Posted by: chartroose | March 12, 2009

I Have Conniptions, Therefore I Am

When I started this blog, I swore I wouldn’t become too political, because politics can ruin everything — fast, so this may be my only real sociopolitical diatribe.  Before I begin this rant, let me apologize in advance for any statements I may make that might offend some of you.  Please remember that I am just a single person (and a strange one at that), so my opinions don’t really matter anyway.   

The buildup of anger that I have repressing for so long started after 9-11, when Bush & Company lied about weapons of mass destruction and never stopped lying about everything that mattered, i.e. Iraq, the economy, Haliburton, torture, Cheney’s psychopathology, etc. for the entire eight years that Dubya was in office.  I’m still amazed and ashamed that we reelected that moron for a second term.  It shows how godawful stupid we are.  On that disheartening day, I wanted to move as far away from the U.S. as possible.  Siberia seemed like a relatively reasonable choice–anywhere but here.

Now we are in real financial trouble, and it seems like nobody wants to take responsibility for it.  Certainly Wall Street is partially to blame, but so is every American who has purchased a McMansion that he/she can’t afford, and who has maxed out the credit cards in order to buy the latest Gucci bags and gaming computers.  Now these bankrupt people who have been living way beyond their means and not paying their bills are weeping bitterly and imploring their savior, Obama Most Revered, to come to their aid, and Obama is saying, “forgive them, for they know not what they do.”  In the darkest, blackest recesses of my soul, I’m thinking, “NO, we should not help these liars and cheaters, who prevaricated about their incomes and assets and everything else they could think of so they could purchase that beautiful new Yukon that gets 10 miles per gallon on the interstate.  If they wanted it so badly, let ’em live in it.”  The sad thing is that I’m going to have to pay (and pay and pay) for their narcissism, even though I’ve always lived within my means, and I’ve never, ever been behind on a mortgage payment.

I’m just sick of us, sick, sick, sick!  We are a bunch of greedy, grasping, ignoramuses who only care about ourselves and our silly little lives.  I started becoming really annoyed while reading Mister Pip, because I realized I knew nothing about the setting of the novel.  I didn’t know where Bougainville island was, or what country (or countries) it was affiliated with.  My ignorance appalled me, and this made me become even more upset about the state of things.  Why is it that we’re more concerned about Britney Spears than we are about Darfur?  Do we even know how to find Darfur on a map?  Why are we lining the pockets of preachers instead of filling the coffers of the World Wildlife Fund?  What has happened to us?

This morning was my breaking point.  I was listening to the Today Show as I was getting ready for work, and Meredith Viera was interviewing some guy about Bristol Palin’s breakup with her baby daddy.  I remember thinking that I don’t give a flying f*#k about Bristol Palin or her boyfriend, just like I don’t care about the insanity of the octumom or what Michelle Obama is doing, or how to get in shape for swimsuit season, or how to bake a raspberry torte.  It’s like we’re hiding from the real world, and the media is promulgating our shallowness and stupidity.

Maybe it’s time for the U. S. to collapse.  Maybe we should let the banks fail and the car manufacturers disappear.  Maybe it’s time to get a dose of reality and find out what it’s really like to scrabble for survival.  Maybe it’s time we care more about the planet than we do about our spoiled bratty little selves.  The problem is that everything is so interconnected that if we fall, there goes Europe, and if Europe falls, there goes the rest of the world.  Crap!

So I’m right back where I started from–frustrated and unhappy about the state of the union.  I’m not sure whether this made me feel better or not, but at least it made me feel.  That has to mean something, doesn’t it?   No, it really doesn’t mean a damn thing.

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Responses

  1. Amen, sister. I feel your frustration.
    Lezlie

  2. It’s like we’re hiding from the real world, and the media is promulgating our shallowness and stupidity.

    I couldn’t agree more.

    And I, also, couldn’t give a flying f*#k about Bristol Palin or Britney Spears or which celebrity is married to/dumping/sleeping with which other one. When did that become news?

    We are certainly complicit for watching the crap that mainstream media puts out there, and it’s about time we demand better.

