Tall Buildings Must Rise
Corporations are the power center; they can’t stay out of government
Joseph Campbell pointed out that if you want to see who has the power, look to see who has the tallest buildings. Once it was the churches, then the government buildings, and now the corporate skyscrapers. The corporations subsumed our democracy with the same facility as the government once subsumed the power of the church. The issue I have with this is that corporations are not taking responsibility for governing, even as the existing government falls into chaos. The tall buildings must rise to the occasion and not just into the air.
Corporations operate under one constant, which is returning maximum profit to the shareholder. They do not govern themselves because they have delegated that to an existing structure which they control by funding toadies for high office, super PACs, etc. Their money has killed our democracy and they did it for more money.
The payment demanded in return for our democracy was getting rid of regulations and taxation, which the gods, or immortal persons under law, have accomplished through their actions. There is no mystery as to the playbook. It is well worn. We have watched corporations overthrow governments from Hawaii for sugar to Iran for oil and Vietnam for natural resources, and the list goes on. They have funneled untold millions into street protests, reporting them as popular dissent, and installed corrupt officials who will kiss their ass as if their life depends on it, because it does.
The disordering of the nation has come from alternative news and opinion sources which are not there to inform, but to misinform, like cowboys cutting a herd and running half of them up a box canyon on orders from the trail boss. All this to stop people joining together against narcissists controlled only by their narcissism. The strategy is to dismiss anyone as socialist who has not yet been bitten and turned rabid.
The problem with free speech is that it was intended to protect the truth, but that has turned to its opposite. It is now to protect the lies and propagandists. It’s no problem to get people sucked into a conspiracy theory. David Hume said that he never knew someone to begin an investigation of nonsense who did not end up believing it. If I immerse myself in a logical construction everything will be logical so long as I stay inside it, and there will be some version of “contradictory evidence is false because it originates from the conspirators.”
There’s the same problem with the second amendment, which was clearly included in the Constitution to quell fears of slave states that the slaves would rise up against the owners, thus the right to have a standing militia. Translation, it was for rich owners to shoot black people “if necessary.” The basic premise remains the same, and now any idiot can have military grade weaponry because, to corporations which produce the weaponry, it’s good business to expand into new markets, in alignment with the instruction to make maximum return for the shareholders. Just keep the money flowing upward.
The corporations might be flying high now, but if they do not accept the reality of their dominance in society, and get together to fix this mess, vulnerable sectors of the society separated off for political ends are not going to be “fixed.” They are functionally insane already. All you have to do is walk among them to know that. Society is much more fragile than we could know by looking overseas, at other targets of greed, because we didn’t look. As with Iraq, the Pottery Barn rule applies in America.
If there is no return to self government for us, corporations need to look at those tall buildings and admit that this is both their fault and their responsibility. They have the power, and they still govern through a system just like the one they used to overthrow democratically elected Prime Minister Mohammad Mossadegh in Iran in 1953 and install the Shah from exile. America did it as a favor to British petroleum. Pump money into protests and proclaim a public uprising which justifies violent overthrow of the existing government. Into the vacuum come the fundamentalists, the terrorists, the ideologues. The center cannot hold.
As in conservative religion, the extremist defines the opposition as an abomination, and those who are in the middle are not sufficiently pure. They need reeducation, and if that fails, well, they disappear. Finally, extremists turn on each other with the same vicious contempt shown toward “the enemy,” as the purity issue replaces everything else.
Eisenhower warned us about concentration of wealth long ago, having seen in Europe how it led to crazy conspiracy theories and social disintegration. Because the laws to protect us were undone by corporate money, we have become impoverished, diseased and with seventy million mentally ill we now have to cope with. Thanks a lot. They installed a strongman with no ethics who would sign whatever their hired toadies put in front of him. The foreign disease has come home and infected the host.
Those skyscrapers have been jutting up in the air for so long they should call a doctor to help with the inflation. They have financed into power senators and representatives who have small minds and zero ethics. Wittgenstein said that ethics is the same thing as esthetics, and your esthetic is Donald Trump, William Barr, and Mitch McConnell, at the top of the list, with their intellectually challenged minions. Maybe the American gods could undo some of the damage when they finally realize they are going to get the same return on investment here as in Iran, Iraq, Vietnam and all the other places where they thought they could just decapitate the head and sew on a new one.