You Only Gotta Know One Thing
And that is this: where all the power is. If you don’t want to think in terms of power, think about money – they amount to pretty much the same thing. Who has all the money? And who has all the jobs?
For most Americans this question has no answer: jobs are just where they are, wherever you can find them. They are not accustomed to thinking in larger terms. But the world has moved on and larger things are now in charge. But they are perfectly happy being unknown and unknowable – while their hands are firmly on the steering wheel.
The last time anyone tried one of these larger analyses was Karl Marx – and I have friends who still stubbornly insist that he was right. They are wrong, dead wrong. Socialism has been a total failure.
Americans then assume that Capitalism, as a result, is a success. They are wrong too – as the most superficial analysis should show them. They don’t even know what it is – and renaming it the market economy hasn’t them any wiser.
A short historical review is in order. Eisenhower warned us against the military-industrial complex. This was strange, because it was on his shift that this happened – but he had the sense to realize its dangers. The military and its contractors had merged – and become the same thing, the same complex. This set the pattern for much that was to follow: merger after merger after merger.
A final technological development: the computer/software/internet made all this possible. Powerful people have always wanted to control everything – now they had their chance. They latched onto these tools and made them their own. The result was something that is obvious to me – but as far as I know, not to anyone else: the corporate complex - consisting basically of every organization there is: the military/industrial/government/media/educational/security complex – and more are added all the time.
This is right where I lose everybody: they refuse to admit that such a thing could exist. It is just too incredible and too scary to be real – and they run for safety at the mere thought of it.
But once you accept it, a lot of things make sense. For example, Obama’s behavior. He was elected as a savior of the American people – but has not acted that way. His behavior is clear enough to me: he is the savior of the corporate complex. Everything he does benefits it (with some diversionary maneuvers to provide some smoke screen).
This even applies to Costa Rica. After its revolution in 1947 it enacted strong social reforms, including good public schools and medical care. The complex, as it developed down here, has fought it ever since. The result was that private schools and colleges and hospitals have flourished – while the public ones have languished.
All that money could go only one place: in their eager, greedy hands.