International Writers Magazine - Our Tenth Year: Reality Check
The Great leap of Faith
Government For The People And By The People Buys The People
Economics -- The social science concerned chiefly with description
and analysis of the production, distribution and consumption of
goods and services.
- Webster's Dictionary
is the science which studies human behaviour as a relationship between
ends and scarce means which have alternative uses. - Lionel Robbins
I think I coulda landed on a dime. I really do. - Evel Knievel
a mere 35 days in office, the president of the United States placed
his nearly two-year, almost robotically orchestrated rise to power on
the slimmest of reeds. There Barack Obama stood, defiantly confident
in front of a joint session of congress, scaling the most ambitious
mountain of far-reaching, nut-crunching populace agenda this nation
has seen in close to a century. With the dexterous oratorical skills
that put him there, he stomped the terra with the unflinching audacity
of a man backed by a 70% approval rating facing down the seemingly unstoppable
implosion of the free market system. In the malleable parlance of political
analysis, this was a Whiz-Bang rousing yawp, part ego-stroking patriotic
nonsense artfully mixed with a parental-like scolding, topped off with
the obligatory schmaltz needed to bring it all home. Indeed, this is
the rise-to-the-occasion candidate nearly 60% of the country voted for,
hitting the high notes, working the room, kicking the ass.
But no one, least of all Barack Obama, can argue that financially manipulating
a crisis, stopping the bleeding, and halving the deficit simultaneously
is anything more than a gamble; it is more likely the political equivalent
of Evel Knievel, a rocket, and Snake River Canyon.
Forget the economic future, near or far, it is bad and about to get
worse, and when it returns to something approaching normalcy it will
forever deconstruct the way we do business, buy stuff, sell stuff, make
stuff, and cheat the tax man for decades to come. All of this has nothing
to do with speeches and bills and congress or the president. It never
has and it never will. It is about biting off more than one can chew,
and even a child will tell you this leads more times than not to choking.
Money problems, be they debt, investment, purchasing or selling of goods,
has two ways to roll, throwing more money at it, or ignoring it and
letting it do what money does. The latter theory has brought us here,
to the brink.
Doing nothing can sometime be as serious a crime as doing too much in
the realm of governance. Two of the worst presidents in our history
live in infamy for lack of action; James Buchanan, who floundered around
as a bumbling caretaker while the country plunged towards Civil War
and Herbert Hoover, who managed to deftly rephrase "Let them eat
cake" all the way into the Great Depression.
However, history is also littered with examples of governments doing
something working in the adverse. Take the recently doomed Bush Doctrine
of restructuring the Middle East in the form of faux democracy, an outsourcing
of ideology that has tanked in every century since the keeping of records.
It turned out, as predicted by anyone using a fair portion of their
brain, to be a spectacular bust and sucked the president and his band
of cronies into a political quagmire in which they were never again
able to emerge.
It is important to point out that although this current economic meltdown
is without refute a crisis more threatening than any terrorist attack,
nowhere in the annals of objective descriptions regarding the concepts
of economics does the word "government" appear; to find this
anomaly one most head to political manifestos. Yet, in the checkered
history of the civilized world, there are countless examples of governments
mucking around in "the social science of production, distribution
and consumption". This is tantamount to governments jamming its
business into all "the human behavior" as well, be it personal,
sexual, racial, familial, etc. In almost all cases, okay, let's be honest,
in all cases things go badly. Even if civilization evolves by government
intervention as in our aforementioned Civil War, there is likely a mass
of blood, destruction of property, plundering of fortune, and decades
of fallout in which to deal.
But these are queer times. This is a president and a congress, Democrats-all,
that have overwhelmingly taken power on the strains of an anti-rich,
anti-deregulation, anti-greed, and anti-stupidity revolt. They have
been given a blank check, a collective open-hand of goodwill from the
majority of a republic desperate for The Turn-Around. This is their
time, as it was for the Republicans after 9/11. In fact, it was the
sum of the Republican reaction to 9/11 that put these people where they
are. They know this. The American people have told them as much.
This is the same electorate which spoke clearly after 9/11, as Bush
rightly pointed out in his last press conference; "Does anyone
remember what things were like right after it happened? I do."
Vengeance and Jingoism ruled the day. It was not some kind of master
plan by the commander-in-chief, as has been the sloppy history of revision.
It was a clamor, loud and long, from every corner of this nation; to
get the bastards, make them pay, show our pride and force and renew
our sense of security. Why do you think a refined hippy like Hillary
Clinton voted for all-out war, which doomed her run for the presidency
eight years later? It was all the rage, that's why.
And Recovery is all the rage now; the American people are screaming
for these people who made all the speeches about saving our ass for
over a year to DO SOMETHING! These will likely be the same people, and
you can already hear them, that will be whining and crying when the
whole thing goes belly-up. And it will go belly-up, because that's what
history tells us, even recent history that continues to perpetuate the
myths that the New Deal saved the nation and that Ronald Reagan never
raised taxes or ceased the bloating of the national budget any of the
years he was in charge.
Maybe then the Republicans won't look as silly as they do now, former
spend-fiends thumbing their noses at every turn to appear a the genuine
loyal opposition and sending a goober car-salesmen like Bobby Jindal
before the public stammering on about "people" over "government"
as if two-thirds of these "people" he speaks to aren't already
begging for a hand-out. Jindal, a political butter knife sent into in
a mortar exchange, represents the very disconnect the Republicans have
with the zeitgeist; "Let's send the young, brown guy in to regurgitate
the same tired falderal and we're golden!"
But the Republicans no longer have a say. They are window-dressing.
They fart into the gale and call it ideals. But their sad wander into
the wilderness has just begun. This is all on the Democrats and Joe
Cool now, and if it works, great, if not, it's the shit house for the
have you gone Muhammad Ali? - James Campion
I miss Muhammad Ali. I miss his defiance, elegance and grit.
What is transpiring throughout the world economy is about survival
© James Campion Feb 28th 2009
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