On that same day, one of my F-book correspondents, a smart guy, liberal, progressive, literate, posted some reflections about Congress on his F-book 'wall':
CONGRESS HAS TWO FUNCTIONS: To declare war and administer the power of the purse. Nixon took away their power to declare war with the War Powers Act and Congress just proved again they have no ability or interest in exercising the power of the purse; they failed once again to create a budget and this will have dramatic consequences for every American. The first thing government should cut to save money ought to be the appropriations for Congress. No sense in paying for incompetent waste on a grand scale, is there?I'm not gonna read it to you. It's on the blog. But, unfortunately, it's sensible, and logical, and measured. And considering the source, an opinion of some gravitas. He ends up suggesting that we just defund Congress, make 'em impotent. And it prompted me to consider again a suggestive confluence of recent phenomena.
Cuz I wondered: You don't really think this all is just some fluke or something, do you? That every public institution of government in the democratic USof A in complete paralysis and disarray? Really? I don't.
I ask, cuz if I were part of same CorpoRat brain trust which is tasked by our compeers--peacefully and unobtrusively and inexpensively and maybe even deniably, and bloodlessly if possible--to overthrow all that bothersome democratic regulation and oversight shit, this is exactly how I would approach the problem: sabotage "democracy," itself. It is, after all, the ONLY force keeping these fascist freaks even slightly in check.
We've talked about an economic "coup" before, hippies...In slow motion. Sixty years, now, and counting. They're in no hurry, nobody's going anywhere. They see to that, too. Where ya gonna go? And it's paying compound interest! No, there's no hurry.
And so, over time, the Owners have slowly but surely been implementing policies and practices which would have the cumulative effect, after 50 or 60 years--which is right now, coincidentally, hippies--of finally and irrevocably alienating the people from their own personal, political sovereignty.
That's the target, hippies: Make us so sick and disgusted with it all that we'll voluntarily abandon self-government. Oh, and the Treasury? Did we mention, the Treasury. Um, yeah, that too. Yeah, the Treasury, yeah...You understand, these things are expensive. And you didn't think WE were gonna pay for 'em didja? Really? Arenjew CUTE!
So by conscious design, a couple of generations ago, machineries and devices and plans and discourses were set in motion which are culminating, even as we eat our turkey and watch football, in the undoing of the ability of ANY instruments, powers, and/or institutions of the State to be employed for the Public good instead of for, or even--the unthinkable!--AGAINST the private, monopolizing, corpoRat interests.
Remember sophomore Civics? The three "branches" of govt: Executive, Legislative, Judicial. Ring bells, hippies? They've been taking the Gummint apart, one branch at a time, since 1963, when they assassinated JFK.
What, you think that WASN'T an "inside job?" They murdered Camelot, quite consciously, as an object lesson to chasten the people still chuffed from victory in World War II, and to warn their kids: Eh, you ain't so to hot; don't get your hopes up. (Likely, the proximate cause was JFK's dismissal of Allen Dulles from the CIA, but it could have been anything.) Johnson installed the Great Society on JFK's gravitas, memory, and mythology. But he got Vietnam, too, in thanks for his troubles, and it broke him.
Then they put Nixon in, and we know what happened there: the high crimes and misdemeanors, his own obvious disingenuousness, his war, his agents, his treachery, and his near impeachment. Spiro Agnew!?! Carter was set up and swept aside as inept.
Then came the Reagan regime's wholesale corruption, unprecedented in the the Century, possibly, beginning even BEFORE the election with their negotiations with Iranian mullahs to prevent Carter from winning the release of the embassy hostages before the election, and extending comprehensively throughout the rest of their tenure: the arms-for-hostages scandals, and the Contras scandals, Oliver North, Salvadoran nuns, and the rest. The honored and beloved Gipper presided over the most egregiously corrupt regime since Taft, at least. By the time GHWBush pledged by his own lips No New Taxes, public trust in the Presidency was as shattered an illusion as the fucking tooth fairy. Bill Clinton was almost a more efficient REPUBLICAN president than GHWBush. He ended welfare as we know it and celebrated the repeal of Glass-Steagal, after all.
Along with the Presidency, naturally, went the trust in the bureaucracy, which Reagan's gunsels also undertook to destroy and diminish from the start. Remember his catchy phrase, telling us "the nine most feared words--I'm from the Gummint and I'm here to help." Both Bush regimes Chimperor Bush's as well as Poppie, installed cells of subversive, anti-government, and in the latter's case, Christo-theistic ideologues whose sole and only reason for existing is to clog up the internal works of the legitimate functions of the State from the inside...They're saboteurs.
