R.F.K. Jr. recently received the William O. Douglas award and at his acceptance speech he pointed out some things that are probably unknown to the majority of Americans; sadly, there is also a large portion that would not care even if they did know.
He pointed out that among so many other infamous acts on the part of the worst president in American history, read- George W. Bush, there are some which are the literal equivalent of pissing in your soup. He appointed as the head of The Forest Service a timber industry lobbyist; Steven Griles. Griles is considered one of the worst of the breed. He believes that the idea of public lands is unconstitutional.
To head the Air division of the EPA he installed a utilities lobbyist who represented the worst polluters in the nation. To head the Superfund he installed a woman whose previous job was teaching corporate polluters how to evade the Superfund. Her second in command is a former Monsanto lobbyist; they who would own the rights to the seeds that grow your food and who sue farmers when the winds blow Monsanto made seeds into the farmers fields.
And at “the Department of Energy, the Department of Agriculture, the Department of Commerce which regulates fisheries, the Department of the Interior, EPA of course, and the relevant divisions of the Justice Department. The same thing, all these agencies and sub secretariats, it is the polluters who are now running these agencies.” You can read the whole, very lengthy, speech Here.
He makes one other point of great interest (to me at any rate) that the result of Reagan’s abolishing the Fairness Doctrine is that “six giant multi-national corporations now control all 14,000 radio stations in our country, almost all 6,000 TV stations and 80 percent of our newspapers, all of our billboards and now most of the Internet information services, so you have six guys who are dictating what Americans have as information and what we see as news.”
I want you to go back over what I just pointed out and then give it a moment to sink in. That’s something isn’t it? You probably hadn’t imagined it was that bad. You knew it was bad but; this bad? This is what happens when corporations make policy. This is what happens when government becomes a front for corporations and this is how you get Fascism. Do you tell yourself that it’s only ‘early fascism’? Do you tell yourself that “If I catch the cancer early my chances of survival are good?” Do you factor in a personal cancer as the price of doing business? Do you include your family’s collateral cancer as a small price for living in the (snicker) greatest democracy in the world?
We’ve all heard some version of the Horatio Alger story. We’ve all heard that all you need is a dream and some honest sweat and you can strike it rich in America. The facts show otherwise and are further compounded by the widening gulf between the rich and the poor. The middle class is not moving up. It is moving down. Sure, there are all sorts of statistics to argue on behalf of anything. I am sure they had a good argument for all those government appointments that I mentioned earlier; maybe something along the lines of “Who better understands the needs of the forests better than the lumber business?” Many absurdities are hidden in that statement but there are logical arguments to follow every one of them up. That’s the thing about arguments and statistics; it all depends on the people making and computing them; Like Stalin’s famous quote about who is counting the votes. And for that you get… election fraud.
Here’s the thing about lies, they grow like weeds among the flowers. After awhile you can’t tell one from the other. It may be that you have to plow the whole thing under to find out. Where does that leave you? For those of us who can still distinguish between the truth and the lies, the lies are not hard to see. The sheer outrageousness of the lies is hard to believe. You would think anyone who wasn’t an actual moron would be able to tell the difference between the lies and the truth that presently confront us.
I used to wonder how situations like Nazi Germany and other tragic conditions came about. I no longer wonder. I am watching it happen. I have a front row seat to the systematic construction of what may prove to be the greatest fascist enterprise of all time. Then again; who knows? I don’t see them backing off and… I don’t see America rising from its material dreams to protest the loss of their freedoms which are being replaced by more colorful, less substantial entertainments; sugar… how about a little more sugar baby?
The fast track to success in this moment is to be a parrot. I see ten thousand Limbaugh’s studying the master. I see the foundries of human reproduction bringing down the flat-headed schematic of the Hannity line. Thousands of pissed off Barbie Ann Coulter replica dolls are coming off the assembly line on their way to the networks. Integrity is a bad career move. They’re all goose-stepping into the glorious future.
I guess I’m a little negative huh? It’s not that bad is it? After all, this is the land of the free. This is the land where they may not agree with what you have to say but they will fight to the death to protect your right to say it. Go back and read about what happened at the death of the Fairness Doctrine. Maybe you want to go and get yourself a picture of Michael Powell and stare into those warm compassionate eyes. Maybe some idea of what the future holds will come to you.
So what’s the deal folks? At some point the corporations are going to have a sit down and decide, “Hey, it’s gotten a little unfair out there, let's open up the process and let in some fresh ideas? So what if it costs a little money?” You can just see that can’t you? How about the president coming out and saying, “Look, things have gotten unfair, too few people have too much money. We realize it always gets like that but we’re going to set the system back a bit and create more opportunities until it gets like this again. We’re going to double the taxes on the rich and remove them altogether off of the poor. How’s that sound?” You expect that?
At what point does it get too bad? At what point will you see what’s happening in the Appalachian Mountains? At what point does the sewage flowing through New Orleans flow down your own street? Oh, New Orleans; that’s just an anomaly right? At what point does the repeal of the Posse Comitatus happen in your town? When does it become too much? When does the smell get too bad? When does the fucking you are giving stop being worth the fucking you are getting? Where is the line? Do you have to see the thing that kills you? Is it never lethal unless you can see it? “Hey, this water tastes fine.”
You’ve got a chance to change this thing now. As I have said in previous essays, all you have to do is just stop shopping, stop watching TV and stop going to work. Someone recently commented this to me as ‘the solution’ and I had to smile as I remembered the series of pieces in which I had said just that.
This September 24th there are some major public actions happening. Why not get yourself up or down to one of them? Critical mass is something we can’t predict. But the levee of disinformation and bullshit and fascist intention won’t be able to stand against a Force 5 human hurricane either. If you die in the sewer you are not going to come out of it smelling like a rose.
'The World is a Rumor' is track no. 8 of 13 on Visible's 2007 album
'The Sacred and The Profane'
Lyrics (pops up)