Tag: Chris Hedges

Bitter Lake ripples.

Reflections on last Thursday’s post.

Last Thursday, I published a post under the title of Oil, money, banks, guns and blood. It was such a departure from my normal style of blog post that I anticipated that it would slide by without any comment. Wrong! It had the highest readership of the week and attracted some powerful and insightful replies. So much so that I expressed the desire to reflect on those replies before responding. Thus, today’s post is my response to your comments and feelings.

First, Hariod Brawn of the blogsite Contentedness responded, in part:

Now, where are we? Val’s words are a good place to begin: “Nothing is what is seems, or will ever be the same again.” Nobody knows for sure, but piecing together fragments of world events, my instinct (fwiw) tells me that we are in the incipient stages of the collapse of the 20th.c. paradigm. Neoliberalism has failed; further than that, Capitalism has failed – we have no free markets where it counts; they’re all rigged. Politics has failed too, having been bought out by the corporates. [There are over 30,000 lobbyists in Washington alone] All that Western Governments have to offer is a doomed re-run of failed practices (same with Japan actually). Worse still, they have gone down on their knees and begged the financial sector to create a fix. The private banks have been given access to vast sums of QE cash at virtually zero interest in order to continue rigging markets (via their agents) all to their benefit whilst also creating huge market distortions in asset bubbles. Has the wealth they created trickled down? Has it hell. Whilst all this is going on, and as the film so clearly demonstrates, the Middle East looks like fulfilling its promise of the last century as being the flashpoint for warfare on a vast scale. And of course, if by some miracle we escape financial collapse, and world peace is not threatened by warfare, then the environment is going down the pan because – guess what? – our politicians have failed us once again. I have said enough on this.

Hariod then went on to recommend the films of Chris Hedges that will be featured on Learning from Dogs at a future date.

Then Val Boyco, her blogsite being Find Your Middle Ground, wrote a response before viewing the film:

Without being informed yet … my thinking is that the world we live in is so complex, stressful and fast that we can’t absorb everything that happens. We simplify and label, in order to make sense. We chop and segment in order to understand, but we miss the full story and many have lost the ability to grasp the bigger picture…. or are too fearful of going against the expectations of others and becoming one of “them” instead of one of “us”.

Then reinforced by her comment after watching the film:

I just watched the movie Paul. It is powerful and very disturbing. As you say, it undermines what we believe is real. It also reveals the complexity – misunderstanding – manipulation – corruption – opium, oil and the struggle for power – naivety – chaos.
In the dualistic fairy tale world of good vs evil it has created a nightmare of errors.
Nothing is what is seems.
Or will ever be the same again.

There was a comment from Patrice Ayme:

Giant American global corporations, the 200 largest ones, do 100 billion dollars of tax evasion through Luxembourg alone. Each year. Many are media companies. Wonder why stories make no sense?

Juncker directed that. Now he is head of the European Commission, and insist Greece shall pay every single penny.

As it happened, my dad was among a European group of geologists working for the Afghan government, who discovered Afghanistan’s riches… In the 1970s. All hell broke loose shortly thereafter.

I write about these sorts of things, day in, day out. But most people prefer the opium of feel-good…

Patrice then went further in offering a post over on his own blog that carried the specific title of Great Bitter Lake. Let me quote a little from that:

“Bitter Lake” is about the conspiracy between American plutocracy and Saudi plutocracy. Plutocrat Roosevelt was freshly flown from Yalta, to the Great Bitter Lake, on the Suez Canal. The idea was to steal the Maghreb, and the Middle East from the French and the British, by making a theocratic alliance.

At Yalta, Roosevelt had given half of Europe to his Comrade Stalin. (Plutocrats of the world naturally unite!)

Never mind that Poland had fought the Nazis courageously the Nazis, at a time when the USA was militarily and diplomatically collaborating… with the Nazis (or maybe, precisely, the Poles had to be punished!) Roosevelt had to be strict: the French had successfully escaped from the military occupation (AMGOT) he had set-up for them.

The movie “Bitter Lake” exposes (some) of the American plutocracy led conspiracies which led to the devastation, among other things, of Afghanistan, and other constituencies, thanks to the Wahhabist Islam it unleashed on the world.

Readers of this site will be familiar with the general ambiance.

