The last time I remember things going right in my country was 2007, I was well employed, well paid, well financed and was buying like crazy. I owned a house and 3 large vehicles, I had everything I needed and more. I had almost everything I wanted. When all hell started breaking loose with the housing bubble, financial scandals and the like, things just rapidly began to...to suck. Mistakes that many of us made suddenly came to light, myself fully included in that. Many of us who considered ourselves "Conservatives" or "Republicans" took an honest look in the mirror and hung our heads in shame. We knew what we'd done, we'd borrowed on margin, overspent, bet on luck and our luck had run out. Sure there was a scandal or two out there, but if we hadn't been stupid with our money, nothing would have ever touched us...at least that's what we told ourselves. Part of the "Conservative" self image comes with a little thing we like to call "personal responsibility", and instead of practicing it, we'd partied our stupid asses off like drunken frat boys on a Vegas vacation. Pools, hot-tubs, oversize houses, golf club memberships, iPod's, iPhones, iPad's, student loans, cars, trucks, boats, motorcycles...you name it, we had it. Our kids didn't work, and we didn't worry about it...there was always money on "the card". I've recently begun to look at that a little differently...the personal responsibility is still there, but it's just that, personal. Personally, I should have had the foresight and the wherewithal to take a look around me and realize just how many people had their hands in my wallet while smiling to my face. But as long as the money didn't run out, I didn't worry about it. Nowadays however, I worry enough for both of us.
I ended up running away screaming from the Republicans (fat old elephants), but stopped short of running into the open arms of the Democrats (braying asses), I looked in the Libertarian (might as well be an anarchist) window for a minute, but that window is something akin to a smoky stained glass design of a hundred splinters. I finally settled on "independent" whatever the hell that means. I think I'm half humanist, half democratic socialist, half I don't know what (Yes, I'm aware that makes me an improper fraction :-) ). So now that my rose colored glasses have been knocked from my face and have shattered on the ground lets take a look at the 2000's with clearer eyesight. Stop me if you've heard this one:
- Enron Scandal
- Arthur Anderson
- WorldCom (Now Verizon!) Collapse and Scandal
- Iraq War (revealed in 2012-13 to be based on complete falsehoods and deliberately doctored information)
- Abu Garib Scandal
- Countrywide Scandal (The real beginning of the housing bust) (Oh and you know who had a 0% Countywide loan? Retired US Senator and one time Presidential hopeful Chris Dodd!)
- WAMU collapse and "Golden Parachute" discussion starter!
- Taylor Bean and Whittaker Collapse and raid by the FBI (Who up until last week was negatively affecting my credit report)
- Bernie Madoff
- Lehman Brothers
- BP Gulf Horizon
- Illegal Home Foreclosures, yes Illegal and inappropriate even, some actually based on race and race alone!
- IRS wrongfully targeting conservative groups for extra scrutiny
- NSA potentially illegal surveillance
- And today, the thing that started me thinking... 6 Bank of America employees give depositions that they were paid to foreclose on homes, given bonuses to lie to customers, and illegally and inappropriately deny loan modifications link.
- John Edwards
- Mark Sanford
- Rod Blagojevich
- Elliott Spitzer
- Gary Condit
- Scooter Libby
- Mark Foley
- Jack Abramoff
- Tom Delay
- Bernie Kerik
- Randy Cunningham
The comment that I paraphrased in the title comes from a commenter on the "Salon" piece about BofA. He states something to the effect that he finds it ironic that the US calls the French cowards, and yet the rest of the world looks at us that way. He ties it in to the demands for "heads to roll, guillotine style" in the BofA scandal. He doesn't tie it in to the wars we fight or the things we do, but rather what gets done to us and in our name, the things we allow. He goes on to say that our Government hasn't said "let them eat cake", but has instead put on a grin and said "yes, yes, you can have it all!" and then turned around, laughing all the way back to their McMansion's while they rob us blind (and I imagine us standing their like a pitiful version of a 21st century Oliver Twist played by Justin Bieber)....then he throws in some "stupid American's" and some LOL's and I suddenly find my hands trembling, and I'm practically blind with rage...but not at the author of the comment.
I don't have any political activist friends, probably a good thing, I don't much care for burn out hipsters or people in "cooky" red hats. My friends are doctors, paramedics, nurses, firefighters, cops, accountants, soldiers, sailors, business owners, professors and the like. They aren't going to like this, not one bit. It's going to feel hostile to them, its going to feel like an attack on their way of life and its not. Rather, its a criticism of the tolerance that we've built up to being screwed over. We fight amongst ourselves for the scraps from the table and look to each other as the problem, maybe were just too stupid to look up. Whatever the cause, try and remember, the more scandals break, the more stupid comments Jeb Bush makes, and the more Sarah Palin comes in and out of the spotlight, the more racial and sexual tension they can stir up, the less anybody focuses on the problem at hand. Were being robbed, spied on, thrown out and laughed at...and were fighting for the privilege, fighting for the idea that right around the corner is our magic ticket to the top. I call "Bullshit"
*I support a coalition of action against #NSA surveillance. Join me – ask US Congress to stop the NSA's alleged actions: stopwatching.us
* The web is meant to be open and free. Join me in asking US Congress to stop #NSA surveillance: stopwatching.us