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5 Take-Aways Already

August 30, 2016

And we have two months for things to get worse.

1:  Democracy and the wealth gap cannot co-exist.

There are 2 wealth gaps: the 1% v. the rest of us; between POC and most white folks.

The former makes it impossible to solve our urgent problems, because it is a major problem and a source of problems: the power of vested interests in the status quo and the withholding, by the rich, of resources that are needed for funding solutions.

The latter, in addition to being outrageously, pathetically inhumane and productive of foolishness (laughable only to keep from breaking down in tears), is a major problem and prevents solutions to problems, by making the population vulnerable to misunderstanding of their problems and potential solutions.  Everybody is a mark.

2:  A large block of aggrieved potential voters is available—especially if the economy is not strong enough to support economic progress and hopefulness for all—for manipulation and exploitation by the rich.

Their grievances are fundamentally about the distribution of money and power: while suffering financial anxieties, and feelings of betrayal, abandonment, and disrespect or even contempt, they are experiencing a crisis of self-worth, and they are losing faith in democracy as a means of achieving redress of their grievances. Of course they also misunderstand, but the leaders of the R party produce that misunderstanding, and the leaders of the D party are not doing enough to help them understand.

3:  The Republican Party does not repudiate fascism, because the leadership of the party is fascist, and happy to serve the interests of the fascist oligarchs who own the party, such as the Kochs. Republican politicians who have refused to endorse Trump, soft fascists such as the Bushes, do so because they are oligarchs or servants of the oligarchy who believe that their future within the party is best served by positioning themselves to better battle for ownership after the election.

4:  Oligarchy and the politics of control dominate both major parties. Both are dominated by the interests of persons and their corporations that are self-centered, at the expense of everyone else. For them, the main questions of political action have to do with how to control the inevitably aggrieved population (e.g. “walls;” incarceration; expansion of health care; a kinder, gentler oligarchy).

5:  Americans have not grasped the amount of change and pain that is going to be caused by climate change; they do not understand the magnitude or urgency of the problem.

Soon these changes will overwhelm everyone except the very wealthy, and will swamp the social fabric with a tide of dislocation and desperation that will make oligarchic control of the population impossible within a genuine democracy.

Luckily the imagination enjoys both stasis and motion, details and patterns, the play of light across wavy surfaces, surfaces rippling their way through a field of light.

I don’t know what that means, but to me it feels comforting.

Maybe because I haven’t seen such darkness since 1941, or at least ’54.

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