  3. I agree that greed has caused much of our financial crisis. We’re still of the old school – we don’t buy what we can’t afford, so we really resent bailing other people out.

  4. Oooh. Politics. Brave girl. My theory is a lot of the Republican/Democrat fighting is overhyped to keep us little people fighting each other and not paying attention to the big picture. It’s as if it’s a football game and one wins for good, instead of being a check & balance for each other for the good of the country. We’re not inhabited by clones.

  5. For what it’s worth, I agree with much/most of what you’re saying, but I tend to apply the same argument to the environment too, as in “big business/politicians have a vested interest in the status quo, as to take real environmental action would result in economic and convenience ‘pain’, therefore nothing will get done until the world has turned to a festering heap of shit”.

    But some people would suggest I’m overly cynical 🙂

    As for the politics, even if I disagreed with you, it wouldn’t bother me. As long as you’re prepared to listen to contrary views, and be polite about ’em while disagreeing, that will always do for me. If that’s all right with you, of course…

  6. I know how you feel, I share the same frustration from time to time. One thing I have done is discover americanboom.com and can do my research and spen my dollars where they will do the most good.

  7. I understand your frustration, I’ve been feeling the same way too. Not that I am a perfect person, but I have always tried to follow the rules (not go into debt, not buying things I cannot really afford, paying my bills on time, etc.). Seems like it didn’t matter, since we will all be “helping” out those who didn’t.

    And don’t even get me started on newsertainment …

  8. Here, here. My breaking point was yesterday when I discovered the German government were giving grants to its citizens to buy new cars in order to stimulate car manufacturing. I’m like WTF? The planet’s in a complete environmental mess, perhaps its a good thing if car manufacturing collapsed, and here you are propping it up under a false premise. And haven’t we — Europe and USA alike — being propping the whole of the economy up under a false premise for the past 10 years under the guise of free credit.

  9. I so get it, and agree with you almost completely except for one teensy, tiny little thing.

    SOME of the people who are being “bailed out” didn’t do anything wrong, in that so many people have lost their jobs due to this shit economy. Lots of people could afford their homes at the time of purchase, but since losing either one or both of their jobs (I’m assuming 2 job households here) it’s not possible for them to make their payments anymore.

    Don’t get me wrong… I totally agree with this culture of greed that we live in, it is a BAAAD thing (and I’m young and still think this!). But I do think the government needs to take some kind of responsibility, as does Wall Street, as do the banks who made tons and tons of bad loans and didn’t explain things to the customers they were selling them to.

    (and I work for a financial institution… one of the biggest ones… haha)

  10. sigh…

  11. I wouldn’t say it on my blog, but . . . yep.

  12. yeah, I know. Me too.

    Of course, I do have some loans and such, but so far still paying.

    I didn’t even know Bristol Palin and her boyfriend broke up, ha. But you’re right…sadly we could use a little pain…and I think we’ll be getting it.

  13. Hey, Chartroose. I selected you for an award. =)

    http://towerofbooks.wordpress.com/2009/03/12/an-award/

  14. I agree with most of what you said. It applies equally well to Germany – they’re doing exactly the same thing here, or at least plan to. But I’m way past caring about all this crap, to be honest. There’s nothing I could do about it anyway, so I just try to ignore the craziness. Not the best strategy, I know. 😉

    By the way, kimbofo: the grants are not really meant to stimulate car manufactoring, but to help get old cars off the streets and replace them with newer ones that produce less pollution and need less gas and all that. Of course, the stimulation of car manufactoring is a welcome side effect for the government, because otherwise they will have to give the car manufactorers a couple of billion Euros to keep them from collapsing completely. Not that I would care about that, but apparently the loss of thousands of jobs is politically not the best move.

  15. I feel your rage, lady, and love that you put this on your blog.

  16. I do believe the current state of things is the reason why I have more books than ever on my “currently reading” list – anything to get away from the madness and the eye-crossing stupidity of so many things these days. May I have the patience to accept the things I can not change and the courage to change the things I can… or something like that.

