The oil companies and other giant corporations have a stranglehold on American policies and behavior, and are choking off the prospects of a viable social and economic future for working people and their families.
President Obama spoke critically a couple of weeks ago about the “cozy relationship” between the oil companies and the federal government. It’s not just a cozy relationship. It’s an unholy alliance. And that alliance includes not just the oil companies but the entire spectrum of giant corporations that have used vast wealth to turn democratically elected officials into handmaidens, thus undermining not just the day-to-day interests of the people but the very essence of democracy itself.
Forget BP for a moment. When is the United States going to get its act together? Will we learn anything from this disaster or will we simply express our collective dismay, ignore the inevitable commission reports (no one pays attention to study commissions), and bury our heads back in the oily sand?
President Obama said on Thursday that his administration was “moving quickly on steps to ensure that a catastrophe like this never happens again.” Well, he can’t ensure anything of the kind. And, in fact, his corporate-friendly policy of opening up new regions for offshore drilling (that policy is only temporarily halted) will all but guarantee future disastrous spills.
The U.S. will never get its act together until we develop the courage and the will to crack down hard on these giant corporations. They need to be tamed, closely monitored and regulated, and constrained in ways that no longer allow them to trample the best interests of the American people.
The catch? Our government IS the corporations. Thanks to the way politicians and government appointees just rotate in and out of their positions and back again, we forget that the what we’re asking is for the very people we want to be regulated to regulate themselves. Think about Dick Cheney moving from the Reagan/Bush admin to Halliburton and then back to the Bush/Cheney admin. Think about how Treasury Sec under Bush, Hank Paulson, just before becoming the Treasury Sec, WAS THE CEO OF GOLDMAN SACHS.
How the hell do we let this go on? Because the reality is, we don’t have a democracy. If the big corps want something done they either buy lawmakers or swap them out with their own people. This is the major problem with our system—We The People aren’t understanding that everything we are told are lies—deliberate obfuscations meant to trick us into thinking things are being done when they aren’t and have no hope of being done because the system is rigged.
“A little-known, but enormously significant, demographic development has been unfolding south of our border. The fertility rate in Mexico—whose emigrants account for a majority of the United States’ undocumented population—has undergone one of the steepest declines in history, from about 6.7 children per woman in 1970 to about 2.1 today, according to World Bank figures. That makes it roughly equal to the U.S. rate and puts it at what demographers call “replacement level,” the point at which women are having just enough babies to sustain the current population. In coming years it’s expected to dip even further. Other countries in Latin America have experienced a similar drop, though not as sharp. All of which means that the ranks of those “invading” hordes are thinning—rapidly.”—
Wow… so Mexicans are getting the clue that their country isn’t a good place to raise kids—or they’re realizing that it’s too expensive to raise more than one or two. Either way, I can’t help but wonder if they’re not functioning as a canary in the mineshaft.
I love that metaphor because warnings are what we need—in this case, I think our economy is descending even more—without anyone in leadership being willing to face it. They say that the first to be hurt in a recession are the poor, well, in North America, it doesn’t get any more poor than Mexico.
Are we next? Because too many people are talking about recovery, I’d say yes…
“In a new study drawing on nearly a half century of data, a team of researchers report that religious adherents in the United States — especially fundamentalist Christians — are more inclined than agnostics to harbor racist attitudes toward blacks and other minorities.” (submitted by therodentqueen)
Interesting study. Go check it out.
It’s all about fear. Whether it’s the fear of God or the fear of The Other, anyone seeking to lead you is probably trying to scare you into letting him.
As faith leaders ramp up a campaign to sign the “Uganda Declaration” to challenge state-sponsored violence against LGBT people in Uganda, Malawi and in 80 other countries, CURRENT TV’S VANGUARD media will premier “Missionaries of Hate,” a one hour documentary that exposes “ The American Architects of Uganda’s Anti-Gay Bill”– evangelicals who export a message of hate to Uganda—and many other places in the world.
Sounds lovely. More reasons to challenge accepted wisdom that Christians are all about love and tolerance. Think Mother Theresa was a saint? I wonder how she would have reacted toward a gay man.
“Do not believe in anything simply because you have heard it. Do not believe in anything simply because it is spoken and rumoured by many. Do not believe in anything simply because it is found written in your religious books. Do not believe in anything simply on the authority of your teachers and elders. Do not believe in traditions because they have been handed down for many generations. But after observation and analysis, when you find anything that agrees with reason and is conducive to the good and benefit of one and all, then accept it and live up to it.”— The Buddha (via hayakawajunpei) (via rainbowhill)
I know, I know, BP is such an easy target! But what are ya gonna do? They deserve so many more attacks than they are getting—and that’s just what I get into in this week’s 666cast. There’s a sad reality as to why our leaders aren’t calling for Tony Hayward’s head on a platter…
Yep, in this week’s 666cast, I take to task the folks who are leading us. Whether elected or not, they have a responsibility to do the right thing to keep society and the people who live in it safe and moving forward. However, none of the guys at the top are doing it. Whether it’s Obama or the bankers or the head of BP, we’re getting screwed big time and our society is in trouble because of it.
Logic and practical reasoning obviously point to the unreliability of deism, but the thing bothering me is how and why so many people cling to it blindly. How can millions of people be so unreasonable? What do you think drives them and convinces them NOT to be an atheist?
Thank you for your time reading this and more power.
One word: Indoctrination.
“For those who stubbornly seek freedom, there can be no more urgent task than to come to understand the mechanisms and practices of indoctrination. These are easy to perceive in the totalitarian societies, much less so in the system of ‘brainwashing under freedom’ to which we are subjected and which all too often we serve as willing or unwitting instruments.” -Noam Chomsky
Religion is taught uncritically to children from birth. It is as simple as that. At least I think so. People’s religious beliefs are nothing more than a simple geographical accident (as seen here).
This is why we all need to question everything about ourselves. You never know when something you’ve done your entire life will suddenly seem amazingly stupid/wasteful/odd/hurtful.
Everything we know we’ve learned from someone else or from our own personal experience and none of it should be blindly trusted. Out intellect is what makes us different from the other animals. Use it to better understand yourself and your actions. Don’t trust your parents or the media or your friends or the government to decide what is right for you, because ultimately, your life is your responsibility to live.
Yep, it’s been a long time coming—an other episode of the 666cast, that is—not the Christmas Episode. In this episode I explain why this is so late, why this Christmas episode is here now, and of course, how I don’t understand how you can know there is no Santa Claus, but still believe in a God.
Oh, and there’s also some stuff in there about Christmas being co-opted by capitalism to help make Christmas an economic issue.