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If Freedom of the Press Was Repealed, How Would You Know? Dire Vision, Revelation … Words a Decade Old Come Back to Haunt

Forgetting the Past, We Were Doomed to Repeat It … The Revolution That Wasn’t Televised: Before Voting Romney, Remember, We Knew This Before

Culture War, Class War, Chapter Seventeen:
Freedom Repealed

Dire Prediction: Before Voting for Romney, Remember, We Knew This Before. Will We Continue Shooting Ourselves in the Foot?

Forgetting the Past, We Were Doomed to Repeat It … A Message Arrives from Twelve Years in the Past Predicting Today’s Events

A Message Arrives from Twelve Years in the Past Predicting Today’s Events

We are disturbed reading that twelve years ago our present national situation was foreseen. Worse, we are reminded of what we lost; what could have been; how we’ve managed to block that from our memory in accepting the much diminished prospects now; but also how we should not forget; how we should remember how it happened; who was to blame; who helped and colluded in bringing it about, and why; so that, remembering, we might never let it happen again.

Forgetting the Past, We Were Doomed to Repeat It

For we learn, worst of all, that our chance to progress, rather, just to survive, now depends on remembering. Because twelve years ago, in the year 2000, all that’s happened since could easily have been prevented if only we had not allowed ourselves to be talked into forgetting the history of only eight years prior to that.

This is a serious and thoughtful piece, which everyone would do well to know if we are to survive another fifty years, not to mention a century or longer. Still, I am not the sort to feel that facing harsh realities means we need go around glumly, martyr-like, in sack-cloth and ashes. Rather, I feel we might as well enjoy and make use of all the God-given abilities we have whatever the outcome of our efforts.

So don’t be surprised that this exposition is aided by guest appearances making their points in hilarious fashion.

If you’ve never heard George Bush as Bluto from Animal House, you’ve got to.

Wolf Blitzer is not recognized for being a comic, but when he goes on to explain to his faithful viewers how they’ve been lied to and manipulated for years, because of pressure from the powers-that-be, and how grateful he is for their gullibility as he is receiving promotions and honors because his viewership is polling the highest in mindlessly accepting the concocted view, well we see many new sides of Wolf.

Thought-provoking but funny, another thing he explains is that their incredible success over the years in getting people to believe and or to forget whatever they want, has resulted in their having a little celebration consisting of an experiment as well…which they hope will bring them in even tighter with the now all-powerful filthy rich and their Republican water boys.

The celebration-experiment consists of a documentary in which the entire truth of the multiyear campaign to lie, deceive, and to control minds is laid out. And the experiment part is that they are certain that the next day and ever afterwards when such thing ever being aired is denied, the people will completely forget it and believe they must have been mistaken. Wolf signs off: “One last reminder on our special tonight, the documentary, “Freedom of the Press, Repealed. The Story and How, this Repeal Now Thoroughly Institutionalized Over Twelve Years, We Can Now Reveal How We’ve Duped You and Will Continue To.” Tune in, don’t miss it; You’re sure to forget it.”

Ok, I’m gettin myself off the floor I was laughin so hard I couldn’t help myself. Ok, now to a more serious part.

Time Capsule Discovered

Not long after Bush left office, I unearthed, March 9, 2009, 9:49am, three never finished drafts of an article I intended to publish on my website prior to the 2000 Presidential election involving Bush v Gore. Stuffed and interwoven among the electrons of the backups of old computers, I had completely forgotten ever having written any of it.

Engulfed, indeed, pushed around and battered within the intensity and sharpness of recent political, geopolitical, and economic and financial forces of late, I was shocked to see the words, written a decade earlier, which, desperately intoning, warned of specific dire happenings should George W. Bush be elected. For it seemed those exact words, of so long ago, had just been lifted from the headlines and front pages of today’s daily news.

At any rate, I certainly thought at first that I was reading something about the recent collapse when I read what I had written in early 2000. I think I’ve said way too much without providing some meat—what kinds of things did I find? OK, in mid-2000, long before Bush was put in power and had a chance to show anything at all of what kind of president he would be, I wrote these words concerning what I thought would be the result of a George W. Bush getting elected:

[If Bush gets elected in 2000,] “I believe we are in grave danger of losing, not just an election, not just a Supreme Court, not just our environment, not just our good economy, not just our recent relative peace in the world but things far worse than those horrors. I believe we are in danger of losing all hope of maintaining, let alone progressing, in the freedoms and privileges that we take for granted.

Prophetic? Eerie? I don’t know quite what to make of it.

Reading more, this popped to my attention:

So is this election important? I believe it is. For me it is especially important, for I feel that if the Republicans take over, they will do so much to damage the dreams of my generation that even if the Democrats were to be reelected to all branches of government in 4 or 8 years, they will do so much damage (the example of Reagan-Bush nearly QUADRUPLING the National Debt in their mere 12 years being the perfect example) that My Generation will have to clean up their mess afterward, taking more years. And only then will we be in a position to progress in this country and world and bring it more in line with the ideals of peace, love, community, and harmony we envisioned in the Sixties.

Now back to 2012.

The Obvious but Hidden Becomes Visible by Contrast.

Though I had foreseen it, I couldn’t have felt more helpless. I was made to face the fact that America’s, indeed the world’s, prospects for regaining a financial footing, whereas a mere twelve years ago looked like lift off, now was predicted as decades off. And that just to regain an ordinariness of life, with some saying that Americans will never again, ever, enjoy the standard of living they once took for granted.

It certainly disturbed me and got me to wondering and then to writing.

It saddens me what could have been. Reading it, I am stunned by how we’ve managed to vanquish from our minds and our media the insane, chaotic, and truly awful outlines of our times, as the events of the last decade crept daily into our lives and world and shaped them and it in drastic ways that we can discern only by the contrast. It was such a slow and gradual change, you see.

These unpolished catscans of a mind and time provide such a contrast, stark and shocking.

Concerning Time Capsule, I have much to say, much have I remembered, and much have I reviewed in my mind observing the timeline of these events and the changes in the social and cultural scenery, and in people themselves as these events happened over the last decade, one following another changing us all. I will make myself clearer following the text of the former piece to follow.

If Freedom of the Press Was Repealed, How Would You Know? Dire Vision, Revelation … Words a Decade Old Come Back to Haunt

A Revolution That Would Not Be Televised: If We’d Lost Freedom of Speech and of the Press, Would You Find Out About It on the News?

Dire Vision, Revelation

But before going into either my writing from 2000 or the recent events that it shows more clearly by contrast, I wish for you to consider how I felt coming across this piece that so clearly laid out the future and revealed the fact that those ideas were not brought out into the media. I wish for you to get a notion of what went through me as I mused upon the abject failure of our media to remember history so as to keep from repeating it.

Words from a Decade Ago Come Back to Haunt, Sadden, Provoke, Enlighten, Motivate

How would you feel if you found out for sure that you foresaw in an eerily accurate way the events over the last decade before they happened? Sometimes we all have a sense of what the future is likely to bring forth. Everyone, in fact, has some working model of the future.

But be honest, you’ll probably acknowledge those models of the future are almost always some kind of continuation of the present and of the recent past, perhaps with a few technological advances thrown in. And usually, being the hopeful optimists we must be in order to continue our daily efforts, we envision something that is at least somewhat a progression. Something a little better at least.

What if you foresaw an exact reversal of the current trends, including an economic debacle, recession, market crash nine years before it happened? And even that it would happen about the time it did? You could think yourself prophetic; it could pump up your ego.

However if you also knew that you did not pick those predictions out of the air but that you had lived through a similar period in the past, well then you might consider the prophecy to be an astute but quite expected conclusion arising from the visible evidence of the times … and nothing unusual. After all, you are no important person, pundit, or professional prognosticator. The masses have not come scrambling to your door. You expect that you are not unusual in your perceptions. You feel that other people have similar predictions inside themselves. Isn’t that what you would think?

But then these events unfold over the years, as you predicted, and … and this is surprising … without exception the experts, the paid prognosticators and pundits all of them, to a person, bemoan wearily the complete inability of anyone to have foreseen any of what transpired on each of these things, as the years go on.

And to a person they talk as if these things came completely out of nowhere, like a freakish weather pattern or an act of God; or as if they came falling to Earth like the frozen chemicalized ice bombs of jetliner rest room waste or appeared like the lightning bolt out of some dark mysterium tremendum hovering high in the sky above us, but in no way having any roots in any previous events.

No, these people, these commentators on events who you see nightly and whose every word is broadcast into the minds of multimillions, who knows, billions? … and whose words are often repeated … they may have another show … or they are offered up more than once … as their very words are echoed by other commentators around the world. In the United States, their words are echoed far and wide by people at all levels and in all countries afterward.

These people with such immeasurable power to reach and influence the minds of a global populace. Well they also went through the same events as you, as proven by their age. Yet they never mention the times previous that were so similar as to cause you earlier to make the obvious conclusions you made. And, now, even after the fact, in retrospect, those obvious near exact patterns of events of the not so long ago are not mentioned by them … they are overlooked, ignored.

Specifically, I remembered what happened with the Reagan-Bush tax cuts and how we went into a great recession because of them that resulted in Clinton getting elected in 1992. Eight years later, with Clintonomics, and Clinton creates a budget surplus and has balanced the budget for the first time in decades.

But then W. Bush, the Republican, gets in, and nobody’s mentioning even as he’s doing his first tax cut and blowing the surplus that this didn’t work last time only a decade earlier with Reagan and his own father, H.W. Bush. And then through the years of Bush’s terms, with more ballooning debt and budget deficits, did any of those events of the not so long ago and up till 1992, with Reagan and Bush, Senior, get mentioned? No. Instead when all the expected results … well, expected by informed liberal nobodies like me, anyway … when all the expected results of trickle-down, voodoo economics begin manifesting, well, an attitude of “we’re only human” and “nobody could have known ahead of time” predominates among the Republicans responsible.

And these representatives of the filthy rich, the 1%–these Republicans–they get away with that excuse because the media was not pointing out past history to them when they were implementing those foolish policies. It is as if those earlier events hadn’t been brought up in such a long time, so those past events, which should have been instructive, are as if they never happened. Mistakes get repeated endlessly as the media cooperates with the powerful in covering up awareness of earlier mistakes of the same kind.

Well this would cause you to ponder, would it not? How could so many people, people whose job it is to do so, not connect the obvious thoughts you and others did a decade ago? And now even in retrospect they are unable to.

Some of the possibilities for that occurring are that the people who are speaking for everyone–these pundits and commentators–have not risen to their levels of influence on their abilities and that something else is behind their rise to positions to speak and shape the thoughts of the multimillions. Yes. That could be it.

You might also ponder then if better more astute prognosticators and analysts were being kept out of the positions of influence intentionally. Yes. That would follow of necessity. And so on. How else do you explain it?

What it would come down to is you have to ask yourself, are you somehow the only one who is capable of making predictions from the recent past? And believing that might make you feel good if you have some problem in your life which makes you doubt your abilities, that is, if you are so lacking in real self esteem. But if you continue to think that way, such narcissistic attitudes would have you living in a world of your own that did not have any ties to reality eventually. You know what I mean.

Or, if humble and astute enough and not so desperately needy for a pleasant thought about oneself, you would have to ask yourself to consider more seriously the prospect that the media reaction may very well be an unexpected part of the original prediction. If you were sane enough, you would be driven to an unwanted and dire conclusion: Something had gradually and so unnoticeably gone very, very wrong with the media and the public discourse of your society.

If We’d Lost Freedom of Speech and of the Press, Would You Find Out About it on the News?

