Monday, December 8, 2008

Let's see. Where are we now?

With the economy now apparently headed straight to the crapper and Arch-looter Henry Paulson demanding all the rest of the Wall Street Bailout cash NOW, NOW, NOW, and the Obama Regime getting ready to maintain as much of the Status Quo as possible under the dire circumstances, and the American People being completely forgotten in this Maelstrom of Misery that everyone knew was coming but nobody wanted to -- or could -- do anything about, where are we now? Really?

Often, I've said, "Look to China; there's your Future." And of course this has been met with your typical American Blank Stare. If it isn't on the toob, or in the NYT it doesn't compute. Now if it isn't on the Blog, it doesn't compute, either.

Authority must be maintained at all costs.

But China is still showing the way to the Future, as authoritarian, undemocratic, and politically repressive as it is, what you see there is what you will be seeing here sooner or later. Don't forget, China OWNS the USA, and China's lead will be followed.

China, after all, is way ahead of the Wall Street Looters in working its way out of the economic difficulty they too face thanks to the appalling lack of plain business sense displayed by the Masters of the Universe. China is ahead, way ahead, because they know how to do this.

And because they are our Owners, they're going to show us how to do it, too. Whether we will comprehend and follow instructions is another story.

I've wondered why the Real Left, while critical of the Obama Regime's imperialism and corporatism, has largely been silent so far during the transition from Bushevism to Obama-mania. And I've wondered if it isn't because, apart from some marginal issue -- like imperialism and corporatism (!) -- the Real Left actually agrees with the Obama Program, as much of it as they can parse out of the carefully couched phraseology.

Even the imperialism and corporatism, even the militarism, doesn't get the Real Left all that upset, and we already know that the right wing is practically rapturous over the "steady hand" they see on the tiller. Nothing fundamental is going to change at all; we'll just get poorer and enjoy working for our New Chinese Overlords, who we will find, in the end, are actually pretty decent and smart as whips (errr... ) compared to the long discredited Masters of the Universe we used to serve.

Even right wing whack-job David Horowitz now loves him some Obama. Bill Kristol sings the praises of Big Government. George Will is now nothing but a crank.

Eyes on the Prize, people. Eyes on the prize.

1 comment:

  1. Andrew J. Nathan, in a long piece in the New Republic in July, commented on Anne-Marie Brady's Marketing Dictatorship: Propaganda and Thought Work in Contemporary China:

    "Brady reveals that China's central propagandists have studied the theories of "manufacturing consent" by Walter Lippmann and Edward Bernays, and have learned from media critics such as Noam Chomsky, and--although she does not make quite this ultimate ironic point--emulate such Western visionaries of popular journalism as Rupert Murdoch. They know how diversity and contention within a permitted range of subjects render invisible the subjects forbidden by the regime and placed outside the perimeter; how naming and framing place inconvenient facts in a desired light. The department intervenes at all levels of the media hierarchy through a system of news guidance, post-publication review, and reward and punishment. Its most effective tool is a traditional Chinese invention rather than a Western import: a "you know what we mean" style of regulation that allows experimentation, tolerates ambiguity, and then punishes retroactively and arbitrarily.

    "The efflorescence of creativity that foreign visitors will see in Beijing in August is not a challenge to Party control. It enables that control. The lively art and music scenes, colorful newsstands, crowded bookstores, stylish clothing, experimental dance, innovative architecture, sexy advertising, rampant consumerism, luxurious housing, ebullient schlock, even the considerable scope for academic inquiry: this lightly patrolled free zone is not the antithesis but the twin of the permanent crackdown on the political frontier, where the few who insist on testing the regime are crowded to the cultural margin and generally ignored. In this sense the energetic new Chinese art that has caught the imagination of Western buyers, with its pictorial irony and cynicism, repudiation of history, detachment from the world, and love of stunts, is not the challenge to those in power it is sometimes construed to be. Rather, it is a secret joke that the regime shares with the artists and their audience--part of a new social contract that allows the children to have their sly fun so long as the grown-ups run the house.

    "Brady argues that the end result of this sophisticated cultural programming differs little from the mass media in the West, where just as in China nothing important is discussed. Like American TV viewers and tabloid readers transfixed by the photo shoot of the teenage star Miley Cyrus and the debate over whether to lift the federal gas tax for the summer driving season, Chinese readers feel they are living in an environment of freedom. The difference is that even those motivated to do so have no way to break into the monopoly circle that decides on the fundamental issues that confront their society."

    It seems as if China and the US are converging on what Sheldon Wolin calls inverted totalitarianism, "based on," as Chalmers Johnson says, "internalized co-optation, the appearance of freedom, political disengagement rather than mass mobilization, and relying more on 'private media' than on public agencies to disseminate propaganda that reinforces the official version of events."