Tuesday, June 01, 2010

All Hail the Oligarchy

Yes, of course it's obscene that the minority Conservative government is going to spend an estimated $1 billion for security for the upcoming G8 and G20 summits as a result of political grandstanding (remember 9/11?!) and in the shallowest attempt to highlight one of the Cons' ridings (which those attending the summit won't see anyway because, apparently, it's too scary out there!). But let's get real here: the opposition won't vote against this spending (inflated from the original estimate of $137 billion in the budget documents - did I say "inflated"? Try "blown right out of the water like BP's Gulf Gusher"). To vote against the budget would be a vote of non-confidence which would trigger an election which none of the parties currently want because all over their numbers guarantee yet another (probably Conservative) minority government. (Don't let all of this resurrected "coalition" talk fool you. Ignatieff thinks being the next PM is, laughingly, his destiny.) And, of course, none of these political puppets (except the Bloc Quebecois) wants to "embarrass" Canada on the "world stage" (compliant actors that they are) by causing a domestic ruckus before the meetings even take place.

And what of these meetings with these leaders and their entourages of thousands? The very fact that they think that spending $1 billion of taxpayers' money on their security - not to mention the numerous other expenses that go along with these quickie tete a tetes that could just as easily be handled via Skype - while a global recession is going on and while claiming that it's their humanitarian mission to help the poor with yet more promises of aid that either never materializes or is so wrought with restrictions based on ideology (no abortion funding for you dying women in Africa!) is just another slap in the face to we powerless peasants living in these so-called democracies whose only voting choices include picking a) Party A that panders to Big Business b) Party B that panders to Big Business or, at least in Canada since we have the New Democrats c) Party C that goes along with parties A & B while they pander to Big Business (although they do have showboating tantrums along the way to try to convince the rest of us that they're really different when they're not).

Look, we have a massive clusterfuck of an oil spill in the Gulf courtesy of British Petroleum. Former BP chairman Peter Sutherland who left the company this past January is now the managing director of Goldman Sachs International. That's right - the same Goldman Sachs involved in bringing down Greece's economy. The same Goldman Sachs whose officers were welcomed with open arms into the Bush and Obama administrations. The same Goldman Sachs that's currently trying to cut a deal with the US government to avoid fraud charges for contributing to that same global recession I mentioned above. The Obama administration sent their AG Holder down to the Gulf to make it look like he's actually going to pursue criminal charges against BP. Any idea how long that would actually take in court? Expect yet another deal where BP ends up paying some small fine (in proportion to its ridiculous amount of profits). Oh - ironically - the cost of the cleanup efforts etc to this point in the Gulf equal - wait for it - the same amount projected to be spent on security for those "G we're trying to look like we're doing something" summits (almost $1 billion). Chump change for a corporation like BP. Hardship for the taxpayers of Canada who will pay for these clowns to get together and talk about how they can keep pandering to monster corporations like BP and Goldman Sachs (offering them every possible legal protection they can) while the rest of us pay for their corporate crimes for decades.

This isn't just about BP, obviously. But BP is symptomatic of a much larger problem: we can't get any decent action to deal with climate change and the horrific damage these corporations are causing because the oilgarchy listens to money. They're Money Whisperers. Let's stop pretending that these guys get together to discuss anything resembling The Common Good unless by "Common" you mean those sitting in corporate boardrooms figuring out even more ways to buy more government officials while getting every possible regulation watered down to the point where it does about as much "good" as trying to get we peons to believe that if we all just switch over to compact fluorescent light bulbs, monstrosities like BP wouldn't have to drill 5,000 feet under water just to satisfy our greedy need for more oil. (Let's forget about the fact that corporate America was busy killing innovations like electric cars and that now that they are available, we can't afford them because they're "too new". See how that works? It's all your fault.)

And the latest crime by Israel? Does anybody realistically believe that will even be on the agenda? Of course not. Perpetual war and occupation is good for business. (See: Wars, Afghanistan, Iraq). What does this Con government plan to so with its' so-called "Maternal Health Initiative" in Gaza? Ooops, sorry. That's off the table. They wouldn't want to insult the Israeli government, after all. Look over there! Iran!! Nope. Israel won't even get a "sternly worded letter". The Cons (and the Obama administration) know where their bread is buttered when it comes to campaign donations. Money Whisperers...

So, what's the point of all of this, really? I'd suggest that these so-called leaders could just meet on a cruise ship in international waters somewhere but then they'd run the risk of the Israeli government mistaking it as a humanitarian mission to Gaza and we all know how that would turn out. So they'll descend on Canada for some 72 hours for photo ops while crowing about the "good" they're doing for various and sundry serfs and we'll be left holding the bag for the most expensive meeting of its kind ever. But don't complain. Just get out there and buy a few light bulbs and the order of the world will remain as it should be.

Never before have so many been bought off so much by so few. All hail the oligarchy.

No comments:

Post a Comment