(you can read part one of this post by clicking here).
I.C., once again, the floor is yours.
In Part I, I attempted to lay out possible interpretations and directions that could or might be drawn from Barack Obama’s campaign. I’ve mentioned the possibility that he seeks to empower the people of this country such that they would become sovereign. That his means to that end would be justice as the measure of political policy, not profits. This would of course displace corporations from that seat of sovereign power that they have so infamously projected and corrupted throughout the Bush and many other administrations.
In the context then of who we want to be and how we are going to get there as a people, we must become aware we are limited by our ignorance, by our lack of vision, by our lack of purpose. Instead of a national discussion toward such quality purpose in national life we have accepted substitutes. Foremost, we have signed on for mountains of consumer goods—gadgets in place of life. To life’s great question, whether ‘To Be or to Have,’ Americans have overwhelming chosen getting and having. Choices that were for the most part completely oblivious and impervious to the profound effects they would have on our selves, on our children, on our environment, on our loss of control of our government.
We have allowed a media owned and operated for profit alongside an entertainment industry with the same purpose, to sell images in place of careful and thoughtful, skeptical inquiry. Their obvious purpose is to soothe, divert and convey a diluted, pathetic version of our political condition. Neil Postman called it Amusing Ourselves to Death. A captured press largely beholden to government regulation of the airwaves and trust combining mergers, is constantly bleating its corporate voice, questioning little or nothing about government connivance with corporations in order to gain more government help. It speaks the bah, bah, bah of corporate sheep, asking for welfare, nothing more.
The least benign substitution for a national purpose of quality is the U.S. world wide military empire. Created at our expense by constantly invented and reinvented fear, it conveys, portrays and portends that we might—could possibly be—certainly are vulnerable to—and almost certainly will soon face—being run over. This by the government that spends more on military might than all the rest of the world’s countries combined.
It is the grand strategy for it guarantees that the greater part of the economy is under military-industrial control or linked to it. Such profits can be secure and inflate others because are in fact guaranteed, the economy steadied by the preposterous military waste. There will always be the ‘need’ for more and little competition to build it. That civil society is stricken, starved and wasted by such allocation is seldom considered. In hidden speech and ruling circles it is made out that prosperity could not exist without military waste. Some of that is undoubtedly believed by the public until the economy collapses under the weight of so much diversion of resources. Fortunately, reality is now more transparent as our sand castle economy disintegrates before our eyes.
The deceitful and simplistic explanations and excuses for this disintegration frightens witches off their brooms but unless the public is vigilant it will all be devised and redirected to divert attention from the madcaps. That is, from the scarab beetles like Dick Cheney and his cohorts who have been tunneling into the ground of national life for years, sucking the resources of the country toward themselves.
As a people we have far more to be afraid of than a black man as president. When the working classes complain they ‘don’t know him’ or accept snide descriptions of him as ‘elitist’ they are really accepting the fear that he might have a vision beyond their imagining. That he might believe in a freedom they are afraid of and have been trying to escape from: that they are the engine of their growth and freedom. That he might be asking them to make a sacrifice of spirit and purpose to commit themselves in establishing the development and implementation of their rights and their purposes such as a health care ‘right,’ not a diluted ‘responsibility’ as John McCain would have it.
Nothing is clearer to American voters today than the monumental need for change on many fronts, economic, environmental, political, and social. Yet nothing is scarier to some of them than real ‘change’ because so few know what is really wrong or have the barest framework of understanding for fixing it. Having not the slightest inkling they are prey to the most ridiculous and preposterous statements and rumors. Sarah Palin has made this her province, her self the very provenience of such claims to her everlasting discredit and whomever she represents, claims to represent, or thinks she represents if they allow her to speak for them.
. Working up a crowd to characterize the opposing candidate as a ‘terrorist’ is despicable politics in any culture, certainly in a nation that calls itself a democracy. Such accusations undermine our national political health, raising a deranged cry to bring on the rabid haters and racist threats of a time long past burying. Call her ‘Mommy Cracker,’ she is channeling America’s racist past from the deep South and throwing in George Bush’s favorite category of fright and fakery, ‘terrorists.’ She is stirring a cauldron of ignorance, to allow a vivid cesspool of prejudicial ideas about minority peoples to bubble to the surface. Ideas that can be used, as they always have been used in the United States, to scare such minorities along with whatever other parts of the public are gullible—into subservience. It was the lowest point of John McCain’s rebuttal Wednesday night when he claimed he had repudiated all such deceit which, of course, he had not done and still has not done as of this writing.
Corporate money likes to ‘own’ its candidates as it clearly does John McCain. That is where his tax deduction scheme for corporations comes from. Should Obama win he must also obtain ‘advisors’ or experts to run the country. Many of these are tainted having been educated, outfitted and gained their experience running various aspects of corporations. President elects are always besieged by such ‘advisors’ to make decisions based on providing emoluments (advantages of office) to those who because of their executive positions managing wealth, come to think of themselves as having created it.
This essentially autocratic position is the deepest, most flawed philosophical, political and psychological misperception of our age and it is not going to go away quietly. Like a toothy carcass of a dead animal this belief in their expertise, their claims of ‘free markets’ has been hung around our necks to stink and scare us to go along, to just go along. ‘Free markets’are free only for those who can pay for them, money that we have a slight shortage of right now.
Barack Obama has made an impressive case that he sees and expects to lead us to a different place in American life. As a body politic we should have the strength to place him a position to do so and then challenge him to make good on his words. Perhaps he will find the substance in us and we can find what there is in him that can make it actual.