    I hope you feel better soon. We all deserve a rant every now and then. 😉

  17. Thank you, everyone, for your comments. It’s nice to know I’m not alone in my frustration.

    And, Heather, I totally agree with you about those honest people who have lost their jobs and can’t afford to live. They should be given all kinds of help, and I feel no animosity toward them.

    The whole situation is so awful! I think I’m going to move to Switzerland and live with Verbivore, and I’ll disappear into more and more novels like Joy suggests.

    Krista–thanks for the award!

  18. I wouldn’t exactly call that a rant – To me a rant is a negative spewing of opinions with now basis of fact to back it up. And your writing was not any of that.

    This was really interesting to read, you presented your thoughts in a well-thought out and intelligent way. You’re angry obviously, but your mind didn’t allow your emotions to make your words petty. I admire that. It also showed that you are not going to be a part of the single-minded herd – and that is something to be mighty proud of.

    The only comment I would like to make (and mine probably is a rant) is about the media, and the completely worthless news that has the world watching with a brain-dead fascination. All I can think of is that the people in charge, the ones who actually run this circus of a world are huge supporters of the current state of entertainment focused news because if the general public is more interested in which 15/yo starlet had a drug-fueled orgy with which singer’s – stepfathers – brother-in-law backstage at the emmy’s, then that’s all the better for them to hide their mistakes and bad choices. Take the phrase “Religion is the opium of the masses” and replace Religion with Media. Seems fitting to me.

    The media is a joke when the front page of the newspaper has full-page articles on the outcome of football games but 15 pages later in a smaller article we learn that thousands of people are starving to death or that we just lost another species of animal. Sad.

  19. I work at a very small credit union and I see people who are struggling so very hard with layoffs and such to make ends meet over bills that are so small that it’s almost a joke. I also see the people with the $500 car payments and $2000 house payments who are so far behind they can’t breathe. One of those groups I really feel sorry for. Unfortunately, I find myself a little guilty of ignoring the news because it stresses me out to think about a future of more of this, and instead I watch crap like American Idol to take my mind off of it. I wish when they did report on the mess we’re in that they were less sensational and more matter-of-fact. I want to do what’s happening, but I don’t want to incite panic, that’s not gonna help anyone.

  20. I admire this post very much.

    We do have the reputation in the world of not knowing our geography. I’ve tried to do better. The Canadians are impressed that I know provincs!

    When Dubya was reelected, that was when I got in touch with my inner expatriate.

  21. While I do think there are a lot of people who have been living beyond their means for too long, I don’t think you can blame them entirely for the mess we’re in now. The real culprits are the people running banks and financial institutions who through their staggering, unimaginable greed took advantage of lax regulations to create this toxic situation. They are responsible for the credit freeze, the layoffs, etc.

    I was talking to a friend yesterday who had been teaching a class to MBA students, and they got on the subject of ethics. Their response was, if you don’t get caught, it’s ok. It’s that kind of thinking that has brought our country to its current state.

    As a culture, we are having a real come to Jesus moment right now. The question is, can we change? Or is this the beginning of the end?

    And if you can’t rant on your blog, where can you rant?

  22. You are so not alone in your thoughts and sentiments my dear. If you make 50K why are you buying a 450k house? Maybe you shouldn’t own a house w/4 bedrooms and 4 baths.
    Get your canned goods and guns ready for the apocalypse, baby. That’s if I don’t move in to my bunker first 🙂

  23. Joanne–I agree with you and Rebecca–the media has become the opium of the masses. I am watching less and less television news with each passing day. Now I have no clue about where I’ll find relevant and unbiased reporting.

    Lisa–How can people who are living paycheck-to-paycheck justify buying a house with $2000.00 house payments? I don’t totally blame the financial folks, because any idiot knows that a great many of them are greedy con artists. Some of that blame must be placed on the consumer for buying huge items that they don’t need and can’t pay for.

    Susan–I may just join you some day!

    Shannon–Bernie Madoff and ING are good examples of Wall Street ethics, aren’t they? This is why I never wanted to go anywhere even remotely close to finance as a career choice.

    jenny–Your idea might not be a bad one. I think stocking-up should be considered because we may be entering some kind of depression where we’ll all be scrambling for jobs and eating one meal a day.


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