Morbid Symptoms

“The old is dying and the new cannot be born.  In this interregnum there arises a great diversity of morbid symptoms.”-Gramsci

The etymology of the word “morbid” is the Latin word morbidus meaning disease. Let us consider the particular disease that grips America right now. Students of Germany in the early part of the Great Depression (1929-1934) might recognize the conditions for a Fascist democratic coup that took place in that period. Here are some of the symptoms:

Paranoia-The Wall Street Journal reports that if you had been savvy enough to invest in an Armageddon portfolio this year you would be sitting pretty.

It is the ultimate bunker portfolio.

Amid the market tumult, a handful of stocks have seen their share prices ratchet up to record highs in recent weeks. And many of them are connected by a curious, if disconcerting, thread: Between them, they provide an investor with essentials for any respectable fallout shelter—makers of bottled water, canned goods, dehydrated broth, gas masks and auxiliary generators.

As with the Goldline Scams, Beck and the end of the world brigade that are pushing the notion, that Spam is the protein source of the future, is part of a completely dystopian fantasy that I think bears little touch with reality but feeds the all important “fear quotient” that is so necessary to fascist politics. A strong man is needed in a time of chaos.

Ignorance-As Timothy Egan so eloquently wrote last week, we are entering cloud cuckoo land.

A growing segment of the party poised to take control of Congress has bought into denial of the basic truths of Barack Obama’s life. What’s more, this astonishing level of willful ignorance has come about largely by design, and has been aided by a press afraid to call out the primary architects of the lies.

The Democrats may deserve to lose in November. They have been terrible at trying to explain who they stand for and the larger goal of their governance. But if they lose, it should be because their policies are unpopular or ill-conceived — not because millions of people believe a lie.

The second element of fascist strategy is The Big Lie. First perfected in 1933 by Hitler’s propaganda chief Joseph Goebbels— “In that position, he perfected the “Big Lie” technique of propaganda, which is based on the principle that a lie, if audacious enough and repeated enough times, will be believed by the masses.” (Wikipedia ).

As Jane Mayer pointed out, The Big Lie  and the  Tea Parties are  financed by Billionaires like David Koch and Koch Industries, that have thrived on Republican government corporate welfare and radically lowered taxes, during the Reagan Bush Era.

The combination of fear and the gullibility to believe The Big Lie, as the Germans, Italians and Spaniards all learned in the depths of a depression, is a lesson we need to avoid here. I still don’t know what Glenn Beck really did last weekend. It was a real curveball. And Beck has studied Orson Welles his whole life. (His production company is named after Welles’s company, Mercury). And Welles knew from the night War of the World’s terrified America, that the the national combination of paranoia and a Big Lie (the Martians were invading New Jersey) can panic Americans into really morbid symptoms. Last Weekend might be just the first act of Beck’s three act play.

Stay tuned.

This entry was posted in Advertising, Business, Entertainment, Interregnum, Obama, Politics, Religion, Teabaggers and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

42 Responses to Morbid Symptoms

  1. Brian says:

    Anything along the lines of a Beck-Palin ticket is a stretch because no matter the heat the numbers aren’t there. Any combination of Mormon-Pentecost, Baptist-Taliban or Conspiracy-Voodoo will not dominate. But for demographic engineering, these are van loads of district votes – which is what we should watch. Koch & Armey believe nothing other than dominance.

  2. Hugh says:

    Love and Peace, Jon

  3. JTMcPhee says:

    Hugh, wouldn’t it be lovely if those were the next two acts in Beckerhead’s play.


    Why am I reminded of my EPA acquaintance, the one with multiple PhDs in the biosciences and toxicology, who opined when slightly drunk that humans have forfeited their right to infest the planet, and that the best thing would be for someone (who, like my acquaintance, had the knowledge and now, thanks to the Innovation that our Investors and Libertarians crow about, has the tools to go with) to assemble a virus that was 100% fatal to humans, left the other living things alone, and could be spread by all possible vectors and pathways?

