Uncommon Sense

August 29, 2021

The Corporate Takeover

Filed under: Uncategorized — Steve Ruis @ 10:40 am

What comes to mind when you read the words “the corporate takeover?” Maybe it is one corporation buying another. Microsoft was so famous for doing this that smaller companies had business models with the goal of being bought by Microsoft. Maybe you think of “private equity” firms taking over healthy corporations and stripping them of assets. Private equity is a euphemism for wealth from wealthy assholes, by the way.

But none of those is the topic of this post; small potatoes they are. I am talking about the corporate takeover of an entire culture, specifically that of the U.S.A.

Allow me to explain.

This country is current a plutocracy; it is run by the rich for the rich. The ranks of millionaires and billionaires has swollen over the past 50 years, and the bulk of these newly rich are . . . corporation executives.

These executives have the temerity to call themselves business leaders. Groups of them are invited to the White House to “advise” the President. Corporate bankers, like Jaime Dimon, CEO of JPMorgan Chase, assume they have access to the President on short order. Why is this so? What do they have to offer? They may know a fair amount about running their own companies but the broader issues are largely beyond their ken. (They have predicted exactly zero of the past ten recessions, for example.)

And leaders . . . really? Leaders of what? Certainly not of our communities or regions, or even sectors of the economy. These are the very same people who supported the bogus economic claim that a corporation’s only obligation was to enhance shareholder value. The executives glommed onto this idea because more and more they are paid in shares of their corporation’s stock. So, they used that “principle” (It isn’t a valid principle, but it is a principle.) to wean corporations off of their previous goal sets, which included goals directed at being good members of their community and to line their own pockets.

These people are leaders, sure, leading to the elimination of any competition their companies might face and toward greater and greater profits, no matter who they hurt. But anything else? Not hardly. The President would be better off inviting successful college football coaches to the White House. At least he might get some tips on making his team stronger. I suspect these “titans of industry” are invited only to keep them donating to the various campaigns of the politicians kissing their asses.

It was not that long ago (I was alive) that corporations had goals of providing good jobs, being a good member of their communities, etc. The CEO’s of companies did well economically but they didn’t become members of the plutocrat club. Corporations weren’t allowed to vote and didn’t have free speech rights. Their ability to make campaign donations was quite restricted. All of those aspects of corporations have gone by the wayside. The Powell Memo was the death knell of liberal democracy. It was a roadmap for the corporations to take possession of the American government system.

The first to cave in was the Republican Party, the GOP, or should I say the GQP, the political party that has conspiracy theories for a heart (Q-Anon, etc.). The Democrats, starting in the late 1970’s became the Corporate Democratic Party. The two together managed to pack the courts with distracters and corporate flunkies. If they aren’t supporting corporations over citizens, they are making decisions that rile up many, many people so that whatever the corporations are doing under and over the table is basically invisible.

The big question is: what are we going to do about this state of affairs? So far, we have adopted the stance of receiving a prostate exam. This is not very promising. Are we all so willing to trade in the American Dream for this corporatist nightmare, all for an iPhone 13? Is our price so low?

If you wonder why our lives are so chaotic and seemingly so small compared with the not too distant past, why our children face a future that promises they will be poorer than we were, the answer is corporatism, a plutocracy being run by rich corporation executives whose goal is to become personally richer than Midas, and to Hell with the rest of us. Wake up, people.

Learning from Others

I just learned that little Costa Rica has handled the COVID-19 pandemic very much better than we have here in the U.S. How is this? Costa Rica made a commitment to public health and through various initiatives has created the situation that Costa Ricans have a longer life expectancy that do Americans.

Costa Rica also had the uncommon sense to add a fourth branch of government to the one they modeled after ours. This branch, which is non-partisan, runs all of the elections. They schedule debates, set the rules, etc. No gerrymandering in Costa Rica.

But we don’t learn from good example or bad examples, because they are from other countries (Others, shoot them, shoot!) and they are trumped by American Exceptionalism. (We’re #1, we’re #1!)

We are also being dumb and lame when it comes to public policy. That is not by accident. Those who have gotten fat off of the current system do not want any competition, nor do they want any opposition, so more liberal voting laws? Nah. More sensible public health policies? No way! Honest elections! No chance, it will put too many party employees out of work.

