Thursday, June 14, 2007
Superheroics. The popular culture of the United States has become a culture of death — violent death — and of people rising above the troubles that threaten to destroy them, thru literally superhuman efforts — "superpowers" that no one really has. That insane culture of impossibility is matched by the insane propaganda of Al-Qaeda, in which people can triumph over adversity thru the superpower of triumph over death: they can blow themselves up to kill their enemies, and they won't themselves die but will instead be magically transported to a better place, Paradise, there to be rewarded with sumptuous living. Of course, they won't really be alive. They won't really have a body to enjoy the pleasures of the body. But the Al-Qaeda Technicolor version of Heaven is just great living on a higher plane.
The American version of Al-Qaeda's fairy tale is that we can triumph over all our problems and irritations to enjoy a better life here, on this planet, by defying death, not embracing it. Our real lives may become hellish, but we can escape reality into a world of fantasy where nothing can hurt us and we are all-powerful against our enemies. When we emerge from the theater back into the lite, the problems are all still there, except we have a little less money to deal with them. So we go back into the theater or slip a videotape or DVD into a magic-machine and return to a world of fantasy that may be hyperviolent, but it is violence in which the good triumph, instead of the real world, where, it all too often appears, the bad always win.
In the real United States, the rich are willfully impoverishing the rest, inflicting interest rates that people can't pay and late fees and overlimit fees and default interest rates that are even higher than the rates people couldn't pay in the first place. Millions of homes are being taken away by foreclosure. Tens of millions of jobs have been exported to the Third World. Millions upon millions of foreigners pour across our borders, to be hired by the rich to take jobs away from Americans and lower wages even for Americans who manage to find work. Benefits are being slashed. Over 40 million Americans have no health insurance, and the bulk of other American workers are being forced to pay ever higher portions of their medical expenses, which rise multiply the rate of inflation. Essentially every day's news brings reports of American youths being blown to pieces in a war sold to them by lies. Once the people realized that it wasn't mistakes that led us to that war but lies, they voted to oust the party of liars and end their war from lies, only to find that the other party refuses to end the war!
The new majority won't end usury, lower interest rates, end evil fees, stop foreclosures, enact universal healthcare, or do anything else the people elected them to do, except raise the minimum wage. Good thing, too, because if American corporations keep exporting jobs and importing Third World workers, we'll all be making minimum wage — except the rich, of course. They will live in their mansions, and the rest of us will be their slaves. And there's nothing we can do about it.
So let's go to the movies or turn on TV and live in a fantasyland where people can do things that people can't do, and that way we can have justice. If the Founding Fathers had had movies and TV, there would never have been an American Revolution.
(The current U.S. military death toll in Iraq, according to the website "Iraq Coalition Casualties", is 3,514 — for Israel.)
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