    Yah, it’s just a crummy plot line for a beach novel or SyFy movie. Right.

    Lots of people are mucking around in the human genome and in the Mass Psyche, having their little and bigger Aha! moments. I don’t doubt that Goebbels and his crew had the same surge of power-driven delight, when they figured out the Keys to the Reich, that Fuckhead Gingrich and Rove and folks like that have had more recently. And for those that trust the Innovators to do right by the rest of us, I got two words: You’re nuts. Can’t hardly wait to see what the little lab rat runners and those who are mastering the fine art of genetic manipulation will present the rest of us with.

    Pretty? Well hey, we can make you pretty, irresistably, as in “Next Top Model”-Gorgeous, if you don’t mind a virulent cancer in a couple years, but maybe we’ll have figured out how to fix that by then. You will, however, bark like a dog, so don’t go for speaking roles unless you got a good voice-over…

  4. Hugh says:

    Orson Welles, eh? Shit. That makes sense.

    Nothing in particular against Maestro Welles, but sheesh & oy vey.

  5. Pingback: Tweets that mention Morbid Symptoms at Jon Taplin's Blog --

  6. len says:

    I plan to blame the aliens living in the Marianas trench for the last ten thousand years using the metals they carved off the tops of the Andean mountains near Nazca. They have to keep their bloodlines pure in accordance with their beliefs that if they mix with the mammals, they will lose their ability to navigate the wormholes and point to the colony in the Himalayas who did mix and devolved into the Chinese.

    Hey… gotta have a plot. :)

  7. Hugh says:

    That’s it, Len! Kremlin noze, the Peruvians could not have been moved by the hope from above, so ipso facto they laid out Edwards AFB. Let’s not look to Melanesian cargo cults with their 55-gallon eggs of the shiny B-17 soaring gods whose return the natives awaited with wicker effigies done to scale.

    Instant religion caused WWII. (That’s almost absurdly oversimplified, but it’ll do for all but the sophs.). And religion has brought peace and decency far beyond sophomoric comprehension, or even mathematics.

    Which, today, are our wicker effigies? Me, I long ago learned to stop worrying and love the bomb.

  8. len says:

    The problem is they still need blood to survive and the animals they’ve been stealing and mutilating haven’t yet produced anything as rich as natural corn-fed and alcohol ridden humans. And after ten thousand years, it’s getting stuffy down there even at the 12k foot atmosphere they required after their long journey here escaping the gamma ray burst that had devastated their local space/time.

    2012 could be a real bloodfest and quite smelly.

  9. Hugh says:

    Then there’s this. There’s the actual, martyred Gramsci and there’s the Rohrshach Gramsci post circa 1983. The diehard Neo’s have used Gramsci in much the same way in which Lutheran apologists have used Bonhoeffer to fig-leaf outrageous misconduct.

    The problem here is that the same simple calculus could be employed to illustrate the opposite. So which is true? We’d have to read Gramsci, and for that matter Bonhoeffer, to find out that neither is, as it happens, anyone’s shill.

  10. len says:

    As I said, Hugh, they are fox hunters convincing a fox that if he consents to the hunt, next time he gets to ride a horse.

    Delving through the studies on the rise of elites and their current incarnation in transnationalism, it seems that cultural hegemony is organic. I didn’t say right or moral, just that a human culture evolves along these lines if as in a closed system, no intelligent external source of thoughtful energy disrupts and redirects it.

    The Republicans are way better at this because as I’ve said before, they are an elite and proud of it, smug and looking for a the best slab of beef to grill. The Democrats are an elite in denial, guilt ridden and looking for the best Chinese restaurant.

    “Yes sir, we grill chicken.”
    “Do they confess without battering?”

  11. Hugh says:


    you’ve described elites, and the two political parties as “elite”. What is an elite? What makes a collective elite?