A Stroke of Genius

Filed under: Culture — Steve Ruis @ 10:33 am

May be a Twitter screenshot of 1 person and text that says 'Andrew Thaler @DrAndrewThaler In retrospect, hiding all the microchips in Horse Dewormer was a stroke of genius,. 11:35 AM Aug 26, 2021 TweetDeck'

August 26, 2021

e-motion 2.0—a Documentary Review

Filed under: Culture,Entertainment,Reason,Science — Steve Ruis @ 11:14 am
Tags: , ,

Jumping the Tracks and the Shark at the Same Time

I took two running starts at this documentary but neither time could I make it even one quarter of the way through. I was washed out on a wave of woo each time.

The film begins easily enough by making a few claims, through quotes, such as “The subconscious mind determines everything about us.” Well, no it doesn’t, but it is very close.

They then went on to state that “emotions control the subconscious mind” and again, no they don’t but they do impact it substantially.

Next they made the completely wild claim that “at the root of every illness is suppressed emotion.” So, their thinking is starting to be exposed: emotions control the subconscious mind combined with the subconscious mind determines everything about us (my emphasis), and they create a direct link between emotions and everything about us, including illnesses. Now, there are some truths involved here but they are extrapolated so far as to make them disconnected.

I am, for example, convinced that imagination is our super power; it is what makes us distinct from every other species. And it is not that other species do not imagine (I don’t know but suspect that some do), but we took that sucker and ran with it. And one thing we can do is imagine a stressful situation so vividly that we can get a bodily stress reaction from it. And that, if repeated a great deal, will lead to an illness. So, memories and emotion can lead to illness.

In the sport I coach, archery, we claim that our subconscious mind cannot distinguish between reality and a vivid imagining. (This is based in science. It seems that instead of interacting with “reality,” whatever that is, directly we create a simulacrum of reality in our mind and interact with that. So, imagination and reality are not at all distinct in our minds.) Where this comes into play in archery is that archers are taught to vividly imagine a perfect shot from their personal viewpoint, just before raising their bows to make each shot. I am of the opinion that this “visualization” is a set of instructions to our subconscious mind, which controls all of our physical movements, to “make it so.” All motion of our bodies, not just archery shots, is controlled subconsciously. You know this from whenever you had no training in some physical activity and had to do it consciously: driving a car, riding a bike, tying your shoes, etc. How’d that go? Clumsy, eh? We all are. We have to train our subconscious minds and then we can turn it over to them to do it effortlessly.

So, our subconscious minds control a great deal of our lives, but “everything”? (Otherwise, how do we train our subconscious minds to do things like tie our shoes?) That’s quite a stretch at best. And we still don’t know what a “mind” is, but most psychologists think we have a stack: we have our conscious minds, then our subconscious minds, then our unconscious minds, and at the bottom, our autonomic processes (heartbeat, gland secretions, etc.). Each “layer” is intermixed with the one’s next to it. Some think that the “subconscious mind” is really just an expanded mode of conscious mixed with unconscious mental activities and it is not really a separate thing. 9In archery discussions I use subconscious and unconscious interchangeably because the finer points are not needed for archery.) The mixing of “minds” (No, Spock, not now!) is evident from experiments in which the subjects exhibited mental control over things like their heart rate, blood pressure, and other “autonomic” things.

So, we don’t know exactly what a mind is, and there seem to be multiple minds with somewhat separate functions or abilities. For example, archers are taught to moderate their emotions because they do affect our subconscious behavior and archery shots are largely subconscious events. Get overly emotional and your shooting becomes erratic.

But, going from “some diseases” are caused by subconscious emotions to “all diseases” are caused by emotions, requires a bridge too far. We became much more proficient in fighting diseases when we discovered the germ theory of disease, that there are microorganisms, including viruses, that cause disease. (In the Age of COVID, does anyone argue against this any more?) So, are disease organisms manifestations of repressed memories?

Also, they jumped to “suppressed emotions” from “emotions.” They claimed that “good emotions” are expressed while “bad emotions” are suppressed. And the bad emotions build up over time and . . . disease. WTF? We obviously have memories of emotional events. Evolution has decided that there is something to learn from emotional events (like to avoid being eaten by the tiger, I don’t have to outrun it, just out run the others in my group) and those memories last longer than mundane memories.