I spend more time on the presidence because it it the more prominent, the more iconic institution. But the other two have been reduced, too.
The ideological corruption of the SCROTUS--and by extension, the whole judicial edifice--was displayed once and for all in the Bush v. Gore decision ending the Florida recount in 2000 and ensconcing the Chimperor Bush in the WhiteHouse, as the official sock-puppet of the PNAC and the banks. Sandra Day O'Connor, already planning her retirement to care for her ailing husband, told confidants that she didn't intend to have her replacement named by a Democrat. Since then, the Opus Deists--Roberts, Thomas, Scalia and Alito, abetted crucially by Edwin Meese protege Kennedy--have effectively compromised whatever was thereafter left of the previously vaunted neutrality and integrity of the SCROTUS. And with SCROTUS compromised, what's left of the rest of the Federal courts' authority?
Now the Congress, the third branch, is getting its treatment. Either because the Super-Committee could not reach agreement on the chore set it by the Shazamster, or for some other, equally plausible reason, what little approval Congress has enjoyed--and it hasn't been much--has swirled right into the bottom of the tank. So, finally, and now, a "Do-Nothing/Know Nothing/Pass Nothing" Congress is regarded approvingly by a mere nine percent of the people, who appear to be seeing through the Oligarchic kabuki.
So all three branches of the state are weakened. We should ask that old Ciceronian, double dative kicker: Cui Bono
Truth, here: Against the power and might of the CorpoRats, the only friend you have is the State. Hence the corpoRat fixation on and obsession with undermining and subsuming it. Yet, in the words of the renowned/reviled Robert Ruark, in around 1965, already: "Nothing works, and nobody cares."
In whose interest is this incipient collapse? Now, as it all grinds down, and the infrastructure slowly crumbles, and obesity and disease envelope the "people"--those poor, medicated, dedicated, terminally confused, ignorant, distracted, impoverished, desperate, incurious citizens, along with the drooling morons, ranting imbeciles and prancing fucktards--whose interests are served by a people who will be EAGER to renounce the troublesome, contentious, dirty business of self-rule, and will be HAPPY to turn it ALL over to the tender mercies of the Oligarchs in their boardrooms?
And, now, it seems, all the pieces are in place.
The primary piece, if we were honest is that here you got a "Negrow" in the WhiteHouse. No 'white" person--not even Ralph Nader or another Kennedy--could supply that particular grade of irritant. He is sand in the fillings of the Limbaughs and the rest of the slithering Rightards...But the Obombster's still LOVED by around half the people, if loathed by the rest. A POLARIZER, no matter that he casts himself as a compromiser and a conciliator.
I think his "reelection is assured by the fact that he's been so good to the Owners already that, even though they complain (for chops--so the proles don't get the wrong idea), it sounds pro forma and insincere.. But the surest index of this fact is the mediocrity of the caricaturish clowns on the stages of their candidates' debates.
Truth, hippies: The Point-One Percenters have seldom done BETTER than with Sir Barry, the Nutless, at the helm. The very impossible mediocrity of the candidate pool itself BELLOWS to me that they plan to throw it, after a plausible effort, like they did in 08. So that "America's First Black President in fact PRESIDES over the inevitable, foreseeable moment--inevitably, like seasons--within the next five years, when China's economy surpasses that of the US, and the pundits proclaim the end of the Murkin Empire.
De Massas don' wanno WHAHT pusson takin' de faw fo' dat, no way, nossuh!
The "fall" of the Empire will be dropped directly into the laps of the "Leftists," the Soshilists, the "coloreds" and the rest of the marginalized, authentic democratic constituencies. Thus spelling effectively the exhaustion of the possibility of any subsequent effort to gain and hold power, by anyone even remotely associated with "progressive" politics.
"We trahd dat soshulism shit widdat damn Negrow, an it din't work wort' a damn...Gummint needsta run lahk a binness..."
And THAT's "Mission: Accomplished!" statement, right there, in a nutshell.
And as the nation and way of life we have know begins to disintegrate, it's fair and just to remember it's not "Obama's Plan." He is merely the designated agent. The plan "belongs" to the CorpoRatist Oligarchists who intend to bring an end to all the meddlesome and interferring, unnecessary and EXPENSIVE regulation by bringing an end to the democracy that brought the constraints into existence...
And they do THAT, hippies, by making people like ourelves so disgusted we'll WILLINGLY relinquish our rights for their "security."
Anyway, that's how it seems, from down here at the beach...Gobble, gobble, hippies!..