One caveat: all what is in the documentary and makes American plutocrats (Roosevelt) and their servants (Reagan) look bad, is correct. However the real situation, the real badness is way worse. (For example the secret, official USA intervention in Afghanistan was under Carter, on July 3, 1979. However the real even more secret intervention, through the Pakistani ISI was even earlier and even more vicious.

So what is my response?

It is this:

In 1887, Oscar Wilde said, referring to the differences between the British and the Americans: “We have really everything in common with America nowadays, except, of course, language.

By way of example there is a saying back in my old country that when something is “… going to the dogs”, it means an irreversible decline in standards; the phrase usually aimed at an organisation or even a country.

Many, especially those of my age, might nod sagely and reflect that something ‘is going to the dogs‘ in terms of the wider Western world.

Let me be specific. There are destructive and dysfunctional issues in modern societies that I would list as: Selfishness; Power & Corruption; Short-termism; Materialism; Population growth; Greed, inequality and poverty. It’s not an exhaustive list!

Now many would argue the ‘whys’ and ‘wherefores’ about what precisely is wrong with Western societies in this 21st century but far fewer would argue with the underlying premise; that something is fundamentally wrong with today’s world.

Indeed, one of the things that is impossible to miss is the body language, the look on a face, the shrug of a shoulder, when one casually remarks that these are interesting times! From strangers and friends alike.

There is no question that what mankind has ‘enjoyed’ these last fifty years or so cannot be continued for very much longer. That the era since the 1960s of growth, materialism and consumption is running one very basic and fundamental resource dry. You know the one I am referring to: Planet Earth.

My hope is that the widely-felt feelings that something is fundamentally wrong with today, are the feelings man has always experienced, since time immemorial, when mankind has passed through the threshold between two eras.

My hope is that the new era, one that we quite possibly may now just be entering, a new era of sustainable living on this planet, of social and political changes to replace extreme levels of inequality, of stronger communities of like-minded persons, will be obvious to all, but especially obvious to our next generation, within the next ten years; possibly fewer than ten years.

One thing is for sure. The sharing of ideas and feelings as is the style of modern blogging is critical to the forming of the opinions that precede the changes that so many now see as unstoppable.

The lure of patterns.

Is this present era really coming to an end?

Somewhere in my aged brain cells is the memory of having heard that humans are great lovers of patterns.  In other words, patterns are deemed to be very important for the progress and evolution of homo sapiens.  Of course, it is not just humans who learn from patterns; I’m sure most of the animals who live around us are great pattern matchers.  To support that proposition, anyone who has owned a dog or cat will have spotted how quickly they learn patterns.  (As an aside, some months ago our puppy German Shepherd, Cleo, work me at around 4am because she needed to go outside for a ‘call of nature’.  I now get woken every single night variously between 2am and 5am for Cleo’s benefit!)

The British mathematician G. H. Hardy who lived from the last quarter of the 19th Century well into the 20th Century, reputedly said (and I cheated and looked it up!):

A mathematician, like a painter or poet, is a maker of patterns. If his patterns are more permanent than theirs, it is because they are made with ideas.

So why has this post opened with the theme of patterns?  Because, call it coincidence or what, within the last couple of weeks there have been three articles, each from very a different source, predicting that the present levels of inequality in society are both unsustainable and the beginning of the end.

First, on Michael Robert’s blog there was a post eleven days ago about global wealth inequality. From which I quote:

Global wealth inequality: top 1% own 41%; top 10% own 86%; bottom half own just 1%

—–

Just 8.4% of all the 5bn adults in the world own 83.4% of all household wealth (that’s property and financial assets, like stocks, shares and cash in the bank).  About 393 million people have net worth (that’s wealth after all debt is accounted for) of over $100,000, that’s 10% own 86% of all household wealth!  But $100,000 may not seem that much, if you own a house in any G7 country without any mortgage.  So many millions in the UK or the US are in the top 10% of global wealth holders.  This shows just how little two-thirds of adults in the world have – under $10,000 of net wealth each and billions have nothing at all.

This is not annual income but just wealth – in other words, 3.2bn adults own virtually nothing at all.  At the other end of the spectrum, just 32m people own $98trn in wealth or 41% of all household wealth or more than $1m each.  And just 98,700 people with ‘ultra-high net worth’ have more than $50 million each and of these 33,900 are worth over $100 million each.  Half of these super-rich live in the US.