You might be led to reason: If you had predicted an erosion of basic rights if Bush were to get elected, and you had seen that had come to pass … I mean basic human rights, like given us from the Bill of Rights … why would not freedom of speech and of the press be part of that erosion? Thinking more deeply would it not have been a necessary part of the erosion of the rest?

For if the press had been doing its job, would it not have been acting as protectors of our rights in decrying any assaults, proclaiming any intrusions, documenting any erosions, and so on, in the uncountable ways it has done in the past? Would that not have been a second “2″ which added to the other “2″ makes sense out of the “4″ you are observing and trying to understand? (two plus two equals four.)

But as usually happens when stumbling on the hidden but obvious things, other, sometimes laughably obvious, correlates come to mind:

If Freedom of Speech and of the Press had been part of the erosion in human rights—the rights laid out by our Bill of Rights—well, who would be researching, detailing, proclaiming, or making documentaries about it? The Press? HA!

In order to give you a sense of the way I began viewing things, after the Time Capsule’s revelations, I’d like to take you on a little journey, a little reverie that may provide a glimpse ahead, perhaps an understanding of the unbelievable, as a journey through the looking glass can often do.

So in answering the question above: If freedom of speech and the press were rescinded who would tell you? I would say that it would be one “revolution” that would not be televised, for starters.

“Well, of course,” you think, cynically, “surely they would have done lots of things.”

Yes, I respond dryly, one of them might have gone like this:

“Freedom of the Press, Repealed — The Story of How We’ve Duped You and Will Continue To. Tune In, Don’t Miss It; We’ll Make Sure You Forget It.”

A Satire on the Mainstream Media Control by the 1% Begun with Installing George W. Bush into the Presidency … Featuring “Wolf Blitzer”

Wolf Blitzer – Freedom of the Press, Repealed

“This is Wolf Blitzer. Tonight, tune in as CLN details the way we, and the rest of the mass media, have been slowly but relentlessly pressured and bullied into presenting the views of the party in power, the Republicans; how we have learned it to be in our interests, if we were to continue unobstructed, to eliminate more and more of the voices contrary to those in power. You will hear how we learned techniques of deception of our own so that we could seem to be presenting a range of views but how we could easily get the viewer to conclude that the party pressuring us was the most credible. How?

“Tune in and learn how we matched the words of sophisticated and savvy talking heads from the right wing against the least informed and least polished of those on the opposition, and how we managed a game…which we termed, keep-out-the-insightful…of politely putting off, through excuses of saying we were focusing on areas not in their realm at the present. And how we used a multitude of such ploys on lefties until, as years went by, they began to doubt their own currency and thus doubted themselves and no longer sought to air their views in any but much smaller venues.

“So that’s how we managed to get the intelligent opposition away.

“Or even letting people know that they were still around or alive. In fact we were able to get people to think that those people had simply changed their minds and were believing what everybody else was believing, or something.

“But, anyway: Tune in to see how mass media like ourselves were able, because of our collectively acting in the same way, having been pressured toward the exact same ends by the one power in America currently, the Republicans and the “filthy rich” owners of our corporations—being essentially one and the same with one being the public and the other the private faces of the same group—were able to cast doubt…the newscasters were able to cast doubt…into the minds of seasoned intelligent and astute analysts as to their worth and currency and that of their ideas in the current era, making them feel that their time had come and gone and that personally they were has-beens, as at the same time we were recruiting the least able and the most naïve to take their places.

“Other ploys: See how we kept media favorites who opposed conservatives and who were astute observers and witty, articulate communicators for their side, how we kept them on the dole and were even able to reap the profits of their appearances but how we slyly undermined their positions in myriad sly ways, using known effects of time of day scheduling, competition in particular time slots, sequencing of segments within shows, and of the shows themselves in the lineup—you know, placement of shows and so on—all in ways to discredit them and garner the least audience for these voices.

“But still, we reap the benefits of having them on the show and collecting the advertising money. Additionally, we just look better in seeming to be more balanced.

“So, in our documentary, see how we maintained our position and survived an assault on the Press, by caving in to the dictatorial demands of a Party that also essentially owned us, surreptitiously of course, but how we managed to fool the public that we had in any way done so; how we managed at times to fool the public that we were their adversaries for truth and a counterbalance, as the Fourth Estate traditionally had been, to the powers of government and wealth, while in fact we were totally their tools in concocting the realities we were told to and muddying or ignoring the truths that came our way that would have been illuminating to the public presented fairly, but would have undermined the position we were pressured to present.

“So, tonight, our special documentary, “Freedom of the Press, Repealed. The Story, and How—This Repeal Now Thoroughly Institutionalized Over Twelve Years—We Can Reveal How We’ve Duped You and Will Continue To.”

“Be sure to tune in or TiVo it. For it is just a little fun we are allowing ourselves—that of spilling the beans about what is really behind the things we bring to you as actual events and true analysis—as a kind of celebration of the thoroughness of our success, and as a proof to the administration at how thoroughly we have manipulated your thinking that we can dare to lay it all out and feel certain that it will fail to enlighten a single one of you, in fact we feel it will aid us in an aspect of our campaign—that of keeping you confused so that you will be dependent on us for your conclusions.

“Especially when tomorrow evening and from now on, there will be no mention that this documentary ever existed, it will be expunged from all lists and archives and thoroughly be extracted and destroyed, as if it never existed.

“At that time we will begin…we’re already assuming our success here…and we’re planning a comprehensive campaign to add to our success so far in confusing and then convincing the public of the one-percent’s version of events, and to add to our favor with the now sole power in America…basically to suck up to them…we will have begun a calculated effort that we have designed that we think will be very successful and that you will enjoy, of the slow elimination, first, of American’s, of your collective memory of your past, beginning with the most recent and then, hopefully if successful and of course with your help, will continue further into the past; and following right behind the elimination of memory—no, we’re not going to tell you exactly how, now that wouldn’t be very game-spirited of us would it? Naw.

“Although, no one but you and I here now, I’ll give you a hint—confusion, for one, has been found to be extremely powerful in clouding out the details of memory—now, that’s all I’m gonna say, and believe me, if I wasn’t so totally convinced that we have been so successful that we can tell you just about anything and get away with it, then I wouldn’t have even said that.

“But of course, I am. That’s why people like me still have these jobs, while—gad, for a second there I almost said, my god just like it were the old days, I almost said, while “you may have noticed the losses and demotions of many formerly household names here at CLN who haven’t been as cooperative, supportive, committed, or as convinced, as I certainly am, of our ability to totally manipulate your thinking, as we wish.”

“Yea, I almost said that. But then that would have assumed that you had remembered any of them. Oh. Old habits are hard to drop.

“And anyway, I have to say I have my viewership to thank for that…for my success. Sincerely, I owe a great debt of gratitude to you folks who regularly tune in to my show in particular.

“Why, the absolute malarkey that I was putting out to you, slowly at first, not feeling totally convinced of your gullibility, I mean, still in those days it was pretty irrational and unbelievable bull droppings, completely concocted out of only the hot air emanating from egotistical rants of those whose sole desire is only to comfort and enslave you.

“Yet, the pollings that came in showed that I could practically fart out these concoctions and you would swallow them whole like tasty confections! I truly began to feel that I was like Moses bringing nightly the stone tablets; such was the utter inability among the masses of you to evaluate in any way what you were being fed.

“My colleagues say that my success is my beard and frizzy hair—part patriarchal, paternal, Moses-like, as well as appealing to My Generation base of long hairs and facial hair valuing; to which we added my supposed background as a member of a Sixties band and interest in current rock music—we felt we needed to do more to convince them, with their tradition of question authority and all—and, well, we must’ve got some of them at least because the polls were overwhelming in their insistence on my staunch credibility.

“So, I just want to say again that my success is owed completely to you, my viewers, and your unbelievably vapid minds, inane gullibility, or busied, stressed, overworked, or threatened existences as to make you grasp at anything outside as being of more substance than what you feel inside, and perhaps more pleasant.

“But whatever it is, thank you, and keep it up. In this next experiment, I’m sure you’ll show up, among all the segments of our viewership, as being the least able to remember and the easiest to forget what we will tell you later tonight. I’m sure you can do it. I’m counting on you.

“Oh, but now I’m forgetting. Sorry, I just got caught up in a wave of heartfelt gratitude to you all. The high ratings you give me and the solid staunch belief in my credibility that comes so high in the pollings, well they just … just that I get choked up … sorry, folks … this part is between me and you and … well, you’ll forget it anyway, if it’s decided by the Deciders later, that you can’t have it … so between us, well, how do you thank someone who has taken you from the ratings floor to the moon? How do you thank someone who has given up their reason, their very reason and rationality, for your success? You see, I take it as a kind of personal affection you must have towards me….

“And that wasn’t me trying intentionally to sound like Bill Clinton at all. No it wasn’t….

“How do you thank someone who has given up their reason and rationality…their individuality for your success?

“You see? I take it as a kind of personal affection you must have towards me when…who you don’t even know, to be so willing to be the greatest mass of idiot viewers on TV, getting the prize certainly.

“Because, you know, I simply can’t imagine that people exist who could be so unbelievably lacking in reason, intelligence, or simply the ability to remember what we say from one night to the next, as to swallow so hungrily the pig slop that I’ve been out here portraying as accurate, unbiased, etc. HA. Ha. Oh, the drivel we won’t say.

“So, unless somehow they’ve managed to create people with air balloons for brains… ha, ha……

“No, No, no! Sorry, my friends, my bad on that. Let me assure you that has not happened. No, there are no people who’s heads are actually balloons. Believe me, OK?

“Ok, then, what I’m saying is that unless the greatest percentage of you is vapid minded or brain dead—and that I don’t believe folks—then the only thing could be that you folks really care about me and making me a success as to sacrifice your own thought, reason, and individuality.

“Well, yeah, I’m sure you’re getting something out of it too, Y’know. I’m sure it helps having not to think and being able to just tune in nightly to be told what’s true and what to believe and never to be given anything unsettling or contrary as to cause you to be upset and have those horrible feelings of uncertainty.

“So, anyway, we get it, we get each other, and together let’s go make newscasting history—if they’ll ever keep an accurate one… hmmm… oh well.

“But at least for now, going back to what I was telling you about our next big wave of … well, some on our side might call it mind control or even enslavement … but you and I know that you’re better off with us giving you your reality, your memories, your beliefs. I’m sure you’ve all realized by now that we’re doing a whole lot better than the crappy reality you all had before we started helping you out.

“So the exciting next phase, as I was saying, begins with the slow elimination of recent memory, then memory further back. And to put it in a nutshell: We’re going to give you new happier memories, and interpretations of those memories that you’ll just relish. Just like we’ve recreated your present by substituting confusing reality with simple heart-warming, however untrue, views and perceptions.

“Well, together we’ve been so successful that we’re going to show our gratitude by doing the same for your past. Of course, in pleasing our Deciders, it will be the grand events of the past, the ones that are in their interest to change, that will be conveniently removed and replaced by versions to suit them, but you can trust us, you’ll much prefer, in fact we guarantee, you’ll enjoy what we give you.

“And, be patient, once we’ve been able to do that; you’re going to have to help of course… of course you will; with that accomplished, we’ll be able to help more and more with your personal memories. Not too long now, and you’ll have wonderful happy memories—we’ll have taken your miserable real ones and instead we will give you these happy memories, splendid memories that will completely buttress the views that we’ve been feeding you, giving you personal, unreal, memories of personal experiences that prove the validity of the beliefs that we’ve caused you to have.

“And believe you me, we’re going to load it up with goodies of all kinds—ice cream dates, Christmases perfect and loving, Fourth of July celebrations and innocent love under the fireworks—but that’s enough. Just you be assured, your gonna have your very own “Happy Days” for a personal past. Our guarantee at CLN – the Central Lying News.