And, we are just now starting to learn how memories are stored. If you thought little video stories are storied in this or that place in your brain, well, you guessed wrong. Memories are dissected. The visual parts are stored in the visual cortex, the audio parts, are stored elsewhere, as are the tactile parts, etc. The locations in the brain that possess the ability to process specific kinds of information are where those kinds of information are stored. When a memory is triggered, all the parts get reassembled (well, usually all of the parts do, but not always) lickety-split. The more often a memory is triggered, the easier it is to recall. So people who chew on events of the past find it oh so easy to pull up the memories of the things they cannot resist. Those who do not dwell on the past find it harder and harder to come up with those recalls.

None of these things were discussed, at least in as far as I got. The second try I stopped at the comment “Ninety percent of our energy is used to suppress energies from our past.” WTF?

I did get past the obligatory mention of vibrational energies and how they are linked to various parts of the body. Vibrational energies were the vogue in the woo-woo crowd of 100 years ago as the wave nature of light and whatnot were in open discussion because of all of the excitement surrounding Einstein and his posse of physicists. No mention of how these vibrational energies operate other than through resonance and the kind of energy is never mentioned, just “energy.”

So, as I said, a tidal wave of woo washed me out.

If anyone gets to the end I would appreciate hearing your thoughts on this . . . whatever it is.

Oh, btw, we do not yet know what an emotion is. One of the most promising theories is that these things are learned!

August 25, 2021

Raising Questions

I am reading Diarmaid MacColloch’s Christianity: The First Three Thousand Years and am enjoying the read, but as always I tend to take a step back.

The author is treating this monumental history as if the scriptures that have survived until now are actually histories. He doesn’t swallow them hook, line, and sinker, but the main threads are just assumed to be true. He does offer some fascinating tidbits along the way, however. I am going to do a full review after I finish it but last night I read this:

We have to remember that the vast majority of early Christian texts have perished, and despite many new archaeological finds, there is a bias among those that survived towards texts which later forms of Christianity found acceptable. One expert on the period has recently estimated that around 85 per cent of second-century Christian texts of which existing sources make mention have gone missing, and that total itself can only represent a fraction of what there once was. The documents which do survive conspire to hide their rooting in historic contexts; this makes them a gift to biblical literalists, who care little for history.” (p. 112)

Of course, I also viewed the documentary Contradiction recently, so there are several threads of questions that pop up to me.

From the documentary, it is emphasized that to many Christians “Jesus’s blood ‘washed away their sins’” and that to gain entrance to heaven you have to “accept Jesus as your Lord and master” or “accept Jesus into your heart . . .” not your brain, your heart.

This entire house of cards has a very weak foundation. The first is “original sin,” which is apparently due to Adam and Eve’s “rebellion” against Yahweh. As a consequence, every human being born thereafter has been born a sinner, which means they will be consigned to Hell unless they get help. Why is it that tiny babies born thousands of years after an event are being made to pay for the event is not explained, but it sure does support the power of a religion which claims to have a “cure” for that “disease.”

So, the mystery of original sin needs a better explanation that it being a “curse.” Do you believe in curses? No? Well, you can’t be a Christian then. Plus, it would be nice to have an explanation as to how this “sin” is transmitted. (Is it genetic? Is it just magic?)

Next, Jesus’s sacrifice. The stories do make it seem as if Jesus was hell-bent to get hung out to dry in Jerusalem. He is portrayed as having foreknowledge of the event and went anyway. Then he provides provocation to both the Temple elites and the Romans. Maybe this chapter in the gospels should be titled “Death Wish 0,” without Charles Bronson . . . see how it all began! Now playing.

A step back: Why do the Romans come off so well in the gospels and Acts? Did they not nail up Jesus, kill him for claiming to be the King of the Jews and thus an insurrectionist? Maybe they were being rewarded for executing their part of God’s plan.

Another step back: Why were the Pharisee’s so vilified in the gospels? When the Jews revolted in 68 CE, the insurrectionists did as one of their first acts was to do away with the Sadducee Temple elites. They were the collaborators with Rome, not the Pharisees.

Okay, so “the blood of Christ” . . . not so effective against COVID-19 but supposedly removed the sins of all believers. How does that work, exactly? How does the blood of one man-god being spilt remove the sins from an entire people? Now the people who were making this claim were also making the claim that burning parts of the animals sacrificed in the Temple was their practice because their god reveled in the sweet, sweet smell of the smoke (barbecue?). But if God were in Heaven, and Heaven was closer to the orbit of the Moon than to Earth, how did the smoke get there, through the vacuum of interplanetary space? (I have already written that the godly power of omnipresence is not only impossible but also unnecessary in that such a god doesn’t need to be anywhere to do anything. He already knows all and has seen all and can do all, so eavesdropping isn’t necessary.)

