There are more than 300 million people in the USA. 492 of them are billionaires. That represents roughly 16 millionths of 1%. In decimal form that’s 0.0000016, or as a fraction, 16 over 1 million. This is not the 1% the Occupy Movement imprinted on (some of) the national consciousness. Even an innumerate person can understand that represents a teeny, tiny, microscopic portion of our supposedly democratic, equal opportunity, propaganda spouting world’s most deadly military killing machine in history.
But hey, we’re a free enterprise system, right? Those less than 500 of us are brilliant, industrious, hard working people who’ve earned every penny of that money by getting up early and getting off to the foundry, office, factory, school, hospital and sundry other places where people work, while the rest of us – roughly 99.9999984% – are loutish chumps (except for a small professional elite who were smart enough to become servants to that 16/millionth) who, if we work much harder, regularly attend religious services and even more regularly take good drugs, can also hope to join them up at that fractional faction of a factional fraction at the top. Someday. Sure.
It’s in the Constitution. Or the Declaration. Or the bible? Well, maybe a comic book?
Meanwhile, at the other extreme of our population, far more people, actually tens of thousands, live in and on the street. They sleep in shelters, which put them up for the night if they are lucky enough to get in, and put them out in the morning. Or they sleep in cars, doorways, under bridges and on park benches, if there is no room at the inn – oops – shelter. But not to worry, theirs is not complete despair, abject misery or living death by comparison to the opulence enjoyed by the top fraction and its servant class.
Our bottom dwelling humans who absorb the most extreme loss that ultimately benefits upper level private profits can avail themselves of free food dispensaries at least once a day. And free health clinics and hospital emergency rooms when their economically and elements weakened state brings on illness or disease. And if they drop dead in the street and are not claimed by relatives, they are guaranteed publicly financed burial in Potter’s Fields. That’s after their bodies have been used to train future doctors and nurses, assuming the ravages of their lives haven’t reduced them to former human but now garbage offering no useful parts or organs as tools for medical education.
We also have tens of millions of pet dogs and cats which live in warmth and comfort, are often loved as members of our human families, are very well fed and have health care from thousands of pet clinics staffed by educated veterinarians, including oncologists. This in a nation where some die in the street and no one even knows they had cancer until their unclaimed bodies are used for medical experiments.
Those may seem uncommon extremes of the social order, but they are factual and not the healthiest sign for a nation and culture in which many still believe that we are superior to others, and if not a master race of people, at least an exceptionally wonderful place to have a family, raise a dog, tap a phone or aim a drone. Given that and the fact that the overwhelming majority of what is called the scientific community warns us that our treatment of the planet’s human and other resources is bringing us closer to a failure and possible breakdown of society previously inconceivable, what would you say we should be most concerned about?
What happened at Downton Abbey? The outcome of the NCAA March Madness? The chances that Miley Somebody’s twerky tongue will grow a foot longer? That Pussy Riot will move to America and host next year’s Academy Awards? Nope, nothing that important. Guess?
Putin, and Russia’s attempt to take over the globe and make us all eat evil black bread!
You’d think as much if you read, watch, listen to and especially believe what you’re told by our nation’s corporate ministry of disinformation, which has been beating the drums of war for years now but most recently over this alleged renewed threat from Russia. And where is the evil Cossack saber poised to strike at the burgers, fries, Fox TV and PBS series we so love, cherish and would die for?
Right on our very borders at the Ukraine!
Well, though it actually borders on Russia and parts of it like the Crimea have actually been in Russia and millions of its population identify with and speak Russian, you might think it was in downtown Dallas or uptown New York for the way it has been treated by our sometimes telegenically attractive brain dead media mind managers and their pinheaded mentors in our Hollywood-for-ugly-people Government.
This would be laughable if not hysterically so, but for the fact that what passes for leadership, like the president, secretary of state, a wannabe president, and half wit critics of those dim bulbs because they aren’t warlike enough, dominate what passes for discussion on an issue that could lead to even greater stress on a failing system, if not a blunder into a war that might just bring on collapse that much sooner.
There has never have been a better time to totally disregard corporate media and to be extremely careful about what passes for its “alternative”. Study a map of the world and also look at the material reality of the USA that’s neglected by those who tell us about it rather than allowing us to experience it. Learn to respect your neighbors and turn anger at those who allegedly represent you but are owned and operated exclusively for the benefit of that top minuscule minority and their servants. Demand and create social transformation before these people and their system destroys us all. Hurry.
You can call that process democracy, revolution, or lunch. The substance is what matters, not the label.