  12. Hugh says:

    (I get it, so that’s what prompts me to beg the qqs.)

  13. len says:

    Essentially, they get to select choices of choices such as what to buy with surplus resources. A collective elite self-identifies but finding them in the data means looking for clusters of transactions. Networks inside networks inside networks.

    There is more but let’s look at a sterling example of how weird that gets when the selections contradict ‘common sense’:

    So sue Jan Brewer for trying to defend the border instead of going down there and working on a solution to a problem everyone admits is real because that gets the lunatic left and the lunatic right to jump off the edge? And then folks like ourselves wonder why the Tea Party is doing so well claiming their paranoia is based on a Big Lie? Lie, hell, just the facts on the ground are doing it.

  14. bernard says:

    Doomsday greed.

  15. John Papola says:

    No time to comment now, but this is a trash post, Jon. You’re linking to a piece of pure, hypocritical, dishonest garbage in that Koch hit-piece and parroting it as fact like a propaganda drone. Why? Love the ongoing fantasy that corporate welfare is a partisan thing, instead of a DC boondoggle with our crooked President currently leading the charge.

    integrity FAIL.

  16. Dan says:

    Imagine if he had time to comment.

  17. JTMcPhee says:

    Om mane padme Om
    Om mane padme Om
    Om mane padme Om
    Om mane padme Om
    Om mane padme Om
    Om mane padme Om
    Om mane padme Om
    Om mane padme Om
    Om mane padme Om
    Om mane padme Om
    Om mane padme Om
    Om mane padme Om
    Om mane padme Om
    Om mane padme Om
    Om mane padme Om
    Om mane padme Om
    Om mane padme Om
    Om mane padme Om
    Om mane padme Om
    Om mane padme Om
    Om mane padme Om
    Om mane padme Om
    Om mane padme Om
    Om mane padme Om
    Om mane padme Om
    Om mane padme Om
    Om mane padme Om
    Om mane padme Om
    Om mane padme Om
    Om mane padme Om
    Om mane padme Om
    Om mane padme Om

    see how calming it is to repeatnrepeatnrepeatyerself, againandagainandagain? Don’t mess with my I-dentity, man! I KNOW what I believe, and how it all works…

    Back to the Deep Valley and the Echoes

  18. Daniel says:

    Nam Myōhō Renge Kyō (南無妙法蓮華經
    This is a good one too.

  19. Rick Turner says:

    O Money, gimme some,

    O Money, gimme some,

    etc., etc….

    The mantra of our estimable leaders on Wall St…K St…and Pentagon Square…

  20. Hugh says:


    Thanks for the clarification, for getting us into the picture. I fer one haven’t yet read the other papers to which you linked but I will do so. Just now I’d say that isolating the cohort is indeed a problem for sociology more than for anthro (much less my backwater subdivision of same). Are you sure you guys aren’t committing presentism in your reading of such mysterious pasts-esses-sss? No, seriously, I’m all for the reading but it pricks my ears on the rebound whenever there’s a hint of interpolating the distant past betwixt the lines of a prosaic Present. Certainly you understand.

    Lemme ax u, were we to cast three elites for a thoroughgoing, live war game, whom would you cast?

    P.S. Aummmmmoneymoneymoneymoney…Aummmmmoneymoneymoneymoneymoney…

  21. Seth says:

    Looks like the “Koch hit piece” was a bullseye, to judge by the dust it kicked up.

  22. Hugh says:

    Seth, seriously, what do you make of that?

  23. Jon Taplin says:

    JP-Did you read the whole Jane Mayer piece? She’s a great and careful reporter. To characterize it as a hit piece on the Koch Brothers, is ridiculous. These guys have operated out of the sunlight for too long.

  24. len says:

    Oh, many paid me some.

    Jobs, folks. No one is listening to the interpolating and prestidigitating. Those are the babble hobbies of the leisure class. Think about it: the reason they are clinging to their churches is because their churches are actually helping them. And prayer however you regard it is always a better sound than cynicism.