“Now, back to regular programming, save one last reminder on our special tonight, the documentary, ‘Freedom of the Press, Repealed. The Story, and How—This Repeal Now Thoroughly Institutionalized Over Twelve Years—We Can Reveal How We’ve Duped You and Will Continue To.” Tune in, don’t miss it; You’re sure to forget it.’”

***

Well, thanks, Wolf. You’re a real trip, man. But anyway, back to reality, er, some version of it. After that little trip into a parallel, bizarre universe that might actually be closer to the truth than we would like to realize…I think a lot of us would like to know how true it is…

Anyway, let’s take a look at that catscan from the past that I was talking about.

Continue with Culture War, Class War, Chapter Eighteen: Dire Prediction

Return to Culture War, Class War, Chapter Sixteen: The Fall of “Obvious Truths”

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Freedom Repealed, Part Three: A Satire on the Mainstream Media Control by the 1% Begun with Installing George W. Bush into the Presidency … Featuring “Wolf Blitzer”

“Freedom of the Press, Repealed — The Story of How We’ve Duped You and Will Continue To. Tune In, Don’t Miss It; We’ll Make Sure You Forget It.”

Wolf Blitzer – Freedom of the Press, Repealed

“This is Wolf Blitzer. Tonight, tune in as CLN details the way we, and the rest of the mass media, have been slowly but relentlessly pressured and bullied into presenting the views of the party in power, the Republicans; how we have learned it to be in our interests, if we were to continue unobstructed, to eliminate more and more of the voices contrary to those in power. You will hear how we learned techniques of deception of our own so that we could seem to be presenting a range of views but how we could easily get the viewer to conclude that the party pressuring us was the most credible. How?

“Tune in and learn how we matched the words of sophisticated and savvy talking heads from the right wing against the least informed and least polished of those on the opposition, and how we managed a game…which we termed, keep-out-the-insightful…of politely putting off, through excuses of saying we were focusing on areas not in their realm at the present. And how we used a multitude of such ploys on lefties until, as years went by, they began to doubt their own currency and thus doubted themselves and no longer sought to air their views in any but much smaller venues.

“So that’s how we managed to get the intelligent opposition away.

“Or even letting people know that they were still around or alive. In fact we were able to get people to think that those people had simply changed their minds and were believing what everybody else was believing, or something.

“But, anyway: Tune in to see how mass media like ourselves were able, because of our collectively acting in the same way, having been pressured toward the exact same ends by the one power in America currently, the Republicans and the “filthy rich” owners of our corporations—being essentially one and the same with one being the public and the other the private faces of the same group—were able to cast doubt…the newscasters were able to cast doubt…into the minds of seasoned intelligent and astute analysts as to their worth and currency and that of their ideas in the current era, making them feel that their time had come and gone and that personally they were has-beens, as at the same time we were recruiting the least able and the most naïve to take their places.

“Other ploys: See how we kept media favorites who opposed conservatives and who were astute observers and witty, articulate communicators for their side, how we kept them on the dole and were even able to reap the profits of their appearances but how we slyly undermined their positions in myriad sly ways, using known effects of time of day scheduling, competition in particular time slots, sequencing of segments within shows, and of the shows themselves in the lineup—you know, placement of shows and so on—all in ways to discredit them and garner the least audience for these voices.

“But still, we reap the benefits of having them on the show and collecting the advertising money. Additionally, we just look better in seeming to be more balanced.

“So, in our documentary, see how we maintained our position and survived an assault on the Press, by caving in to the dictatorial demands of a Party that also essentially owned us, surreptitiously of course, but how we managed to fool the public that we had in any way done so; how we managed at times to fool the public that we were their adversaries for truth and a counterbalance, as the Fourth Estate traditionally had been, to the powers of government and wealth, while in fact we were totally their tools in concocting the realities we were told to and muddying or ignoring the truths that came our way that would have been illuminating to the public presented fairly, but would have undermined the position we were pressured to present.

“So, tonight, our special documentary, “Freedom of the Press, Repealed. The Story, and How—This Repeal Now Thoroughly Institutionalized Over Twelve Years—We Can Reveal How We’ve Duped You and Will Continue To.”

“Be sure to tune in or TiVo it. For it is just a little fun we are allowing ourselves—that of spilling the beans about what is really behind the things we bring to you as actual events and true analysis—as a kind of celebration of the thoroughness of our success, and as a proof to the Deciders at how thoroughly we have manipulated your thinking that we can dare to lay it all out and feel certain that it will fail to enlighten a single one of you, in fact we feel it will aid us in an aspect of our campaign—that of keeping you confused so that you will be dependent on us for your conclusions.

“Especially when tomorrow evening and from now on, there will be no mention that this documentary ever existed, it will be expunged from all lists and archives and thoroughly be extracted and destroyed, as if it never existed.

“At that time we will begin…we’re already assuming our success here…and we’re planning a comprehensive campaign to add to our success so far in confusing and then convincing the public of the one-percent’s version of events, and to add to our favor with the now sole power in America…basically to suck up to them…we will have begun a calculated effort that we have designed that we think will be very successful and that you will enjoy, of the slow elimination, first, of American’s, of your collective memory of your past, beginning with the most recent and then, hopefully if successful and of course with your help, will continue further into the past; and following right behind the elimination of memory—no, we’re not going to tell you exactly how, now that wouldn’t be very game-spirited of us would it? Naw.

“Although, no one but you and I here now, I’ll give you a hint—confusion, for one, has been found to be extremely powerful in clouding out the details of memory—now, that’s all I’m gonna say, and believe me, if I wasn’t so totally convinced that we have been so successful that we can tell you just about anything and get away with it, then I wouldn’t have even said that.

“But of course, I am. That’s why people like me still have these jobs, while—gad, for a second there I almost said, my god just like it were the old days, I almost said, while “you may have noticed the losses and demotions of many formerly household names here at CLN who haven’t been as cooperative, supportive, committed, or as convinced, as I certainly am, of our ability to totally manipulate your thinking, as we wish.”

“Yea, I almost said that. But then that would have assumed that you had remembered any of them. Oh. Old habits are hard to drop.

“And anyway, I have to say I have my viewership to thank for that…for my success. Sincerely, I owe a great debt of gratitude to you folks who regularly tune in to my show in particular.

“Why, the absolute malarkey that I was putting out to you, slowly at first, not feeling totally convinced of your gullibility, I mean, still in those days it was pretty irrational and unbelievable bull droppings, completely concocted out of only the hot air emanating from egotistical rants of those whose sole desire is only to comfort and enslave you.

“Yet, the pollings that came in showed that I could practically fart out these concoctions and you would swallow them whole like tasty confections! I truly began to feel that I was like Moses bringing nightly the stone tablets; such was the utter inability among the masses of you to evaluate in any way what you were being fed.

“My colleagues say that my success is my beard and frizzy hair—part patriarchal, paternal, Moses-like, as well as appealing to My Generation base of long hairs and facial hair valuing; to which we added my supposed background as a member of a Sixties band and interest in current rock music—we felt we needed to do more to convince them, with their tradition of question authority and all—and, well, we must’ve got some of them at least because the polls were overwhelming in their insistence on my staunch credibility.

“So, I just want to say again that my success is owed completely to you, my viewers, and your unbelievably vapid minds, inane gullibility, or busied, stressed, overworked, or threatened existences as to make you grasp at anything outside as being of more substance than what you feel inside, and perhaps more pleasant.

“But whatever it is, thank you, and keep it up. In this next experiment, I’m sure you’ll show up, among all the segments of our viewership, as being the least able to remember and the easiest to forget what we will tell you later tonight. I’m sure you can do it. I’m counting on you.

“Oh, but now I’m forgetting. Sorry, I just got caught up in a wave of heartfelt gratitude to you all. The high ratings you give me and the solid staunch belief in my credibility that comes so high in the pollings, well they just … just that I get choked up … sorry, folks … this part is between me and you and … well, you’ll forget it anyway, if it’s decided by the Deciders later, that you can’t have it … so between us, well, how do you thank someone who has taken you from the ratings floor to the moon? How do you thank someone who has given up their reason, their very reason and rationality, for your success? You see, I take it as a kind of personal affection you must have towards me….

“And that wasn’t me trying intentionally to sound like Bill Clinton at all. No it wasn’t….

“How do you thank someone who has given up their reason and rationality…their individuality for your success?

“You see? I take it as a kind of personal affection you must have towards me when…who you don’t even know, to be so willing to be the greatest mass of idiot viewers on TV, getting the prize certainly.

“Because, you know, I simply can’t imagine that people exist who could be so unbelievably lacking in reason, intelligence, or simply the ability to remember what we say from one night to the next, as to swallow so hungrily the pig slop that I’ve been out here portraying as accurate, unbiased, etc. HA. Ha. Oh, the drivel we won’t say.

“So, unless somehow they’ve managed to create people with air balloons for brains… ha, ha……

“No, No, no! Sorry, my friends, my bad on that. Let me assure you that has not happened. No, there are no people who’s heads are actually balloons. Believe me, OK?

“Ok, then, what I’m saying is that unless the greatest percentage of you is vapid minded or brain dead—and that I don’t believe folks—then the only thing could be that you folks really care about me and making me a success as to sacrifice your own thought, reason, and individuality.

“Well, yea, I’m sure you’re getting something out of it too, Y’know. I’m sure it helps having not to think and being able to just tune in nightly to be told what’s true and what to believe and never to be given anything unsettling or contrary as to cause you to be upset and have those horrible feelings of uncertainty.

“So, anyway, we get it, we get each other, and together let’s go make newscasting history—if they’ll ever keep an accurate one… hmmm… oh well.

“But at least for now, going back to what I was telling you about our next big wave of … well, some on our side might call it mind control or even enslavement … but you and I know that you’re better off with us giving you your reality, your memories, your beliefs. I’m sure you’ve all realized by now that we’re doing a whole lot better than the crappy reality you all had before we started helping you out.

“So the exciting next phase, as I was saying, begins with the slow elimination of recent memory, then memory further back. And to put it in a nutshell: We’re going to give you new happier memories, and interpretations of those memories that you’ll just relish. Just like we’ve recreated your present by substituting confusing reality with simple heart-warming, however untrue, views and perceptions.

“Well, together we’ve been so successful that we’re going to show our gratitude by doing the same for your past. Of course, in pleasing our Deciders, it will be the grand events of the past, the ones that are in their interest to change, that will be conveniently removed and replaced by versions to suit them, but you can trust us, you’ll much prefer, in fact we guarantee, you’ll enjoy what we give you.

“And, be patient, once we’ve been able to do that; you’re going to have to help of course… of course you will; with that accomplished, we’ll be able to help more and more with your personal memories. Not too long now, and you’ll have wonderful happy memories—we’ll have taken your miserable real ones and instead we will give you these happy memories, splendid memories that will completely buttress the views that we’ve been feeding you, giving you personal, unreal, memories of personal experiences that prove the validity of the beliefs that we’ve caused you to have.

“And believe you me, we’re going to load it up with goodies of all kinds—ice cream dates, Christmases perfect and loving, Fourth of July celebrations and innocent love under the fireworks—but that’s enough. Just you be assured, your gonna have your very own “Happy Days” for a personal past. Our guarantee at CLN – the Central Lying News.

“Now, back to regular programming, save one last reminder on our special tonight, the documentary, ‘Freedom of the Press, Repealed. The Story, and How—This Repeal Now Thoroughly Institutionalized Over Twelve Years—We Can Reveal How We’ve Duped You and Will Continue To.” Tune in, don’t miss it; You’re sure to forget it.’”

