07 March 2013

The Middle Class: Death By a Thousand Cuts - Is Nothing Sacred?

"The corporate right and the political right declared class warfare on working people a quarter of a century ago and they've won... Take the paradox of Rush Limbaugh, ensconced in a Palm Beach mansion massaging the resentments across the country of white-knuckled wage earners, who are barely making ends meet in no small part because of the corporate and ideological forces for whom Rush has been a hero."

Bill Moyers

"The escalation of the class war against the poor and the working class is intense. More and more working people are beaten down. They are world-weary. They are into self-medication. They are turning on each other. They are scapegoating the most vulnerable rather than confronting the most powerful. It is a profoundly human response to panic and catastrophe. I thought Barack Obama could have provided some way out. But he lacks backbone.

Can you imagine if Barack Obama had taken office and deliberately educated and taught the American people about the nature of the financial catastrophe and what greed was really taking place? If he had told us what kind of mechanisms of accountability needed to be in place, if he had focused on homeowners rather than investment banks for bailouts and engaged in massive job creation he could have nipped in the bud the right-wing populism of the tea party folk. The tea party folk are right when they say the government is corrupt. It is corrupt. Big business and banks have taken over government and corrupted it in deep ways.

We have got to attempt to tell the truth, and that truth is painful. It is a truth that is against the thick lies of the mainstream. In telling that truth we become so maladjusted to the prevailing injustice that the Democratic Party, more and more, is not just milquetoast and spineless, as it was before, but thoroughly complicitous with some of the worst things in the American empire."

Cornel West

"Politicians are the public face of corporate power. They are corporate employees. Their personal narratives, their promises, their rhetoric and their idiosyncrasies are meaningless. And that, perhaps, is why the cost of the two presidential campaigns is estimated to reach an obscene $2.5 billion. The corporate state does not produce a product that is different. It produces brands that are different. And brands cost a lot of money to sell...

Unfettered capitalism is a revolutionary force which turns everything into a commodity. Human beings become commodities, the natural world becomes a commodity, that you exploit until exhaustion or collapse...

You can dismiss those of us who will in protest vote for a third-party candidate and invest our time and energy in acts of civil disobedience. You can pride yourself on being practical. You can swallow the false argument of the lesser of two evils.

But ask yourself, once this nightmare starts kicking in, who the real sucker is."

Chris Hedges

"The most sacred of the duties of government is to do equal and impartial justice to all its citizens.”

Thomas Jefferson

Nihilne sanctum est?

Politicians from both sides of the aisle will swear pious oaths to protect and foster the well being of the middle class.  They will say that their policies and proposals are all designed for its betterment.  And yet the state of the middle class continues to dwindle into despair and disrepair. Why is this?

It is not because of the predominance of a right or left ideology, of taxation and deficits and austerity. It is not because of the re-emergence of a perversion of the gospel, in the predestination of prosperity. We have seen all this before. It is not because in our comfort we have lost the sense of the imperative of common cause.

It is because of the overwhelming corruption of power, and of the cynical amorality of thoroughly modern political managers who worship power and personal wealth as ends unto themselves.   They distract the people with artificially divisive social issues and crises, while robbing them blind.

It is driven by the allure of the cartels, monopolies, and  monied interests, and their corrupt political bargains.  It is a child of the subornation of perjury on a massive scale. It is the unscrupulous servility to power of those who have sworn to uphold and protect the law.   What is truth?  Whatever suits us, whatever we say it is, by whoever has the power and the craft to define 'we.'  It is not the triumph of evil so much as the absence of any sense of the good, of honor, honesty, and of simple common decency.

And it is marked by the daily subverting of the law as a matter of convenience and comfort to the insatiable few, and the cravenness of their enablers, driven by personal ambition, ignorance, and fear.  It is the will to power, the elevation of the ascendant self and the system that supports it, above all else.  Greed is good.  Whatever works.  And the enemy is all that is not the self, which is the other.

And where there is nothing sacred, the people perish.