Rant Alert: Be warned, this is a rant.
We don't give President Bush enough credit. Seriously, we have failed to give him his proper due. Here we thought his culture, philosophies (if you can call them that), politics and policies were just wrecking the country. Turns out, they were on the verge of wrecking the entire world.
At least that's what all the smart people gathered together to figure out some way to bail us out of this current financial mess are saying. Of course, the way it's going to be bailed out is by foisting more debt on cash strapped Americans, thus ensuring that we're cash strapped for generations to come. That is, if the entire house of cards doesn't come melting down like the polar ice caps that finally show in stark relief that global warming is real, unless you're of the Palin crowd and don't believe in global warming but do believe humans once rode dinosaurs like horses.
Yes, this crisis is real and more banks will fail, just like more Manhattan-size ice floes will break off and melt into the ocean. And before you know it, nobody's going to be able to afford to visit those saddle-backed Stegasours at your Creationism Museum.
The thing is, things will get worse before they get better and nobody's saying when they'll get better, only how worse they could get if we don't do this $700 billion bailout. Which is kiss all your money goodbye, your ATM card will only be good for picking locks or food out of your teeth worse. And they might get that bad anyway. Nobody knows and that's the truth.
Sure this is about sub-prime lending and securitization and deregulation, etc., but mostly it's about culture coming home to roost. And it's a no-accountability, instant-gratification, incompetence-loving, corrupt, cronyistic, arrogant, ignorant culture that has been allowed to run wild in the Bush years.
We are all complicit. Why haven't we been marching in the streets for years?
The Bush transgressions -- the more than $500 billion we've spent on the travesty of the Iraq War, the fact that an entire city was lost to bad weather while "Brownie" did a "heckuva job", the resurgence of the Taliban, the at-largeness of Bin Laden, the billions and billions of dollars that have gone to war profiteers such as Cheney's chums at Haliburton, the tax subsidies that you and I pay for the richest corporations and individuals, the crumbling infrastructure, fraying social safety net, failing public education, disappearing healthcare, the toxicity of the neocon commodification of 9/11 Fear to empower the band of idiots in the executive branch, the entire ugly despicable mess of things this asshole and his crowd and their Republican lapdogs in congress have made of this country -- should warrant massive outrage, demonstrations, calls to bring the bastards to justice, fighting in the streets...something. And we've barely blinked through it all.
We're blinking now. Now that our savings and 401ks and retirement plans and even the freaking money in our checking account is on the verge of going down the toilet. Bye-bye baby. Awake yet? Maybe not. Not fully. Not judging by the polls that have Palin-McCain, a ticket that's been part and parcel of this culture (The Children's Defense Fund rates John McCain the worst U.S. senator - which is saying something given how bad some of his blood-sucking vampire colleagues are), neck and neck with Obama-Biden. It boggles the mind.
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SHOW ME HOW
So, what's to do? When Bush got reelected I wrote a piece suggesting that California secede from the union. It wasn't the militant brand of secession advocated by Palin and her husband for Alaska, but a simple, mediated, amicable (more or less) dissolution of the marriage between California and the U.S.
Given what's coming down the pike, I think it makes more sense than ever because, as usual, good, ol' fruits and nuts California will be paying an inordinate share of our country's way out of the mess propelled by genius deregulatin' Republicans since Reagan.
Just think, Californians, how high we could fly without the rest of the country strapped to our backs -- to the weight of some $60 billion we put into the national treasury (sure to go higher in the next few weeks) that we never get back. That's $60 billion we could be investing in our futures instead of subsidizing oil companies to make record profits while destroying our planet and farming concerns to not grow stuff while also destroying our planet.
Simply put, we deserve better than the culture that's elected the house of Bush three times and is even teetering on the brink of signing up for the ghoulish Palin-McCain show. Don't worry, full visitation rights would be granted -- so long as you can prove your IQ is higher than the Disney characters you must be taller than to get on the rides at Disney World.