The End Of The American Dream and What Is To Come Next
"Three decades of neoliberal policies have decimated the middle class, our economy, and our democracy"
"America today has higher inequality and less upward social mobility than most other developed countries"
"After rising for a century, average life expectancy in the U.S. is now declining. And for those in the bottom 90% of the income distribution, real (inflation-adjusted) wages have stagnated: the income of a typical male worker today is around where it was 40 years ago."
What is Neoliberalism?
"Often associated with laissez-faire economics, the policy that prescribes a minimal amount of government interference in the economic issues of individuals and society. This theory is characterized by the belief that continued economic growth will lead to human progress, a confidence in free markets, and an emphasis on limited state interference... Neoliberalism supports fiscal austerity, deregulation, free trade, privatization, and greatly reduced government spending... There are many criticisms of neoliberalism, including its potential to endanger democracy, workers’ rights, and sovereign nations’ right to self-determination." [Investopedia]
"As diversity continually grows each year, the Baby Boomer Generation that profited most from the Neoliberalism Movement that started in the 1980's, will likely be the one's who will likely suffer the greatest, from the downsides of the system they once coveted."
"We can thank former President Ronald Reagan and former British Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher for our current state of affairs. The neoliberal reforms of the 1980s were based on the idea that unfettered markets would bring shared prosperity through a mystical trickle-down process."
"We were told that lowering tax rates on the rich, financialization, and globalization would result in higher standards of living for everybody. Instead... a greater share of the wealth and income from this limited growth was funneled to the top 1%...
Instead of the promised prosperity, we got deindustrialization, polarization, and a shrinking middle class. Unless we change the script, these patterns will continue — or worsen."
"Trump and the lobbyists he has appointed to dismantle the U.S. government are doing everything they can to strip away regulations protecting the environment, public health, and even the economy."
"The U.S., after all, stands alone among developed countries in not recognizing health care as a basic human right. Ironically, while the U.S. spends more on health care — both per capita and as a share of gross domestic product — than any other developed country, its predominantly private system delivers worse outcomes."
"It requires that we reverse the Republican Party’s systematic effort to disenfranchise large segments of the electorate through voter suppression, gerrymandering, and other anti-democratic techniques. It also requires that we reduce the influence of money in politics, and restore proper checks and balances."
"Neoliberalism sees competition as the defining characteristic of human relations. It redefines citizens as consumers, whose democratic choices are best exercised by buying and selling,"
"Attempts to limit competition are treated as inimical to liberty. Tax and regulation should be minimised, public services should be privatised. The organisation of labour and collective bargaining by trade unions are portrayed as market distortions that impede the formation of a natural hierarchy of winners and losers. Inequality is recast as virtuous: a reward for utility and a generator of wealth, which trickles down to enrich everyone. Efforts to create a more equal society are both counterproductive and morally corrosive."
"The privatization or marketization of public services such as energy, water, trains, health, education, roads and prisons has enabled corporations to set up tollbooths in front of essential assets and charge rent, either to citizens or to government, for their use."
"“Like rent,” he argues, “interest is ... unearned income that accrues without any effort”. As the poor become poorer and the rich become richer, the rich acquire increasing control over another crucial asset: money. Interest payments, overwhelmingly, are a transfer of money from the poor to the rich."
"Not only are the banks too big to fail, but so are the corporations now charged with delivering public services... vital national services cannot be allowed to collapse, which means that competition cannot run its course. Business takes the profits, the state keeps the risk."
"The greater the failure, the more extreme the ideology becomes. Governments use neoliberal crises as both excuse and opportunity to cut taxes, privatize remaining public services, rip holes in the social safety net, deregulate corporations and re-regulate citizens."
"Neoliberalism show[s] that it’s not enough to oppose a broken system. A coherent alternative has to be proposed. For Labour, the Democrats and the wider left, the central task should be to... attempt to design a new system, tailored to the demands of the 21st century."
