While we were sleeping, we were stripped of our civil liberties, constitutional rights, personal wealth and political power. While in a stupor induced by frenzied conspicuous consumption, we allowed our government to sell out our interests to global corporatocracy. We reveled in the lower prices that followed free trade without the realization the devastating cost was our livelihood. No noise of protest, nor a mere whimper was heard when they stripped us of our rights and liberties in the name of security. While they kept us afraid with colour coded threat levels, civil disobedience and protest manifested with movements such as Occupy Wall Street were quashed with the new powers they anointed themselves.
While Rachel Maadow and pontificating Lawrence O’Donnell mercilessly mock the GOP and Tea Party, the GOP is imploding upon itself. The irony didn’t escape me when I watched the GOP shut down the government, costing the economy an estimated $24 billion over a healthcare plan they didn’t support, which was virtually identical to the plan successfully implemented by their Presidential candidate, former Governor Mitt Romney, in his home state. It’s kind of like watching the World Wide Wrestling Federation with all of its contrived melodrama and staged matches in horrific glee. You want to turn it off, but can’t bring yourself to do so. While you were concentrating on watching that right hand like a hawk, you completely missed what the left was doing. Governance reduced to a cheap, tawdry parlour trick.
While this despotic corporate-ruled government knowingly and intentionally runs this country into the ground, they’re making sure that they are taking everything and everything they can get their mitts on. We are almost there and it ain’t going to be pretty sight. They intentionally, with foresight, malice and intent are hollowing out the nation from the inside out. We won’t see the rot until the whole fetid mess finally collapses upon itself. We are unwitting partners in our own demise. If you believe the government isn’t complicit in the crimes Wall Street perpetuated on the middle class, I’ve found the fountain of youth and want to share it with you at a one time bargain basement price (phone lines will be open for only one hour…be sure to call while we still have some in stock…). Do you really believe that while JP Morgan Chase faces numerous criminal investigations and has already been fined $13 billion, Obama’s favourite banker, Jamie Dimon, no longer plays golf with the President? I doubt it. Although these these people are directly responsible for the greatest global financial meltdown since the Great Depression, the collective “we” believe in the very institutions they lead. Although history has shown us the class struggle is eternal and witnessed first hand it’s devastation, we still believe in the capitalism and the institutions it represents. We must be suffering from Stockholm Syndrome as time after time, we have witnessed the destructive forces of a system of unfettered capitalism. We have bonded with our captors.
What lies in the heart of my contempt is how the comfort zone we exist in blinds us to the incremental erosion of the power “we the people” hold. We often dismiss the activist who has foresight and understanding the perilous path we are on. We characterize his activism as “crazy” often portraying the protest he partakes in as criminal. We don’t notice that our income, little by little, erodes with each passing year. We justify the decimination of our rights and liberties in the name of security. We believe our elected representatives serve our best interests, not the interests of Corporate America. When we have nothing left, have lost our personal wealth, have lost our rights and have lost our voice taken by the very corporatocracy we created, do we realize that we fed the monster. We made it grow now are no longer able to reign it in.
We slept on while our President; a constitutional lawyer whose campaign platform called for the return to the rule of law, along with promised government accountability and transparency, codified the very things he railed against. While condemning the previous administration, he expanded executive powers far beyond Bush, further subverting the Constitutional rights and civil liberties of the American people. We slept on while we remained embroiled in a unwinnable war leaving behind a landscape of a nation that may never recover. We slept on while unmanned drones dropped an arsenal upon the population below in countries we are not at war with. We slept on when a young, courageous, young man gave up everything; his work, his family, those he loved, his liberty and country in order to make us aware that not only does our country spy on its enemies, it does the same to allies and citizens alike. We showed more interest in the final season of Breaking Bad.
When the 1% are the sole residents of a cocoon of comfort and privelige, the people will wake from their self inflicted hibernation demanding their rights, political power and personal wealth only to discover one fundamental truth that while we were sleeping, we passed the tipping point, losing our voice, our rights and our power. Nothing short of revolution will save us.