***

Well, thanks, Wolf. You’re a real trip, man. But anyway, back to reality, er, some version of it. After that little trip into a parallel, bizarre universe that might actually be closer to the truth than we would like to realize…I think a lot of us would like to know how true it is…

Anyway, let’s take a look at that catscan from the past that I was talking about.

Continue with Culture War, Class War, Chapter Eighteen: Dire Prediction

Return to If Freedom of the Press Was Repealed, How Would You Know? Freedom Repealed, Part Two—Dire Vision, Revelation … Words a Decade Old Come Back to Haunt

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A Revolution That Would Not Be Televised: If We’d Lost Freedom of Speech and of the Press, Would You Find Out About It on the News?

A Revolution That Would Not Be Televised: If We’d Lost Freedom of Speech and of the Press, Would You Find Out About It on the News?

Dire Vision, Revelation

But before going into either my writing from 2000 or the recent events that it shows more clearly by contrast, I wish for you to consider how I felt coming across this piece that so clearly laid out the future and revealed the fact that those ideas were not brought out into the media. I wish for you to get a notion of what went through me as I mused upon the abject failure of our media to remember history so as to keep from repeating it.

Words from a Decade Ago Come Back to Haunt, Sadden, Provoke, Enlighten, Motivate

How would you feel if you found out for sure that you foresaw in an eerily accurate way the events over the last decade before they happened? Sometimes we all have a sense of what the future is likely to bring forth. Everyone, in fact, has some working model of the future.

But be honest, you’ll probably acknowledge those models of the future are almost always some kind of continuation of the present and of the recent past, perhaps with a few technological advances thrown in. And usually, being the hopeful optimists we must be in order to continue our daily efforts, we envision something that is at least somewhat a progression. Something a little better at least.

What if you foresaw an exact reversal of the current trends, including an economic debacle, recession, market crash nine years before it happened? And even that it would happen about the time it did? You could think yourself prophetic; it could pump up your ego.

However if you also knew that you did not pick those predictions out of the air but that you had lived through a similar period in the past, well then you might consider the prophecy to be an astute but quite expected conclusion arising from the visible evidence of the times … and nothing unusual. After all, you are no important person, pundit, or professional prognosticator. The masses have not come scrambling to your door. You expect that you are not unusual in your perceptions. You feel that other people have similar predictions inside themselves. Isn’t that what you would think?

But then these events unfold over the years, as you predicted, and … and this is surprising … without exception the experts, the paid prognosticators and pundits all of them, to a person, bemoan wearily the complete inability of anyone to have foreseen any of what transpired on each of these things, as the years go on.

And to a person they talk as if these things came completely out of nowhere, like a freakish weather pattern or an act of God; or as if they came falling to Earth like the frozen chemicalized ice bombs of jetliner rest room waste or appeared like the lightning bolt out of some dark mysterium tremendum hovering high in the sky above us, but in no way having any roots in any previous events.

No, these people, these commentators on events who you see nightly and whose every word is broadcast into the minds of multimillions, who knows, billions? … and whose words are often repeated … they may have another show … or they are offered up more than once … as their very words are echoed by other commentators around the world. In the United States, their words are echoed far and wide by people at all levels and in all countries afterward.

These people with such immeasurable power to reach and influence the minds of a global populace. Well they also went through the same events as you, as proven by their age. Yet they never mention the times previous that were so similar as to cause you earlier to make the obvious conclusions you made. And, now, even after the fact, in retrospect, those obvious near exact patterns of events of the not so long ago are not mentioned by them … they are overlooked, ignored.

Specifically, I remembered what happened with the Reagan-Bush tax cuts and how we went into a great recession because of them that resulted in Clinton getting elected in 1992. Eight years later, with Clintonomics, and Clinton creates a budget surplus and has balanced the budget for the first time in decades.

But then W. Bush, the Republican, gets in, and nobody’s mentioning even as he’s doing his first tax cut and blowing the surplus that this didn’t work last time only a decade earlier with Reagan and his own father, H.W. Bush. And then through the years of Bush’s terms, with more ballooning debt and budget deficits, did any of those events of the not so long ago and up till 1992, with Reagan and Bush, Senior, get mentioned? No. Instead when all the expected results … well, expected by informed liberal nobodies like me, anyway … when all the expected results of trickle-down, voodoo economics begin manifesting, well, an attitude of “we’re only human” and “nobody could have known ahead of time” predominates among the Republicans responsible.

And these representatives of the filthy rich, the 1%–these Republicans–they get away with that excuse because the media was not pointing out past history to them when they were implementing those foolish policies. It is as if those earlier events hadn’t been brought up in such a long time, so those past events, which should have been instructive, are as if they never happened. Mistakes get repeated endlessly as the media cooperates with the powerful in covering up awareness of earlier mistakes of the same kind.

Well this would cause you to ponder, would it not? How could so many people, people whose job it is to do so, not connect the obvious thoughts you and others did a decade ago? And now even in retrospect they are unable to.

Some of the possibilities for that occurring are that the people who are speaking for everyone–these pundits and commentators–have not risen to their levels of influence on their abilities and that something else is behind their rise to positions to speak and shape the thoughts of the multimillions. Yes. That could be it.

You might also ponder then if better more astute prognosticators and analysts were being kept out of the positions of influence intentionally. Yes. That would follow of necessity. And so on. How else do you explain it?

What it would come down to is you have to ask yourself, are you somehow the only one who is capable of making predictions from the recent past? And believing that might make you feel good if you have some problem in your life which makes you doubt your abilities, that is, if you are so lacking in real self esteem. But if you continue to think that way, such narcissistic attitudes would have you living in a world of your own that did not have any ties to reality eventually. You know what I mean.

Or, if humble and astute enough and not so desperately needy for a pleasant thought about oneself, you would have to ask yourself to consider more seriously the prospect that the media reaction may very well be an unexpected part of the original prediction. If you were sane enough, you would be driven to an unwanted and dire conclusion: Something had gradually and so unnoticeably gone very, very wrong with the media and the public discourse of your society.

If We’d Lost Freedom of Speech and of the Press, Would You Find Out About it on the News?

You might be led to reason: If you had predicted an erosion of basic rights if Bush were to get elected, and you had seen that had come to pass … I mean basic human rights, like given us from the Bill of Rights … why would not freedom of speech and of the press be part of that erosion? Thinking more deeply would it not have been a necessary part of the erosion of the rest?

For if the press had been doing its job, would it not have been acting as protectors of our rights in decrying any assaults, proclaiming any intrusions, documenting any erosions, and so on, in the uncountable ways it has done in the past? Would that not have been a second “2″ which added to the other “2″ makes sense out of the “4″ you are observing and trying to understand? (two plus two equals four.)

But as usually happens when stumbling on the hidden but obvious things, other, sometimes laughably obvious, correlates come to mind:

If Freedom of Speech and of the Press had been part of the erosion in human rights—the rights laid out by our Bill of Rights—well, who would be researching, detailing, proclaiming, or making documentaries about it? The Press? HA!

In order to give you a sense of the way I began viewing things, after the Time Capsule’s revelations, I’d like to take you on a little journey, a little reverie that may provide a glimpse ahead, perhaps an understanding of the unbelievable, as a journey through the looking glass can often do.

So in answering the question above: If freedom of speech and the press were rescinded who would tell you? I would say that it would be one “revolution” that would not be televised, for starters.

“Well, of course,” you think, cynically, “surely they would have done lots of things.”

Yes, I respond dryly, one of them might have gone like this:

Continue with “Freedom of the Press, Repealed — The Story of How We’ve Duped You and Will Continue To. Tune In, Don’t Miss It; We’ll Make Sure You Forget It.”

Return to Dire Prediction: Before Voting for Romney, Remember, We Knew This Before. Will We Continue Shooting Ourselves in the Foot?

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Forgetting the Past, We Were Doomed to Repeat It … A Message Arrives from Twelve Years in the Past Predicting Today’s Events: Freedom Repealed, Part One

Dire Prediction: Before Voting for Romney, Remember, We Knew This Before. Will We Continue Shooting Ourselves in the Foot?

A Message Arrives from Twelve Years in the Past Predicting Today’s Events

We are disturbed reading that Twelve years ago our present national situation was foreseen. Worse, we are reminded of what we lost; what could have been; how we’ve managed to block that from our memory in accepting the much diminished prospects now; but also how we should not forget; how we should remember how it happened; who was to blame; who helped and colluded in bringing it about, and why; so that, remembering, we might never let it happen again.

Forgetting the Past, We Were Doomed to Repeat It

For we learn, worst of all, that our chance to progress, rather, just to survive, now depends on remembering. Because twelve years ago, in the year 2000, all that’s happened since could easily have been prevented if only we had not allowed ourselves to be talked into forgetting the history of only eight years prior to that.

This is a serious and thoughtful piece, which everyone would do well to know if we are to survive another fifty years, not to mention a century or longer. Still, I am not the sort to feel that facing harsh realities means we need go around glumly, martyr-like, in sack-cloth and ashes. Rather, I feel we might as well enjoy and make use of all the God-given abilities we have whatever the outcome of our efforts.

So don’t be surprised that this exposition is aided by guest appearances making their points in hilarious fashion.

If you’ve never heard George Bush as Bluto from Animal House, you’ve got to.

Wolf Blitzer is not recognized for being a comic, but when he goes on to explain to his faithful viewers how they’ve been lied to and manipulated for years, because of pressure from the Administration, and how grateful he is for their gullibility as he is receiving promotions and honors because his viewership is polling the highest in mindlessly accepting the concocted view, well we see many new sides of Wolf.

Thought-provoking but funny, another thing he explains is that their incredible success over the years in getting people to believe and or to forget whatever they want, has resulted in their having a little celebration consisting of an experiment as well…which they hope will bring them in even tighter with the now all-powerful Administration.

The celebration-experiment consists of a documentary in which the entire truth of the multiyear campaign to lie, deceive, and to control minds is laid out. And the experiment part is that they are certain that the next day and ever afterwards when such thing ever being aired is denied, the people will completely forget it and believe they must have been mistaken. Wolf signs off: “One last reminder on our special tonight, the documentary, “Freedom of the Press, Repealed. The Story and How, this Repeal Now Thoroughly Institutionalized Over Twelve Years, We Can Now Reveal How We’ve Duped You and Will Continue To.” Tune in, don’t miss it; You’re sure to forget it.”

Ok, I’m gettin myself off the floor I was laughin so hard I couldn’t help myself. Ok, now to a more serious part.

Time Capsule Discovered

Not long after Bush left office, I unearthed, March 9, 2009, 9:49am, three never finished drafts of an article I intended to publish on my website prior to the 2000 Presidential election involving Bush v Gore. Stuffed and interwoven among the electrons of the backups of old computers, I had completely forgotten ever having written any of it.

Engulfed, indeed, pushed around and battered within the intensity and sharpness of recent political, geopolitical, and economic and financial forces of late, I was shocked to see the words, written a decade earlier, which, desperately intoning, warned of specific dire happenings should George W. Bush be elected. For it seemed those exact words, of so long ago, had just been lifted from the headlines and front pages of today’s daily news.

At any rate, I certainly thought at first that I was reading something about the recent collapse when I read what I had written in early 2000. I think I’ve said way too much without providing some meat—what kinds of things did I find? OK, in mid-2000, long before Bush was put in power and had a chance to show anything at all of what kind of president he would be, I wrote these words concerning what I thought would be the result of a George W. Bush getting elected:

[If Bush gets elected in 2000,] “I believe we are in grave danger of losing, not just an election, not just a Supreme Court, not just our environment, not just our good economy, not just our recent relative peace in the world but things far worse than those horrors. I believe we are in danger of losing all hope of maintaining, let alone progressing, in the freedoms and privileges that we take for granted.

