April 26th, 2011 11:28 EST
Disposable Americans, Dumped By Corporate Greed
The middle class as styrofoam waste
Once robophones started telling us to press one for technical support, two for billing information, three for appointments, and four for other, we should have known the disposable society was fixing to dispose of its white- and blue-collar middle class.
We had become little more than styrofoam plates and plastic bottles, hardly worth a deposit. We were as docile in our acceptance of this dehumanization as we are in accepting the patently absurd notion that if we maintain and enhance welfare for the super-rich we`ll benefit. No one henceforth acknowledged a moral responsibility to treat us decently.
Our doctors no longer had to talk to each other. If their medications conflicted, it was our hard luck. Insurance companies and banks were licensed to trick us. The food industry was licensed to poison us. The almighty dollar, not our ideals, not our religions, not our common decency, ruled. The free market economy is code for bilkdom, just as states` rights is code for racism.
We never bothered to ask ourselves how the corporados and their political stooges could wipe out the middle class and expect it to keep on buying American products. Perhaps we knew the answer all along and deemed it too horrific to consider: the corporados don`t need and don`t want American labor, and they have plenty of overseas markets. Once they use us up "we`re close to this point "they move on. Our beloved flag is their flag of convenience, and they are more than willing that we should die under it in defense of their inalienable right to swindle us.
In other words, the corporados abandoned America while bilking it, and when their bilking operation got them into trouble they asked us to bail them out, persuading us to believe they would take care of us if only we sacrificed more and called on them to sacrifice much less.
And now comes the great Tea Party swindle, bought and paid for by the corporados, and we still don`t want to hear the awful truth. We`re roadside trash to our corporate elite. They don`t ever intend again to pay us decent wages, and they`ll go on selling us what we can`t afford until we`re impoverished, as more than 40 million of us already are, while they move on to cheaper labor markets and rising economies.
They`ve cherry-picked us and need to keep on bullshitting us for another decade or two while they transfer America`s future to countries even easier to abuse. A corporate elite that doesn`t want to talk to us, that shuffles our inquiries from one unresponsive recorded message to another, was practically telling us to get lost. A press that failed to forewarn us of the impending sub-prime mortgage crisis because it had been paid off with bank and developer advertising is telling us we`re incidental. And a health care system that would rather let us die than reduce insurance company profits is criminal.
We don`t want government to mess with our Second Amendment gun-toting rights because we believe it would render us helpless, but we have chosen to render ourselves helpless in the face of this onslaught on our future. We apparently believe our gun rights to be more important than our rights to security, health and a decent living. Is it because we don`t want to do the heavy lifting needed to change things? It would seem so in view of the public`s complacency as neocons in Washington prepare to slash Medicare and Social Security, eventualities that would finish the destruction of the middle class.
Sickened on corn syrup and grease, swindled by our banks, corrupted by reckless developers, hornswoggled into an endless and bankrupting war, we insist that everything will be all right if we just make the rich a little richer, if we cut the national debt on the backs of the poor "and never mention the immense defense establishment that is bankrupting us, the very kind of monster that crushed the Soviet Union from within.
Djelloul Marbrook is a retired newspaperman. His second book of poems, Brushstrokes and Glances, will be published by Deerbrook Editions on December 20, 2010. His first book of poems, Far From Algiers, won the Stan and Tom Wick Poetry Prize from Kent State University in 2007 and was published in 2008. It won the International Book Award in 2010. His novella, Artemisia`s Wolf, will be published by Prakash Books of India in December. His novella, Saraceno, was recently published as an e-book. His story, Artists Hill, adapted from the second novel of an unpublished trilogy, won the Literal LattÃ© first prize in fiction in 2008. The pioneering e-book publisher, Online Originals (UK), published his novella, Alice MIller`s Room, in 1999.
Del`s book, Far From Algiers: http://upress.kent.edu/books/Marbrook_D.htm
New review of Far from Algiers: http://www.rattle.com/blog/2009/05/far-from-algiers-by-djelloul-marbrook/
Artists Hill, Literal LattÃ©`s fiction first prize: http://www.literal-latte.com/author/djelloulmarbrook/
His blog: http://www.djelloulmarbrook.com
His mother`s art: http://www.juanitaguccione.com
His aunt`s art: http://www.irenericepereira.com