Like a proper Confederate State resident, you should support immunity and absolution from Federal law for any white, Christian, man with a cowboy hat. Other violators go directly to jail. It’s in the Constitution and the Bill of Rights. Clearly written, under glass, and in brownish ink on yellowish paper. The country will become a better place as these armed semi-educated grifters run amuck willy-nilly and have their way with the impure and unwashed regular people.
What if the definition of “freedom” were to include: “freedom from psychological manipulation and abusive labor extractive efforts by rent-seeking billionaires”?
One day I was telling my union committee about Asia in the ’90s. Those naive Texas boys said;
“No way! You’re lying!”
I picked up the speakerphone and called my long time business partner. He’d spent time there with me. He said;
“I’m driving with my wife now so I can’t go into details. But I can assure you that whatever Sumner told you is far more humble than the real story.”
I bet those guys still don’t believe it.
When the United States of America, which was meant to be a Utopia for all, was less than a century old, Noah Rosewater and a few men like him demonstrated the folly of the Founding Fathers in one respect: those sadly recent ancestors had not made it the law of the Utopia that the wealth of each citizen should be limited. This oversight was engendered by a weak-kneed sympathy for those who loved expensive things, and by the feeling that the continent was so vast and valuable, and the population so thin and enterprising, that no thief, no matter how fast he stole, could more than mildly inconvenience anyone.
Noah and a few like him perceived that the continent was in fact finite, and that venal office-holders, legislators in particular, could be persuaded to toss up great hunks of it for grabs, and to toss them in such a way as to have them land where Noah and his kind were standing.
Thus did a handful of rapacious citizens come to control all that was worth controlling in America. Thus was the savage and stupid and entirely inappropriate and unnecessary and humorless American class system created. Honest, industrious, peaceful citizens were classed as bloodsuckers, if they asked to be paid a living wage. And they saw that praise was reserved henceforth for those who devised means of getting paid enormously for committing crimes against which no laws had been passed. Thus the American dream turned belly up, turned green, bobbed to
the scummy surface of cupidity unlimited, filled with gas, went _bang_ in the noonday sun.
_E pluribus unum_ is surely an ironic motto to inscribe on the currency of this Utopia gone bust, for every grotesquely rich American represents property, privileges, and pleasures that have been denied the many. An even more instructive motto, in the light of history made by the Noah Rosewaters, might be: _Grab much too much, or you’ll get nothing at all_
How many people do you know who were complicit?
William Black is an associate professor of economics and law at UMKC. He has held many prestigious positions, including executive director for Fraud Prevention. He recently helped the World Bank develop anti-corruption initiatives and served as an expert for OFHEO in its enforcement action against Fannie Mae’s former senior management. He is a criminologist and former financial regulator.
I believe that I will leave this airline profession and go to my grave never understanding why pilots believe that they, among all US job categories, have this great threat of “the government” being strong-armed by the major domestic and/or foreign carriers to allow foreign nationals to work within the confines of the United States as surrogate citizens, and to steal legitimate citizens’ pilot jobs.
It’s paranoia. It is absolutely preposterous to me. But this whole union mindset is built up around it. It’s heresy to think otherwise! I bet I’ve debated this a hundred times to my total intellectual dissatisfaction. Any such foreign pilot would need to be provided a Green card, provided a Social Security Number, be employed by a US company (subsidiary), pay US Federal and State taxes, and be subject to US labor and health care laws. There’s not even any economics to justify it. It ain’t gonna happen!
There’s the idea that citizens need guns so they can, if need be, oppose the force of a repressive government. Those who think there are current (or likely future) government actions in this country that would require armed resistance are living a paranoid fantasy. The idea that armed American citizens could stand up to our military is beyond fantasy.
- From Who Needs A Gun, by Gary Gutting, NYTs 12/12/13
But the people who believe this “rise-up” weapons fantasy also believe that the military will rise up on their side against the government. This must surely tip fantasy into delusion.
The more reasoned use of the “rise-up” theory is as faux-patriotic dog whistle, communally justifying a wasting of money on adult playtoys.
….premium grade-A grass-fed free-range bullshit, collected and packaged by hand from the polished anuses of award-winning Texas longhorns that have been bred for peristaltic perfection so that each individual dookie meets the exacting standards of the American Bullshit Association.
-Jon Stewart, The Daily Show
I had to look up peristaltic.
I’ve told this story before. I’ve written this story before. But I felt a new urge to say it again.
In 1997 I was staying at the Taipei Hyatt for business. For the first time ever in my experience this hotel had a high speed Ethernet connection in the room. Before I left the States I had loaded up both my laptop and home computer with software that was a first generation precursor to Skype. I was excited to call home from such distance for the first time in Asia and to not pay the exorbitant long distance toll fees. I would be able to talk home all day and night if we wanted, for nothing other than the hotel connection cost. It was hard to believe.
I attempted contact with our home computer several times but no connection was established. “What could be wrong” troubleshooting ensued. Finally after some number of attempts my ten year old daughter answered and said; “Dad, I’m playing Zoombinis now! Can you call back later and talk to Mom?” There was a curt conversation before we disconnected.
And that was my and my daughter’s very first experience with near zero cost life-changing Internet telephony. The event’s historic timportance was overwhelmed by Zoombinis.
Looking back on some of 2013′s lost wishes that we can’t let go. In no particular order.
- Al Queda was involved with Benghazi.
- We needed to bomb Iran and then they will submit to US interests, because that has worked so well in the past.
- HealthCare dot gov is an un-salvageable web site and is destroying the economy as evidenced by the record stock market valuations.
- Trickle-down economics is working great (for some few thousand people across the Earth). Don’t mess with success.
- Inflation will go hyper any day now. This time for sure.
- Austerity is a huge success. As exhibited by nowhere.
- The way to balance the budget is by shutting down any part of the government that doesn’t carry a weapon.
- You should be able to keep your antique non-compliant health insurance policy, or at least continue freeloading. Either way, knowingly risking personal bankruptcy at the expense of others is an acceptable personal strategy.
- If everyone carried a gun then commerce would transact more freely and the US economy would grow stronger faster.
- Withholding government assistance from the unemployed makes them better Americans. Particularly for the aging, infirm, and children.
- Legal Americans will fill all of the below minimum wage jobs left behind by the self-deporting Hispanic illegals.
- Marihuana is a gateway drug to the end of the world.
- Traditional marriage and sexuality are best because old belligerent white guys say so. And I guess they haven’t tried anything else.
- No one really knows or cares how “legal” immigrants got here, how many got here, or where they came from, as long as they don’t speak Spanish.
- The poor people don’t have proper American stoic self-control, borrowed too much money, couldn’t pay it back, and collapsed the global economy. But now we need them to borrow more money.
- Complaints of inequality are unjust attempts by the poor 99% to get free stuff from the 1% who have everything.
- Edward Snowden is a criminal because he told the American people what the spokes didn’t want the American people to know, because the American people would put a stop to it. A process that has begun.