Michael Robert’s essay closes:

All class societies have generated extremes of inequality in wealth and income.  That is the point of a rich elite (whether feudal landlords, Asiatic warlords, Incan and Egyptian religious castes, Roman slave owners, etc) usurping control of the surplus produced by labour.  But past class societies considered that normal and ‘god-given’. Capitalism on the other hand talks about free markets, equal exchange and equality of opportunity.  But the reality is no different from previous class societies.

Secondly, just last Friday I was drawn to an essay on, of all places, The Permaculture Research Institute blog.  The essay, by Chris Hedges (**), was called On Inequality and the Collapse of Globalization.  Chris Hedges opened his essay, thus:

The uprisings in the Middle East, the unrest that is tearing apart nations such as the Ivory Coast, the bubbling discontent in Greece, Ireland and Britain and the labor disputes in states such as Wisconsin and Ohio presage the collapse of globalization. They presage a world where vital resources, including food and water, jobs and security, are becoming scarcer and harder to obtain. They presage growing misery for hundreds of millions of people who find themselves trapped in failed states, suffering escalating violence and crippling poverty. They presage increasingly draconian controls and force—take a look at what is being done to Pfc. Bradley Manning—used to protect the corporate elite who are orchestrating our demise.

We must embrace, and embrace rapidly, a radical new ethic of simplicity and rigorous protection of our ecosystem—especially the climate—or we will all be holding on to life by our fingertips. We must rebuild radical socialist movements that demand that the resources of the state and the nation provide for the welfare of all citizens and the heavy hand of state power be employed to prohibit the plunder by the corporate power elite. We must view the corporate capitalists who have seized control of our money, our food, our energy, our education, our press, our health care system and our governance as mortal enemies to be vanquished.

The PRI editor’s preamble to the Chris Hedges essay included a couple of videos that he recommended watching.  One was a talk by Robert Reich: How Unequal Can America Get Before We Snap?

The other one was a recent TED Talk by Richard Wilkinson (his profile is here).

Mr. Wilkinson explains that for the majority of people there is an instinctive feeling that societies with huge income gaps and corresponding high levels of social inequality are somehow going wrong. He charts the hard data on such economic inequality and shows what gets worse when rich and poor are too far apart: ergo, the very real effects on health, lifespan, and even such basic values as trust.

Just 16 minutes long, it’s a very revealing talk.  Do watch it.

oooo

The final, third piece of the pattern was me coming across an essay on the blog DeflationLand, not a blog I had come across before, on the same day that I saw the PRI article.  This essay, published just two days before the PRI article, was about patterns; the patterns of the centuries.  More specifically, how the characteristics of a century generally evolve to a new culture within the first 10 to 15 years of the following century.  It was a most interesting proposition and, to my delight, I was given permission to republish that essay here on Learning from Dogs.  So here it is.

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Why I stopped worrying and learned to love the currency collapse

For the past 300 years, the historical pattern has been for the era marked by a century to continue into the following century by fourteen or fifteen years. Let me explain.  Everyone knows that the 19th Century, its uprightness, its optimism and sense of purpose, the halcyon days of British Empire, came to an end with World War I, starting in 1914 and building to a nasty crescendo by 1916.  The 20th Century had arrived, and it had some real horrors in store for us.

Germans before Kraftwerk
Germans before Kraftwerk

But if we return back another hundred years, we notice that the 18th Century ends in 1815 with the final defeat of Napoleon, that final project of the Enlightenment and of the French Revolution.  With the Congress of Vienna in 1814-1815, we have a new Europe along the lines of Metternich’s plan, and the 19th Century at last is here.

"Sorry, guys.  My bad."
“Sorry, guys. My bad.”

In 1713 and 1714, we have the Treaties of Utrecht, Baden, and Rastatt, bringing an end to the era of Spain as a major power, and the rise of the Habsburgs.  Louis XIV dies in 1715, after reigning for 72 years.  The Baroque period is over, and we are now firmly in the 18th Century.

War of Spanish Succession
War of Spanish Succession

We still live in the 20th Century.  Nothing much significant has changed in our lives in the past twenty years.  Symptoms of a deeper rot are appearing here and there, foreshadowing a larger crisis, but the crisis itself has not arrived yet.  We still live in an era of Pax Americana, the old republic very much a strained and tired Empire now, with the U.S. Dollar as the world’s reserve currency.

