Friday, October 10, 2008

On Privilege

Politics. I hate the shit. So much of it is aimed at capturing the vote of the lowest common denominator, and thus lacks nuance, reason, and intelligent repartee. No offense (and I doubt you should take offense if you are reading this site), but I would rather not have the country become an ochlocracy (i.e. mobocracy). I do not want to be ruled by idiots (as derived from the Greek [def]) who have never passed more than a single economics or civics course--if that. And I do not want to be ruled by the 70+% of Americans who do not have a Bachelor's degree [1]. It makes me nervous and scared.

Earlier this evening I saw something on television that pushed this fear out of my relative subconscious and into the open. After news on a report revealing Sarah Palin's misuse of power [2], a commentator, who used to be the liberal "sidekick" of Tucker Carlson [3], parsed some of the hate emerging from the McCain crowds [4]. The misunderstandings, the fear, and the hatred exhibited reminded me of Orson Welles' 1984. I started rereading 1984 a few days ago. Abuse of language, abuse of reality, and incitement of negative emotions seethes from the ruling party in the book. And my belief that many of these misuses are a part of our own society has strengthened--I am not limiting them to one side of the aisle either. They are useful tactics when anyone wants to control a mob of people. And that is exactly what our form of government tends to encourage, albeit, not with the absolutism displayed in 1984. But it is there.

Here are a few videos of Palin's recent speech and McCain's recent rally that make me somewhat fearful for the state of the union. If you want to watch the program I watched on television earlier, click the fourth reference link above. After the videos I will strive to make some sense of the title of this post.

Obama, the associate of terrorists?

Slight misunderstanding (or associate of the misinformed)?

McCain receives boos when he asks the crowd to respect the other presidential candidate?

I digress... Ugh. Meritocracy? Fuck that shit seems to be the clarion call sounding from all four corners of the country. And, it appears, that people strive to instill this argument with credibility by saying we're all created equal (i.e. "do not hold me up to the same standards as those more talented than me; we are all equal in God's eyes, and deserve the same."). Let me assure you, all of this leads to a failed state: some form of socialism, communism, or fascism, demoralizing to those who contribute the most to the advancement of society.

As for privilege, which I now do not believe I will spend much time on, it is coming to an end for the vast majority of Americans. Jobs are being shipped overseas that used to provide a decent salary for the unskilled; high paying construction jobs have slowed; because of declining incomes, fewer Americans will participate with vigor in the consumer economy; and worse, Americans, for the most part, do not want to see what they are becoming.

Privilege. We, as Americans, have been privileged to live the life we live. Nearly everyone has a television here. Free education through high school and government aid, for many poor, thereafter. Cheap clothes, cheap food. Libraries in many cities. Use of 25% of the world's energy. We are privileged.

But it will not last if we continue to disregard the necessity for higher standards.

And, personally, good riddance to those uninitiated in the realities of the world. I'm sick of hearing all the doublespeak.

I want a society built on merit.


MatchPointTrader said...

Amazing post. I can't put this in better words! This is really getting dirty.

Complacent Panda said...

Thank you!

I'm hoping things do not continue down this is too ugly for my taste...