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Posts Tagged ‘Delusion

The Incompetent Leadership Class in a World of Hurt

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Updated below:

It should be apparent to all by now that the Obama administration is fifth-rate at best. Perhaps any American administration in these days would be. It is stuffed with self-important folks with Ivy-league wallpaper, few competencies, and endless ambition.

Meanwhile the US was embarrassed (thankfully, for those of us fearing a world war) by Iran’s recent nuclear deal with Brazil and Turkey; frozen in the headlights by the No. Korean torpedoing of the So. Korean ship; tap dancing as fast as they can to do endless U turns in Afghanistan re: Karzai; and in a daze regarding the Gulf oil disaster. There isn’t a logistics expert in sight, no one with an organizing principle or maybe any principles at all. And the financial meltdown is far from over.

The signs of delusion and decay are everywhere.  Any self-respecting rat should be hunting for the nearest porthole.

–Claudia

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The real pandemic: willful suspension of disbelief

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Lone Ranger 2Americans always expect a “savior” to show up at the last minute to save the day.  Generations of  movies with happy endings, soppy political speeches and focused advertising pitches have not been wasted: Americans’ rose-colored glasses make the targets painted on their chests quite invisible.

Paul Street of ZNet recently commented on a Frank Rich column about the Corporatist “Punking” of America:

In an opinion-editorial bearing the provocative title “Is Obama Punking Us?” Rich notes the absurdity of Republican efforts to frighten the electorate by claiming that Obama is a socialist. “They have it backward,” Frank observes (without bothering to explain what would be wrong with having a socialist president). “The larger fear is that Obama might be just another corporatist, punking voters much as the Republicans do when they claim to be all for the common guy.”  ……

Rich is on to something, no doubt about it. But isn’t a little late in the game for the Sunday Times’ reigning “left liberal” to be figuring this basic sort of stuff out? When exactly did he wake up to the discomfiting but elementary and long-understood fact that American “representative democracy” is crippled by “too much [corporate and military] representation” and “too little [actual popular] democracy” (Arundhati Roy)? It’s more than a century past the time when the prolific American philosopher John Dewey darkly noted (in the age of U.S. Steel. JP Morgan, Social Darwinism, and the Billion Dollar Congress) that “politics is the shadow cast on American society by big business.” ……

….what has U.S. President Barack Obama (endorsed by the Times as a change candidate before 2008 election) – Mr. “Change” himself – tried to accomplish other than to make the American corporate profits system “work more efficiently” without “dismantling the [capitalist] framework” and with power (and wealth) still concentrated “at the top?”

I admit to doubting that Americans will ever wake from their self-imposed hypnosis. At least until they and their ragged childen must roam the streets for scraps.  What is certain is that the Lone Ranger will not be coming this time.

Flight into the collective self-delusion of corporate ideology

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circle jerkWriter Chris Hedges examines the cult of Corporate Happy-talk and its delusion that wishing will make reality go away:

….The driving ideology of corporate culture is a blind faith in the power and virtue of the corporate collective. All quotas can be met. All things are possible. Profits can always be raised. It is only a question of the right attitude. The highest form of personal happiness, we are told, is when the corporation thrives. Corporate retreats are built around this idea of merging the self with the corporate collective. They often have the feel of a religious revival. They are designed to whip up emotions. Office managers and sales staffs are given inspirational talks by sports stars, retired military commanders, billionaires and self-help specialists like Tony Robbins who tell them, in essence, the impossible is always possible. And when this proves not to be true, it is we who are the problem. We simply have to try harder.

………This flight into the collective self-delusion of corporate ideology, especially as we undergo financial collapse and the pillaging of the U.S. Treasury by corporations, is no more helpful in solving our problems than alchemy. But there are university departments and reams of pseudo-scientific scholarship to give an academic patina to the fantasy of happiness and success through positive thinking. The message that we can have everything we want if we dig deep enough inside ourselves, if we truly believe we are exceptional, is pumped out daily over the airwaves in advertisements, through the plot and story lines of television programs and films, and bolstered by the sickeningly cheerful and upbeat banter of well-groomed television hosts. This is the twisted ideological lens through which we view the world.

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Written by laudyms

July 27, 2009 at 9:36 pm

Our own worst enemy

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dead endHow many times have we read an article like this? hell, how many times have we written one in our heads as yet another atrocity shows it’s American roots?

Tom Engelhardt delivers up An American Hell today: yet another litany of horrors, dishonor, cover-ups, and lost opportunities to set things right.

Lost opportunities embody the irony of the American myth. We truly expect last-minute redemption.  Dream on.

Written by laudyms

July 23, 2009 at 2:13 pm

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