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"Amerika, Inc."

By       Message Dave Lefcourt     Permalink
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There remains little doubt in the mind of this writer that we in America have now the complete corporate takeover of our country.

They reign supreme as our democratic institutions, the Congress, state assemblies, our public and private universities et al have been usurped and bought off by big corporate largesse.

Our media are owned by the corporate barons. They have long since been rid of the likes of Edward R. Morrow and Walter Cronkite whose independence and integrity questioned the red baiting of a Joe McCarthy or the morass of the Viet Nam war (to the consternation of the government and maybe their corporate overlords of the time), but they commanded the publics respect and they couldn't be silenced. We have lost their skepticism as our corporate owned media now presents "happy news" or the "food fight" political spats between MSNBC and FOX (that is nothing more than an elixir for their respective fans to hate the other), celebrity gossip and "reality show" inanity plus inundating the public with sports that serves to distract us while infantilizing us with beer and car ads that steal whatever imagination we may have left.

Our mass entertainment (besides the mostly moronic T.V.) of movies at multiplexes and franchised restaurants serve to homogenize the culture to believe we are free to make choices (yes but within the confining limits of what the corporate marketing gurus decide). Meanwhile our basic purchases of food, clothing and other essentials are dominated by the Wal-marts and other big box corporate outfits.

Our industries have been relocated and the labor outsourced to 3rd world countries all with the blessing of our government whose tax incentive write offs and no domestic tariffs (of foreign made goods but American corporate owned) go to the enrichment of the corporate honchos and their investors but to the decimation of the American worker.

The wars we fight are unnecessary but serve the interests of the military/industrial/political troika (exactly what Eisenhower warned us about in his farewell speech in 1960).

We the people are but pawns to be manipulated and propagandized made passive and docile, dispersed, isolated and socially fragmented from taking collective action against that which is literally a malevolent giant corporate octopus whose tentacles are omnipresent and the thing we should effectively oppose and not accept as something benevolent that serves our interest.

Unlike the Iranian people who erupted against their oppressive masters who stole the people's election for a new president, the French who took to the streets to oppose their governments raising of the retirement age or the Greeks who openly demonstrated against their government's austerity measures that would fall on the backs of the people, we in America remain mostly passive except for the "tea partiers" that scream against the government, a black president, "Socialism", the debt et al but whose message is often incoherent and contradictory as in "Don't let the government take away my Medicare" (a shout made by a senior "tea partier" during a town hall meeting two summers ago in the health care "debate").

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Meanwhile we on the left in America (or what remains of it) who recognize the corporate takeover but remains mostly passive, perhaps fearful of losing our own modest gains and holdings remain distant and aloof, detached and disconnected from the economic hardship, foreclosures and the decimation of our working class and the ever expanding poor among us.

We on the left have essentially accommodated the corporate takeover by our apathy and acquiescence in the face of it, effectively becoming its enabler.

We on the left are appalled by what we see but we do nothing. We don't mobilize and connect with our working class brothers and sisters and together with them take on our corporate overseers. This should have happened at the height of the financial meltdown in the fall of 2008 when Treasury Secretary Henry Paulson (he the former CEO of Goldman Sachs) called for a $700 billion bailout of the Wall Street titans whose greed and casino style risks and excesses caused the crisis.

Sure some people called their Congressman (which scared the bejeebers out of some of them) and they initially voted against Paulson's no strings attached money grab of the taxpayers money. However within days a new proposal was presented with some strings attached and "TARP" was enacted to save the financial robber barons and keep them whole. And we the people remained mostly supine in the face of this money grab.

Now the Supreme Court in its "Citizens United" v/s "FEC" ruling in January gave official sanction to the avalanche of corporate and special interest cash (most of it hidden with sources undisclosed) to essentially determine the outcome of our elections in their favor.

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This ruling obliterates the idea of our democracy being of, by and for the people. It's of, by and for the corporate state.

If we continue to accept this as just something else we'll have to live with i.e. "whatever" and do everything possible to fight and overturn this horrendous ruling we'd just as soon say we accept our serfdom and forfeit the illusion of our freedom.

There's a name for it and it's called "Amerika, Inc".


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