Blackout Balloon

There is an invisible but giant blackened balloon in which national policy discussions occur. The balloon not only keeps those in these discussions in the dark about the realities of the world outside its membrane but most importantly blocks out all input that might broaden or flatly contradict these discussions. The outcome is that what goes on inside the balloon simply reflects a 45 yard line to 45 yard line echo chamber. This is then parroted by mainstream media via a heavily filtered one way channel that passively broadcasts only this content, The balloon is filled with the gas of corporate. interests including those of the MSM and their “newspeople” who prize stale ideas and access to those who spout them, elected officials whose task is to remain elected, academic figures wedded to whatever consensus views assure them life in the balloon, “think tanks” funded by those already secure in their status, military elites who wish to make rank, bureaucrats who prize their fiefdoms over the common good, and numerous others whose interest is in the status quo as it is manifested in poverty, militarism, racism, inequality, and the superiority of “cutting edge conventional wisdom” (Yves Smith).

The results of the above enforced ignorance have left us with a global sense that there is no alternative (TINA) in all major policy areas where the common good is concerned.

The next time an emission of gas about USA response to some world crisis is promulgated whether direct from one of the above or via the MSM that states what is needed is more military activity or “all options are on the table” ask yourself: “When was the last time a military solution was effective?” The answer is course a long, long time ago. Then ask yourself “How often is that answer ever, ever proffered for general consumption”?

The next time emissions of gas proclaim global warming doesn’t exist or worse that what we are agreeing to even closely approaches a sufficient response, ask yourself why aren’t we hearing serious proposals from either political party? Who is funding the moratorium on discussion and action?

The next time an emission of gas states we cant afford to supply a public good, ask yourself “Why not”? And if you even get answer does it rely on the analogy of a household/business budget to the federal government? And then ask why that analogy is never disputed but always assumed when in fact it is flat wrong. Or does it ever get discussed that we could afford it if we didn’t support the largest by far military budget in the world with no rationale for it beyond the vague reassurances from the gaseous class that it is needed for national security?

Or more broadly when the argument for or against spending for the public good gets discussed it is never allowed to suggest that there are other ways to organize an economy and that the way we have been doing it has led over past 40 years to no real change for most, and major gains for the few. This is immediately dismissed as “class war” but of course this the response from inside the bubble occupied by the class that has won the war.

Is there any sign of life in a discussion of a different type of divide — between those who assume the current institutional framework of capitalism, the TINA power group, and those who would actually use the history of economic theory to question this framework and argue that the economic problems of our times require looking at class understanding as a requisite for real reform ?

Airpower to solve a problem? Do you ever hear the response that airpower has a terrible track record in actually delivering success however that is defined? And when was the last time a discussion was allowed or took place on regular basis in public forum about our nuclear weapons? How often is it allowed to reveal how much nuclear firepower we have and what would be needed in some doomsday scenario?

The USA is the largest penal state in the world by a wide margin. Other than its being noted and sometimes tied to draconian drug laws is there ever any mention of the complicating factors of poverty, racial, corporate power?

Where can we find folks with the courage to forsake their comfort and power and status to burst the balloon from the inside?

Otherwise will it be ruptured from out here, outside, with no assurances as to the consequences.?

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