|A Well of Despair - The Rise of Fascism (Part Two)|
|Saturday, 14 November 2009 08:39|
The Underbelly of the Threat of Government Independence
Seemingly “blah” subject matter lately, I know. However, it is based on research and anecdotal indications I am doing and receiving daily. The now largest and (once) most solvent proportion of the North American population is in a state of passive distress.
I could quote Kierkegaard and call it anomie or even more appropriately and accurately, Marx, and call it a period of diminishing expectations. The point is an aging but not senior portion of the North American population, one once uniquely bulging with promise and a sense of idealism, is limping en masse. Individuals who make up this once potent economic driving force are beyond tired, overwhelmed and disillusioned by the recent malfeasance that brought the world economy to its knees. They are hopeless. The most dangerous emotional and existential state of all – especially when it envelopes those who had held and tried to sow the seeds of positive change.
The most worrisome factor related to this state of serious angst (as opposed to the poetically frivolous angst of youth), is that there is repeatedly expressed the sense that there is nothing good to come, no let up or lifting of a veil of fear and barely managed despair. We are the generation subjugated to the internet and email, cell phones and high tech regulatory intrusions. We are, as well, the generation that was to be the last that automatically (and with focused attention) would achieve a level of security beyond that of our parents. And we almost did it, or had it. It was taken away late in the game, with no or little time to recoup, in the last two years.
The intensity surrounding the election of an “African American” President was Christmas for a day. Or longer. Supporters invested more than they knew in what this historic event would mean for both the country and the continent, as well as for their own lives. For many it drowned out the still disturbing rumble of 9/11 and signaled permission to fear those we have long exploited and angered, less. For others, it meant an improvement in all race and ethnic relations. There was also an illusory kinship, a sense that he was his supporters’ friend, and that he would and could do nothing but improve their lives and lighten their loads. It was a lie supported and nurtured, but self-told.
With the President tied to big business (including the pertinent pharmaceutical companies amid a now socially disturbing national health emergency ) and Wall St. moles supportive of business as usual in the White House, the inaugural energy not only settled, it imploded. African Americans may feel something new, but it isn’t change. Ethnic minorities are watched and stripped of their rights more ruthlessly than ever, and we are all watched by a government untrusting of its own population, and of itself.
Whether Calvinist, Keynesian, Marxist, Hegelian or a follower of the avuncular and intelligent Galbraith, now aged, and quietly watching what he predicted unfold from a quiet home in Vermont, they all warned of the politics of disappointment. Disillusionment breeds passivity and stupification. This, while the alert move slowly, carefully and with the planned element of surprise, into positions of disastrous power.
Where is the leadership of hope?