Thursday, February 25, 2010

when did the u.s.a. become a 3rd world country?

now i must make a disclaimer. as a poet and artist i'm hardly qualified to talk about politics. in fact, these roles demand a kind of perfection of life that isn't possible. and the political art remains what can be done under the circumstances.

that said, i'd like to ask a few questions (and give my answers, of course).

when ronald reagan elected, i shared an apartment in new york city with my friend susie. upon reagan's ascension, susie cut out article after article from the newspapers, delineating the programs the new president eliminated. from the beginning it was a revolution, one curiously unremarked by history. basically, he dismantled equality. as the leader of the house said, 'he has a heart of ice.'

why should we be surprised? as governor of california he closed the mental hospitals. you wonder where those indigent people you step over on the way to work came from? look no further. mr. reagan put the insane back on the street. so much for a caring government.

i read his early diaries and autobiography, where's the rest of me? well, that's one question i never could answer.

you wonder where the recent financial crisis came from? look no further. as he signed the bill deregulating the savings and loan, he did a little dance and declared delightedly, 'we did it. we did it!' yes, he certainly opened up the door to everything we've experienced in the past few years.

i haven't been able to find it, but posted in the university library at the end of his reign, i remember an article from the san francisco chronicle. it declared at the beginning of his tenure americans had never been so equal in income, at the end so unequal. our lack of historical memory might once have been justified. however, anything you wish can be found on the internet. after all, it originally established to exchange information between university libraries. thus, it remains a liberalizing force.

when the democrats left office in 2001, a three trillion dollar surplus existed. at the end of the next administration millions lost their jobs. so much for the myth of conservative money handling. how we fall for it again and again beats me. maybe i'm too much of an outsider, feeding on the bottom. crumbs from the table, i'm delighted to scoop them up and have time for my own thoughts.

i do know a couple of things. one is: running a big country is a lot different than running a small. and the other is: you can't found a society on a theory, that way the path to a totalitarianism. a big country a free-for-all, a free-fall. the best we can have is the freedom to succeed or fail by our own lights. and i recommend appreciating what you already have. when big sums of money are involved, trust nobody.