When you fight a disease, you can treat the symptoms, but you won’t get a cure unless you remove the infected cells or halt the root cause of the disease. When a society has a disease, the logical options to a cure are the same: remove the infected cells or stop the cause of the disease. The US government is suffering from internalized greed disease. Unless cured, it is usually fatal to a society.
They called it the roaring twenties because there were excesses of wealth but also of poverty. The Depression of 1929 happened when the wealth gap reached a breaking point. FDR’s New Deal was about checking the wealth gap. Then something happened in the early 1980’s. The progressive tax system, which was the way we paid for the New Deal, started disappearing. Monopolies, once legislated against, were allowed to profligate. Money started shifting to the top 10% – and ultimately to the top 1%. This trend was amplified by inevitable technology- the internet revolution, robotics and then outsourcing.
Progressive taxation had been clearly keeping the middle class in the middle. So why did it go away? There’s only one logical answer: Politicians got bought by the corporations that benefited by the tax changes. Buying politicians is probably highly illegal. But our politics is now so corrupt that a fraternity of players vowed to silence is protecting the criminals within. After all, they all have dirt on each other. Thick as thieves, they used to say.
What does political corruption have to do with terrorism and racism?
People who are generally content with the creature comforts of life are not easily enrolled into violence and hate. Deprived and forgotten classes are easier to sell on the notion that other races of men and immigrants are taking their jobs! That meme breeds hate of the others. And that results in a divided nation – which is obviously what Trump wants. If he did not want this, he would speak differently.
Heather Heyer was a victim of an act that was inspired by the division in our nation that Trump stokes daily with his words. Ironically, the his followers have been sold the hate others meme by the very same people that keep them from the creature comforts and needs that could set them free of their hatred. . The GOP pulls this off with lies and a news station that is more propaganda than news.
This scenario is pretty much the same in the Middle East. Could ISIS or MS-13 enroll people to fight for them if their people had something hopeful to live for? Not so easily. Saudi Arabian citizens are fairly well off and we don’t often see their youth running to fight for ISIS. But the Saudi government is sort of like the Koch Brothers of the Middle East. They promote hatred and terrorism while not partaking in it. They squash their free press. Trump is doing the same thing as best he can.
We can minimize the effects of greed disease in our society, and I argue we were in the process of doing that after WW11 – during our “golden years” from 1950 to 1964. But Ronald Reagan got sold on the idea of protecting big business, most likely from GE, whose TV show he used to host in the 1960’s things began to change. Then in the 1980’s, Gordon Gecko said “greed is good”, and somehow this was not rejected by the nation as a whole; it was largely embraced. At that point, the golden age of America was over.
Greed is the root cause of racism, Nazism and terrorism. Jesus knew this 2000 years ago, and he was killed for it – by the greedy.
There are honest ways to fight for what you believe in. But today we are witnessing greed infused with cowardice. Greedy cowards don’t want to climb the ladder the way honest, loving people see fit to. They see short-cuts. The greedy will lie, steal, hide and kill to get ahead because they are cowards. What are they afraid of? They’re afraid of doing hard work. They’re afraid they don’t have what it takes. They’re afraid they are unqualified and must cheat to win.
Donald Trump has been such a coward all his life. Greedy cowards side-step laws and eventually develop the mentality that they are above the law. That’s exactly what happened to Trump. He spent a lifetime cheating to win – using lawyers to side-step our laws. Now that we’ve given him the mantle of the presidency he just wants to say he is the law, or he alone is above the law -just like a greedy cowardly autocrat.
I realize greed has been around for a very long time and is not going away. The ideals of the individual do not, and will never align with the ideals of the society. This is just biology. Darwinism.
But we were on the path to a fix here in America after WW11. And the fix was simple: a progressive tax system. All we need to do is reinstate the tax and monopoly laws that were in place then, adjusting then for today’s reality, and I think that golden age can return. It’s not that hard to do. But we have to get greed, corruption and money out of politics to do it, right?
And we can’t do any of this with the leadership we have now. Trump represents the very embodiment of a twisted greedy soul.
Yesterday, somebody very wise told me that “crap rises to the top before it’s flushed away”. Maybe that’s a necessary step. Maybe we must see our problem to eliminate it. We are seeing the dirt rise to the top almost every day. Maybe that will be the Trump Cycle’s historical meaning: a much needed 4 -year cleaning cycle. The Trump Era? Not! It’s the Trump Cycle – a much needed cleaning cycle.
Progressive taxation does not eliminate personal greed, but it helps by making it harder for wealth to pool at the top. It does this while not stifling capitalism. Nothing else will work to restore harmony in America. There is no other way to pay for healthcare, infrastructure and all the things we need. All else is robbing Peter to pay Paul. All else is word salad. They used to call it double-talk.
So yes, we clearly need new leadership in the USA. We need to get the current president, all his appointees and any that align with him – out of office.
Unchecked greed is the root cause to all our societal ills. We can legislate our way out of this mess, the way we did after WW11. Sharing our common wealth more evenly is the cure for most of out ills.
The capitalistic system will break when the gap between the rich and poor gets too great. Then it’s 1929 all over again. A communist system also has a break point. It’s all about the wealth gap.
A resistance has emerged. Here it’s the resistance. There it’s ISIS. This dogfight persists until there is a full-blown revolution. We are on that path. We all can feel that as a distinct possibility. Some call it an impending constitutional crisis.
The way out is the 2018 midterms. Vote out all elected official aligned with Donald Trump. Look to elect those who appear to have more socialistic, compassionate, people-oriented viewpoints. We can reset our American society, but we need the right people in Congress to do it. The people in charge now never had any desire to help us. Most got into politics for self promotion. And greed is not good.
Heather Heyer was the first visible martyr of the resistance.
Rest in power.