February 21, 2010

When Decline Is Staring You Right in the Face

Dear Friends,

Sometimes the ongoing collapse of the US is so obvious, you almost have to laugh. The very newspaper that (4 years ago) dismissed my analysis of the end-of-empire as a "tirade" is now substantiating the analysis. The stories on the front page of today's NY Times (Feb. 21), when taken together, form an interesting picture. One article says that millions are unemployed, and that they can forget about finding work for years to come. (The official figure is 10%, but these figures are always doctored, because typically the US Labor Dept. doesn't put folks whose unemployment compensation ran out back on the unemployment rolls. Actual figure is 1 in 5, or about 20%.) The middle class lost its retirement savings and is now lining up at soup kitchens. However, you'll be glad to hear, the stock market is making a modest recovery.

Then there's an article on how the Afghan Army isn't doing squat, and how the US armed forces are actually the ones waging the (oh-so-necessary-to-our-freedom) war over there. Yes, we really need to send 30,000 more troops into that black hole, without a doubt.

Problems with a deadlocked, do-nothing legislature? How's this for a muscular solution: Evan Bayh, who is leaving the Senate in disgust, thinks that a monthly bipartisan Senate luncheon might create a warm, fuzzy feeling among the bitter ideologues and get things rolling once more. Why he hasn't also come up with a plan to reverse the earth's gravitational field is not quite clear.

And as a lovely ps, an article about Amy Bishop, the biology prof. at the U of Alabama who recently (Feb. 12) responded to not getting tenure by gunning down six of her colleagues, killing three. I can't help wondering if she had been on a steady diet of best-selling management books, such as Winning Through Intimidation and The Brand Called You.

America, America!