INFORMATION SOCIETY TO ENTERTAINMENT SOCIETY, NYC 1995-2003
“I wanna know what your thinking…there are some things you can’t hide. I wanna know what you’re feeling. Tell me what’s on your mind. Here I am in silence….looking round without a clue. I can see behind your eyes. The things that I don't know
If you hide away from me How can our love grow?—Information Society, "Pure Energy" Circa 1980 something.
Mr. Bush...Mr. Bloomberg....Ms. Rodham-Clinton, I wanna know what you're thinking. Please for once, tell me what's on your mind.
Who is the Grinch that stole the economy? 9/11 terrorists? Enron executives? Corrupt Wall Street executives? Incompetent politicos and a government bureaucracy gone wild? I write this even as some are beginning to write about the present bull market. Terry Keenan recently provided her Top 10 Reasons to be bullish again highlighting most significantly that "corporate insiders are selling like crazy" and that "after three years it just feels good to be bullish again." Did it ever occur to Terry that perhaps corporate insiders are selling because they figure this might be as good as it gets for a while thus making it a prime time to liquidate some of their insider stock into cold hard currency?
I wonder how we have gone from Silicon Alley Nights to Networking for our Survival. Does it seem to you like everyone is seeking their 15 minutes of fame in the spotlight of “Reality” TV, while still others have turned to even more questionable pursuits, including entrepreneurial predatory schemes? If you ask me…it is a mad, mad world. Recently in fact, the Consigliere was lured to a casting call where he was “cast…..aside” in favor of some truly beautiful actors, actresses and models. I am not complaining. In fact, if I were the director, I would probably cast them rather than me as well. The fact remains that reality TV is not reality when reality TV casting calls are filled with a multitude of actors, models and performers with “previous experience” on “reality TV.” This is nothing more than creative and cost effective programming by The Entertainment Industry which has finally figured out a way to bypass the SAG Actors and union wages to exploit the plethora of free talent that will work merely for the exposure. Why import oil by the barrel from overseas or cross country when you can turn on the tap anywhere at any time. In fact, one observation is clear, there are not nearly as many “reality TV” programs as the talent search would seem to suggest. It’s turned some casting businesses into stockpiling data and a talent pool for future reference. One of my actor friends pointed out how mind boggling it was to her who she saw on a recent casting call, lawyers, bankers, business owners, etc, many of whom were unemployed or "in transition."
I do not even want to get into my experience networking with a Sociopath for several months who’s weapon of mass destruction or “WMD” was something right out of a Bret Easton Ellis American Psycho novel. I emerged unscathed but psychologically battered nonetheless. Just more evidence of a world gone mad.
All I know is that there remains a huge pit and wide open air space where a chunk of New York's economy, both real and symbolic, once stood. Our psyche as a people remains in flux at best and perhaps turned the entrepreneurial class in to scavengers feeding off the bones of a dead carcass, remnants of the New Economy. All while a handful of elities dine at the 21 Club and travel the world on book deals arranged to promote their hypocritical and self absorbed lives...(Case in point: Hillary Clinton). The fact that anyone listened to the "Living History" slop and P.R. that she offered on Barbara Walters and will even read her book amazes me. Lest anyone have any doubt, before you shower the Clintons with any more sympathy etc, this is nothing more than the second phases of a business/political partnership between two obviously over ambitious individuals. And if they truly do love each other, the drama of their type of love/political arrangement whether Anthony & Cleopatra or Juan Peron and Evita should be the subject of an Oprah episode and not hog the news headlines.
