Tag: America

Stop it, America! My sides are hurting!

Hulk-HoganWhen Shakespeare first wrote the words, “The first thing we do, let’s kill all the lawyers.” please keep in mind that the world had yet to discover the profession of ‘economist’.

What hasn’t been said? Whose view point should we cut to? Surely another expert has joined us in the studio.

On a trip to Cancun, a friend and I decided to check out a club on the strip. As the continued genius of Mexican urban planning would have it, each club was next to, or across the street from, each other. Not a bad idea, if the clubs were to incorporate the common architectural practice of including walls in their design. Climatically inclined to release themselves from this hazard and through the spirit of competition, el discotheque-owners have aimed themselves directly at one another to create what I believe the French would call “une gallerie des clubs”.

The curb to curb plethora of writhing masses, strobe lights and thick, narcotic air arrives in a symphony to all the senses, that is, all except one. Where the eye can conjure a tapestry, the ear tries to interpret and meld and orchestrate cohesively to a logical pattern to the brain. Where the clubs complemented one another in their splendid array of feathers, even so with peacocks, to hear a half dozen at full volume in close proximity does little to promote the health of the inner ear. Nigh a week has passed since that moon’come’morn and my cochleas have yet to forgive me.

Pundits, politicians, peacocks and nightclubs in Cancun have at least this in common.

Listening to the approach of what is sure to be one of the more important day in recent American history, (or not, maybe), the screeching tirades from Democrats and Republicans create for dramatic spectacle. The Crumbling Empire! Chaos in the Streets! Obama’s Armageddon! Have all contributed to the insistence that one side is absolutely right. Yet given human history, how can that be?

Where any partisan thought exists, so too goes the rule of a broken watch. Not only will it be right twice a day, the watch’s precision is inversely proportional to its accuracy. Because a politician or pundit can prove to be a legitimate advocate for one issue or another, he (or she) is often given equal footing on most subjects available for debate on the 24 hour news vacuum.

The chance that he will come to the right conclusion on all matters not pertaining to his political contributors by instead referring the matter to a mash up of elected officials with their own bills to pay, then standing behind it come hell or high water, is a greater recipe for calamity than most had dreamed of. As an observer, one can’t help but repeating the words… “They can’t be this stupid.”

But don’t let us wake you, you’ll know it when it happens.

Of course, corruption abounds where apathy abides. As millionaires and billionaires and soon-to-be trillionaires (my spell check does not yet recognize the word, trillionaires – that won’t last) carve up and snarl over the last reserves of the middle class, we turn to reality [TV]. As we are placated with images of owning a timeshare of the American Dream, we drown in our houses. As we are given the choice between the bad and the worse, the inept and the corrupt, the weak and the weaker, we are asked to pay for their decisions. As we shuffle mindlessly toward an event horizon, diligently watching our feet succeed each other, we are cozy and sleepy and happy in knowing that at least somebody has to have our best interests at heart, right?

Somebody? Anybody? No, that’s cool, I don’t mind that you smoke pot… Hookers? What, in college or something? What do you mean, how often is weekly? Okay, what about the other guy? Straight A’s, military service, nice… Wants Congress deregulate private industry further because private industry has never done anything wrong to anybody, ever. Anyone else? Really? 350 million people and that’s it?

The rest of the world can be smug as the giant stumbles. They can jeer or tremble, riot or revolt. They can hoot and holler and fire AK47s into the air. Can it be that near months after the death of Bin Laden, America’s bank account soon follows? For the greater they are, the greater they… but wait, who is that coming out of the woods? Why they’re just some teenagers up against the entire Russian army, they’ll never overcome the odds —- but they are American teenagers, they can do anything. Wolverines!

Personally, I love it when Hulk Hogan holds his hand up that one last time. On the brink of disaster, somewhere, somehow, the Hulkster – the greatest American to ever live – is able to pull it together. As great as he was at finding it in himself to rise to the occasion, one last time, he was never divided in his cause.

