Wednesday, May 16, 2012

The Crass Menagerie

Michael Reagan:
Sheep and chickens.

That's what America's greatest corporations have become.

Whether it's in California or nationally, it's the same sad story.

America's best and biggest companies -- the banks, the energy corporations, the computer giants -- are refusing to stand up to the bully governments in Sacramento and D.C.
If only they had guts the CEOs could blow cigar-smoke into the faces of everyone and store all their oil by floating on the Gulf of Mexico and steal houses and destroy the economy of the world. BUT THEY DON'T HAVE GUTS. So they should lead America once they've had a pep talk from Michael Reagan, who insults them.
We have the same problem nationally -- a flock of corporate chickens.

Why is it that the only voices we hear fighting against Washington are talk radio and Fox News?

Where are Exxon and Apple and Ford and Wells Fargo? Why aren't they standing up for what's left of free enterprise in America?
Yes, where are those corporations? Heard of any of 'em lately? No you haven't because they're sitting at the back of the class trying not to be noticed while Washington Fat Cats™ totally don't ask them for bags of money.
It's time corporations start standing up for themselves. Talk radio and Fox News' 4 million viewers can't save a bunch of sheep and chickens. No one can.
Can millions of people led by major media corporations save a chicken when it is determined to blow its head off with a shotgun? NO. Similarly there is nothing millions of people led by major media corporations can do when a sheep wants to drive down the highway at top speed into a telephone pole. What are millions of people led by major media corporations gonna do, call the sheep's cell phone? THE SHEEP HAS NO HANDS.
There's a scene in the "Avengers" movie where the people are told to kneel down to show their subservience to their ruler. But one brave man stood up and said he refused to kneel any longer.
That man was fired.

An alternative to sheep and chickens:

27 comments:

mikey said...

Good lord.

These idiots have been running right for so long they've come completely unmoored.

Now it's nothing but spittle flecked word salad rants, shrieking against bizarre imaginary threats from a non-existent political movement.

They simply cannot be politically successful. They now require their adherents to not only be utterly stupid and mis-informed, but to have no ability to feel shame or embarrassment...

Substance McGravitas said...

It's not unusual, I guess, to think that your team is going to do The Things You Want - building the better America - rather than looking out for themselves, but it takes a lot of work to insist they aren't looking out for themselves when they're raking in all that cash.

ifthethunderdontgetya™³²®© said...

It's increasingly difficult to pretend that we don't have a right wing party and a far right wing party, but that's not going to prevent anyone from taking up the profitable mantle of trying.
~

Substance McGravitas said...

And then the Fuck Both of You party is never ever going to compete with them cash-wise.

Smut Clyde said...

I was just getting used to the idea that Corporations are people. Don't confuse me with the news that they are doing barnyard impressions.

Substance McGravitas said...

Apparently they go the the Furrycons.

wiley said...

They should stand up for themselves. They should stand up and say "We will no longer accept any government subsidies or special favors and will clean up our own messes from this day forward" and hold themselves to their word.

ifthethunderdontgetya™³²®© said...

And then the Fuck Both of You party is never ever going to compete with them cash-wise.

True, but I'm not joining them for the money.

It's because of stuff like this.
~

Substance McGravitas said...

Sure. But I don't see a change to the established order as long as the money flows the way it does.

You have seen this via Mr. Atrios.

ifthethunderdontgetya™³²®© said...

I did see it.

Obama has been trying to cut Social Security, he refers to it using Luntz-approved language: "entitlements".

Tom Coburn (R-OK): I don’t know. I’m not good at predicting that. If President Obama is president again, those problems are still there and we have to solve them. He knows that. We’ve had conversations where he’s told me he’ll go much further than anyone believes he’ll go to solve the entitlement problem if he can get the compromise. And I believe him. I believe he would.
==========

I believe T.C. is telling the truth. Now if you're a Democrat, why would you want to vote for Obama? Because you feel better getting stabbed in the back by the man telling you lies you want to hear?
~

mikey said...

Sure. But I don't see a change to the established order as long as the money flows the way it does.

Right - and THAT'S because the only people with the power to change the system are incentivized to protect and even reinforce the status quo.

The key to where we find ourselves and the only solution lies in the system. We got here because the American political system is an anachronism, obsolete a hundred years ago, that can only work at all on the basis of a series of "Gentlemen's agreements" and social norms.

A political system with this many veto points, a system that empowers the minority to a greater extent than the majority, one that emphasizes the democratizing function of elections but functionally nullifies their outcome, a system with a strong executive and co-equal separated powers simply breaks down as soon as those parties become ideologically homogeneous.

We now find ourselves with a deeply corrupt system struggling to obtain an unreachable super majority in order to enact their ideological agenda without having to compromise.

The fix is easy - go to a multi-party parliamentary system where the winners of an election can implement their agenda with a simple majority vote. So there is NO way we can fix it peacefully.

mikey said...

Thunder is confusing me.

He acknowledges that we have a center right and a far right party, then he gets all butthurt when the center right party wants to reduce transfer payments to the poor, disabled and elderly.