So, the mechanism by which the blood of the Christ forgives sins is a mystery, but it is also a conditional mystery. In other words, it doesn’t work unless you believe something (that Jesus is fit to rule and run your life). And how does that work? This is another form of curse, one that works backwards. And, not surprisingly, one that provides power to the various religious sects.

I have mentioned before that the story we have been given is full of holes. For example, Jesus walks around Jerusalem for 40 days after his resurrection, and the Romans don’t get wind of it, even though Jesus apparently is drawing large crowds.

Can a god die and resurrect itself? Where’d He go for the two days he supposedly was dead? If his “soul” stuck with his body, could he have fooled the people washing his corpse for burial into believing he was dead? Did his soul hang out in Hell? (“Always wanted to see this place. That lake is amazing, but it is pretty noisy, what with all of the screaming.”) Did it float above the city, taking in all of the events? What does dying mean for such a being?

All of this blood magic in the Bible, and it is blood magic (menstrual blood can make you unclean, don’t you know), makes it sound like a fantasy thriller. Does anyone today believe in blood magic? No? If you don’t you can’t be a Christian.

Maybe that is a task I will take on some day, making a list of all of the things one must believe to be a Christian of one stripe or another that are at their very best mysterious and worst, hokum.

Why? Enquiring minds want to know, that’s why.

August 24, 2021

Can You Spell Pandering Boys and Girls?

Filed under: Religion — Steve Ruis @ 12:25 pm
Tags: , , , , , , ,

How can you go to church and pray when you’re wearing a mask?
Do you think God can hear your prayers through a mask
?” (Televangelist Jim Bakker)

I guess when Jim Bakker got out of prison he went back to the only thing he knew how to do: bilking people out of money by spouting nonsense.

So, can God hear you praying when you are wearing a mask? If not that puts a pretty low upper limits upon His omnipotence and omniscience, now doesn’t it? (When you get old, your hearing starts to go, then your memory and this god is really, really old. . . . ) Doesn’t Jim Bakker’s god know everything, everything that has happened and will happen? So, in effect he has already heard your prayer, no?

And what about the Gospel of Matthew’s condemnation of those who go to pray in public places? Couldn’t Jim Bakker’s church goers pray their hearts out . . . out loud . . . before they left home or, maybe in their car on the way to church? Surely there are things to do in church other than pray, no?

So much for “you can’t hide what is in your heart from God.” (A mask means you can hide!)

So much for “He knows when you are sleeping, He knows when you are awake, so . . .” ooops, wrong deity.

So much for this god which lets tens of thousands of children die from hunger every damned day, but is willing to listen to your whiny ass prayers and, on occasion, throw you a bone: letting your high school football team win a game, helping you find a parking space, or making sure there was enough buttermilk in the fridge for you to make biscuits tonight.

I challenge Jim Bakker to quote scripture where it says “Thou shalt not wear a mask into a church building!”

I am waiting. (I am not simultaneously holding my breath.)

Contradiction—A Review

Filed under: Culture,History,Race,Religion — Steve Ruis @ 12:20 pm

Contradiction is a 2015 documentary available on Amazon Prime. The subtitle is “A Question of Faith” with the primary question being this: there are more black churches serving the black community than any other community claims and the observation made was the poorer the community, the greater the number of churches. Is one the cause and the other the effect and which way? The documentarian seemed to believe that the effort supporting such a large number of churches is at least a drain on their community’s resources that would be better invested in helping people out of poverty and drug addiction, etc.

I am recommending this documentary to you because while it relates to the black churches of the U.S., the same questions need to be asked of all of the other churches.

My position is simple: civilization was created by a small group of people, the elites, coercing labor from the masses to support the interests of the elites. If the elites are not going to be working the fields and what not, somebody has to replace that labor. Apparently the number of volunteers willing to do extra work to take up the slack weren’t enough to make up for the labor lost, so large scale slavery started up when civilization did.

Plus, if slaves or unwilling “citizens” were to be forced to do this labor, guards would be needed, which swelled the ranks of the “elites” (those not growing food and supplying shelter, etc. but instead providing governance, art, music, etc. largely only for the elites but it was what it was and is what it is) which only increased the demand for coerced labor.