    Henry II was right. Becket was beloved.

  25. John Papola says:

    Yep, I read it, Jon.

    It’s a hack job. A long, detailed, well written hack-o-rama. It’s incredibly thinly sourced and polemical. It’s utterly crawling with weasel words like “is know for”. This is trash “journalism”.

    The repeated attempts to make it seem like they’re “covert” and “under the radar” doesn’t hold up to actual reality. Running for president isn’t “under the radar” guys.

    She repeatedly tries to call libertarianism a partisan, republican movement, despite major divergence on a wide range of big issues for war, immigration, drugs, sexual freedom, civil liberties, etc. The stances that places like Cato and Reason have taken against the GOP now and during Bush are easily found with a quick google search. Her assumptions about political alignment alone are completely bogus.

    Here’s the most bizarre assertion:

    They had become supporters of the Libertarian Party, and were backing its Presidential candidate, Ed Clark, who was running against Ronald Reagan from the right.

    The Libertarian Party platform called for the abolition of the F.B.I. and the C.I.A., as well as of federal regulatory agencies, such as the Securities and Exchange Commission and the Department of Energy. The Party wanted to end Social Security, minimum-wage laws, gun control, and all personal and corporate income taxes; it proposed the legalization of prostitution, recreational drugs, and suicide.

    How the hell is that platform credibly called “running against Reagan from the right”???

    How exactly can one reconcile the tone of this piece and it’s “men behind the right wing conspiracy” vibe when it quotes WF Buckley calling them anarchists? The entire premise of this article is really to snap libertarianism into the left-right mold. She should have checked out the fact that the Koch’s have been repeated attacked FROM THE RIGHT before taking such a simplistic stance.

    She writes from the assumption that libertarian ideas are “pro-corporate” because they oppose government regulations which are demonstrably to the benefit of big corporations (see Obamacare). “Cap-and-trade” is a scheme concocted by Enron, after all.

    She continually reference “the Center for Public Integrity” as some kind of independent information source, failing (of course) to mention that it’s funded by Soros, the Koch of progressivism, along with Media Matters.

    The “conservative economist” she cites is none other than Bruce Bartlett, a bitter, keynesian (not free market) who has been using his status as a former Reagan guy to get just these kinds of phoney quote gigs. He’s not a credible voice IMHO. Paul Krugman was in the Reagan administration too, you know.

    Now, all that said, this is quite a piece and it’s a good thing that it was done. The environmental stuff is pretty damning sounding and seeking any government contracts or subsidies is bad stuff. People should be aware of the forces at work in our political system. I’m not defending the Kochs here. I don’t know them, though I do work with the Mercatus Center via George Mason U on our website, I guess that makes me on the periphery of the Kochtopus, though it’s partnership in which Russ and I have full creative and editorial control. Am I an agent of the lizard men? Not to my knowledge.

    The problem I have with this thing is that it’s constructed to discredit libertarian ideas which are bigger, deeper and much much older than these men. I happen to agree with their point of view on many things… though I don’t agree with anyone getting nickel from Uncle Sam or being wreckless.

    Here’s Nick Gillespie’s take on this whole thing. If I had their money, I’d being doing the exact same thing in terms of trying to foster social change toward libertarian goals through peaceful associations and think tanks.

  26. Seth says:


    I haven’t yet summoned the will to read all the way through Jane Mayer’s “hit piece” on the Fabulous Billionaire Boys aka Koch-rhymes-with-coke brothers. I just figure if Captain JP Kirk of the USS Anarcho-capitalist Enterprise is talking “integrity FAIL”, it probably nailed the target.

    The Koch brothers are classic libertarians. Sort of the mirror image of the ‘limousine liberals’ we hear tell of. Limousine liberals have heard tales of woe, and rush to spend money on ‘fixing’ them and all manner of ‘unintended consequences’ hijinx ensue.