Hillary, please stop selling the American public fictional accounts and dramatic stories of your profound romantic love for each other and the challenges to your marriage, lest this be labeled a left wing bullshit conspiracy. I did fundraising on your husbands campaign in Boston and even I am tired of seeing and reading your crap. The bullshit flows equally from the left as it does from the right I am afraid. Fortunately some are “Unmasking Hillary.” Sharon Lerner recently pointed out Why She Enrages Feminists and Joy Press calls Hillary’s self absorbed promotional book nothing more than a 500 page resume in “Living History: A Lifeless Letdown” . Establishment shall have no fear over Ms. Clinton. Relax, while Hillary settles comfortably into the power structure in American Government, she is no where near the revolutionary or the threat that some consider her. The evidence is in. In the opinions of her most ardent supporters, she is basically a White Collar Tranny, an old boys club male who just figured out how to play the game in a dress. She was after all a Goldwater Girl in her youth. While people’s politics do change, the evidence suggests that much like her husband and perhaps even to a greater degree, she is the consummate political pragmatist, consumed with one end and one end only power and higher office. Before all of my female friends again clamor for me to support the idea of a woman for President, show me what the distinction is in this case, other than that she has a Vagina and Bill has a penis. As for who wears the pants, is it really all that relevant now anyway?
Where is the morality, shame, indignation or focus on real priorities which affect how people live, breathe and survive in our society. God bless Michael Bloomberg but even as a non-smoker who has a disdain for the activity doesn't it strike you as bit odd, misguided and somewhat self righteous that the mans first few symbolic acts upon getting into office in one of the most fragile periods of this city's history were to enforce a smoking ban on an otherwise stagnant nightlife industry, which was already crippled, embrace the cities most blatant race baiter and self promoter in Al Sharpton and to separate himself from the legacy of Guiliani by his statement that he wanted to be a kindler and gentler Giuliani. I mean really what the fuck does that mean anyway?
Those who have theorized that the decay of civilization as we know it has begun in earnest point to those pursuing open or alternate lifestyle arrangements. Though misguided, it is perhaps an excellent way to take focus away from some of our corporate and political leaders who are completely devoid of a leadership vision beyond their self interest. Despite all of their flag waving they otherwise continue to fuck us. Yes, I said fuck. Moralists are often quick to demonize “sensualists” who are free and open with their sexuality rather than focus in earnest on the true corruption and immorality which lay at the center of our bloated government bureaucracy and those in corporate America who engage in ponzie schemes to defraud the taxpayer. That type if immorality is of greater concern and consequence to me than whether some executive wants to have his ass spanked by a dominatrix or a swinging couple that shares their bed with additional partners.
The real fraud and decay in our civilizations morality lay at the heart of the seat of power in this country and some of the board rooms of the Fortune 500 and not in the bedrooms of those who lead an open lifestyle. In fact, one can argue that our government is actually doing a better job of fucking us. I only wish that they had asked whether we like anal sex before they bent us over and took us for a ride. This is the largest full time gang bang in history, one government schtupping nearly 300 million Americans daily. If the modern era in America feels somewhat like Caligula's reign at the dawn of the fall of the Roman Empire it may be more a result on the lack of principled moral leadership and less so on the sexual indiscretions of the proletariat.
Consider the issue of “social security.” As recently brought to my attention by my friend Palagia of Onelegupnyc who forwarded a poignant dissertation from Debsfunpages :
“Perhaps we are asking the wrong questions during election years. Our Senators and Congress men & women do not pay into Social Security and, of course, they do not collect from it.
You see, Social Security benefits were not suitable for persons of their rare elevation in society. They felt they should have a special plan for themselves. So, many years ago they voted in their own benefit plan.
In more recent years, no congressperson has felt the need to change it. After all, it is a great plan.
For all practical purposes their plan works like this: When they retire, they continue to draw the same pay until they die, except it may increase from time to time for cost of living adjustments. For example, former Senator Byrd and Congressman White and their wives may expect to draw $7,800,000.00 (that's Seven Million, Eight-Hundred Thousand Dollars), with their wives drawing $275,000.00 during the last years of their lives. This is calculated on an average life span for each. Their cost for this excellent plan is $00.00. Nada. Zilch. This little perk they voted for themselves is free to them. You and I pick up the tab for this plan. The funds for this fine retirement plan come directly from the General Funds-our tax dollars at work!
