Two interesting and very different writers (one a journalist, one a novelist) published articles in the last couple of days that came to similar conclusions: This Is The End. Not the Apocalypse, but the end of civilized society, and the “exceptionalism” that used to describe Americans (i.e. the rule of law trumping fear, justice over torture, as two examples).
Former NYT reporter, Chris Hedges, opens with: “When civilizations start to die they go insane.” The quest to accumulate greater wealth in the final days of empire eventually leads to “collective death.” Because how does one profit, literally, from love? Life itself becomes useless and valueless in an age when corporations are people.
Which leads to the point of brilliant novelist, E.L. Doctorow, in his essay in the Sunday NYT titled “Unexceptionalism: A Primer.”
“To achieve unexceptionalism, the political ideal that would render the United States indistinguishable from the impoverished, traditionally undemocratic, brutal or catatonic countries of the world, do the following:”
Then, Doctorow describes eloquently and elegantly the grotesque behavior of the Supreme Court: to appoint a President, to rule that corporations are people; which leads to, Phase Three: the legislative body becomes an arm of the corporations. By subverting the Constitution, and the rights of the People, “Phase Four” is easy:
“If you’re a justice of the Supreme Court, decide that the police of any and all cities and towns and villages have the absolute authority to strip-search any person whom they, for whatever reason, put under arrest.
“With this ruling, the reduction of America to unexceptionalism is complete.”
Coincidentally, the so-called “Fourth Branch of Government,” the media, is making its own headlines today. Rupert Murdoch (Chairman and CEO of News Corp.) and his son (deputy COO of News Corp.), were deemed “unfit to lead” and exhibiting “willful ignorance,” respectively, according to the U.K government, who is investigating the pair for wiretapping.
One can conclude that Civilization, and the Media that reports on it, are declining simultaneously. Which is no surprise, since the media owners ARE the 1% questing to accumulate greater wealth. “Welcome to the Asylum,” indeed.
By the way, what the American press has failed to mention is that by “unfit to lead,” the UK is saying that News Corp could be unfit to hold a broadcast license. So, civilization continues “across the pond,” but not here, my friends.