Wednesday, October 20, 2010

Guy McPherson, "Grifter Nation"

"Grifter Nation"
by Guy McPherson

"Throughout the blogosphere, pundits are predicting the foreclosure fiasco will be the tipping point. Instead of death by a thousand cuts, this spurting wound will bring the industrial economy to its overdue close, they say. Those of us who care about the living planet should be so lucky. All twelve of us.

Let’s ignore the fact that the media tack “-gate” onto every single event, large or small, as if every event since Watergate is a REALLY BIG DEAL. How many thousand “gates” have we experienced since Nixon waived goodbye, with no appreciable change in the national scenery? Politicians are slippery enough to squirm away from this crisis. And by politicians, I mean banksters and corporations. They’re all cut from the same coarse cloth, after all.

If we set the guilty free this time, the pundits say, we have abandoned the rule of law. Chaos will erupt. Anarchy will rule the day. Never mind the difference between chaos and anarchy, which most people cannot distinguish. Let’s cut straight to the argument about the rule of law.

As if that’s mattered in this country, or the entire industrialized world, for the last several generations. When was the last time you saw a person of color, accused of raping a while college girl, receive the same treatment as, say, an east-coast, Ivy-league, blue-blood with blue eyes that reflect familial bling? To suggest we are a nation of laws that apply equally to all citizens is to express a level of national naivete we haven’t seen since the cultural revolution of the 1960s. I’d like to think we are equal under the law, and that resistance will overcome inequalities. But I didn’t fall off the turnip truck yesterday.

We’re a nation of grifters, addicted to Ponzi schemes. We specialize in scams that transfer financial wealth from the poor to the rich. There is no honor among the conniving thieves herding this country into the abattoir. The last American on the stinking, sinking ship of empire will be laughing maniacally because he is holding onto a chest of fiat currency as he sucks his last gulp of air. “I won, I won,” he’ll cry to the crashing waves, failing to notice the seagull gliding through the azure sky.

• Imperial myth number one: We are a nation of laws that apply equally to all citizens. But I have seven more:
• We can bail out countries by loaning them money.
• Printing money creates wealth (in the case of the U.S., it’s contributing to poverty).
• Consumerism creates happiness (in the case of the contemporary American, consumerism has created resentment, frustration, and anger).
• The Fed is primarily concerned about the citizens of this country. No comment necessary.
• The two-party system actually presents a choice. Ditto.
• Your home is a good financial investment. Ah, those were the days.
• The recession has ended. Okay, that one’s not a myth. The recession is over, and the Greatest Depression is fully under way (aka the empire is in decline).

I’m sure I missed some. But any number can play (hint, hint)."

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