Tuesday, March 17, 2009

A Sucker Play (minding the business of others, continued)

It surprises me that while our version of kings and queens enjoy retirement health care, and numerous perks for a job that never should have become a profession, republicans, democrats, and people of all ilks are up in arms because of executives for companies getting bail out bucks are receiving bonuses.

Something tells me the whole story is not out there. Apparently some lawmakers signed a bill which allowed bonuses for bail out recipients if they were in place prior to some particular date. It may also be that, by contract and prior agreement, that was part of the payment package.

Whatever the case, the public at large has allowed themselves, for reasons of class envy and a feeling of power, to take for granted that it is OK to play arm chair CEO and decide who should be paid what in corporations whose business few of us understand any better than the tax code or our utility bills. The more we find and are given excuses for making the lives, pay, and conduct of others our business, the more we erode the philosophy that is essential for a free society, and one that is bound to be most innovative and fair. Of course, my idea of fair is not the same as the Castro definition or that of many trade unions.

The first big scam was to pretend that this gigantic spending frenzy was not a feeding frenzy for the well connected special interests, those who placed those in power who hold elected offices of all kinds. The next big joke was to convince the public that now it is OK to hate "the rich". Now it is up to the public to dictate how corporations run seminars and conventions. That is not a positive thing.

But, can't say I never railed against the dependence of so many upon grants and government contracts. They couldn't resist that piece of the endless pie made up of tax dollars. Right wrong or indifferent, if it is legal people convince themselves it is OK. Now it is time to reap the real consequences of that game which has become bigger over the last century.

In many ways, today's disregard for freedom,. privacy and free market are merely the culmination of a path taken many years ago, before I was born. It is not the result of Bush or Obama or that shameless charlatan Barney Frank.

Just in case no one heard, Cuba was not fun as the onset of the communist regime began implementing policies, neither was the USSR and other such places. What they have in common with today's USA is that atmosphere of finger pointing and hypocritical self righteous indignation over supposed breaches of the "better good". The better good changes at will. the will of those calling the shots.

Maybe many of the various hated "rich" executives are bad guys. Having worked white and blue collar jobs, let me tell you, being a bad guy and a thief is not a condition confined to the rich. Buying into the encouragement to single out a class of enemies is a serious mistake and very dangerous. That is the same tactic many dictators and totalitarian regimes employed. Facts are always either irrelevant or only partial. It works because people would rather have a sanctioned target to judge than know facts which would mitigate their feeling of power.

It also works because in an atmosphere of blame and witch hunts, no one wants to be the witch getting blamed. The same people who have been running things for years and have to bear some responsibility for trouble we now have are using these tricks to keep light off of themselves and to stifle any efforts to implicate them. They are instead parading before the public people on which they've declared open season. It's OK to criticize these evil executives, but those in political power are more and more off limits.

I don't care about bonuses. I do care that none of this is a proper function of government. I do care that they pass bills without disclosing what is in them, and I do care that they tag little favors for specific interests onto bills which have nothing to do with such pork. That adds up to so much more than these bonuses or big partying conventions, it is laughable those creeps have the nerve to feign outrage. They are playing the public. People are oddly upset, saying "they are having fun and getting rich on our money".

Well, where the hell was the outrage when they were blowing billions upon billions on things equally useless to the citizens of this country over the last fifty or a hundred years? How many dictators, insane holy men from religious states, etc. have received millions and millions of our dollars while we cheer? How many companies have been put out of business while our government negotiates on behalf of specific companies abroad?

Get some damned perspective and make up your mind USA. Either you want to be a totalitarian state of absolute control over enterprise and resources, or you want to be a place where people can live free and kick ass. It would require a lot of live and let live. The "let live" part is what is sorely lacking.

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Ballistic Mountain, CA, United States
Like spring on a summer's day


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