Prophetic? Eerie? I don’t know quite what to make of it.

Reading more, this popped to my attention:

So is this election important? I believe it is. For me it is especially important, for I feel that if the Republicans take over, they will do so much to damage the dreams of my generation that even if the Democrats were to be reelected to all branches of government in 4 or 8 years, they will do so much damage (the example of Reagan-Bush nearly QUADRUPLING the National Debt in their mere 12 years being the perfect example) that My Generation will have to clean up their mess afterward, taking more years. And only then will we be in a position to progress in this country and world and bring it more in line with the ideals of peace, love, community, and harmony we envisioned in the Sixties.

Now back to 2012.

The Obvious but Hidden Becomes Visible by Contrast.

Though I had foreseen it, I couldn’t have felt more helpless. I was made to face the fact that America’s, indeed the world’s, prospects for regaining a financial footing, whereas a mere twelve years ago looked like lift off, now was predicted as decades off. And that just to regain an ordinariness of life, with some saying that Americans will never again, ever, enjoy the standard of living they once took for granted.

It certainly disturbed me and got me to wondering and then to writing.

It saddens me what could have been. Reading it, I am stunned by how we’ve managed to vanquish from our minds and our media the insane, chaotic, and truly awful outlines of our times, as the events of the last decade crept daily into our lives and world and shaped them and it in drastic ways that we can discern only by the contrast. It was such a slow and gradual change, you see.

These unpolished catscans of a mind and time provide such a contrast, stark and shocking.

Concerning Time Capsule, I have much to say, much have I remembered, and much have I reviewed in my mind observing the timeline of these events and the changes in the social and cultural scenery, and in people themselves as these events happened over the last decade, one following another changing us all. I will make myself clearer following the text of the former piece to follow.

Continue with If Freedom of the Press Was Repealed, How Would You Know? Freedom Repealed, Part Two—Dire Vision, Revelation … Words a Decade Old Come Back to Haunt

Return to The American Awakening – 99% Rising … in a Plundered Land: The Fall of “Obvious Truths,” Part Two

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Foolin’ the People About America … It’s About Creeping Corporate Insertion Into Every Aspect of Your Life. Better Off Than Fifty Years Ago?

Peaking in the Sixties, Starving for Prosperity, The Compassion Gap, Starving the “Beast,” Humbug for the Poor, Democratizing the Hate … Your Money or Your Life

Culture War, Class War, Chapter Fourteen: Better Off Than Fifty Years Ago?

Peaking in the Sixties

casually_pepper_spraying_cop95

Better Off Than Fifty Years Ago? Part One: Peaking in the Sixties

Obvious “Truths”:

  • Americans are innovators and problem-solvers.
  • There’s nothing Americans can’t do, no problem we can’t solve, once we put our minds to it.
  • Things just keep getting better in America
  • Republicans are for small business.

392329_228739500539022_100002089216589_538765_11110285_n

So unfortunately, after Reagan instituted “voodoo economics,” with prices on health care and pharmaceuticals going through the roof along with the sudden unexpected increases of other necessities of life, you had that lowered standard of living we have now become accustomed to for the great majority of Americans. You had a population that was poorer, in relative terms, and got increasingly poorer.

family_income_median_income_growth_productivity1

Over time, over the course of my lifetime, though we might ostensibly have appeared to prosper we did not. The apparent rise in standard of living was a result of the glut of new consumer items produced in an increasingly technological and complex culture. 955830597_092af7676dYou might be able to afford plenty of cheap trinkets and toys, but for things that pertained to your well-being and quality of life, such as health and medical care, good schools, wholesome food, higher educational opportunities, a clean environment, recreational opportunities, fuel and energy, leisure, family, and quality time, and so on we were ever more wanting.

topincomeshares1

Peaking in the Sixties

In retrospect I can see we prospered in the Fifties and Sixties. The records show that Americans achieved a peak of affluence in the Sixties and that since then, and rapidly accelerating since the Eighties, we have been on a downward slide.

wealth-pyramid

Poor Mothers Could Afford to Stay Home and Take Care of the Kids.

ason504l6a00d8341c579653ef00e552b0f6fb8834-800wiI can see the ways we, living in the Fifties and Sixties, were as a culture fairly well off, though personally my circumstances were anything but that. My father made only fifty dollars a week for a time. But my mother never had to go to work. She actually did get a part-time job much later in life for the enjoyment of it. Can anyone today imagine that?

How Much for That House? Ok, Let Me Get My Wallet.

My father never made over a hundred dollars a week until later in his life he actually started his own small trucking outfit…that’s another story about who are the real job creators in America that I get into elsewhere. Yet he bought his home with cash he had saved up. Eight thousand dollars smack on the barrelhead in 1953. He never had to work three jobs to get by either, like some folks have to today. No mortgage on his house and he bought every car he owned—roughly once every five years—also with cash he had saved.

College Educations for Free in the Sixties and Seventies. #occupycollege today

No loans, never in debt and yet five of his six children attended at least some college and two attained at least Master’s degrees. I was talking with my older brother about his college education, which mirrored my own, and we both remember getting by with very little or no debt afterward. We both received enough to cover all college plus living expenses most years just on scholarships and grants—mostly state and federally funded—yet we both attended private, somewhat prestigious, colleges.

I know, millennial generation, but don’t blame us, we’re on your side. #occupycollege.

What’s Health Insurance?

My family didn’t have any health insurance, had never even heard of it. We were not well off, but we like most people could afford to go to the doctor. And similar to others we could even normally pay hospital bills, for maternity and so on. If anything very serious developed that required more money no one ever imagined that they would be turned away at a hospital. The Mercy Hospital in my city, run by a religious order of Catholic nuns and funded by contributions, was a place one could always go regardless of one’s means. Sounds unbelievably quaint, doesn’t it? I know. I can hardly believe it was once that way myself.

Glenn Beck as Jesus

Starving for Prosperity

Better Off Than Fifty Years Ago? Part Two: Starving for Prosperity

Foolin’ the People About America

Obvious “Truths”

  • There is an abundance of food in America
  • There is a huge problem with obesity in America because folks actually have too much to eat.
  • People are overweight because they eat too much.

Starving for Prosperity

“Have Some More, There’s Plenty!”

And my family never starved back in the Fifties and Sixties. The dinner refrain was “Have some more, there’s plenty.” Though we were fairly poor by the standards of that time, I never, ever, ever imagined there being a lack of or limitation on food. There were big restrictions on sweet treats and goodies, but not on wholesome food. So it shocks me to see how much more concerned parents are today about how much their children will eat, as well as how precisely they mete out their gustatory offerings when entertaining.

“You’re Not Leaving This Table till You’ve Eaten All Your … Ketchup.”

When not long ago I worked in a group home for troubled boys I was shocked and distressed to see the controversies over the food portions given and the restrictions on when they could eat. This was a government-funded group home and had to abide by all kinds of minimal standards in nutrition. Still, ever since Reagan determined that ketchup qualified as a vegetable serving, I have noticed this public stinginess about food.

Where I worked, sugared-water drinks qualified as juice, and peanut butter consumption was limited to a thin layer like that of butter that’s spread on bread. Cheap sugar this and thats and nutrient-low, colon-clogging baked goods, noodle dishes, and pizza were the at-hand substitutes for wholesome, more substantial offerings. The resulting blood-sugar swings and erratic, aggressive behavior were handled with drugs and listed within their case histories.

“Please, Sir, Some More?”

There was much more like this but suffice it to say that I could hardly believe the happenings in this Oliver Twist world. My heart went out to those young boys who in this once wealthy land and still surrounded by plenty in this post-millennial, rich suburban California stood near the kitchen with plate in hand, their eyes pleading if they might “please have some more.”

This miserliness about food seems a prevalent thing throughout the culture as it is evident in school lunch programs also. Whereas at the grammar and secondary schools I attended while growing up I enjoyed complete wholesome meals on a par with and sometimes surpassing the enjoyable repasts at home and even seconds were allowed, what is considered a decent school lunch today is shocking. Corporations have taken over as suppliers. Can you believe we had a Joe the Cook in grade school who concocted home-style offerings, which were ladled out by those of our mothers, including my own, who had volunteered?

The Beloved School Cook–Pepsico

Today the school meals are akin to that in fast food restaurants and just as monotonous … pizza, chicken nuggets, spaghetti, greasy burgers, hot dogs, fries. They are not “cooked.” From what I understand, they are taken from freezers, popped in microwaves, and dealt out to pupils like one would cards. The epidemics of obesity and diabetes in our country attest to how much worse is the nutrition for young folks today.

Aren’t America’s “Extermination Policies” Just More Undetectable Than Nazi Germany’s? Starving the “Beast”—That Means You: Your Money or Your Life

Foolin’ the People About America. Better Off Than Fifty Years Ago? Part Three: Starving the “Beast”

Your Medical Payment or Your Life

What else is different now than fifty years ago? Well, there’s people who can’t pay for health care… can’t get health care? …. Now that’s something new for me too. Can’t get health care. Wow. You mean you’re sick, you’re gonna die, but you can’t get help in the medical system? Unbelievable. That used to be unheard of.

I know. You’re thinking, “But we passed universal health care in recent years.” Remember though, we passed universal health care “coverage” … not care. Everyone has to be insured does not mean everyone gets taken care of.

At any rate, none of this “universal health care” has “trickled down” to the very needy as far as I can tell. Now, I don’t know if folks are being turned away from hospitals like they were before it was passed. Folks got refused care for lack of coverage in recent decades. And sometimes they died. (I wonder how many others died while struggling to fill out the forms to apply for health care for the needy? *sarcasm*)

Regardless, health care that is delayed, rationed out, or cut back and denied for certain conditions can be just as much a death sentence as being turned away at a hospital door. Example? After we passed “universal” coverage Governor Jane Brewer of Arizona allowed a change in policy in their state-funded health care to deny organ transplants to those folks who could not afford it otherwise. These were organ transplants needed to save their lives. These people would have received them under some other coverage, but falling through the cracks and being poor—some of them born too disabled to be able to work at a job—they were essentially told, “We can’t afford to keep you alive (we’ve got tax cuts for the rich to pay for).” So they did. They died. Republicans clamored about “death panels” beforehand; then promptly implemented one as soon as they could.

Isn’t this the kind of health care the opponents of “socialized medicine” say we would get if we went to single-payer? Well, we’ve got it folks—delays, rationing, denials, complications … and stress!—without any of the benefits of “socialized medicine.” I’ve watched it take two weeks to get a prescription in Riverside County, California, when it should have taken 45 minutes or less. The folks there handling health care for people who include poor folks on Medi-Cal are so overworked and stretched thin that you need to stand in line, literally stand in line for sometimes four hours or more to get a prescription filled. Think I’m exaggerating? I’m aware of at least one elderly gentleman who collapsed while waiting and was removed on a stretcher. I felt like I was in a scene from the movie Soylent Green, wondering where they were taking this one who had fallen by the wayside.

And the answer is no. No to the other question in your mind: “Don’t they have places you can sit down?” I know of no other place where you have to stand to get your prescription, you’re REQUIRED to stand. But then this is a huge county hospital catering to the poor. It handles many poor people…and it does it poorly. The unwritten rule is, “You’re asking for health care at a discount!? Well, WE’LL MAKE YOU PAY…ONE WAY OR THE OTHER, DAMN YOU!”

