Tuesday, September 23, 2008

financial 9/11?

Rachel Maddow dropped the phrase (or maybe she was just repeating it, I'm not sure) that we're experiencing a "financial 9/11". I suppose that depends on your perspective, but one key difference, besides terrorists who knew how to take over airplanes versus terrorists who knew how to take over our financial system, is that more people have foreseen this current cataclysm for years and have been warning against it. Perhaps the dissimilarities stop there, because on paper, both events look similar; there are things that both events have in common. For instance, both events might not have happened were it not for:

  • A small group of well-positioned people intent on benefiting from the massive suffering of others
  • A small group of well-positioned people with nothing to lose, and everything to gain
  • A small group of well-positioned people with the right connections to people in high places that guarantee access
  • A complacent media with a singular focus on gossip stories about celebrity infidelity (political and otherwise), and a near perfect absence of true investigative journalism
  • An indifferent populace too busy worrying about how much foam they have in their lattes, or how much Made in China junk they could stuff into their Chinese-mortgaged homes

The bottom line here is that these are seriously complex issues that require a sophisticated understanding of either global economics, or at least a modest acceptance of these time proven altruisms:
  • Absolute power corrupts absolutely
  • Money is the root of all evil
  • If it sounds too good to be true, it is
  • Treat everyone with respect, and TRUST NO ONE!
But over the past few decades, there has been a strong, systematic effort to dumb down the citizenry, and it has proven to be extremely effective. For the pre-eminent Super Power on the planet, it is striking that we have one of the dumbest and uneducated citizenry of all developed nations, yet we - as Americans - continue to claim superiority. What we really have is a country of scared sheeple begging for leadership, but a people also willing to abdicate individual freedoms at the slightest whiff of scariness, What has America become? When did we become a nation of belligerent cowards, a nation of people eager to throw rocks at other people while taking shelter behind thin paper walls?

Of course, this could only happen by having such a worthless media, a collective body so graciously willing to spread its non-greased ass-cheeks to its corporate masters, emboldened by the help from hyper-greedy, anti-social, war-mongering chickenhawks in government who work tirelessly to pass themselves off as honest representatives of the people - except when those same people aren't looking, which is most of the time. Oh yeah, a compliant media only exists because of the compliant populace willing to keep it afloat. We'l see how long that lasts in the current climate.

One of the biggest takeaways that everyone seems terrified - or cowed by the corporate overlords - to talk about is how precarious our current situation is. It is high time that Obama steps up and offers something that looks like leadership. Get in a good dig or barb on Mac whenever possible, and do it without making him out to be important enough to even run for the office.  So far, Obama has been speaking in sweeping platitudes, and not discussing details, this despite his being surrounded by very smart money-only-men, like Volkerr, et al. McCain is floundering like a fish out of water, but if Obama chooses not to exploit that, his campaign may be doomed.

Can anyone in the Corporate-Run Media call bullshit on McCain once and for all?

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