"The current economic crisis has exacerbated stagnation and inequality."
"Real socialism is the only option to the current economic crisis... as capitalism ceases to be a viable historical system, socialism may prove to be the only viable solution to the fundamental crisis confronting humanity in the 21st century"
"Capitalism is inefficient as is socialism... The great advantage of socialism over capitalism is that the former outscores the latter in fulfilling social needs."
"The presence of exploitation in both systems. In the case of capitalism, capitalists exploited workers and peasants. In socialism, the state exploited workers and peasants"
"Neoliberalism is a failure because it has produced lower growth rates than keynesianism and real socialism. Furthermore, it has not satisfied people's basic needs."
As you can see, there are no perfect options or simple solutions. It is evident that, what we are doing, and the current path we are on, IS NOT SUSTAINABLE. Change is imminent.
I have been saying for years: the solutions do not reside on the Far Left or Far Right, but instead somewhere in the middle. The irrelevant models and systems of the past are antiquated. It is imperative for us to develop a new modern system that creatively integrates Capitalist Innovation with all-encompassing Social Democratic Safety Nets.
If we have learned anything from the Great Coronavirus Pandemic of 2020, is that wars are no longer the greatest threat to humanity. Viruses, Technology/AI and Climate Change pose far greater threats. The need to redirect resources, (both financial and other) towards: Education, Health and Eco-Friendly practices are mandatory to our survival.
As of this morning, Italy has now witnessed over 74,000 cases of Coronavirus and more than 7,500 Deaths as a result. To put that in perspective for Americans that may be minimizing the impact of this pandemic and possibly believe that this is just another flu, consider this:
you turned on Fox News today and they announced that EVERY SINGLE PLAYER of the: National Football League; Major League Baseball; National Basketball Association; and National Hockey League, had passed away since the Super Bowl on February 2nd, 2020?
In addition to that, EVERY SINGLE COLLEGE FOOTBALL PLAYER of the SEC and BIG10 had also passed.
Not to mention, the: Head Coach; Assistant Coach; GM; Owner; Mascot; and even #1 Fan, of each of those 151 Teams have also died in less than two months, would that be a point of concern?
So, to put this all in perspective, if the above scenario played out, the 6,059 dead would still fall short of what the Italians are currently dealing with as we speak.
My hope here is not to instill fear or loss of hope, but instead... awareness. Demand that your local Representatives, Mayors, Governors, Senators, and even President, take this seriously and give Human Lives greater priority than Corporate Profits.
Pray for those in mourning all over the World who are dealing with the results of this pandemic, as well as the brave and hardworking: Doctors, Nurses and Scientists; who are on the front lines of Hospitals and Laboratories everywhere, attempting to care for and treat those infected or dying, while striving to remain healthy themselves.
#NFL #MLB #NBA #NHL #NCAA
"The coming weeks and months will require us to make decisions, decisions that will bring major changes, and I will take full responsibility for those changes"
~French President, Emmanuel Macron
In a foolish attempt to stay informed and better grasp the situation at hand, I mistakenly watched Trump ignorantly and incoherently stumble through yet another divisive and mind-numbing press conference.
Inspired by a friend's post the other day, I decided to see how other Leaders were addressing and comforting their citizens.
I have no desire to enter in to conversations of another Leader's politics, stances or past actions - for I do not follow, and have no dog in that fight.
What did impress me was the Confident, Coherent and Compassionate messages that were delivered to their Citizens. In such interesting times like these, it is encouraging and reassuring to witness True Leadership during this unprecedented period that we are experiencing.
If you are curious, I have attached links to the speeches below.
Stay Safe, Stay Healthy, Stay Confident & Stay Informed!
All the Best,
Prime Minister of Canada
Chancellor of Germany
(Perhaps he should not be the one to lead our country for another Four Years)
51 Rules for Leadership Excellence
How do you think Trump stacks up
against the first 20 Rules of Leadership Excellence?