Starve the “Beast”

You don’t think this attitude trickles down to the masses from policy on high? Well, you tell me what the policy makers of the 1% are thinking when they say they are going to “starve the beast” of government … continually cut back funds for government services…as a back door way of making government smaller. This is the exact wording they have used, since Reagan, for their policies of tax cuts for the rich that require massive spending cuts on services for poor and middle income folks.

But think now: Just who do they imagine is really that “beast”? And why use the word, “starve”? Yes, the “beast” of the masses, the riff-raff, is being “starved”—being made to suffer for lack of sufficient money for systems and workers so folks can be served faster. With money stretched thin for humane processing systems and employees to implement them, people are refuse…”beasts”…having to stand and suffer.

I wonder how this is not simply a more undetectable way of eliminating in America the handicapped, disabled, and/or mentally challenged than the way the Nazis did it to the same sort of “riff raff” when they got to power during the time of the Third Reich.

Universal Health Care in America? Don’t Make Me Laugh… You Get an “Assumed Doctor” and Like it or You Choose to Die.

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Foolin’ the People About America. Better Off Than Fifty Years Ago? Part Four: But Do You Get a Doctor?

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And Do You Get a Doctor?

102792692praying-with-open-hands2_thumb[3]Do you get a doctor, though? Not in this decade you don’t. When I was a child we went to the doctor’s office and paid $7 for a doctor’s visit. Even on my Dad’s $50 a week, that was affordable; and that was the least he made. When you now have doctor’s visits that cost a hundred to three hundred dollars if you pay out of pocket (or more), do you realize how much you’d have to make for it to be as affordable as it was for my Dad? Figure $700 to 2 to 3 thousand a week. Some people make that nowadays, but not the poor. Remember, my father was dirt poor, getting by on $50 a week with six kids.

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House Calls in the Past; “Pretend” Doctors Today

But we got to see a real doctor. We even got a doctor who made house calls. Today? Well you get a pretend doctor who confers, along with a gaggle of other pretend doctors, with an actual physician, then gets back to you as you wait…and wait some more.

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And You Wait

955830597_092af7676dRecently, it took four hours for the visit and another four hours to get the prescriptions at the same hospital in another place…and the prescriptions didn’t all come through until after two weeks and a number of phone calls, as at one point they had to order a common prescription and then lost the order (had no record that it had ever been made; though on several phone calls they referred to it) and had to make it again. And this experience has been common. I’ve experienced it a number of times. I’m trying to acquire health care elsewhere, believe me.

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You Get an “Assumed” Doctor

OliverTwist_6957Did I get a doctor? No. Oh, they call themselves doctors. The last one was more honest and announced when he came in that he was so and so who was a “student doctor.” I didn’t hear him correctly. My mind scanned thousands of files in an instant and what it came up with I just had to ask. I said, “Did you say you are an ‘assumed doctor’”?

And You Like It

tumblr_lv1gf21YZO1r6m1z5o1_500And being “processed” like a piece of meat this way, you get a different “assumed doctor” every time. There is no continuity. You don’t bother to keep track of their names, for it doesn’t matter. You start all over on every visit. The only thing they know of you is what has been electronically recorded from previous visits; nothing human or relational is carried forward. They will tell you it is because all the “assumed doctors” are equally competent and qualified, so it doesn’t matter. Of course that is a rationalization for a system so “starved” of funding the personal touch has long ago been squeezed out in favor of assembly-line efficiency.

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Or You Choose to Die

So what is the upshot of all this. It is that many folks have to weigh getting health care in America—which is claimed to be “available”—against the complications and time of getting it. I don’t have a job, so I was able to persevere. What of folks who have to work full time or more? I was well enough to stand around and coherent enough to make notes and make phone calls. What of folks who are sicker than that?

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The Unspoken Costs of Health Care

2008_09_25_wall_stThe upshot is that many folks are weighing THESE costs of health care when choosing whether or not to seek help. And their decision is leaving many of these folks dead. I know of a number of people who have made such a decision; many of you also do.

Some Are Choosing a “Soylent Green” Escape

I know of one instance where it was even done consciously, for the person did not want to spend what might be her last time on Earth struggling with an insensitive and mean-spirited medical system, so she just opted to let her cancer take her in the serenity of her home and surrounded by loved ones. (Why am I thinking of that movie Soylent Green again? Well, maybe you remember that scene as well.)

Others Are Risking It

passion-of-the-christ-3.lrgrI know I myself weigh these costs in time and suffering and inconvenience whenever I feel I might need to be looked at for something. And very often…most of the time actually…I put off being looked at. ht_pepper_spray_meme_12_nt_111121_ssvI postpone doing tests that are made more time consuming and painful for poor folks (don’t get me started on that); and I often give up in pursuing the treatments and medications that I am prescribed…figuring that putting up with the suffering of the ailment is better than the suffering incurred in its cure. And I am not alone. Will it cost me my life? Perhaps.

Universal health care in America? Don’t make me laugh..

America—Best Health Care in the World
…Before Them

reagan1Now, compare all this with the way it was fifty years ago. hc-gop-prescriptionA friend of mine on Facebook shared how her brother was treated when he had a life threatening injury. This was that long ago and she relates they were poor. She says, they flew in a specialist from Australia to perform the delicate operation. I repeat, they were poor. But then this was all before Reagan…and Nixon. I’m getting to that.

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With the Excuse of “The Game,” Small-Hearted Folks Can Now Flaunt Their Mean-Spiritedness – The Compassion Gap

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“Stop War? Now, Don’t Go Gettin’ All Kumbaya on Me!” … Foolin’ the People About America. Better Off Than Fifty Years Ago? Part Five: The Compassion Gap

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pepper spray 84 y-o occupy seattle 111511 (2)IngrahamSo what happened to our country? We were supposed to be a country that valued human life, for example, but is now valuing contract law over that.

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The Word’s More Important Than The Life

So the word has become more important than the person, and better that people sleep in the gutters or lie out in the park than to lend them a hand. And god forbid when you have children, that one of them get sick, someone have an accident, or someone get killed….

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Rules (Made Up to Benefit the Wealthy) Are Now More Important Than Life

194423-megyn-kellysantellismirkGoddamn it. Y’know, here you’ve got Rick Santelli saying, well they must have put in a kitchen or else they wouldn’t have gotten foreclosed on. Where does he get that? That’s not a fact. That’s a made up thing, just to get people angry.

3001217305_fc96d11d48_bAnd that’s the game. A game that’s not founded on any facts, only played to be won, and it’s won by making the best argument to arouse the most passions, the most negative passions in people, and to find scapegoats.

Stop War? Don’t Be Silly.

eric-cantor24mccain-apAnd this is the kind of thing that was brought up year after year over the decades to the point where it became that the things that I heard being valued growing up were laughable: compassion, if you were caring about people, or not wanting people to die.

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Say, there was a war or something and there was agony over the loss of life. And all these people would gather together out of their concern. I’m sure you’ve heard about it. People anguished and horrified by other people’s deaths and sufferings…reaching out to help them, help each other, comfort each other, pray together…hope…weep.

Oh My Lord, Kumbaya.

380431_10150394611429091_577414090_8854717_513826914_noccupy-wall-street.hippies.crppdYea, a great big kumbaya moment! Wow. And I’m sure that’s what you heard, too. So I get it. Ok, so you shouldn’t have any feelings toward your fellow suffering brother or sister. Is it, what, silly? Uncool? Weak? Wussy? Sappy? What?

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What is it you’re trying to prove to others with that?

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What is it you’re hiding about yourself?

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… What would Jesus have said to that…

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It seems more than the standard of living was lowered since those days. And I’m sure they are in many ways connected…. I’ll get into that later.

Health Not-Care: Democratizing the Hate, Humbug for the Poor, and The Middle Class Is the Last Bastion of Who You Can Give a Damn About

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Foolin’ the People About America…The Middle Class Is the Last Bastion of Who You Can Give a Damn About. Better Off Than Fifty Years Ago? Part Six: Health Not-Care

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Getting back to the change in the physical standard of living that Reagan wrought, though, let’s take for example the increase in health care costs. This is one of the necessities of life, and it’s been climbing out of reach, putting a burden on people, ok? …

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Humbug for the Poor

humbugforthepoorAs I explained in Part Two of “Obvious Truths,” Nixon addressed that problem in the Seventies. He was supposedly helping out the people, the poor…. Uh. But, no, he would never say that. He would never say he wanted to help the poor! Previous to him, in Johnson’s time…The Great Society and all that, yes. That was surely a time when you would hear talk like that. There was actually a War on Poverty then.

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But by the time of Nixon….

So, I guess that’s when it started happening.

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You couldn’t say you were actually going to help out the poor anymore. Because the truism, which I’m sure you all agree with, whether you admit it to yourself or not, is that the poor people deserve to be punished because obviously they’re lazy. Think about that; isn’t that the same stuff that, back in the day, they were saying about African Americans? …

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Democratizing the Hate

Who-reports-child-abuse-and-neglect2889767_370So isn’t it kind of like that racism has become classism? It’s kind of like a hatred that’s not been eliminated because they’re still saying that about people of color, but it’s been expanded. It includes more people–whites and blacks…and all other kinds of colors. All the poor, they’re all now lazy, deserving what they get.

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The Middle Class–The Last Bastion of Who You Can Give a Damn About

So instead what you hear today is like the “middle class”! Well, supposedly the middle class are ok people. They’re not deadbeats; they didn’t put in that kitchen they can’t afford…. Actually they’re the ones who are owning homes so some of them actually are the ones getting those new kitchens.

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Health Not-Care

Nixon Cared About Health…Healthy Profits.

Nixoncared..aboutprofitsSo Nixon’s answer to health care, to help the middle class, he started the move toward HMOs. And remember how it came about. There were actual White House tapes, an actual taped phone conversation of it. You hear Nixon talking to Ehrlichmann. And they are discussing the matter, health care. kaiserexposedNixon is told that Kaiser, and this is the guy who started Kaiser Permanente, jpmone of the top HMOs. He is told that Edgar Kaiser is proposing a “for rich-poorprofit” system of health care.

Now here we have people who can’t afford health care and now you want to have a system that’s going to add to the costs of it. How’s that you say?

Some People Just Wanting to Get Sick Again and Again!

hospitalinternYou say HMOs lower health care costs by reducing overhead? Maybe, but to all necessary costs that are already there, HMOs add the cost of profits to go to the owners of that health care system. Ok?

Also, Kaiser pointed out it would discourage “overuse” of medical treatment. Wow! So, here we go again.

pleasesiriwantsomemoreMitt_Romney_Corporations_Are_PeopleSo now we see that people who need medical treatment are just like those deadbeats, they’re like poor people, they’re overusing medical care. My god! They’re getting sick too much. And if you had a for-profit system, well, they could deny people coverage. And they could deny people medical treatment, no doubt, because they would naturally want to increase their profits.

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GOP-Think. GOP, Think! GOP…Think?

sarahpalinSo guess what? So, Nixon replied, “Well, now that I like.” This is a true story. gop-needs-its-brains-backSo this is a look into how Republicans think.

Well not long afterwards, Nixon gives a speech to present his sweeping new health care proposal. What does he say?

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Remember, there is this obvious disdain for certain groups of people who might be getting too much health care. On the other hand, Nixon is wanting to see that certain other groups of people will make out big time from profits that will be involved.

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But his speech doesn’t go like that. Nixon is recorded giving a speech, proposing a big solution, purportedly to answer the problem of the rising health care costs that are beginning to be felt at that time. He will emphasize that his proposal would be a great benefit to the middle class. [Footnote 1]

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Make It to the Middle Base and You Score.