That is going to change.

The next task for History is to dismantle the untenable structures and institutions put in place by late Modernity, which have been extended now as far as they can go.  Our debt-based monetary system will collapse, our unbacked fiats will be worthless.  The debts and unmeetable obligations will all default.

There are ironies and great contradictions as the former home and hope of Liberty becomes viciously unfree and increasingly despotic.  Our leaders no longer govern, but try instead to rule us — they are less legitimate with each passing day, their laws corrupt or worse.  They are nearly finished, and will be swept away with the tide.

Just as in 1914, the internationalist system will break down, dashing the hopes of the would-be first-world nations.  We will probably have a pretty good war as well, or many local ones worldwide.  These transitions tend to involve war.

Deflation first — it clears the way for the complete loss of faith and hyperinflation that will follow.  The next big wave down in the financial markets is the battering ram.  The U.S. national debt is about faith, so is quantitative easing, and so is the very idea of magical coins that could ever be “worth” a trillion dollars.  When this faith breaks, in concert with loss of faith in perpetual growth and unlimited cheap energy, then things will move very, very quickly.

There is nothing any of us can do at this point, except navigate the rapids as well as possible, and to stay out of the way of a dying empire, which is still very dangerous in its death throes.  We are actually very privileged to be alive and witnessing this next transition, to what we do not know just yet.  But what an honor to live at this time, not in ignorance but with an existential resolve to come out of it alive and much the wiser.

Ass Americana.
Ass Americana.

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** Chris Hedges is a Pulitzer Prize–winning author and former international correspondent for the New York Times. His latest book is The World As It Is: Dispatches on the Myth of Human Progress.

I am neither a scientist nor a historian; just someone who has lived in and observed the world for coming on for 60 years.

So you have to understand that my prediction is hardly worth the ‘paper I write upon’ (which certainly dates me!).  But, undaunted, here are my predictions for the 21st Century:

  • That the power of internet communications will allow more people, more quickly, to find their soul-mates wherever they are on this planet.
  • That the realisation of how dysfunctional many Governments are, of how truly poorly they serve the majorities of their citizens, will lead to mass rejections of these so-called Governments’ policies.  Such rejections predominantly peaceful, as in taking the horse to water but being unable to make it drink.
  • That there will be a new form of localism.  At two levels.  Literally, people geographically close to each other creating 21st C. versions of local communities.  Virtually, those local communities linking to other like-minded communities right across the world resulting in highly effective and innovative learning, accelerated common-sense, (call it wisdom if you wish), and extraordinarily efficient and sustainable ways of living on this planet.

What do you think?

Looking into self.

Rounding off the week.

Starting with Monday’s video of Carl Sagan reminding us all that Planet Earth is just a grain of sand in the vast cosmos right through to yesterday’s Dealing with madness post, much of the week has been reminding us all of one very fundamental truth.  No better expressed than in a comment from Patrice Ayme [my emphasis]:

… there is no healthy man without a healthy world.

Regulars will have noted the high levels of debate this week.  Thank you all for those comments.

I have also received a couple of emails with feedback and comments, sent to me on a personal basis.  One of those emails had such a powerful message that I begged for permission to publish it on Learning from Dogs.  I was asked to keep the author’s identity private but, trust me, it is from someone I know well who subscribes to ideas of integrity and honesty in spades.

The author also strongly recommended publishing in association with his personal essay an extract from Chris Hedges’ book “Death of the Liberal Class”.  That extract follows straight on from the essay.

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Reflections from a Vietnam Combat Veteran

War is an unnatural dichotomy.  Both sides are morally and materially diminished.  A future World War would most probably finish us as the self-appointed predominant intelligent species on planet earth.  It seems worth noting that German industrialists coordinated fundamentalist propaganda to foster the bigotry, hatred and fear which fueled their profitable war engines prior to World War II.

United States commercial media today reflects a financially dominated military-industrial culture with liberty and justice for sale.  The results are divisive and lead to both a declared international war against nebulous assailants we have been taught to dislike and an internal political war that has polarized our once fair nation.

We’ve stopped investing in the future in response to radicals who want to destroy government, human rights and what remains of the earth’s surface resources.  There is an emerging police state mentality on display with a variety of candidates for local dictator.

