Have you ever noticed that no matter how much we interfere in other country's dealings that within a short amount of time they revert to their old ways? We went to war with Afghanistan to eliminate the Taliban and to capture Osama bin Laden. Seven years later and the Taliban are back in power and threatening us without impunity. And that crap about improving the lives of women? It was just that. Crap. Afghanistan's freely elected President, Hamid Karzai, rushed a bill through Parliament whose only goal was to keep him in office until they have their next election. Most world leaders wouldn't put pen to paper and legalise the rape of women, restrict their access to courts, and approve child marriage in this day and age but that didn't stop Mr. Karzai. Oh no, he rushed the bill through without it being read out loud or debated by the Parliament. And we keep supporting this guy. You know it's bad when Saddam Hussein had more respect for women.
Yeah, yeah, yeah. We get the picture, things haven't changed much since the last Depression. Corporations, banks and Wall Street are the winners and their employees are the losers. And will stay that way. In the waiting line.
For a country that revolves around its citizens buying things we aren't going to last very long if a majority of the people are unemployed and stuck in places that don't have enough jobs for the amount of people who would like one and therefore can't afford to buy anything. If people can't afford housing, food or clothes, how can they afford a new car or a refrigerator for the house they no longer have? The recovery needs to start at the bottom, the top has had help for years and look at the mess they made. Not that they're suffering. Yet.
This is my issue with working for a corporate employer. They require that you be at work at a certain time, eat and sleep at a certain time, dress a certain way, behave according to their rules and that if you break them, you can be dismissed. For complying they promise to pay you a certain wage on a predetermined schedule and years ago they offered benefits such as a steady job, health insurance, vacation and sick pay and a pension after committing a large percentage of your life to the company.
In the eighties they started spending company money to move production to another country to save costs and increase profits. When they figured out that the people they laid off could no longer afford their products they didn't discipline the people who had exhibited faulty judgment by eliminating the consumer base, they laid off more people in the States and moved production to even poorer countries where they wouldn't have to pay benefits or worry about workplace conditions and could still give the almighty shareholders their precious dividends and executives received bonuses. Then they set about systematically dismantling the pension and health insurance for the people who had already fulfilled their end of the bargain and worked faithfully for them for years by claiming that they couldn't afford to keep the deals they made with the employees. And then the Bush administration shifted large sums of money from the Pension Benefit Guaranty Corporation to the already unstable stock market. End result? The elderly will eat dog food and ketchup or die of starvation or they can hang on until winter when they can freeze to death. The middle aged live in their cars and earn just enough to eat a mini meal at Mickey D's once a day and the youth wander the streets aimlessly with no hope for the future and see crime as their only way of getting ahead. I know I'm a cynic but what's next? Lining the homeless up against a wall and shooting them so the rich aren't offended by all those lazy people?
At one time we were the greatest country in the world and now all we have is faded glory. The rich don't notice, they are too busy vacationing or buying homes in other countries while ensuring that they pay less and less to the country that made it possible for them to be a success. Heck, they even adopt kids from poor countries while forgetting about the ones in the land of their birth. The sad part is that those who aren't rich don't mind getting help to cut their own throat because they no longer have the skills to think critically, question authority before it goes too far and are willing to be spoon fed economic pablum by the pundits instead of looking at their own circumstances and seeing how screwed they are.
We may not be watching Rollerball but American Idol, Survivor and Dancing With The Stars make a nice substitute, don't they?