Tuesday, October 14, 2008

This Is The End, My Fickle Friend



"Could this be the end of capitalism as we know it?" asks the talk show host. The economics professor agrees, but he knows you can't say the "S" word. You can say social security, social justice, social dancing, and social dating. You can say social drinking, social science, and social mobility, but you can't really say social-ism.
While people are scrambling to refresh their memories about the differences between capitalism, socialism, communism and the like, it's important to remember none of these "isms" exist anywhere in their pure form. And therein lies the problem. While our politicians are scrambling to parse their remarks about the necessity of our government's role in meeting the needs of the people it serves, it's fascinating to note how the once Socialist/Communist world (2nd world) is slouching toward Capitalism all the more. We know that 90% of what we purchase in this country comes from China, or at least came through China while being assembled somewhere else. We know that millions of jobs have been "outsourced" to cheap labor and deregulated working conditions and product standards. Yes, the economic world we live in is in flux. BUT, do you really think the U.S.A. will ever honor the core principles of "to each according to his/her needs?" Hell, most folks choke on the word, let alone the concept.
And then there is the overriding matter of all those who dutifully rushed off to battle to defend the "free world." Those who swallowed the mythology of war, pure of heart, but void of knowledge. The Chinese and Vietnamese are now the Capitalists, the Americans (North Americans, of course) are flirting with Socialism to survive.

...the first one now will later be last,
as the present now will later be past,
the order is rapidly fading,
for the times they are a changing...
II
All this talk about Obama "palin" around with terrorists. Easy to refute, I know because he was only 8 years old when William Ayers was building bombs for the Weathermen. (... you don't need a weatherman to know which way the wind blows) What's missing in all the emotional exchanges is the fact that this country was founded by "Freedom Fighters" also known as "Terrorists." George Washington and his rag tag band of revolutionaries embraced violence as a cleansing force as I recall. Ask people about the U.S. role in Guatemala, Vietnam, Chile, Iran, not to mention Cuba, Panama, and the sovereign Indian nations on our very own soil. Who's asking just what was it that made a young Ayers, now a professor of early childhood education, embrace such radical ideas. Was it the illegal war, the poverty and hunger amid the wealth and arrogance? Was it sadism, or just pure evil at the core? Could it be impressionable youth, a lust for power, or perhaps a genuine desire to improve the quality of life for all?
It can be tiresome reminding some folks about their own history.

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