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Moment of Truth: May 20 2017

Krauthammer and Sickle

Welcome to the Moment of Truth: the thirst that is the drink.

Fox News Channel chattering skull Charles Krauthammer is off the chain and skating on the slippery slope toward socialism.

Back when we were hunting and gathering in small tribes, we didn't have much, but what we had we shared. We never let anyone go hungry or homeless who was in the tribe. And you had to do something pretty severe to get kicked out. It wasn't until we had a large surplus that we began starving people. Now, it could be said that these people we've been starving since we developed the ability not to starve anyone aren't members of our tribe. However, ethically, we've come to the conclusion that all people are human beings and worthy of every chance to live. Of course there's a sizeable minority of racist, nationalist, and religious fanatics who think anyone not like them should die. But for the most part, humanity is leaning toward including all of humanity and even some other beings in the "in" group.

And yet somehow, we're starving people. We're allowing people to go without medical treatment for permanently damaging or even fatal ailments. We're shortchanging them on education. We're shortchanging them on opportunity.

Just to review: when we barely had enough, we shared. Now that we have way more than enough, we allow a few a-holes to hoard a ridiculous surplus that could save lives.

We are slaves. If that offends anyone because it trivializes actual slavery, I'm sorry, but I don't mean this metaphorically. In the future, should we be fortunate enough to have one, people will wonder how we could stand it, having the basic necessities of survival denied us, held hostage, only provided to us on condition of our servitude. Obviously there are other ways to look at our condition, but when a small handful of idiotically privileged people skate merrily about in solid gold ice rinks or sip heroin tea in which they've poached the last embryonic platypus while toxically polluting more land than all the farmers in the world could farm, land that could be filtering pollution and hosting herds of cool megafauna, while the vast majority of people are either forced to work at unfulfilling, monotonous, spirit-killing, or even dangerous jobs, or to beg, or to pick weeds out of the desert gravel in order not to starve – what do you call that? You call that freedom?

There's this idea that if you create the basis for a money-making organization, you deserve all the millions you can legally milk from it if you should be so lucky that it makes millions. That's a sucker's idea. It only works for a few people, and those few people are just lucky, not better than the rest of us. And there's not so little to go around that we have to let the lucky few have so much and not force them to share it, if they won't do so on their own.

There's an obnoxious belief that in order to keep humanity progressing, creating, inventing, and devising ways to get more value out of the environment for less human input of energy, we have to incentivize activities by offering astronomical rewards. A corollary to that is that in order to keep people contributing to the upkeep of the public sphere we have to incentivize healing, teaching, cleaning, food preparation, and various infrastructure maintenance by threatening people with hunger, homelessness, and pain and death through medical neglect. This is barbaric.

But the majority of people believe these lies. We are slaves to these false propositions.

Here's an example of mental slavery: in the California legislature, they're trying to ban drug companies giving gifts to doctors. Studies have shown that doctors prescribe name- brand drugs over generics more often when bribed, or excuse me, given gifts, by drug company reps. Now, there's actually a faction in the legislature arguing that bribery is a necessary part of the pharmaceutical/medical relationship. How else are drug companies going to coax doctors to over-prescribe their expensive drugs? By sending them information about how good the drugs are? Don't be ridiculous.

What if the overriding socio-economic proposition were that, yes, there are things that need doing, and the vast majority of people would gladly take a few hours out of each day to do what needs doing if the rest of their time were their own to enjoy the richness of the world and the ways humanity can enhance it?

Not eight hours. That's too many. That's too many to be cleaning someone else's home. That's too many to be flipping someone's burgers, if burger-flipping is even something that needs to be done.

I'm not saying all rewards for all work need to be equal. I'm saying all rewards need to be rewarding and reasonable. What Bill Gates has is way out of line with what he's provided, and judiciously copying and buying up other people's software should not entitle him to push his and Eli Broad's charter school agenda. I don't even know what Eli Broad does. I like his museum. But I could live without it if it meant that we put a higher priority on public education. I can't really afford to take advantage of his wing of the Disney music center, so I wouldn't miss that. I don't even know what goes on there.

What a nurse does is superhuman. She should have some say in how education is funded and organized, but she's too busy sleeping off her 16-hour shift and the constant stress of repressing her desire for a few hours to play mediocre violin for her own damn enjoyment. Yet we find nothing easier than to justify this tragic arrangement and all its ramifications.

Resentment over things that can't be helped is the problem of the person with the resentment. But to resent a man stealing food from poor kids because he wants another house in the Swiss Alps is reasonable. Yet we contrive to see all resentment as the same, because we're slaves.

Charles Krauthammer says we're going to have single-payer health care within the next seven years. Charles Krauthammer is not a socialist. He's actually a bit of a fascist. He's a Fox News Channel talking head. Krauthammer is also his stripper name. He looks just like you'd imagine a Charles Krauthammer would look, except he dyes his hair and eyebrows black. I'm not convinced his hair is real, either. Imagine a vampire whose decomposition due to exposure to sunlight has been arrested just at the point where his jowls and eyelids are melting.

Why does such a capitalist tool predict we're going to have single-payer? He says it's because, although Obamacare has failed on every level (his words), the discussion has become about denying coverage for pre-existing conditions and other unfair insurance practices, and now the public will never go back to a free-market system. So, I'll answer for him, because I don't think he really knows why he made his prediction. It's because the illogic of trying to keep rewarding capitalists for holding health care hostage is becoming unwieldy even for his mind, a mind otherwise synched up precisely to the slave-masters' minds. Even Charles Krauthammer understands on some level that to discriminate against poor people by denying them medical treatment is unreasonable. It doesn't look good. It's become too difficult to justify. It's not a good look for a nation calling itself a democracy. And maintaining a system where capitalists make tons of money from medical skill and problems has become too expensive and inefficient, not to mention its toll on the image of the USA. It's an embarrassment and it's unsustainable.

We're slaves because we work. I know a lot of people who love their jobs. But we work whether we love our jobs or not. So we're slaves. We are physically enslaved.

We're also slaves because we are mentally incapable of breaking out of the mindset that we need the jobs the über-capitalist provides. We're slaves to the mindset that we can incentivize altruistic behavior with selfish rewards. We're slaves to the mindset that there's a capitalist answer to non-capitalist questions, like how do we provide healthcare for everyone in the nation? We're slaves to the idea that nobody will do anything unless there's a ghastly threat or an obscene reward at the end of it. And we're slaves to the idea that, once someone has secured the legal right to control a resource, to wrest that control away from that person is somehow immoral.

We at one time freed ourselves from the delusion that kings were given their position by God's decree. We've replaced the divine right of kings with the divine right of the motivated, clever, industrious individual. I don't care how smart, beautiful, clever, focused, brilliant, athletically adept or energetic you are. If people are starving and you have billions, you are nothing but a pharaoh. And if we can provide a decent standard of living for all people, and opportunity for all people to contribute with their true gifts, you're being a dick.

If Charles Krauthammer can break the bonds that imprisoned his soul, so can we. This has been the Moment of Truth. Good day!

 

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