I know football is so very, very important, considering the ongoing impact it continues to have on our health, well being and national security, but I heard something which bears repeating. I think it does, anyway. Unless you’re a fan of the Lions or the Bears, which continue operating as very expensive entertainment franchises in cities struggling to survive. Detroit is being sold off like a giant garage sale and Chicago is closing schools and privatizing other publicly owned city operations such as parking at O’Hare Airport, parking enforcement, and so forth. You get the idea. It used to belong to the people. Now, they’re selling it. Before long the venerable old Shedd Aquarium will be renamed “BP Aquatic World.” An oil-spill free environment, where the kiddies can go to learn just how much effort big oil is putting into preserving our oceans.
Poor Chicago. Hardly seems like the people in such an impoverished area could afford NFL Football? But apparently they can. And then there’s down and out Detroit. Things are so bad there that Forbes guesses that it’s the only NFL franchise losing money.
Without Detroit, we might have lost a whole lot more. And I’m not even thinking about Motown, which had a giant influence on American music.
No, without the motor city, the United States might have lost World War II. Where do you think all the tanks, trucks and Jeeps came from? However, now that trade barriers have been dropped and jobs have either been sent overseas or to “right to work for less” states, which can keep unions out and wages low, following 50 years of the game being rigged in favor of the corporations and the billionaires, Detroit has been sucked dry. It’s wealth extracted, this one-time industrial behemoth has been cast aside to whiter away. It’s people, many of them elderly pensioners, left to die. Even the water is being turned off to the City’s poor who can no longer afford to pay their bills.
I wonder who’s going the Lion’s games, and how any of this can be happening in the richest country in the world, with a gross domestic product of $16,720,000,000,000. Unless things are really, really screwed up. Even worse than you or I can begin to imagine, because we don’t really have the inside track on where the greedheads are taking us. But you had better believe they are takin’ us there Bubba, and you probably are not going to like it, once the train arrives.
And it’s not just happening here. Today, one of the last sane men standing, Thom Hartmann, was talking about Ireland, and the push by big lenders to force the Irish to privatize their national water system in order to raise money to pay back some of the debt they incurred when the deregulated bankers went nuts in 08, crazy with greed, coming up with all sorts of ways to extract capitol (suck the money) out of the U.S., Ireland, Greece, Spain and so many other countries that thought they were “safe,” because they had been duped into thinking they could trust the bankers. Until the bankers went bust and blamed the countries and demanded that the taxpayers make up their losses while the millionaires and billionaires pulled all their money out, sending it to offshore entities that can’t be traced.
And now they are trying to steal Ireland’s water delivery system? Next they’ll be trying to privatize the air we breath and the ground we walk on. With no public streets, there might be a “steppage fee” for wear and tear on the roadway when you go for your evening walk. And a “breathable air” fee, for the air you’re forced to inhale as a living human being.
And why not? Our new credo, our new religious mantra is “anything that makes a buck is a good thing!” Forget about the impact it has on any individual or the United States of America as an entity. And therein lies the rub. The billionaires and the millionaires are taking all the money for themselves while they give one big greedy middle finger to the good ole USA. It’s at the heart of all our troubles. Well, that, and the inability of the citizenry to figure it all out before our once-representative democracy is totally destroyed and the new feudalism sets in any further, locking most of us into to a permanent status of surfs with no way out.
“Please sir, may I have another?” I’m so very damn hungry, you see.
And don’t look to the politicians for assistance, most have been purchased by Billionaires, millionaires, corporate board directors and CEOs. Not directly. These guys leave no finger prints on who they’re buying. They don’t have to after the Supreme Court ruling on “Citizens United,” which effectively finished representative democracy in the United States.
I must admit though, it’s a little easier with 52-week auto financing, credit card debt to fund our purchases and NFL Football to keep us entertained.