It’s well past time for moderate republicans to ignore their uber-conservative brethren.  It’s well past time for moderate democrats to renounce their corporate ties.  This will only happen when our financial and political leaders awaken to the reality of what is in the best long-term interests for all life on this planet rather than our present unsustainable global economy.

To complicate the problem, our planet is under attack by a swarm of vociferous human locusts seeking profit without regard to the consequences.  Meanwhile, despite human denial, the universe continues to emerge.  Species which do not adapt to change do not survive.

It’s important to remember that we’re in the midst of a battle that’s as old as the conscious awareness of the human species.  We generally have very little idea of the inclusive nature of our being; let alone the nature of our collective being as a species. We have as yet to learn how to surrender to reality.  The battle is with our own species.

Committing collective suicide for quarterly profit is not a sane way of life.  What we’ve created is a neo-feudal global economy without any foundation that feeds on an empire of consumption.  When we combine a neo-feudal economy with neo-fascist politics we arrive at a moral and biological dead end.

The coup d’état of the current Corporate State is the Citizen’s United ruling that makes money a form of free speech.  Money has no DNA.  In case anyone missed how the “occupy” movement was crushed, there’s no question that we’re rapidly criminalizing all forms of dissent.  These actions are being taking under the 1917 Espionage Act and related state secrets acts.  No discernment of moral value is considered and no public hearings are conducted.  People who speak up are locked up.  We’ve become a fearful and secretive population.

Our self-appointed elite power structure is completely irrational in its belief that human reason is our ultimate power and money is its servant.  We are made of the stuff of the stars.  At best, we’re in our adolescence as a species.  We think we know the answers rather than admitting our ignorance.  What little we know is vastly less than what we have as yet to learn.  We are often unaware of being unaware.

The lives we presently lead can not be sustained in ways that we have become accustomed to; ways we take for granted.  What’s going to need to change?  The simple answer is everything.  Our species has systemically corrupted the small part of the cosmos which sustains our being.  Nature has no sense of humor, no patience for human squabbles and no financial interest.

Fortunately, we already know what we need to do to adapt.  We know how nature works through the wisdom of our earth sciences.  The answer is simple.  Love the earth.  Love life.  Share compassion.  Educate, naturally energize, and transform.  The resulting process of change will help re-establish a realistic world economic foundation.

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‘Death of the Liberal Class’

By Chris Hedges

From the book “Death of the Liberal Class,” by Chris Hedges.  Excerpted by arrangement with Nation Books, a member of the Perseus Books Group.  Copyright © 2010.

The following selection is taken from the first chapter of the book, published in October 201 by Nation Books.

In a traditional democracy, the liberal class functions as a safety valve. It makes piecemeal and incremental reform possible. It offers hope for change and proposes gradual steps toward greater equality. It endows the state and the mechanisms of power with virtue. It also serves as an attack dog that discredits radical social movements, making the liberal class a useful component within the power elite.

But the assault by the corporate state on the democratic state has claimed the liberal class as one of its victims. Corporate power forgot that the liberal class, when it functions, gives legitimacy to the power elite. And reducing the liberal class to courtiers or mandarins, who have nothing to offer but empty rhetoric, shuts off this safety valve and forces discontent to find other outlets that often end in violence. The inability of the liberal class to acknowledge that corporations have wrested power from the hands of citizens, that the Constitution and its guarantees of personal liberty have become irrelevant, and that the phrase consent of the governed is meaningless, has left it speaking and acting in ways that no longer correspond to reality. It has lent its voice to hollow acts of political theater, and the pretense that democratic debate and choice continue to exist.

The liberal class refuses to recognize the obvious because it does not want to lose its comfortable and often well-paid perch. Churches and universities—in elite schools such as Princeton, professors can earn $180,000 a year—enjoy tax-exempt status as long as they refrain from overt political critiques. Labor leaders make lavish salaries and are considered junior partners within corporate capitalism as long as they do not speak in the language of class struggle. Politicians, like generals, are loyal to the demands of the corporate state in power and retire to become millionaires as lobbyists or corporate managers. Artists who use their talents to foster the myths and illusions that bombard our society live comfortably in the Hollywood Hills.