    Koch libertarians, on the other hand, notice that life is pretty sweet when they have no rules and want to endow the rest of us with their kind of freedom — minus the inherited pile of loot. Funny how that, too, has ‘unintended consequences’ for the little guys.

    There is undoubtedly a degree of spontaneity to the Tea Party movement. Republicans have been out of power, there was bound to be a populist insurgency contending for control of the party, just as the Dean campaign contested establishment control of the Democratic party. But Mayer is shedding light on the astro-turf money seeking to channel this insurgency into policy positions that protect inherited wealth and privilege.

    You mean the Tea Party isn’t Real America? Well, more like Real America(tm), all rights reserved by the trademark holder.

  27. John Papola says:

    Seth, I enjoyed that comment. Well done.

  28. Ken Ballweg says:

    An extension (or additional “hack job” as JP will surly note) on just how impossible politics have become.

    Be sure to read the comments for confirmation of just how infested the big lie is. But remember that there is a cottage industry writing propaganda responses to online media that could be in play there.

    It will be interesting, post the midterms, to see how a stalled House joins a stalled Senate, and somehow makes the world safer for our corporate overlords.

    Reading “It’s Different This Time” by Reinhart and Rogoff for the long view of economic crisis. Another eight years or so is what it will probably take, according to their historical look back, for a major financial crisis of the current magnitude to work through. From their analysis it wont matter much who is in charge, the turn around takes a set amount of time so even if the Repubs get enough control back to actually implement what ever the hell their real policies will be (more wealth shifted to the wealthiest I’m sure) it’s not going to change much on the bottom.

  29. len says:


    It’s a good article if the point is to defend Obama’s competence. It does do that.

    The image that stays with me is the meetings with Hillary Clinton. The understanding between them that the job is the job and their own self-image is based on how well they do it is the very image of competence. Take a look at her hair. I’ve heard it said that she is very conscious of that and the message it conveys. Being men, we might find that supercilious, but being honest men, we know it’s not. She is wearing it longer.

    She is working at an image that is strong, quiet, feminine and yet competent and powerful. She and he understand the contrast of how it appears when they appear together and notice, they don’t do that very often and when they do, he is always out front. She knows the power of her attractiveness when dealing with the Middle East or the Chinese. She knows how to mute that when appearing with Obama.

    If the Democrats want to give a better impression that they are not dysfunctional, they may want to emphasize a rejuvenation based on a broader appraisal of what is required to project their longevity, their vitality in the face of this high velocity, heavily compressed, and noise-gated steam of signals. They need analog warm with digital speed to use images from other conversations we have here.

    We all perceive just how noisy and cheap our politics and our politicians have become. Maybe they should take a page from Burnett’s playbook for how to project clear classy well-produced sound. It’s a metaphor but we only have eight weeks to the midterms and we need a hit.

  30. John Papola says:

    Ken is dead right.

    There’s no short cut. We put ourselves in epic debt buying all kinds of stuff we wanted be could afford. We’re going to need to live with what we’ve got and pay it off before we can really talk about sustainably making consuming a ton more.

    Of course, it’s possible for a radical productivity gain that makes our current nominal debts easier to pay off. Is that likely? Who knows. But that is the ONLY thing that can accelerate recovery. Trying to prop up unsound enterprises and re-inflate asset prices makes things worse, not better.

  31. Hugh says:


    You may recall that the image consultant Gerald Rafshoon convinced President Carter to change the way he parted his hair. Naomi Wolf, of all people, dressed candidate Gore in earth tones to make him appear less Alpha. What, then, does one read from the streamlined makeover of Obama’s Oval Office, now done up in yellows and greens, with the presidential standard on a black background? I’d like to see what a Yale Americanist would make of this newest text.

  32. John Papola says:

    Thanks, hugh. Undeserved considering my typos… but thanks.