Also, if there were religious as well as secular elites, they soon realized that they were both better off supporting one another than contesting for elite status, so religion became the tool of coercing the labor. (They were sometimes all-in-one priest-kings, or separate “rulers” with one subordinate to the other, but they always were working together in their coercion, no matter how they fought among themselves.)

This was reinforced by the history of American slaves who were forcibly converted to Christianity and the preachers of black churches were given points to reinforce, the primary one was the “pie in the sky” promise, that their reward would come after they died. (The others being “slaves, obey your masters,” and, well you know.

It is hard to conceive of why black people are so loyal to their churches and to the baby Jesus. If I trace my ancestors back in this country, on both my father’s and mother’s sides, I find Christians all of the way back. But if African-Americans were to do the same, I would guess the number of their ancestors who arrived in this country as slaves who were also Christians, would be <1%. Their native religions were stripped from them and Christianity, a very limited Christianity (no Jesus tearing up the temple courtyard in their sermons), was forced upon them (with beatings, etc.) by “their masters.” Then to hear so many black women say that the most important thing in their life was “accepting Jesus as their Lord and Master” was shocking, very shocking.

This is quite worth watching, highly recommended.

August 23, 2021

Capitalism or Socialism?—Show Us

Filed under: Uncategorized — Steve Ruis @ 10:12 am

“A recent Fox News poll showed that more Democrats favor socialism over capitalism, in a sharp reversal from just a year and a half ago. The poll, taken between Aug. 7-10, showed that 59% of registered Democratic voters who participated had a positive view of socialism, compared to just 49% who felt that way about capitalism. In February 2020, when the question was last asked, 50% of Democrats who participated said they had a favorable view of capitalism, with just 40% saying the same about socialism.” (Source http://www.defendemocracy.press)

I am sure that a lot of conservative news commenters will be wringing their hands over this, along the lines of “Don’t they know socialism is bad?”

Actually I do not think those polled have any idea what “socialism” might be in this country, but one thing they do know: capitalism is not working for them. We were told “work hard, keep your head down, and your children’s lives will be better than yours.” Does anyone believe this tripe any more? People have worked harder and harder and only gotten further behind. If it didn’t have such a bad reputation the current crop of rich, greedy bastards would reintroduce the “company store.”

Over the past half century, the rich have captured the reins of government and have been running it to make themselves vastly richer, and well, the rest of us can go fuck ourselves. It is every man for himself, right?

It will no longer be that unless the current crop of greedy rich bastards show that capitalism can work for all of us. And they had better be damned quick about it. The ship is sinking and rearranging the deck chairs isn’t going to work anymore.

August 22, 2021

Make Earth Sacred Again

Note—It is Sunday Sermon Time again, boys and girls! S

The title above is a proposed solution to greedy capitalists processing everything we need to live into profits. The Medium.com post was “Make Earth Sacred Again” with the subtitle “Reverence for Nature could stop Big Money’s destroying the world.” (Note I wish these people would stop saying “destroying the world/planet.” It is us they are destroying, not the world. The world will still be spinning on this same path long after humans are all dead.)

I have to assume that some sort of Native American religion is going to be involved in such an effort, because the dominant religions in the U.S. today don’t seem to possess this attribute.

Devout Christians often do say foolish things like this, “the Earth is sacred; we have the stewardship of the entire planet on our shoulders” and, my favorite “life is sacred.” (No, it is not.)

First “life is sacred.” Really? Says who? Certainly not the God of the Bible, responsible for killing millions upon millions of humans and at one point 99.99999+% of the plants and animals in the entire world.

To show you how far we have come from our hunter-gatherer roots as a family or at most a small tribe (<100 humans), consider this: is your life sacred? Sure. How about your spouse and children, your immediate family? Yeah, right on! How about your neighbors on your block? Well, kind of, I guess. How about all God-fearing Americans? Yeah, damned straight. How about Canadians? Well, I guess? How about Mexicans? Hell, no! The Taliban? The Chinese?

Basically, the farther a person gets from being a part of your family, by being adopted or born into, the less sacred their lives seem, no? So, since our hunting and gathering phases, we have changed not at all in this, other than in the capacity to know that other people exist quite a few kilometers away (and farther away). They are still “others” and are categorized as such, and they are not on the same level as you and your family. Moving back to the “Make Nature Sacred Again” bit . . . was it ever sacred? Certainly not to any of the imported Americans. One could argue that many native Americans had a concept like this but that also might just be a way of expressing what they knew to be pragmatic: take care of your environment and it will take care of you.

