chuck kottke Posted May 31, 2011 Share Posted May 31, 2011 Chuck, all the working droles who make 8 dollars an hour and bust their butts every week without vacation can cut on a TV and see MTV's "Cribs" about billionaires' mansions. The incentive to overthrow the system is low, as long as prices for food and fuel remain low (he has some disposable income to buy drinks), and government abuses are sporadic and isolated. Nobody cares about the other guy as long as he perceives him as "other", and thinks similar abuses committed against himself are unlikely. Just ignore the individuals. Sure, there are bad cops and bad politicians and bad judges and bad rich people. Just like there are bad dentists and bad shoe salesmen. The problem isn't the advertisements. It's what we teach our children - that government can solve all our problems, from slavery to harsh working conditions, to white people treating black people rudely, to the Earth slowly getting warmer, to endangered species, to unsafe cars, to to to to When you look for a single answer for every problem you face, there's a name for that: religion. > Working droles or working trolls? :laugh3: Jay, I used to be a 10-hour a day, 6 days a week working elf, making those lovely rocking horses and water skis you kids like! But my employer wasn't a very good Santa, since we were expected to work in an unhealthy work environment for a pittance, with minimal benefits, and got snarled at no matter how hard we worked, or how good the workmanship was. Then the plant closed and they moved it somewhere they could exploit workers even more effectively! The problem is that after an exhausting day & an endless week, about all the energy you've got left to do is sit and relax, hoping something pleasing is on TV to distract you from a miserable life. A lobster pail where there's no need to grab someone and pull them back in - all lobsters in the pail are equally hobbled. I suppose if it got the point where no one could afford fuel of food, then what's the point of trying to make it work - might as well revolt! Perhaps that is the case, and perhaps we will see that happen. But consider also the protests in Madison - citizens are no longer asleep as they once were. Everyone has limits, and when those limits are breached, a torrent of humanity is unleashed upon those rigging the system. I can't ignore the individuals, as there are many who in concert are corrupting the system. And advertisement works, money buys our elections. What we teach our children is how the system is supposed to work. The problem is that the system needs fixing; it no longer functions to the benefit of average Americans, and much to the disaffection of citizens in other parts of the globe. Our U.S. Government, having been hobbled by corporate interests who seat themselves at the heads of agencies and cabinet posts who hire retiring politicians for lobbying jobs & who have amassed more wealth than most nations, that government is no longer working primarily in our best interests, but instead for a minority of plutocrats. If we eliminate the government, then what's left is basically huge multinational corporations, and given their talent for deception, intimidation, and amassing power sans for what little is done to curb their appetite, I can only shudder at the though of a world stripped bare of any government protections for humanity. It is not government that is the problem, it is government that serves mainly those with the power and money to control it, and throws a crumb to those who make it all possible. Either we reform it, or form a new one, but it is in my mind the essential referee and promoter of humanity's well being. Can it solve all problems? Certainly it cannot, but it can serve to promote solutions that work, and properly fund things for the common good of all. It can provide a fair and honest justice system if we demand that it do so, and promote the general well being of our citizens. It does a pretty good job when it is designed properly and checked routinely, accountable to any and all, and when necessary reinvented. Government is the body through which our collective ideals are upheld and through which our knowledge & actions are utilized to achieve common goals. Certainly there are answers outside the realm of government, whether that be from individuals, charities, cooperatives, worker-owned companies, religious organizations, societies, or other forms of social engagement. However, for the protection of those things we all hold in common, honest government has an important role to play. Link to comment Share on other sites More sharing options...
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