An often-used technique by those who would fool you into doing something that’s contrary to your own best interest, is to make the situation seem so complex, so terribly complicated, that there is just no way you can fully understand what’s really going on. So you give up, leave it alone, and let someone else decide for you.
In a culture that forces so many of us to work twelve hour days or hold down two jobs just to keep the kids fed, this happens frequently, to the point that much of what should be issue oriented news never gets on the air, with news executives declaring that “it’s just too complicated for television.” No, it’s not. They just don’t want to put in the time, effort and money necessary to get it done. So an already exhausted American public becomes a little more dumbed down.
So let’s simplify.
-There is a direct connection between the dumbing down of America and the rise of the new ruling Corporatocracy which began with the tax cuts of “Reagonomics,” and deregulation, and continued on with the Neocon policies of the Republican Party, supported by a Democratic Party, which, more often than not sat on its hands while the rich bought our political system and off-shored millions of jobs to countries where slave-labor wages are accepted. It’s to their advantage to keep you in the dark, while you are spoon fed overblown issues like Benghazi, by a corporate owned media that cares more for profits than public responsibility. So you don’t get what you need, you get ratings-driven “infotainment.”
-We are no longer a Democratic Republic, we are an Oligarchy, controlled by multi-national corporations, millionaires and billionaires. Thinking your vote matters, when the Congress and White House are owned by billionaires and CEO’s, is a sad joke. The “Citizens United” decision by the Supreme Court drove the last nail in our national coffin, giving free reign to the wealthy of any nation to purchase the U.S. Government. How’s that for the “New World Order” George H.W. Bush talked about while having no idea what a bar code reader does? While politicians still must fear losing their jobs by losing an election, that lever has lost much of its clout for the American people, as newcomers who are voted in will eventually fall prey to the millions of dollars flooding the system from lobbyists, giving us the best government money can buy. The more money you have, the more the government is likely to reflect your wants and needs.
-The United States lags behind the rest of the developed world in healthcare. We continue to pay more and get less. Even with “Obamacare.” We need to catch up with the rest of the developed world with a single payer, government controlled system of Medicare for all. Dental care and eye care need to be included in the system. To regard dental and vision care as somehow being separate from healthcare, is madness.
-We are badly behind most of the European countries in rail safety, as was just highlighted by the tragic train derailment in Philadelphia, a crash that might have been prevented by technology that automatically slows trains to a safe speed. Technology the Europeans have been using for years, but we don’t have it, as the railroad industry and Congress argue over who is going to pay to have it installed. By one estimate, 140 rail accidents might have been prevented had the new “Positive Train Control” system been installed. Instead, congress voted to cut rail funding on the day of the Philadelphia crash. This isn’t a high speed bullet train we’re talking about folks, it’s old fashioned 20th Century train travel. And we can’t afford to get it right? Oh well, at least we’re good at making war. What about once the war ends?
-The U.S. continues to offer inadequate support to its veterans. According to the National Coalition for Homeless Veterans, “Although flawless counts are impossible to come by – the transient nature of homeless populations presents a major difficulty – the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) estimates that 49,933 veterans are homeless on any given night.
Approximately 12,700 veterans of Operation Enduring Freedom (OEF), Operation Iraqi Freedom (OIF) and Operation New Dawn (OND) were homeless in 2010. The number of young homeless veterans is increasing, but only constitutes 8.8% of the overall homeless veteran population.”
We didn’t give adequate care to our vets following Vietnam, and now we’re doing it all over again with those returning from the Middle East.
There’s more, but isn’t this enough? The rich do well, while the middle class is gutted. Our infrastructure goes begging while our elderly can’t afford dental or vision care and millions of Americans are forced to pay for “Obamacare” which still has no “public option” to provide real competition for the insurance industry.
At the heart of the problem is a lack of campaign finance reform. They’ve bought us, folks. They own us. Our government is going to the highest bidder. Many of our politicians are in bed with the CEO’s on Wall Street who nearly bankrupted the nation. But none of the big shots went to jail and the “too big to fail” banks are still there.
It’s relevant that a significant cause of World War II, was a worldwide depression that got its start on Wall Street.
It’s really very simple. Our representative government is gone. You now get all the representation you can afford to buy. With enough money you can defraud the nation, nearly crash the world’s economy, and stay out of jail. Our Senate has routinely been called a “millionaires club.” Professional politicians like the Clintons enter office in debt to eventually become millionaires who set up their personal legacy with a fund that’s received millions in donations from the Saudis. Then there’s the speaker’s circuit, which can be incredibly profitable if you have the right friends. Politico reports that Bill and Hillary, have pulled in roughly $25 million in speaking fees since 2014. On the other side of the isle, the uber-rich Bush family takes us to war in Iraq, while maintaining a close ties with Saudi royalty. Are you beginning to see a pattern? It’s all about who you know and who is willing to buy your influence.
At the same time, so many Washington fat cats, particularly on the Republican side, refer to Social Security and Medicare as “entitlements” that should be eliminated. Entitlements? Hell, many of us, with no friends in Saudi Arabia to rely on, have been paying into those programs since we were in our teens. They’re not entitlements, they are earned benefits for our national social good, as Bernie Sanders has repeatedly stated. FDR got it right and now Bernie, and populists like Elizabeth Warren, may be our last best hope. Remember that term. Earned benefits. They are EARNED. They are NOT a government handout.
Don’t let all the smoke and mirrors confuse you. It’s all about the money. Always has been. Everything else is an illusion. Until all that money is somehow gotten out of politics, we the people out here on Main Street are flat-out screwed, as our trains crash, our highways crumble, homeless veterans live in cardboard boxes under an overpass while we continue paying twice as much as the rest of the developed world for prescription drugs and our old folks are forced to sign “reverse mortgages” in their golden years, as the wealthy on Wall Street develop yet another method to extract every last bit of wealth Middle America has.