BaucusMiddlemccainpalinKeep in mind as I was saying in Part Two, there was a time in which influential groups would consider they “had a home run” when they could dor001make a case that their proposal was going to benefit the tea party teaAmerican people. But by this point, because of the culture war and mean-spiritedness being stirred up in the country by Republicans, it had become necessary to single out the middle class as the only ones receiving the benefit, because, y’know, poor people…they’re not Americans.

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Thanks for Those Health Care Savings, Dick! Nixon’s Big Idea: HMOs … for One-Stop Larceny

Foolin’ the People About America…”Thanks for the Health Care Savings, Dick!” Better Off Than Fifty Years Ago? Part Seven: Hit Men for the HMOs

Foolin’ the People About America: Nixon’s Big Idea—HMOs

Thanks for the Health Care Savings, Dick.

So Nixon says he is going to lower health care costs. Well, you can see how right he was about that. Just look at Michael Moore’s movie on American’s health care system if you can handle knowing how bad it got. The documentary, “Sicko,” lays out in brutal detail how devastating it was to inject the profit motive into health care.

“I Was a Hit-Man for the HMO.”

There is one especially disturbing example of this. A former employee of a huge HMO testified before Congress. Crying and tearful she related how she was rewarded for denying an operation that would have saved a man’s life. It would have cost the HMO a half million dollars. Instead, he died; they increased their profits.

In another situation an HMO employee received bonuses upwards of $20,000 for cancelling coverage on people who were costing the insurer a lot of money. She cancelled hundreds of policies, including for those who were scheduled for life-saving procedures. In one “particularly good” year for this person, she saved her employer $6 million. I don’t know offhand how many folks died in exchange for her dutiful and lucrative actions and am not sure I want to. This is hard to look at, isn’t it?

The upshot is these HMO-persons were rewarded for taking people’s lives; and they are in no way untypical. Linda Peeno, the physician who testified before Congress, admitted as much; she admitted her action amounted to a murder, for which she should have been charged but wasn’t. She pointed out how perverse it was that instead the system rained rewards up her. Now you show me the moral dividing line between theses actions of professionals of the HMO and “professional” assassins…mafia hit men. For I don’t see it.

Pay Us Now. We’ll Think About Covering You Later.

Now you might argue that saving money on costly care means there would be more help for others.

But, no. That’s not the rationale. That’s another part of it. They can deny health care on any basis. They can deny it on any basis but they went out and they found more ways to make even greater profits. If you were going to cost them a lot of money, if what you needed to live was medical treatment that they might consider too expensive, well what they would sometimes do is hire people to look into you. These people would be paid to research your background, to see if they could find something that could be used as an excuse to deny your costly procedures to you.

Michael Moore records in his documentary at least one such researcher who explains, with remorse, what he had been paid to do and how he would go about it. He, and people like him, would pore over your records to look for something, even slight, that they could hang a denial of coverage on. They would in particular look into your childhood for any care that they could say indicated the presence of a medical condition for you at that time.

When they found something, they would be able to say that you had a pre-existing condition and so they were not liable for your care now. They would claim that you lied on your application in not listing such an ongoing ailment so that they could drop you from coverage and let you die.

So people were being left to die, killed in this manner. Does this not amount to more “hits” put out on people by the HMO?

Buuuut It’s Contract Law!!

Did You, At Any Point in the Past, Pre-exist This Application?

Buuut it’s contract law! …dollar laid, dollar played, y’know. And it’s contract law that is stretched to benefit the people with the most money and who have the better lawyers and who can, y’know, twist things better in their favor. Here you have a situation, where, let’s say, somebody is dying and they’re dying of emphysema. I don’t know enough about medicine to know if that would be the kind of thing that could entail very costly care, but let’s just say it did. So this person very ill with emphysema might be informed that it had been discovered, let’s say, that they had a bronchial condition as a child…maybe to them, they were prone to get colds. But they would make the determination that your frequent colds shows a preexisting condition for you. Now you tell me how a person who is dying is going to be able to fight that.

Over Your Dead Body Getting Paid

We’ve all heard Obama’s story about his mother and what she had to go through prior to her death. She spent the last months of her life arguing with the medical insurers over the bills. She was being told they didn’t have to cover her. Are those the kind of final days you would want for a loved one of yours? How does that prospect fit your own view of your last days?

One-Stop Larceny

Getting back to Nixon, at the time of his health care proposal he said huge managed care systems, which he touted as being one-stop medical systems, were going to lower health care costs. This was so, he claimed, because cost sharing and lower overhead would rein in the price of providing medical care. He said these lower expenses would benefit the whole system.

Apparently he forgot to mention the for-profit part, which ended up funneling all those benefits, those lower expenses, into the pockets of the owners and shareholders. That is what happens when you put profit-hungry businessmen in charge of care. Gradually, America’s medical needs were primarily the purview of business, big business.

Remember, again, that the health care law that went into effect under Obama was to make sure everyone would receive coverage, not health care. It remains to be seen how effective this health care reform will be in reducing these sorts of abuses by insurers. No doubt it is better than what existed before. But it leaves intact the profit motive in American health care. So any regulation and prohibitions of abuses are likely to amount to tying down a ravenous beast with bungee cords. It is hard to believe this monster created by Nixon will not break free whenever it can and wreak much havoc before being stopped again…but again with piles of dead Americans in its wake.

You Mean You Care…And You’re Not Paid To?? (Oh, Kumbaya.)

Previous to all this with big business put in charge of the life or death decisions of Americans, much of what was involved in caring for the sick had been attended to by religious and charitable organizations. These concerned social institutions might be dedicated to idealistic or religious principles, for example, which included compassion and caring for the sick as one of their values or one of their religious ideals. So, much of health care had been in the hands of charitable entities and people dedicated to the idea of service, caring for the sick, getting them well, caring for your fellow person, your fellow man or woman, and so on; naturally the type of care you received was infused with such ideals.

But with Nixon all that changed. And Nixon loved it.

Corporations Crowding Out the Mom and Pops … HMOs Driving Out the Private Physician, It’s the Same Old Monopoly Game

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Better Off Than Fifty Years Ago? Part Eight: The Monopoly Game Again…It’s About Creeping Corporate Insertion Into Every Aspect of Your Life.

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The Monopoly Game Again: HMOs Drove Out Private Physicians

So then also, these businessmen with their HMOs are having near monopolies; they’re the only HMO providing health care in many areas. The only alternative is privately paid physicians. And these medical providers have costs that have have gone up because of their reduced client base, their patients having been siphoned off by the HMO.

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“Buy One Appendectomy, Get a Second One for a Dollar!”

So private care physicians have the same overhead, and now they’ve got less clientele. In addition to that, now with their making less money and having higher costs, they also have extra costs, of competition, advertising for the first time.

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“I Need to Take Two Aspirin…I’ll Call YOU in the morning.”

angry-anger-mad-furious-mob-crowd-yelling-hate-blame-blaming-accuse-accused-scape-goatdoctor smileBut that’s only one of the many costs that occur in a situation where you have a small market, with the same number of providers. You have a scrambling with other private small medical practitioners over a smaller pile, which increases not only the competitive costs involved in having to put oneself out imagesthere to win clients from competitors and thus further increases the cost of private care, it also increased pressures and tensions on private physicians who now are required to have two jobs. They have to be medical provider and business person. They have to work longer hours because of this too.

Of course you can imagine what a boon this was for medical care in our country.corp_signs Now you not only have to pay more for private care but also compared to not so long ago it is being increasingly performed by angry, stressed, tense, overworked, underslept professionals. Well what happens when you’ve got those kind of people providing you medical care on the private side?

So, on the one side–the mega-care side, you have them denying you medical care even if you’ve paid. Occupy-Wall-Street-Corporations-Suck-SignYou’ve got them denying you coverage if you have anything wrong, or if you’ve ever had anything in your life and you admit it. You either don’t get covered at all, or you may have paid premiums for years but when you get sick you don’t get treated so you die.

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“Take Two Aspirin and Call Me After Tax Time.”

AlperOn the other hand, you can pay the higher costs for private care out of your pocket. And these people are overworked, spending much of their time trying to drum up business and trying to take care of all the increasing paperwork of a competitive business enterprise and that of an ever increasing number of payers. So they’re making more mistakes.

ADS_April 2009-thumb-450x297And more mistakes equal what? More mistakes in medicine means more people dying, by mistake, or having the wrong procedure done, or having the wrong limb removed. The extra stress will push some physicians to “operate under the influence” of alcohol or the readily available prescription mood drugs glutting the market.

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chiropractorsofficeYou get the idea that things may have been getting worse over the years in a lot of areas?

So with all the extra pressure on medical practitioners, we begin to hear more and more about malpractice. So, another cost is introduced. And medical malpractice insurance for physicians has ever increasing premiums. This adds even more to the price of private care.

The Kind of Care That Increases Suffering

mountain_king_must_die_ii_by_tapsa-d3l5u57So you can see that the suffering of the masses, in both health care systems, is going up. As for the doctors themselves, well now they’re either out of business because they made a mistake or they’re keeping up with the competition and trying to make a living. But now they have these huge malpractice insurance payments. This is a cost HMOs can easily absorb, but for private physicians, it adds even more to their costs of business, their need to increase their fees, their loss of patients, their financial stress.

So what happens? They’re forced out of their professions. Or, they’re minds are filled up with financial considerations and they are burdened with concerns…and now they’re gonna treat you!

Foolin’ the People About America: Republicans Are for Small Business?

Making It So You Need a Car to Do Anything

Globalism-Flag_thumbamerican_slaves36Well, I’ve been around long enough, I saw this before. It’s a pattern of the big guys gobbling up the little ones. It’s the story of creeping corporate insertion into every aspect of your life that you keep seeing over and over again in America. And it’s changed America.

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Back in the Time of Neighborhoods

cash_mob_hawaii_the_sourcearticle-1250214-083FF92D000005DC-736_306x423There was a time when there were no supermarkets in America. I remember that time. You used to be able to walk up to the corner, walk down the street, and you’d see bakeries, drug stores. There were penny candy stores, there were meat markets…. There was a wonderful ambiance of community about it…it was a garden of delights…people smiling and everything.

Drive to the Store, Get a Loaf of Bread.

And now they have these huge mega supermarkets. And I saw the way it slowly changed; it didn’t happen overnight.

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Republicans—On the Side of the Mom-and-Pop Walmart

Those supermarkets — run by hourly wage workers — could beat mom-and-pop prices. Gradually over the years we don’t have meat markets, bakery stores….

And Republicans say they are for the small businesses, the backbone of the middle class. Well, 050-786949store2this is an example of just what a lie that is because, no, supermarkets are not small businesses. It’s all those meat markets, bakery stores and all that–those are the small businesses, they are the mom and pop, those are the average Americans trying to be self employed. Self-employment is not huge corporations.

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Continue with Culture War, Class War, Chapter Fifteen: Money Madness

Return to Culture War, Class War, Chapter Thirteen:
The Great American About Face

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Footnote

1. For a humorous, hard hitting aside on this callous attitude of Republicans, on behalf of the rich, and as contrasted with Democratic efforts, check out this audio monologue of mine, “You’re Turning Down my Money for ME!…To Stare Down…Who?!!”: Likely Constituent’s Response to Republican Governors Who Turned Down Unemployment Money from Stimulus to “Score Points” Against Obama“ below.

This four and a half minute clip is taken from the longer, 35-minute audio, “Naked Republicans Blue Meanies Fleeing or Looking Foolish.”