The media, the church, the university, the Democratic Party, the arts, and labor unions—the pillars of the liberal class—have been bought off with corporate money and promises of scraps tossed to them by the narrow circles of power. Journalists, who prize access to the powerful more than they prize truth, report lies and propaganda to propel us into a war in Iraq. Many of these same journalists assured us it was prudent to entrust our life savings to a financial system run by speculators and thieves. Those life savings were gutted. The media, catering to corporate advertisers and sponsors, at the same time renders invisible whole sections of the population whose misery, poverty, and grievances should be the principal focus of journalism.

In the name of tolerance—a word the Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr., never used—the liberal church and the synagogue refuse to denounce Christian heretics who acculturate the Christian religion with the worst aspects of consumerism, nationalism, greed, imperial hubris, violence, and bigotry. These institutions accept globalization and unfettered capitalism as natural law. Liberal religious institutions, which should concern themselves with justice, embrace a cloying personal piety expressed in a how-is-it-with-me kind of spirituality and small, self-righteous acts of publicly conspicuous charity. Years spent in seminary or rabbinical schools, years devoted to the study of ethics, justice, and morality, prove useless when it comes time to stand up to corporate forces that usurp religious and moral language for financial and political gain.

Universities no longer train students to think critically, to examine and critique systems of power and cultural and political assumptions, to ask the broad questions of meaning and morality once sustained by the humanities. These institutions have transformed themselves into vocational schools. They have become breeding grounds for systems managers trained to serve the corporate state. In a Faustian bargain with corporate power, many of these universities have swelled their endowments and the budgets of many of their departments with billions in corporate and government dollars. College presidents, paid enormous salaries as if they were the heads of corporations, are judged almost solely on their ability to raise money. In return, these universities, like the media and religious institutions, not only remain silent about corporate power but also condemn as “political” all within their walls who question corporate malfeasance and the excesses of unfettered capitalism.

Unions, organizations formerly steeped in the doctrine of class struggle and filled with members who sought broad social and political rights for the working class, have been transformed into domesticated negotiators with the capitalist class. Cars rolling off the Ford plants in Michigan were said to be made by UAW Ford. But where unions still exist, they have been reduced to simple bartering tools, if that. The social demands of unions in the early twentieth century that gave the working class weekends off, the right to strike, the eight-hour workday, and Social Security, have been abandoned. Universities, especially in political science and economics departments, parrot the discredited ideology of unregulated capitalism and have no new ideas. The arts, just as hungry as the media or the academy for corporate money and sponsorship, refuse to address the social and economic disparities that create suffering for tens of millions of citizens. Commercial artists peddle the mythical narrative, one propagated by corporations, self-help gurus, Oprah and the Christian Right, that if we dig deep enough within ourselves, focus on happiness, find our inner strength, or believe in miracles, we can have everything we desire.

Such magical thinking, a staple of the entertainment industry, blinds citizens to corporate structures that have made it impossible for families to lift themselves out of poverty or live with dignity. But perhaps the worst offender within the liberal class is the Democratic Party.

The party consciously sold out the working class for corporate money. Bill Clinton, who argued that labor had nowhere else to go, in 1994 passed the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA), which betrayed the working class. He went on to destroy welfare and in 1999 ripped down the firewalls between commercial and investment banks to turn the banking system over to speculators. Barack Obama, who raised more than $600 million to run for president, most of it from corporations, has served corporate interests as assiduously as his party. He has continued the looting of the U.S. Treasury by corporations, refused to help the millions of Americans who have lost their homes because of bank repossessions or foreclosures, and has failed to address the misery of our permanent class of unemployed.

Populations will endure the repression of tyrants, as long as these rulers continue to manage and wield power effectively. But human history has demonstrated that once those in positions of power become redundant and impotent, yet insist on retaining the trappings and privileges of power, their subject populations will brutally discard them. Such a fate awaits the liberal class, which insists on clinging to its positions of privilege while at the same time refusing to play its traditional role within the democratic state. The liberal class has become a useless and despised appendage of corporate power. And as corporate power pollutes and poisons the ecosystem and propels us into a world where there will be only masters and serfs, the liberal class, which serves no purpose in the new configuration, is being abandoned and discarded. The death of the liberal class means there is no check to a corporate apparatus designed to enrich a tiny elite and plunder the nation. An ineffectual liberal class means there is no hope, however remote, of a correction or a reversal. It ensures that the frustration and anger among the working and middle classes will find expression outside the confines of democratic institutions and the civilities of a liberal democracy.