    I want to point something out to everyone here. Lew Rockwell, a consistent anarcho-libertarian has been demonized repeatedly by detractors, and yet here he is expressing tolerance for islam and deep skepticism for our warmongering just as the many facets of the Kochtopus have (I don’t think Lew is associated with the Kochs):

    Is Islam compatible with free markets? Turkish journalist Mustafa Akyol points out that the vast majority of the world’s 1.2 billion Muslims are tolerant, peaceable and reasonable people whose lives do not make the news. The blowback of terrorism is the result of Western colonialism and the CIA’s promotion of fundamentalism in its Afghan war on the Soviets.

    Islam was founded by a successful merchant, and the religion was largely pro-market until the colonial disease of socialism infected the Muslim world. The Koran calls the merchant the most honorable man, saying that nine of ten of God’s bounties come from trade.

    This is not the work of an evil “right-wing” guy. There’s so much that is totally not “to the right of Reagan” in libertarian ideas. That’s the core problem of this whole “debate”. It’s trapped in “left-right” land.

    Speaking of breaking from from the left-right paradigm, and Naomi Wolf, please have a listen to this podcast interview with her about war and her new found libertarianism.

  33. bernard says:

    Colonialism or Imperialism left right, it doesn t matter the fact is that an other oilwell just exploded in the gulf some kind of a tecno no no. More pollution. I understand that there is a difference between a libertarian and a libertine. There must be some kind of planetary regulation put in place and strongly enforced. If you are the most developed nation on earth you must set the example. All this white collar malfeasance must be stopped. Money doesn t rule any more because if things continue the way they are we will use money to wipe our…or what is left of it.

  34. Rick Turner says:

    JP, the problem with “us” getting more productive is that it is all from the capitalist dream of eliminating workers in favor of robots…or people working like robots. I’m not immune to this myself; I have a CNC machine…a robotic wood carving machine, and yes, it helps to eliminate the need for a couple or more employees if it’s working 40 hours a week.

    This fits into my premise that we can be a productive society without all eligible workers working 40 hours a week. The problem is that right now you have many working 50 to 60 hour a week and many not working at all. This inevitably leads to a redistribution of wealth though unemployment insurance, welfare, unpaid loads on healthcare, etc. Some day we’re going to just have to suck it up and admit that we can be more productive than we need to be. We already are, so let’s get on to the next way to deal with it. We also have to understand how we’re ripping off the future of it’s natural resources.

    One of the ways to deal with all this would be birth control. Another would be to eliminate tax deductions for more than two children.

  35. bernard says:

    No wonder the vultures are making money on the doomsday products. If this society wants to survive chaos it must figure out a technological way out of the mess we all are in, with no exception of race or religion. Money should finance brilliant minds and new ways of doing old things. To pray will not change the climate a carbon tax may.

  36. bernard says:

    Forget fancy sports cars and private jets, submarines are the new vessel of choice for the ultra rich.

  37. Rick Turner says:

    and drug smugglers…

    is there a difference, though?

  38. len says:

    What, then, does one read from the streamlined makeover of Obama’s Oval Office, now done up in yellows and greens, with the presidential standard on a black background?

    That he’s a black man with black tastes? Cool.

    “One of these days we’ll all be there.
    Come on children come on.”

    Relaxing here learning GABRIEL’S MOTHER’S HIGHWAY BALLAD #16 BLUES from my favorite teacher of such things. :)

  39. Seth says:


    Budding Captain Nemos among the Übermenschen?

  40. Ken Ballweg says:

    Going way back to JP’s comment re: “Of course, it’s possible for a radical productivity gain that makes our current nominal debts easier to pay off. Is that likely?”

    Short answer “no”, at least not in the current political climate. There are two types of bubbles in my experience: the purely speculative (tulips and mortgage derivatives) and the generalification (if I may coin a awkward word) of a major technology shift (canals, railroads, electricity).

