Swans Commentary » swans.com October 19, 2009  





by Gilles d'Aymery





(Swans - October 19, 2009)  Short is best, especially when one can watch a NASCAR race.

President Obama appears to have given in to, or embraced, the usual culprits: the sick care industry; the banksters (aka, Wall Street); the military-industrial-congressional complex; the powers that be... So, comprehensive universal health care reform is a thing of the past; the banksters get their bonuses on the backs of the taxpayers; and our $1 trillion-plus killing machine is on track to foster more American death (and Afghans, and Pakistanis, and Somalis, and, and, and...which we do not care to count) in order to defeat a practically nonexistent al Qaeda, with its feeble record of success, as methodically demonstrated by Dr. Marc Sageman (M.D., Ph.D., and former CIA analyst) in his October 7, 2009, testimony (PDF) to the Senate Foreign Relations Committee.

The pundits (gatekeepers) talk about Nobel Peace prizes and a mushroom-shaped helium balloon with a 6-year-old hiding in the attic for a better "show." No worries, the recession is over. We are on our way to economic recovery. Life's swell.

Time to check the race. Watching cars going 200 miles an hour around an oval track makes one feel comfy. We need the oil for entertainment. Thank the military for the pre-race flyover and our well being.

Where is this short rambling going?

Ah, yeah, contrast...

Here are a few examples in no organized order:

The oceans' acidification is becoming out of control, destroying the oxygen and life underwater, including the coral reefs. Wow, why should one care? We should be glad to sit next to Glenn Beck and watch the race.

The steady increase of the oceans' dead zones (hypoxic areas), courtesy of pesticide-laden agriculture (think fossil fuels), is turning into an impressionism that Manet or Renoir would have enjoyed painting.

The destruction of the world fisheries makes you want to eat more fish while they last and are not mercury-filled. Hollywood and Madison Avenue will engineer the fishes of the future and they will ride all over oval circuits before being served at McDonald's.

The rapid retreat of worldwide glaciers with its serious impact on fresh water supplies, in the midst of dwindling water resources, makes you want to hit your best single-malt bottle for a scotch and water.

According to water.org, "nearly one billion people lack access to safe water and 2.5 billion do not have improved sanitation."

Acute water shortages are a greater threat to human survival than oil shortages (there is no substitute for water). Again, there is beer...and NASCAR. Let the good times roll.

Over 1 billion people are undernourished. According to the World Food Programme, reduced aid from wealthy nations (a $2 billion shortfall this year; the Obama administration has decreased US food aid by $800 million compared to the Bush administration) threatens millions of poor people with starvation. Who cares? They are not white and they do not watch NASCAR.

The masses of destitute people who live in either absolute or "relative" poverty do not watch NASCAR, since they don't have a TV set and can't pay for cable. Too bad they can't afford feeding themselves and watching TV. We can. So, fuck them. We are American$, aren't we?

The thinning out or melting of the Arctic Ocean's ice cap may or may not happen, but so long as NASCAR is on TV, why should one care?

The chopping down of the world's forests (see the 10 countries with the highest deforestation rates in the world) provides us with great decks and housing projects from which we can watch our favorite car races, comfortably ensconced into our feel-good, ignorant selves.

Is there more in America'$ land?

There sure is, but the NASCAR race takes precedence, especially on a 62" plasma TV...

Jimmie Johnson won.

We all lost.


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Internal Resources

Patterns which Connect

Myths and Realities


About the Author

Gilles d'Aymery on Swans (with bio). He is Swans' publisher and co-editor.



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Swans -- ISSN: 1554-4915
URL for this work: http://www.swans.com/library/art15/ga274.html
Published October 19, 2009