Today I saw an article in OEN talking about how the economy "has Chronic Fatigue Syndrome". As someone who has fibromyalgia, which is kind of like CFS, but with perks like muscle spasms, I felt a strong need to respond to this. The more I thought about it, the more I had to say about it. So here we are, I'm ruminating in an article about it now.
The economy doesn't have CFS. The economy is dying. There's a difference between having to adapt to an illness in order to function in the life one is accustomed to, and having to 86 the whole mess and start over.
We are in the position where the old mess is no longer redeemable. The mess comes down to us from the Greeks and Romans in the form of a philosophy of conquest- the idea that we are predators of the planet, conquistadors of life. The mess is an artificial construct that has gone completely FUBAR over the centuries.
"There are three kinds of lies: lies, damned lies, and statistics." ~Benjamin Disraeli
Everything the average person in this country was taught in business school is a damned lie, usually predicated on Milton Friedmann's delightful boughten [by Rockefeller] philosophy of "the bottom line", and usually it is intimately entangled with the phenomenon of statistics to boot.
I've got news for Uncle Milty and all the suits in Wall Street. Contrary to their self-delusion, it turns out that "The Bottom Line" is not the bottom line. The Life Force is the bottom line. Without the Life Force, this is just another naked rock hurtling through space. Without the Life Force, the very Masters of the Universe are nothing but bones in a box.
Because all of our budding businesspeople are weaned on that special nugget among all of the swinepearls of damned lies, the Friedmaniacal Ethos, they all aspire to becoming corporate bigwigs with corner offices. They've drunk the koolaid, which they use as the very foundation of operational dogma. The corporations they work for have in turn taken over our thinking, substituting jingoistic market-share driven bullshyte for actual wisdom in an effort to better create profits. "Shareholders" have replaced "citizens" as The People Who Matter. Wealthy celebrities are the false idols of the age.
Corporations are not about human beings- neither the ones who work for them nor the ones who buy from them- nor any living thing. They are basically human-built predators for profits- golems of gain. They swoop in and take the profit out of the environment they are predating upon, destroying every living thing that gets in the way in the process.
And so the West Virginia mountaintop is bulldozed for coal, or the pregnant Jamaican seamstress in the "free trade zone" works to exhaustion for not enough to eat and isn't allowed to go to the bathroom, or the Haitian farmers aren't allowed to grow food in order that Cargill can have market share of the starving population's grocery bill, or the massive corporate hog farm kills an entire river in Virginia, or the rainforest is mowed down for the sake of McDonald's burgers, or the PCBs are dumped into the Hudson River, carried out into the Gulf Stream, and circulated around the world, creating cancers wherever they go, and nobody takes responsibility.
The thing is that predators cannot long survive in the environment that they've completely tapped. In natural systems, when a group of hunter/gatherers has wiped out the herd or the grazing grounds, they move on. The land replenishes itself. But when the "hunter" is global and corporate and the spoilage of the landscape is vast and ongoing, then there is no chance for healing or replenishing of the slow-grown wealth that the hunter initially came for- both the landscape and the hunter will inevitably die together. If they don't sustain the system they are feeding on, eventually the system can't sustain them.
We are seeing the global corporate hunter's death right now. This is not a temporary situation or even a "chronic illness", it is a simple inevitability. The system that we've grown accustomed to is on its way out because there is no way that it could continue. It was and is recklessly unsustainable, both environmentally and fiscally. The lion is dying because he's eaten all of the gazelles, the speculation on the price of gazelles has tanked because there weren't enough gazelles to go around to begin with, and the lions still don't get the idea that they're either going to have to learn to eat grass or die themselves.
A fundamental change in perspective will bring us through to our future.
We cannot assume that the Way Things Were is the Way Things Will Be- no epoch in human history has been able to do that. The sooner we stop pouting and throwing tantrums and carrying on, or wishfully pining for the fjords of former days, the sooner we can fix our very serious real right-now problems and get on with things.
We are in the midst of enormous- and necessary- fundamental changes, ones that have been a very long time in coming. The only effective way to deal with them is to be aware, keep our balance, and stop trying to make things the way they were, or to define the moment we're in by the moments that have passed. Our lives have already changed. We must adjust our behaviors- and our thinking- accordingly.
The idea of trading in land as a money-making scam was one of the strangest philosophies of the corporatist mindset that was introduced over recent [coupla-hundred] years. The environmental, social, and architectural monstrosities we've seen in this country are direct results of the disconnection between the humans and the land.
We think of plopping a shoebox house onto a rectangle of land, or "developing" huge malls as ways of "improving" the value of land. Our very treatment of the planet relates to the crazy consumer modality we've been programmed to.