You’re Turning Down my Money for ME!…To Stare Down…?!!…” –Comedy Monologue, audio clip by SillyMickel Adzema

Here is the audio clip of my comedic monologue. Click on the link to the audio site above or click the link to the audio player below. The script for this piece is included below the player, fyi.

http://ecdn0.hark.com/swfs/player.swf?1305835355

About the audio above

[From July 2009] What a riot these Republicans are. There was Louisiana, Alaska, Arizona, South Carolina, and Texas governors refusing stimulus money to “show up Obama.” Then they turn around and ask for it secretly, or as in the case recently with Texas, which turned down almost 550 million in unemployment extension money at the time, only in this last week (7/14-7/18) to ask for a loan from the federal government for about 440 million, get this, to pay for extensions on unemployment. HA!

bobbyjindelfakesmileWell, in this clip, I play a constituent of the Louisiana governor who went nationally to say he was going to turn down the unemployment money from the stimulus. Now, if you’re a Louisianan, and you’re on unemployment…hmmm…just imagine how freaking happy you’d be to hear that! Well, that is what I express in this clip.

Keep in mind this happened just after this governor had given the (horrible) Republican “response” to Barack Obama’s unofficial “State of the Union” address in January. And this governor, Governor Bobby Jindal, at the time was being touted big time as a presidential front-runner for the Presidency in 2012.

You’re gonna love this response to the self-serving “more principles-than-brains” political one-upsmanships at the expense of their constituents by these Republican x@#&%$%#@@# governors.

And the text of the “You’re Turning Down my Money for ME…” audio:

Ok, so now I’m one of those “constituents.” I’m thinking…

Thanks a lot, bastard, you think I got it easy? You jerk! Who the hell you think you are down there in Louisiana, Mr. freaking Governor who don’t need no additional unemployment money. No, idiot! You GOT a job! It’s me that can’t find work and that’s worried about my kids getting sick and, well, now the almost certainty, by the way because of your stupid-assed spiteful action to turn down my money for me. Now, I ‘m gonna lose my house, worry about my kids staying healthy, but you’ve done what? You’ve stood up to Obama (the guy who was gonna give me money?) You’ve said we don’t need no stinkin’ money and made yourself a spectacle on the national stage and, you think (here’s that lying again. You screwed us over and then you’re thinking you can tell us that we were better than that or something of other of a slick confusing fog of insanity.), and you think that this will give you a leg towards the Presidency.

Well, Mr. Jerk-off turning down my money for me like it’s my pride your fighting for, do you really think we are still that stupid, still that happy to be burdened and crushed for your aspirations, which obviously don’t include, you’ve made that damn clear, doing anything for any person, any “constituent, any citizen, no, not anyone” and it’s clear that our burdens are so meaningless to you that you will heap misery on us to do, now what was that again? You “stood up” to Obama? What the fuck, are you in grade school? Do you think I give a shit who’s staring who down? I’m trying to live a life; a life that you have just put a cloud of unhappiness and worry over that will not go away form many many years; in fact I may never own a home again.

But I won’t go on about things that cause your eyes to glaze over. Just let me ask you this Mister, wise-potato? You “stood up” to the guy who’s gonna give me money, and hold out his hand to me. Ok, Mr. more principles-than-brains, what’s your next big plan? Oh, I see, you’re gonna stand up to, well, Santa Claus. Oh, yeah, I hear it all right. Out on the National stage; spoutin out as if you’re talkin our mind; shit, you ain’t even one of us. But I hear you:”

“Nope, Mr. Matthews, you see we’re Louisianans? Not beggars. We don’t need Christmas. We can take care of ourselves. Let you folks out there have Christmas. I mean, if you’re so weak. So you’ve had it your whole life and now you’re kind of like addicted to it. Well OK. I’m not going to talk down any on those who are obviously so weak and needy.

But, you see, Mr. Matthews… Mr. Matthews, well let me put it this way, you ever come down to Louisiana? Ever? To visit or anything? You have? So you’ve met with some of our citizens, have you? You have. Well, then you know what a strong-willed, strong-spirited, and PROUD people we are down here, don’t you? You agree. So you see that’s why. I knew you would agree because it’s so obviously true about the folks that live down here, I didn’t see how you’d miss it.

So that’s OK, let Santa go somewhere else where he’s , you know, where they’re the folks that need to have a handout and can’t get by the year without having a good time. No, my constituents are strong-willed, and they wouldn’t have me letting any squirrely funny-suited guy out here prancin around and lookin foolish. Well, not us. We’re not foolish. We’re PROUD.


The Rise and Fall of “Obvious Truths,” Part Three – an Audio Reading by SillyMickel Adzema

Here is an audio of the author’s impassioned reading of this part. Though it is of the first, unedited and unpolished version, and it does not contain all the detail of its current form below, it does capture the flavor of it all. I offer it here for your listening pleasure. For the reading of this part, “The Rise and Fall of ‘Obvious Truths,’ Part Three,” click on the link to the audio site above or click the link to the audio player below.

http://ecdn0.hark.com/swfs/player.swf?1305835355



Continue with Culture War, Class War, Chapter Fifteen: Money Madness

Return to Culture War, Class War, Chapter Thirteen:
The Great American About Face

Invite you to join me on Twitter:
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Foolin’ the People About America … ”Thanks for the Health Care Savings, Dick!” Better Off Than Fifty Years Ago? Part Seven: Hit Men for the HMOs

Thanks for Those Health Care Savings, Dick! Nixon’s Big Idea: HMOs…for One-Stop Larceny. Better Off Than Fifty Years Ago? Part 7

Foolin’ the People About America: Nixon’s Big Idea—HMOs

Thanks for the Health Care Savings, Dick.

So Nixon says he is going to lower health care costs. Well, you can see how right he was about that. Just look at Michael Moore’s movie on American’s health care system if you can handle knowing how bad it got. The documentary, “Sicko,” lays out in brutal detail how devastating it was to inject the profit motive into health care.

“I Was a Hit-Man for the HMO.”

There is one especially disturbing example of this. A former employee of a huge HMO testified before Congress. Crying and tearful she related how she was rewarded for denying an operation that would have saved a man’s life. It would have cost the HMO a half million dollars. Instead, he died; they increased their profits.

In another situation an HMO employee received bonuses upwards of $20,000 for cancelling coverage on people who were costing the insurer a lot of money. She cancelled hundreds of policies, including for those who were scheduled for life-saving procedures. In one “particularly good” year for this person, she saved her employer $6 million. I don’t know offhand how many folks died in exchange for her dutiful and lucrative actions and am not sure I want to. This is hard to look at, isn’t it?

The upshot is these HMO-persons were rewarded for taking people’s lives; and they are in no way untypical. Linda Peeno, the physician who testified before Congress, admitted as much; she admitted her action amounted to a murder, for which she should have been charged but wasn’t. She pointed out how perverse it was that instead the system rained rewards up her. Now you show me the moral dividing line between theses actions of professionals of the HMO and “professional” assassins…mafia hit men. For I don’t see it.

Pay Us Now. We’ll Think About Covering You Later.

Now you might argue that saving money on costly care means there would be more help for others.

But, no. That’s not the rationale. That’s another part of it. They can deny health care on any basis. They can deny it on any basis but they went out and they found more ways to make even greater profits. If you were going to cost them a lot of money, if what you needed to live was medical treatment that they might consider too expensive, well what they would sometimes do is hire people to look into you. These people would be paid to research your background, to see if they could find something that could be used as an excuse to deny your costly procedures to you.

Michael Moore records in his documentary at least one such researcher who explains, with remorse, what he had been paid to do and how he would go about it. He, and people like him, would pore over your records to look for something, even slight, that they could hang a denial of coverage on. They would in particular look into your childhood for any care that they could say indicated the presence of a medical condition for you at that time.

When they found something, they would be able to say that you had a pre-existing condition and so they were not liable for your care now. They would claim that you lied on your application in not listing such an ongoing ailment so that they could can drop you from coverage and let you die.

So people were being left to die, killed in this manner. Does this not amount to more “hits” put out on people by the HMO?

Buuuut It’s Contract Law!!

Did You, At Any Point in the Past, Pre-exist This Application?

Buuut it’s contract law! …dollar laid, dollar played, y’know. And it’s contract law that is stretched to benefit the people with the most money and who have the better lawyers and who can, y’know, twist things better in their favor. Here you have a situation, where, let’s say, somebody is dying and they’re dying of emphysema. I don’t know enough about medicine to know if that would be the kind of thing that could entail very costly care, but let’s just say it did. So this person very ill with emphysema might be informed that it had been discovered, let’s say, that they had a bronchial condition as a child…maybe to them, they were prone to get colds. But they would make the determination that your frequent colds shows a preexisting condition for you. Now you tell me how a person who is dying is going to be able to fight that.

Over Your Dead Body Getting Paid

We’ve all heard Obama’s story about his mother and what she had to go through prior to her death. She spent the last months of her life arguing with the medical insurers over the bills. She was being told they didn’t have to cover her. Are those the kind of final days you would want for a loved one of yours? How does that prospect fit your own view of your last days?

One-Stop Larceny

Getting back to Nixon, at the time of his health care proposal he said huge managed care systems, which he touted as being one-stop medical systems, were going to lower health care costs. This was so, he claimed, because cost sharing and lower overhead would rein in the price of providing medical care. He said these lower expenses would benefit the whole system.

Apparently he forgot to mention the for-profit part, which ended up funneling all those benefits, those lower expenses, into the pockets of the owners and shareholders. That is what happens when you put profit-hungry businessmen in charge of care. Gradually, America’s medical needs were primarily the purview of business, big business.

Remember, again, that the health care law that went into effect under Obama was to make sure everyone would receive coverage, not health care. It remains to be seen how effective this health care reform will be in reducing these sorts of abuses by insurers. No doubt it is better than what existed before. But it leaves intact the profit motive in American health care. So any regulation and prohibitions of abuses are likely to amount to tying down a ravenous beast with bungee cords. It is hard to believe this monster created by Nixon will not break free whenever it can and wreak much havoc before being stopped again…but again with piles of dead Americans in its wake.

You Mean You Care…And You’re Not Paid To?? (Oh, Kumbaya.)

Previous to all this with big business put in charge of the life or death decisions of Americans, much of what was involved in caring for the sick had been attended to by religious and charitable organizations. These concerned social institutions might be dedicated to idealistic or religious principles, for example, which included compassion and caring for the sick as one of their values or one of their religious ideals. So, much of health care had been in the hands of charitable entities and people dedicated to the idea of service, caring for the sick, getting them well, caring for your fellow person, your fellow man or woman, and so on; naturally the type of care you received was infused with such ideals.

But with Nixon all that changed. And Nixon loved it.

Continue with Corporations Crowding Out the Mom and Pops … HMOs Driving Out the Private Physician, It’s the Same Old Monopoly Game

Return to Health Not-Care: Democratizing the Hate, Humbug for the Poor, and The Middle Class Is the Last Bastion of Who You Can Give a Damn About



The Rise and Fall of “Obvious Truths,” Part Three – an Audio Reading by SillyMickel Adzema

Here is an audio of the author’s impassioned reading of this part. Though it is of the first, unedited and unpolished version, and it does not contain all the detail of its current form below, it does capture the flavor of it all. I offer it here for your listening pleasure. For the reading of this part, “The Rise and Fall of ‘Obvious Truths,’ Part Three,” click on the link to the audio site above or click the link to the audio player below.

http://ecdn0.hark.com/swfs/player.swf?1305835355



Continue with Corporations Crowding Out the Mom and Pops … HMOs Driving Out the Private Physician, It’s the Same Old Monopoly Game

Return to Health Not-Care: Democratizing the Hate, Humbug for the Poor, and The Middle Class Is the Last Bastion of Who You Can Give a Damn About

Invite you to join me on Twitter:
http://twitter.com/sillymickel

friend me on Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/sillymickel

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