    We know where the pure speculation bubbles come from; short memories working in conjunction with some new ponzi scheme. If you have a generation nailed by the collapse of such a scheme then it takes a while for the next ponzi to take hold. That’s part of why the great depression generation led to appellations like “the greatest generation”. They had the economic shit kicked out of them and the body of oligarchs that will ever be with us (sorry JP, there is the one hugh flaw with Libritarianism, but more on that in a minute). In the process the very wealthy lost control of the spin machine, and then WWII came along and diverted them into war profiteering so they were able to be on the side of the angels for a bit there.

    Non-speculative bubbles, in my reading of history, come when an industry gets a heavy public subsidy allowing it to spread to common use. Trains, planes and automobiles if you will. Follow the ruralifcation of electricity, which created a commodity the wealthy could exploit with enough public benefit that it was a temporary win/win (until you get an Enron selling smoke in the form of manipulated shortages).

    The TVA and the BPA were a combination of generating new power sources, but also really revolved around the control of water (I refer you to the classic “Cadillac Desert” for a text book in public subsidies being a superficial win/win. Folks could get rich from public subsidized distribution of power, but could also make their nut through massive inland farming thanks to canals, and river locks, or made it on land speculation. All of them have had unintended consequences (the erosion of the Mississippi delta, or just Phoenix Arizona or LA as unsustainable population pits – water water water). But all of them have made life considerable better for us serfs. So we pay the taxes.

    Ponzi bubbles, like I say are all tulips and derivatives. The mass losses it’s collective mind and buys into the road to riches de jur, believing “This Time It’s Different”, because they’ve lost the generation that got burned last time to attrition and get to be stupid again.

    The flaw with both extremes, radical liberalism and libertarian models and there are many flavors of both, is that both are exploitable and subject to being too slow to react to changes in the herd.

    Exploiters will always be with us. Set up a government subsidized equalization of benefits for the serfs (medicare, medicaid, social security) and it will get massively scammed which in turn will be pointed to by the very wealthy as a reason for shutting it off, even while they are robbing the coffers blind. And the herd will refuse to allow real changes even when the herd dynamics change such as population growth or average age trend lines that need to be addressed.

    The laissez-faire variations (which is the long and the short of libertarianism no matter how much lip stick you put on it) are loved by the wealthy because it’s ever so much easier to kick start the next ponzi cycle. You don’t even have to wait for the die off of the memory to reach the tipping point, you can set up a spin cycle that will drown out influence of the declining minority who “Remember”.

    All of which is a way too wordy lead in to why “a radical productivity gain” isn’t going to happen. The conservatives are locked into a getting back into power and focused on just one method of getting richer once they get in, tax cuts paid for by cutting serf services, that they will not fund a massive public works effort that gave wealth opportunities before. They can only way they can see to sustain dramatic wealth increases is to further drain the public coffers. Radical liberals, on the other hand, have no organized way to fight the anti-tax religion inoculated into the land by the very effective, high cost for higher returns campaign of the last four decades.

    We’re just doomed to ride along being a larger version of the fall of the British Empire, until the new conservatism either burns too many bridges, or has to start another war as a profit center. The next war is going to be a tough sell, as too many dollars went off shore to make it attractive to all the top 5% needed to really gin up another phony one (Iraq I’m looking at you).

    Not enough lessons were learned from the current crisis because it was headed off before it became the necessary leveler of a depression deep enough to disrupt the control of public perception of “Why all of this is happening!” that the very wealthy have made part of the bedrock. Liberal or libertarian, the exploiters (who, like the poor they depend on, will always be with) will always muck it up by trying to turn a fast, disproportional profit. The only win/win in the past has been the massive public works programs that did spark a “massive productivity gain”, and did result in real trickle down before they ran their course and became corprotized. And that, given the republicans lock into their scorched earth strategy they believe will get them back to, in a word, taxcutswhileprintingmoremoneyasawaytomorewealth ain’t going to happen any time soon.

Leave a Reply