talked you into it!!! Naaaaaaw?
Certainly, he’d have to be characterized as one of them “filthy rich” that you helped to create, making people wonder who’s really calling the shots in Washington. …
But, never mind, even if it was his good idea — and now I understand he’s had plenty of experience — being involved with the folks who did Watergate and all…way back in his early days… with Ehrlichman and all — so that — no doubt he’s got lots of good ideas, ya gotta give him that.
But, hell, don’t want to take any shine off your apples. No, it was you who chose him. And despite his background, managed to get him on your side and portrayed as one of the most well-respected men on Wall Street, at the time… I remember that well…. I’d never know about his background, and I was most respect…everybody said it was a big…a good pick for you? ‘Course that was the old Wall Street; ‘cuz we now know those bonuses and stuff aren’t too popular right now.
Anyhow, brilliant move, you put this man of yours on task for the high-pressured auto trading that you knew would be required to pull off such a heist.
So you had your guy Paulson, former head of Goldman Sachs…coming to take this position of Secretary of Treasury for you. And now we find out that none of that money went where it was intended to go and it did not change the situation but rather exacerbated it! Brilliant! More on that later, but…
more on that later, but, Jesus! I gotta say though…pretty incredible!!? I mean, Paulson himself, gets like, uh, what was it…50 some billion to a German bank? That then owes…Goldman Sachs 16 billion, and so he makes off with 16 billion on top, is that like…
What a crackup this guy is being! I mean he had everyone fooled, and, in fact, there is nothing at all being said about his involvement or his possible effects on what happened, even to this day.
That’s smoothness even you and I could learn from , y’know, Mr. W and……..stay away from him, man…. He’s just tooo smart for all of us, ok, I think he’ll have……. He, he, I think he’s already had his hands in all of our pockets, he, he, I figure… (I’m sorry bout that)… But anyway…
Naw, c’mon, let’s, let’s…we wanta go over your accomplishments tonight, Mr. President, I mean…. I mean..the whole thing…y’know, going to Congress, there…. Getting them to tally up that un-be-leiv-able sev-en hun-dred bill-ion dollars! …like almost a trillion dollars…. I mean they could not get that high, I mean….
Anyway…so we heard how you guys gathered these guys together in Congress…I mean how it was done, y’know, it was like…well musta been like one of those movies….like Ocean’s elev…. Like an Ocean’s 33, yeah! And. Anyway, so you gathered those suckers, those guys, in Congress together, who had the money, huh?
And, he, he, he, y’know, like, we heard afterwards how you guys gathered, Congressional Leaders… and… without explaining exactly how it would happen – of course Congressmen could not be expected to understand the workings of economics and high finance like a Paulson could. So, kindly Paulson and his deputies explained using analogies, how nice of them to bring it down to their level, so sweet of them….
Y’know analogies…like this is like this, this is like this, y’know, and…yea, like that….
I just want to say how cute you are, W.. I mean, it was just, soooooo you….
Anyway, the analogy they used was that if Congress didn’t cough up the dough pronto – perhaps those weren’t the exact words, my bad. But anyway, that the consequences – and tell me W. this was all you, right? – The consequences would be that of a “GLOBAL ECONOMIC MELTDOWN” (tell me, that part was you, right?) a terminal global economic meltdown that would… (wait, I’m getting an inkling here… was this next part, Cheney’s?) “End modern civilization as we know it for the foreseeable future.”
Wow! It gives me shivers just hearing it. I mean there ain’t no auto salesman in his wildest fantasies that could come up with something so absolutely, well, disabling.
You guys really took those suckers in Congress “out by the knees”! How could they have had a chance!
And, boy, there’s that implied nuclear thing again…”the meltdown”; yea. Doesn’t have to make any sense; I mean economics melting, but hey close enough. How clever! I mean that whole image of mushroom cloud, why it just worked stupendously to get us into a war. And now, this being economics…
Oh, my God, I see it; it’s like a fifties movie — “Oh, please help, we’re meeee-ee-llll-tiiinggg. It’s the economics mel-ting!” Yea, super scary. Heck, anything like that from fifties horror flicks…just good stuff. Heck, you know that most people believe that stuff anyway. So, I see, you feed them what they always feared anyway. Brilliant. Brilliant.
But that’s my George, the W. himself, going with what he knows. And, hey, why bother coming up with anything else, that card’s a winner for you, my man….
And c’mon, level with me, I just gotta know, won’t tell anyone else… Was that Cheney with the “end of civilization” part? C’mon, he’s already living the Wild West out there in Wyoming, he’s probably thinkin Mad Maxin it and everything… I mean, c’mon…. C’mon, it’s got to be him, that’s just sooo Darth Vader, who else could think like that?
Please tell me I’m right…I feel like I know this guy and that is….well, that is just sooooo him!…
The Rise and Fall of “Obvious Truths,” Part One
an Audio Reading by SillyMickel Adzema
Here is an audio of the author’s impassioned reading of this part. Though it is of the first, unedited and unpolished version, and it does not contain all the detail of its current form below, it does capture the flavor of it all. I offer it here for your listening pleasure. For the reading of this part, “The Rise and Fall of ‘Obvious Truths,’ Part One,” click on the link to the audio site above or click below to launch the audio player here.
Continue with Culture War, Class War, Chapter Ten: Erosion of Reason, Self-Confidence
Return to Culture War, Class War, Chapter Eight: Creating an American Mind
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