In my native state of California, archeologists dug up immense mounds of mollusk shells near the S.F. Bay. What they finally concluded was that a tribe of Native Californians would move to the area and eat everything in sight and then would move to another location to do the same there. While they were gone, the oyster beds and mussel beds recovered so that when they came back years later they could do it all over again, and being pragmatic, they always discarded the shells in the same place, which grew to the size of small hills. Not exactly careful husbanding of nature, but not totally destructive, either.

In the New England states, the Native New Englanders were careful to husband their crops. They would burn off the weeds and shrubs in controlled burns which encouraged grass and trees to grow and deer and other game to congregate to eat their produce. The Native Americans and the deer and whatnot ate a lot of mast, nuts from the trees, and whatever grew in the layer at the base of the tree (mushrooms, etc.). By being careful, they could make it through even a harsh winter, by losing a few pounds before things harvestable started to grow again and deer and other game came looking for the grasses and mast they could gorge upon in their hunting grounds.

Then came the “new” Englanders. Told that the streets were “paved with gold,” usually in the form of being able to hunt deer and moose out your back door, and harvest nuts and wild fruits a short walk away, more than a few “Christians” set up lodgings there. They didn’t do controlled burns and objected when the natives did. They over hunted, over fished, and over harvested and, within just a year or two, the entire regional system collapsed.

And the reason they did this is they believed their fucking God “would provide.”

The Native Americans new that the land was to be taken care of if they wanted it to take care of them. They thanked their prey when they shot a deer and used every tiny bit of it to honor the sacrifice of that animal. The Anglos, on the other hand, slaughtered millions of bison to provide lap robes for rich English people.

This solution to our existential problem will not work because the concept of sacred doesn’t exist in the American mind, especially the Christian mind. And there is no vehicle, that is no religion, that enough people subscribe to that can implement that concept. And, even if there were, the fucking greedy capitalists would allow it free rein, as it would hurt their bottom lines. They would mobilize the Evangelicals against the “pagan religions” that could save our asses and that, would be the end of that.

Whatever happened to the inventive capitalists who looked to the future and anticipating change, embraced it to make new profits. Today’s capitalists have no creativity, no imagination, and are sitting where they are like the buggy whip manufacturers when automobiles began to take over, wringing their hands and using their fortunes to prevent anything from changing. They, like the buggy whip makers before them, will have no luck in those endeavors. The future belongs to the prepared.

August 21, 2021

What “Today’s Conservatives” Really Want

I am not at all sure that conservatives still exist, certainly not the conservatives of my youth, but the label is still bandied about, so I will work with it. What do “today’s conservatives” really want?

Recently someone said that conservative Americans want to have decent lives. They want to work, worship, raise a family, and participate in public affairs without being treated as insolent upstarts in their own country. Gosh, might these new conservatives have something in common with today’s liberals and progressives? Gee, I wonder what it could be?

Often as not the 1950’s are mentioned wistfully as such an age.

In the 1950’s, again often as not, the nuclear family (no, not that nuclear) had a male “head-of-household” as breadwinner, a stay at home mom, and wholesome kids who walked or bicycled to a decent school.  I say “decent school” because back then we didn’t know there were “good schools” and “bad schools” to choose from. You went to the same schools your siblings, and often your parents, did.

So, what went wrong?

You can lay in the lap of then conservatives most of the wheels coming off of this blissful state: Ronald Regan presided over a huge shift in stay-at-home moms to the workplace. Women went to work in droves in the 70’s and 80’s because one income didn’t hack it anymore. But, how come? Why were incomes no longer sufficient to raise a family on just one? Over the last 50 years. American worker productivity has gone up and up and up, but wages barely at all. Why was that? It is called “wage suppression,” boys and girls, a conservative effort that paid big dividends for the rich. So, “conservatives” suppressed wages, making many, many women have to seek jobs to maintain a decent standard of living for their family and could, therefore, no longer be at home raising the kids. (Remember the “latch key kid” issue?)

Another feature of the 1950’s was the explosive growth of the suburbs. If you do not remember “sub-urbs” were areas outside of the urban areas we tended to live in. In the urban areas, we didn’t get to always choose our neighbors, but in the suburbs, all the white folk got to tell the black folk that “their kind weren’t wanted around here,” and the federal government helped! (Remember redlining in real estate and bank loans for housing?)