What, did you forget they weren't the Social Democrats? Dood, of COURSE the 2012 Democrats want to cut entitlements. What part of center right are you missing? The only reason it hasn't happened already is the tax absolutism of the far right party. As soon as they can contrive to climb down from that, a "Grand Bargain" will be struck, and the plutocratization will continue apace...

ifthethunderdontgetya™³²®© said...

He acknowledges that we have a center right and a far right party, then he gets all butthurt when the center right party wants to reduce transfer payments to the poor, disabled and elderly.

That's ridiculous, mikey.

My 'butthurt', as you condescendingly describe it, is with all the Obama cheerleaders out there who refuse to acknowledge that he's working against their interests.
~

Substance McGravitas said...

The "butthurt" bit doesn't help. There are pretty good reasons to be anti-Obama: if something like this then it's pretty hard to vote for the guy. And then there's war and unemployment and the ongoing theft of everything.

For myself, I don't get to vote, but I get to bug the family and I say vote Obama. Health care and birth control and Supreme Court and Not Mitt would be my reasons; from the money angle any change to Citizen's United is gonna go through the Supreme Court and that's the key to a third party anyway.

Apart from presidential politics though, a third legislative party would be a very good thing.

Substance McGravitas said...

"Something like this" being a tipping point.

vacuumslayer said...

Obama's all we've got. And I think he's neither as wonderful nor as terrible as everybody thinks he is.

mikey said...

Thunder, I'm sorry. I did not mean to offend - I thought we were at a point in this long-running conversation where I could be a little looser with the verbiage. Y'know, kind of take a kidding tone. I would not have thought you could feel condescended to after all the years we've been talking. I'll make a point to keep it on a more cautious level in the future...

mikey said...

But setting aside my bad attitude and poor choice of words, VS is absolutely right.

We have a two party system. That means there are exactly two people who can be elected president in November. It truly is a case of which one you loathe more...

Substance McGravitas said...

Thanks for modulating a little mikey. If it helps, I thought to myself "Hey, mikey's a good guy and he'll pull that one back quick."

I still don't begrudge Thunder his choices; utilitarian calculation and principle and disgust don't mix well.

mikey said...

It's kind of weird.

I made my first blog comments in April of 2006. Everything else I've done for half a dozen years I've gotten good at. But I still manage to make bad assumptions, make poor word choices and overstep on relationships I truly believed I understood.

It's kind of like an open sore that never scabs over - we can't ever seem to develop that easy verbal comfort we have with our IRL peeps. I mean, I could tease any number of my friends, even the fucking wingnuts about being "Butthurt" and they'd understand the context and laugh.

This is harder, more fraught, and I'm just not sure I understand, even at this point, how the hell it works...

mikey said...

One last thought. We're going to wake up on November 7th and either Barack Obama or Mitt Romney will be President elect.

If you are rabidly opposed to Obama, don't you have to have the courage then to support Romney? He's the ONLY other choice.

I mean, are we really going to let politically active and well informed people to be for "neither"? Isn't that just...cheap?

Because one of those outcomes WILL be our reality until 2016. If you think Romney's better than Obama, then stop hiding and SAY so. Fer crissakes, even that FDL lady had the stones to come out for that crazy old man with the onions tied to his belt.

I dunno, maybe I'm just not smart enough to get it. But is it a valid position to just be against all possible outcomes? I guess you could say "hey, I didn't vote for either of them, none of this is MY fault" but that doesn't amount to much in my book...

M. Bouffant said...

Many may not have previously realized that the National Security State can not (And will not, for your own good!) be contained.

Substance McGravitas said...

I dunno, maybe I'm just not smart enough to get it. But is it a valid position to just be against all possible outcomes? I guess you could say "hey, I didn't vote for either of them, none of this is MY fault" but that doesn't amount to much in my book...

We've been through whether or not things matter before: chances are vanishingly small that a personal choice in the voting booth makes any difference at all. In that sense I think the amount of pleasure you might get from voting for Bozo the Clown outweighs sucking it up and voting for the guy you think is a criminal.

I love voting and I don't fuck around with my vote, but the amount of self-justification I feel when I do it is a bit much. Mind you there isn't a vote for the prime minister here, so local turnouts mean a lot more.

Brando said...

I don't see the system changing any time soon. Third parties have never worked in this country, and if we can't take that step, I don't see how we could go to a multi-party system. Although that would be swell if it happened.

The Web could provide a solution in the future, as it is far easier now to get your message to a national audience than ever. For the immediate term, though, it still takes an assload of cash and connections to even have a chance to become president. For all the advances in grass roots organization, no alternative candidates have even come close to matching Ross Perot's performance in '92. That's what I see as the first benchmark before getting too excited.

Substance McGravitas said...

Presidentially I think third parties don't work at all. They do exist at local levels and can be built up, and that could be where you draw non-crazy congressmen from.

ckc (not kc) said...

...and a parliamentary system can still get you Stephen Harper

Substance McGravitas said...

I wouldn't tout our parliamentary system as the best alternative.