Thursday, September 25, 2008

Election Season Economic Crash Fears of an Artist

The following is a total rant.

As a gay male artist, I must admit that out of necessity I am a liberal both politically and in the practice of my Christian religion. Thus, I am constantly angered by the Republican, self-righteous Christian Right’s use of “Values” (like the rest of us don’t have any) and questionable political practices (like lies) to obtain their ideological goals to limit my freedom as an American citizen. At the same time, I am horrified at the stupidity of my fellow middle and working class American citizens in allowing themselves to be hoodwinked into accepting the increasing limitations being placed on their ability to work toward the American Dream by the current administration, and the Neo-con Republican ideologues. * I am even more appalled by the fact that racial prejudice among the (white) middle class may cost Obama the election in November. *2 Darn, I sound frightened and angry as I read this. Its just that the possible extension of this Republican pro corporation, “anything goes” system, for 4 to 8 more years through McCain and Palin scares the (BLEEP) out of me. And now, McCain wants to postpone the first presidential candidate’s debate because he’s suddenly concerned about the economy (bull-BLEEP!)

In fact, part of the reason I am so frightened is because I’ve been watching the economy take its hyperbolic slide down hill since September 2005 with increasing anxiety as greed and denial eliminated the first two and one half years of the slide from our collective consciousness. Yes, September of 2005, three entire years ago. If you notice Bush and McCain have only begun to admit there is a problem during the past 2 weeks, and we are now three years into the worst economic crises since the 1929 crash and the super depression of the 1930’s. *3 Am I the only American that understands the fact that this economic crisis has been brewing for three years or more? Actually the crisis goes back more than thirty years, since it is based on the super-rich Republican Oil Oligarchy’s “lazy fair” ideology, that you let the economy regulate itself, and then (their) wealth (the super-rich oil oligarchy’s) will gradually trickle down through the rest of the upper classes (those rich families worth less than 5 billion dollars each) to the middle (those earning 5 million a year according to McCain) and gurgle as a happy sludgy brook through the professional and working classes, and finally over the edge of a cliff as a tumbling trickle to dust the poor with a bit of rarified black oil oligarchy mist.

I also find it very interesting that there is that portion of the rich and super-rich upper classes that historically, whether Republican or Democrat, define themselves in ways that make sense to me. These honest rich folk feel a responsibility to distribute their wealth through providing well paying jobs to millions of workers, through charity work and endowments. They do so because the very foundation of their philosophy and religious practice makes them responsible for their brothers and sisters, for they do see humanity as one family (which it is genetically). In fact in the good old days the rich Republican understood that not only did government have to be financially responsible, but that responsibility took into its province the provision for its citizenry of the best possible environment in which to grow in spiritual, emotional and physical wealth. I’m not sure what happened to these Republican and Democratic rich folk. I think they are still around; it’s just that the greedy folk have gotten the upper hand.

As an artist I am faced with putting my work out before the public this winter (after the presidential election) and I hope that there is enough wealth left in the United States that a few people who like my work might be able to afford to buy it. You see, I know that original artwork is the last thing people will buy in an economic crisis. And, rich folk, whether Republican or Democrat, are going to look for an Old World, Modern or Postmodern masterpiece. I’m afraid I don’t fit into any of those categories – not yet anyway (I am writing this last with a smile on my face.)

Oh, and now my fellow middle class and working class Americans don’t want the government to rescue Wall Street because the rich greedy fools caused this mess. “U-u-u-h-h-h U-u-u-h-h-h!” Do these nay saying middle class folk really want to let all those bad mortgages turn to dust and watch all those families turned out on the streets, all those billions of dollars in assets evaporate? The "smash-up" such a mess would make causes the 1929 crash to look like a walk in the park! The Democrats in the Senate and Congress have it right here. Here are some of the restrictions that must be put on the bailout. First, don’t allow the CEO’s of these companies to walk away with millions for having put their companies in harms way. Second, make sure that the now government owned companies pay back as much of the tax payers money as possible over time. Third, the rescued companies must be forced to buy back their stock at some point in the future. Fourth, at least some of the money earned from these buy-backs should end up in tax payer's pockets.

My Excuse for this Diatribe

Because of preparing for my show and the concerns that groundwork has generated I’m in a political panic, thus, this entry in “The Art Of John Bittinger Klomp.” In the end I must allow my spiritual self to have the upper hand - that part of me which understands all of this entry to be based on worldly concerns - that God has a much larger view of things including the entire universe, not just this tiny bit of consciousness on this tiny spec of dust of a world lost among the hundred thousand stars of the Milky Way Galaxy which is itself lost among the thousands of other galaxies spread across empyreal space and time.


*Perhaps the American Dream needs redefining or at least the original American dream needs to be reemphasized. It seems to have become increasingly coupled with the idea that one works toward becoming buried in manufactured junk of all kinds, rich beyond anything Midas could have imagined, and entitled to any/all assistance that the government can provide, provided that anyone of any other political, social, religious, racial, sexual persuasion is not so assisted.

*2 (09-20-08) Yes, this will be something of a rant. I was just reading this morning's news, specifically the Associated Press Article titled "Racial views steer some white Dems away from Obama," The article states that racial prejudice on the part of Democrats and Independents may cost Obama as much as 2 and 1/2 percentage points which will go instead to McCain. The article discusses the fact that 40% of whites in America still harbor some prejudice against blacks according to a recent Stanford University study. This is an academic study done with care and precision, not a national poll taken by one of the news services. I personally am ashamed of my fellow Caucasian Democrats who still exhibit such foolish prejudice in the 21st Century. We as middle class whites complain that Latin persons are taking our jobs away from us, when illegal aliens are the only folks who are willing to dig ditches, do public and domestic gardening, wash dishes, as well as other menial jobs. We complain that blacks are lazy when we ourselves would refuse to lift a shovel to dig a hole. Well, I've got news for most white middle class Americans - your present Republican government headed by G. W. Bush has put you in an economic space so dangerous that you may well end up having to do those jobs that the lazy black folk of your imaginings won't do, and the illegal aliens actuality do, because you personally, corporations and local governments won't have the money to pay to have them done. So much for prejudice being alive and well in America!

*3 In view of the fact that I began writing this article last week - the sudden recognition of the worst economic crisis since THE GREAT DEPRESSION has finally happened with the government bailout of Fannie Mae, Freddie Mac, Lehman Brothers and AIG and many others - we are now a socialist state. Isn’t that nice to know. And all of this has taken place under the Republican, GW - “Lazy Fair” -Bush administration!

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