Today’s conservatives are aligned against the Democratic Party because the Democrats want to give away honest taxpayer’s money to undeserving people, people of color! Of course, if you add up all of the money spent to try to lift people of color out of poverty, it is a pittance when compared to the money dished out to white rich folks. And it is still a hallmark of “conservative” federal administrations. Consider the recent Trump Tax Cuts: in 2018, the average tax cut for the richest 1 percent was $51,000 and the average tax cut for the bottom 80 percent to be about $800. Of the total loss of tax revenue to the federal government in the first year, the bottom 90% of taxpayers, including you and me, got 6 billion dollars. The top 10% got 34 billion dollars, with the bulk of that going to the top 1%.

The money “given away to the “undeserving” (code for colored folks) is a pittance compared to the money given away to ordinary white Americans, which is a tiny fraction of the money given to rich people and major corporations (run by rich white people). (Which segment of the American populace has benefit from Social Security? Answer: OWLs, old white ladies. Black folk don’t live long enough to really cash in on SS.)

Those conservatives used a racist smokescreen to cover up the nature of their real aims, to make sure the rich got served first . . . and more than anyone else.

This is not to say that the liberals and progressives are much better. They are better but are also serving the rich first. As far as the rich are concerned, a good politicians is one who stays bought.

So, if you haven’t noticed, this is a racist country. Back in the 1950’s if you watched TV, you didn’t see people of color. The Kramdens didn’t have any black or brown neighbors. Neither did the Nelsons, or the other families shown on TV. The Ricardo’s got away with Desi being Cuban, but that was okay because he was an entertainer and we allowed “coloreds” to entertain us. But they didn’t have any black neighbors or co-workers, either.

This is the 1950’s that many of “today’s conservatives” pine for. None of those “dangerous people” in our neighborhoods. (If you didn’t notice, an extensive media campaign was waged to paint black people as violent and dangerous, especially young black males, so they could be locked up out of sight. If you weren’t aware of that look up the “New Jim Crow.” Oh, and many of the prisons full of young black men were privatized, so rich white people could profit from the scheme.

Let’s see . . . part of the wage suppression efforts was the defanging of labor unions, labor unions which were racist but making progress a little faster than the general public, so that was a “two-fer.” The decline of unions (again, people, not an accident or based upon anything they did) decreased worker power, so wages and working conditions, but not profits, suffered.

So, what do we see in the news today that reflects this? We see people acting out from their powerlessness. Their jobs are insufficient to support the American Dream anymore. (Remember the American Dream: a house, with a white picket fence in a good neighborhood with good schools . . . and white neighbors?) Ordinary American’s credit cards are maxed out trying to stay afloat. When I was young, ordinary people couldn’t get a credit card, they just weren’t available. Today, credit card debt, along with student loan debt (student loans when I went to school had little to no interest) are heavy balls chained to the ankles of everyone of us. We cannot afford to get out of line because we could be ruined financially, so no protesting for a union for us.

We see people proclaiming bizarre beliefs, expressing their powerlessness. They are basically saying “See, I can believe nonsense and you can’t stop me,” so “You can’t make me toe the line on masks and social distancing” is part of a general pattern. Jewish Space Lasers, fire them up! Vaccine micro-chips, yep, they are in there! Hillary Clinton’s child porn ring in the basement of a pizza parlor? Sounds reasonable to me! Overturn the electron results because Donald Trump didn’t like them? Sure, it is only right.

Modern conservatives are in real pain, fomented by faux conservatives. The people behind all of the changes bemoaned by conservative Americans today are the “conservatives,” who are not real conservatives as the only thing they are trying to conserve is their bottom line. They are super-rich wolves in conservative sheep’s clothing.

If you don’t believe this, ask yourself this: if an ordinary American were shown a night of Tucker Carlson and the rest of the Fox News goons, what do you think their reaction would be? They would be flabbergasted. They would blubber “But they are making stuff up, and lying. They can’t do that on the public airways!” (Remember the public airways and standards for news reporting? Done away with by conservatives.)

As I have mentioned before: I didn’t start the class war, the “conservatives” did. And now that they have won, they will work like beavers to keep it this way.

How to you like the world our “conservatives” created for us? This is their vision of the American Dream: profits over people, no opponents to their will in sight, ah . . . reminds me of the 1950’s . . . not.

Next Page »

Create a free website or blog at WordPress.com.