American’s internal struggle to realize the world keeps-on-a-changin’ is its greatest obstacle from maintaining its dominance on the world stage. Lost in utopian ideals of forefathers and the dreams of slave owners, the country of the inventor, the innovator, the revolutionary is quick to ignore that an invention is often perfected, elsewhere. As such, an attempt to infuse social responsibility to limitless wealth is seen as a ‘Red’ menace. An effort to regulate those who fleeced trillions from mom and pop, is plain un-American (a term also not recognized by spell check).

Yes – in a world where the wealthy American takes their tax breaks and spends it on German cars, French champagne, Italian Suits and Swiss Watches while building another mine in Angola, factory in China or call centre in India to deal with the influx of default notices due in Arizona – trickle-down economics (for some reason or another) just isn’t working. Yet far be it from me to say how people should live.

Americans have allowed their insulation to cut off their circulation. They refuse to find models abroad, to acknowledge how even a relatively small investment of $10 billion could create millions of jobs in the boom-to-be industry of high speed rail. To insist on archaic models that exploit fossil resources to gain further wealth in a choking planet and to do so without the shackles of pesky oversight. Even to fully comprehend how their very way of life is beginning to fall drastically behind other countries; is yet a tiny example of how Americans think they know everything, and thus, can save themselves from this disaster… thank you very much. By the way, what does this red button d— (what am I talking about… America invented “the button”!)

It is not a reaching statement to submit that this is the single most petty period in US politics. Political strategy disguised as economic assumption is hucked from either side of the [what seems like an epically wide] isle rebuffing the others’ lob to a fine polish, smooth as a river stone. Though more fairly said, at least one side seems to be wading in from the banks of the river that magically stops politicians from practising mutual respect and kills any urge to do something greater than toe party lines.

The system is stifling. The foxes not only run the hen house, but own all franchising and merchandising rights therein. There’s even a chance that that hen’s genetic property belongs to a different corporate entity, that may or may not be paying taxes in the United States of America.

For the last fifty years, the world has been catching up to the US by imitating its quest-for-profit-above-all to some degree. America has responded by joining in its imitation. As we’ve seen from similar instances such as the television industry, the result is nearly unwatchable.

It would seem that if this mammoth tremor in the foundation of an era were to do anything, it would unite the country. But arguably, the last time a wealthy set of libertarians near brought America down to this extent was right before the Civil War. Preposterous! Ridiculous! What do you mean we can’t afford Cheetos? Get me my gun!

Good luck America. I, for one, am rootin’ for you. It’s such a shame to see you consider letting go in the fickle name of Politics. To see the great hero, face down on the canvas, seemingly knocked out by his own wallet. The referee lifts his hand and it drops limply to the floor. The crowd roars for another try. The ref, in silk Armani pinstripes, raises the hero’s hand again, yet again it drops. A child cries from the audience, “What about my future Hulkster?” The ref raises his hand one more time…

What’s this?

Shaking, it defies gravity. One hand, resisting the bonds of defeat. The ref can’t believe it, he has his secretary call the club to tell the ‘boys’ that he’ll be running late. Hulk opens his eyes and gets to his knee. His hand rising higher in the spotlight, the crowd goes crazy. “U!S!A!U!S!A!” Somewhere in Kansas a couple of teenagers are losing their virginity in the back of a Cutlass. In Manhattan, someone pays $60million for Marilyn Monroe’s lip gloss. The hero rises slowly to his feet; the love from the crowd pouring over him, restoring him.

Suddenly, from out of nowhere Mitch McConnell charges into the ring and kicks Hulk Hogan squarely in the balls, convinced that it was his duty as an American to do so. The crowd is stunned, the hero sinks back to his knees, unable to breathe. McConnell grabs the mike and informs the audience that the show is over as the auditorium was only paid for until 11pm. For some reason, a riot breaks out.

The nights the lights went out in America…. Watch it only, on Pay-Per-View

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