CounterPunch is a lifeboat of sanity in today’s turbulent political seas. Please make a tax-deductible donation and help us continue to fight Trump and his enablers on both sides of the aisle. Every dollar counts!
George W. Bush once delivered a speech to a gathering of wealthy Republicans and said: “This is an impressive crowd—the haves and the have-mores. Some people call you the elites; I call you my base.”
Barack Obama could stand at a podium and just as smugly say the same words to wealthy Democrats.
Most of us can’t identify with these “elites”.
Nor can we comprehend our country’s debt. I had motion sickness when I checked the National Debt Clock website (http://www.usdebtclock.org/). We can say trillions. But the number really is too huge to grasp.
Have you ever counted and rolled coins into those brown-paper cylinders? Takes awhile. After you’re finished, you do the math. Hmmm, thirty-friggin’-five dollars. Yet, in your palm, it feels heavy.
Not the same heavy as: How can I provide food for the family? Or: How am I going to pay the mortgage? Or: Where am I going to get money for the medicine? Not the same heavy as hearing: “We regret to inform you.” And not the same heavy as acknowledging what is being done in our names.
My friend Eliz writes and tells me to “keep up the good work” while telling me that I’m missing the mark. And I do appreciate it. Honestly, no sarcasm. In fact, I say, right now: “Eliz, you keep up the good work, forcing me to think more deeply and in the right direction.” Anyway, Eliz says the solution is to bring down the Big Banks, by cutting up the plastic. NO MORE CREDIT CARDS.
Why? Because the banksters own politicians and the banksters own us.
Even check cards benefit THEM. You shove plastic into ubiquitous ATMs and they launch cash—if you’re covered. Fee, please. And if you don’t know exactly schmackly the account’s balance and punch in a dollar over, you’re charged $30.00 for being shit out of luck, cause, “We’re the Big Bank, Stupid.”
Eliz says break up the banks into smaller, local entities. She’s right. Then, we’ll see change we can believe in.
Meanwhile, Washington, D.C.’s Alfalfa Club held its annual dinner for the moneyed last week. It was one hell of a heliotherapeutic mega-dose extravaganza, an evening of shits and giggles and filet mignon and lobster and lauding and mood enhancing liquid assets for the corporate class, to take the chill off January. George Bush and Don Rumsfeld were schmoozing. So was Dick Cheney, thin and in need of a heart. But, aren’t most of them in need of hearts? One topic of conversation: Egypt. Our ally. Some what-ifs. What if the Muslim Brotherhood advances? What happens to the Peace Process?
What Peace Process?
Standing in for Obama at the gala, William Daley, new White House Chief, promoted public service—probably with something like: “Uncle needs enlistees.” Of course, this message wasn’t for the children or grandchildren of those in attendance. Certainly, Daley could have added, “Don’t try this at home,” but the guests knew he didn’t mean their blood.
At the end of the orgy, someone captured the mood with, “We just get together on a grim winter evening and have fun. We’re not feeding the poor. We’re feeding the rich.”
Which is exactly what you and I are doing each time we use plastic and can’t pay the balance each month.
Each time we pay a fee to withdraw what is ours.
And each time we sit in obeisance to government by and for Wall Street Banksters.
MISSY BEATTIE lives in Baltimore, Maryland and is in need of heliotherapy. Reach her at firstname.lastname@example.org