1. Take responsibility; never, ever place blame elsewhere.
2. If you want to control your future, let go of the control.
3. Learn to be a strong communicator. No, this does not mean send a lot of text messages.
4. Listen, don't judge.
5. Don't make excuses; when it comes to being a respectable leader, there are none.
6. Never forget that your team - not your product, not your bank account - is your number-one asset.
7. Give your team the tools and freedom to be extraordinary. There is no better investment.
8. If you promise to do something, do it--and do it well.
9. Let your ego know that it's really smart to surround yourself with people who know more than you do.
10. To work with a coach or mentor is a sign of a successful mindset, not a weakness.
11. Consciously build a powerful company culture. Otherwise, it will build itself and you probably won't like the results.
12. If you consistently work through the night, you're doing something wrong.
13. Employee meetings are not a disruption, waste of time, or inconvenience.
14. Never enter into a 50-50 partnership.
15. Do not launch a product without doing market research that goes well beyond family and friends.
16. Before you even think about stepping into a leadership role, define and understand your values. Otherwise, you have no road map to lead yourself or others to success.
17. You are only as successful as you believe you are. Mindset is everything.
18. Don't think your idea is a great one because you believe in it and you've worked hard for it. It's only great if your customers believe it too.
19. Honesty is a code to live by; choose your words carefully.
20. If you think it's time to quit, it probably is.
Google Maps vs Apple Maps vs Waze: Are we being guided to our destination or driven to consume?
Are Humans being manipulated and moved like chess pieces through a Matrix-like game of Life, as we are continually updated on more efficient paths to take? Where one route may give preference to or promote taking us along the toll road, the other is paid to steer us past a Starbucks, (which they know we frequent) or perhaps a Ford Dealership because we searched for “used Ford F-150” just prior to leaving our home.
We all know of dirt road shortcuts, but we are never presented with these options, perhaps due to a lack of commercial or retail options along the route, perhaps because “popular” routes create more traffic which calls for increased gas and energy usage as well as opportunities to monetize you and promote our American Capitalistic Consumerism?
Just as an App thriving from increased usage time, your retail consuming probabilities exponentially increase with each passing moment you spend outside of your home. Turn by turn, each move is strategized and monetized.
When all is said and done, are we all just some cat, dog or Cookie Monster emoji icon upon a Waze game board, literally being played on a modern Illuminati influenced video game platform???
Perhaps we are not just cattle being domesticated and raised as obedient consumers.
Perhaps subliminal advertising is but an illusive sacred cow...
"I saw a subliminal advertising executive, but only for a second"
Take a stand, make a difference and seek out better representation of the values that matter most to you.
If the last 4 years have taught us anything, it is that the USA is irrevocably divided. Trump’s words, actions and policies have not only cemented an, “Us vs Them” mentality and dialogue amongst Republicans and Democrats, but also revealed a Grand Canyon size fissure between Republican Politicians and the Voters they supposedly represent.
The Democrats created their own party divide back in 2016 with questionable tactics that promoted the Establishment Candidate, Hilary Clinton, to the Democratic Nomination over the Progressive Candidate, Bernie Sanders, causing a disenfranchised segment of the Democratic Party to vote either against their own candidate, or not at all — all but clearing a path to Trump’s victory.
“At this point [Trump] should just go and play a round of golf with OJ and tweet...just two innocent guys out enjoying 18 holes of golf...”
The current State of our Union,
is one where our Congress has just impeached the President;
The spread of Lies, Fear and Disinformation have become the norm;
And our country has now become
as divided as it was
in the 1860s.
The State of our Confederacy,
is Complete and Total Disarray...
In the article below, Noam Chomsky does a brilliant job of intelligently defining just how dangerous Trump is; how Trump’s actions are a greater threat to Mankind than those of Hitler, (and that the comparisons are more than justified); and why Sander’s consistent commitment to the policies he promotes, is a threat to the .01% Establishment, but not to the large majority of the American population which he hopes to represent.