MacArthur, on Democracy Now yesterday (transcript) with Amy Goodman, says among other things (watch/listen here), that the popular notion that any American can become president only reinforces the “destructive national delusion that widespread, up-from-the-ground, truly popular democracy, both political and economic, really exists in America.” To assume that, he says, is equal to believing that Santa Claus exists. (Not unlike believing in "God": It may be comforting, but it is wholly irrelevant with respect to 'reality,' effect, or consequences.)
Friends, things are really, truly, completely, wholly, totally fucked up (yo!) if the members of the actual 'ruling class' (to which class MacArthur indisputably belongs) are dismayed by the catapulting propaganda.
Someone remarked on one of the other blogs--Drum?, S!N.?, TP,? (I fergit)--the other day that the Conventions reminded them of an annual corporate stockholders' meeting-cum-trade expo. Which is just about right: The Dims this week, and the Pukes next week, have brought together in the same place all the important functionaries of the apparatus where they can collect corporate largesse, schmooze with the Fat Cats, and feel like they're part of some 'movement.' It's where the Fat Cats can select from the array of potential sycophants, purchase the ones they want, and jam broomsticks into the spokes of party satraps who are not sufficiently friendly to the bipartisan, CorpoRat Agenda. Plus it is a terriffic propaganda show, now become truly a "pseudo-event," a 'thing' that only exists so that it should be reported on (Boorstin, 1961).
Matt Taibbi has made a similar point, on the Rolling Stone blog:
The truth is that the campaigns of both Barack Obama and John McCain are being inundated with cash from more or less exactly the same gorgons of the corporate scene. From Wall Street to the Big Oil powerhouses to the military-industrial complex, America's fat-cat business leaders know that the Animal House-style party of the last eight years that made almost all of them rich with bonuses, government contracts and bubble profits is about to come to an end, and someone is going to have to pay to clean up the mess. They want that someone to be you, not them, and they've spared no expense to make sure both presidential candidates will be there to bail them out next year.We are SOOOOOOOOOOOOO fucked, people. "We" Murkins have made the classic mistake: Believing our own promotional material, forgetting the spin imparted to make it plausible to the ignorant, and/or the terminally delusional.
They're succeeding. Both would-be presidents have already sold us out. They've taken the money and run — completing the cyclical transformation of the American political narrative from one of monopolistic Republican iniquity to an even more depressing tale about the overweening power of corporate money and the essentially fictitious nature of our two-party system.
In layman's terms, we've gone from being screwed to being fucked. Who knows — maybe Barack Obama will surprise us if he wins the election. But if you look at the money, it doesn't look good.