Are you really in the bottom 98% if you make under a million, Papi?
— the author’s son
If you’re not into a redistribution of wealth in the U.S., that’s okay. You should read this anyway. If you’re not against U.S. wars overseas or torture, that’s okay. You should read this anyway. Why? In short, because Ban Ki-moon, a relatively conservative Secretary General for the U.N., has asserted that if the world’s nations don’t come to an unprecedented agreement on the environment at Copenhagen this December “it’s all over.” As in end of the world as we know it. And since I can guarantee you that the gathering in Denmark will NOT produce what’s necessary in time, this article — assuming that Ban Ki-moon is “off” by a couple of years respecting deadline — just might provide salvation of a sort.
The proposal below, Plan 98, tries to address multiple issues, but whether or not we embrace this or that particular issue together, you can count on this piece being worth the heartbeats to read because at heart it tries to motivate you — us all — to stop our ecocidal momentum. You’ll pick up on that pulse in the piece if you stick with it to the end. From there you can tweak things as you will, rejecting this, running with that.
There are a number of organizations/citizens who stand to benefit enormously by my proposal below. They include anti-war activists, health care advocates, supporters of immigrants, animal rights people, human rights groups, environmentalists of all (or most) stripes, feminists, sweatshop protesters, ALL groups concerned with the welfare of children, living wage fighters, prison reformers, union members, socially-conscious entrepreneurs, organic farmers, overburdened parents, disgruntled educators, writers, opponents of police brutality, artists, those who hate Monsanto unconditionally, and many others. Many, many others.
If readers can’t immediately connect the dots between Plan 98 and the above, I’ll be happy to go over the synapses.
As per the superrich and wealth and income distribution in America (The figures are worse today!), I recommend that the top 2% of the country’s population (holding almost all of the nation’s “financial wealth”) be forced to release a small portion of their fluid reserves immediately so that the lower 98% of our population benefits at once. The powers that be held emergency sessions to make sure that this and that financial institution did not fail, as they say. They can (They really can!) do the same thing for the purpose of — virtually overnight — ensuring that the bottom 80% of the U.S.. population goes from sharing only 7% of the country’s financial wealth to holding… double that!* Citizens who are in the top 20% at present (in terms of financial wealth) but NOT in the top 2% will also gain somewhat, though not as much.
*Not so that consumerism can be increased. Rents could be paid, mortgages. A tooth pulled.. Sight restored. Funerals financed. That sort of thing. Okay, maybe the purchase of one harmonica. [You don't want to lose your sense of humor here.]
How we will determine who falls into what category — all the devilish details — can be worked out easily enough. Enough with anal-retentive game plans, sphincter tight ordering! The first fun, (loose) order of business is to see who’s on board with what can easily be labeled (and dismissed prematurely) as a socialist idea. [Never mind that many of our major (destructive) corporations and the Pentagon, among other elements in society, are subsidized (and have been for quite a long time) very socialist-like.] With Plan 98 we’re focusing on benefiting the vast majority of our population, but NOT to the same over-the-top degree as corrupt corporations et al. have profited along (hidden) “socialist” lines.
PLEASE don’t worry about some underprivileged person getting something for nothing on occasion. The top 2% that we’re targeting get away with way more — Like murder and unprecedented theft! — on a regular basis, at more of a cost to society than the poor of this nation could possibly drain from our common coffers if they worked at exactly that 24×8.
No immigrant, Mexican or any other, could possibly be as illegal in this country as the U.S. abominations abroad are illegal. And there is no standard by which any immigrant presence in this country can count as remotely comparable to our immoral atrocities conducted abroad. Not just in terms of the wantonly horrific, unnecessary military aggression, but — also — with regard to our dumping of toxic waste into the environments of other nations via routine Pentagon practice.
Like Green Day asks: Do you know your enemy?
The U.S. military is arguably the single greatest polluter on earth. So cutting out what we’re doing in Columbia, what we’re trying to pull off in Africa, what we intend to do further in Afghanistan and Iraq and Pakistan and Iran… well, that would go a long way toward making this a better world. Increasing safety to boot.
The lifestyle of the Super Rich — the upper 2% — is killing the earth. I’m sure I don’t have to delineate how they’re contributing, to what enormous extent. Our wars, war-related prep/experimentation, and Pentagon indiscretions are doing their number on the planet too… and keep the vast majority of the country — unnecessarily — without necessities.
If you can rise above the self-serving fears those two have inculcated in you (through our educational system, media fare, etc.), and come up with your own definition of what being patriotic is, or what life is all about… then perhaps you’ll want to embrace Plan 98.
Now here’s where we get practical, hands on. Here’s where you go to work… beyond what’s your work*… without your present work suffering.
*Even if 50% of the country were doing “good work” individually, it wouldn’t be enough. Something must be done on a large scale in solidarity. And with that 5% or 10% would be enough… if a lot of them were from California.
If you help us to put TOSCA’S twelve unaffiliated, non-politician citizens into the Governor of California’s office (so that they can serve together on an equal basis1 ) in 2010, I promise you that we’ll take our best shot at dismantling/undermining the electoral system as it stands, our ecocidal environmental momentum as it moves, and abominable U.S. practices on all fronts.
Things are clearly getting worse daily. The only chance we have, I believe, is for everyone to get behind helping us to put a dozen radical citizens into the Sacred Seat in Sacramento, California for the purpose of helping the public to self-educate about the need for a revolution.
It won’t work?
That’s what they always say. But, then, right now there’s 98% (of others) who just might get it. So that it could be made — forced — to work. A 2% California solution giving them time/urging them to get on board too… to see what might happen, could happen.
In spite of the hypnosis going on, I like the disgruntled odds. And I LOVE the potential payoff.
- In lieu of a single self-serving careerist (once again). [↩]