From our own Social Security Plan, which you and I pay (or have paid)into every payday until we retire (which amount is matched by our employer) we can expect to get an average $1,000 per month after retirement. Or, in other words, we would have to collect our average of $1,000 monthly benefits for 68 years and one (1) month to equal Senator Bill Bradley's benefits!
Social Security could be very good if only one small change were made. That change would be to jerk the Golden Fleece Retirement Plan from under the Senators and Congressmen. Put them into the Social Security plan with the rest of us ...then sit back and watch how fast they would fix it.
Shamanta in in Exposing Corruption in the Global Monetary System, suggests that we have been Unless There Is A Global Movement For Gold And Silver
GOLD STANDARD AS A HUMAN STANDARD --ALTHOUGH THE GOLD STANDARD IS STIPULATED AS THE ARTICLE 1, SECTION 8 OF THE CONSTITUTION OF THE UNITED STATES --THAT CONGRESS SHALL HAVE THE POWER TO COIN (CREATE) MONEY AND REGULATE THE VALUE THEREOF -- THE PRINCIPLE IS UNIVERSAL
SECTION 19 OF THE COINAGE ACT OF 1792 "…. IF ANY OF THE GOLD OR SILVER COINS…SHALL BE DEBASED.. EVERY SUCH OFFICER OR PERSONE WHO SHALL COMMIT ANY OR EITHER OF SAID OFFENSES, SHALL BE DEEMED GUILTY OF FELONY, AND SHALL SUFFER DEATH." -
So, while we fight about the cigarette ban, the Hillary chronicles, strive for our 15 minutes of fame on reality TV and assorted other distractions, there remains a huge hole in the ground, unemployment and underemployment of mythic proportions and a degree of insecurity and malaise in the population not seen since the Carter Administration. Before, we have any wag the dog distractions to the real issues at hand in our lives……listen up baby, it is the economy stupid and my simple request that our government stop raping us as a people with ponzie schemes that will ultimately bankrupt our society, all while asking that we continue to make greater sacrifices. My answer will simply be shut the fuck up when you tell me about belt tightening when some Washington insider is walking away with millions in misappropriated retirement funds, while at the rate we are going the average yuppie will be living in a cardboard box without any retirement safety net.
Every 4 years we listen to the party out of power tell us how the party in power is the party responsible for the current bust or downturn, only this time it is worse and the pain is more pervasive. The boom bust economic cycles occur because if the system in place and not because of one party or the other. Clinton came into office in the early 1990's vowing to stamp out the pervasive greed of the Reagan years that crippled Bush's economy. The only problem with that inference is that the 1980's were an appetizer compared to the feast of capitalistic explosion that occured in the 1990's, the longest growth spurt in he nation's history was prolonged by the Fed. 9/11 and the cycle of boom and bust precipiated the malaise that we suffer from today. If coincidentally a Democratic administration should wrestle power from the Republicans, are we going to once again give credit for the resulting boom to the Democrats? It is this circle jerk political process that prevents us from seeing the truth about what is happening in our country and the Global Economic Disorder. Who is to know how to Manage Global Economic Disorder.
If you think I am out of order, then in the words of Al Pacino in And Justice For All ……this is whole fucking world is out of order! And if you are too blind to see it or to passive to change it as a people then we as American deserve the shaft that is being placed up our tukhis on a regular basis, whether it be a Republican or Democratic Administration. The American public is seemingly bi political…we enjoy being fucked equally by Donkeys and Elephants. If nothing else is clear, Shamanta may actually be quite right that the lack of sound moral economic fundamentals reduces the probability that we will have a future which will provide Justice for All. Perhaps we can find solace in our societal bankruptcy and our fifteen minutes of fame on a realty TV show.
Well as I expect, when you take on the left, right and everything in between in one column, you are not likely to be left with many friends. After this I may need a course from Dale Carnegie on how to make friends and influence people.