Tuesday, May 6, 2014

Corruption Seduction

Most of us were still very young when we first began seeing that the world is not run according to how our parents & schools insist it is.  The process is called becoming aware, and it heralds one's approaching entrance into adult society, and the matrix.  Just as we eventually had to forgive & forget childhood lies such as Santa, and the tooth fairy; every day in adult society we are silently expected to act as if society is everything it isn't.

When I was a teen, a pal and I had gotten pinched in some harmless mayhem we conjured up.  When mom was just too exasperated to continue berating me she rested her case with the all-American classic, "Just you wait till your father gets home!"  Actually I was rather looking forward to that particular confrontation on the merits of right & wrong.  Dad was well employed by a national corporation as a fleet representative; meaning that he sold all manner of heavy trucks and equipment to city & state governments across a six state region.  Dad was on the road a lot, sometimes three weeks of every month; and in that week he was home he and Jack Daniels would go on for hours about how filthy dirty and corrupt his industry was.  Payoffs, kickbacks, bribes, sometimes even intimidation; not to mention the wild drunken weekend parties field reps were expected to host for their prospective clients.  Yeah, great role model for integrity!

Corruption. It is everywhere we look, in every level of society from dog catcher to top dog.  Whether it's price gouging on the goods you sell, or selling wars of conquest with a pack of transparent lies; corruption has not only assimilated human culture, it has indeed become the very foundation on which all else is built.  The system isn't broken, it was intentionally designed to function as it does.  The fix is in, you really can't fight city hall; and you as a citizen cannot sue the government of the united states, unless it grants you permission to do so.  And still, we just silently accept this dystopian nightmare generation after generation.  We're not being so complacent because we think it will all some day go away, no...we're mostly just holding out long enough to get our own share of the pie, because everyone knows that the merits of fair play are for fools.

Why in the hell should a kid stay in school, study and fight uphill to make something for himself on minimum wage (if lucky); when he can sell drugs on any street corner in America and make hundreds if not thousands of dollars a week??  This is the mindset that undermines the illusion at every level.  Those are real, tangible dollars - and it's so blessed easy!   Whether on the street corner, or in the executive boardrooms high above; the promise of quick riches and a shortcut to success is all the temptation most people need to forsake any claim on integrity, and follow the siren song of corruption.  Some people resist the temptation longer; until some unexpected emergency arrives along with the opportunity, and their "little voice" inside is telling them that everyone else is doing it so why not?

Where the psychopathic executives & politicians never spend a moment reflecting on how their corruption affects people; the average person with a basically good heart gets consumed with such thinking.  Why not cook the books a little, or hide assets, or push thru a deal that turns your stomach - if it's the difference of whether your family eats or not, or even has a home?  The very pervasiveness of corruption constantly seeks to suck in all within reach just like a black hole.

 There are of course many who never succumb to the allure of corruption at all, but instead are screaming their lungs out in the fight against it.  We never actually see these folks though, being as the system routes them to the psychiatric ward straight away.  They're still chasing after Michael Moore.  Along with you can't fight city hall, we hear other mantras of conformity such as Don't rock the boat, and of course the old standard, Go along to get along.  Standard programming for the masses from the great shining lie.  Subconsciously we use these mantras to ease our conscience each time we are tempted & tainted by corruption.  We know that lying is wrong and that we should never do it; yet the average person cannot get thru the week without at least a couple of little white lies tossed into the mix for whatever motivation.  When our politicians and corporations are never held accountable for the world class lying they do every day the average person has a hard time drawing the line.  It has become part of our society to lie and deceive: so much so in fact that at any given time the average person is just two decisions away from benefiting from corruption.

Of course corruption is nothing new, I for one suspect it has always been a part of human nature.  Mozi (470 BC - 391 BC) was a Chinese philosopher during the hundred years school of thought period, in the era of warring states.  Founding the school of Mohism, Mozi fought against corruption and for Humanism & freedom of the individual.  He emphasized self-reflection and authenticity rather than obedience to ritual and dogma. Lamentably Mozi and his teachings did not survive the burning of books and burying of scholars when the legalist Qin dynasty came to power.   

As a modern day example take the city of San Francisco; which sprang up from nowhere as gold fever gripped the world 165 years ago.  The man who started the gold rush was a fellow named Sam Brannon, who was the consummate entrepreneur of his day.  Before spreading the word about the discovery of gold in California, Sam Brannon arrived in the camp that would become San Francisco and set up a mercantile hardware store specializing in the tools needed for gold digging & panning.  Brannon built a monopoly, ensuring his was the only store where miners could get supplies.  He would even row out to meet arriving ships; and if the cargo contained mining supplies he'd purchase the entire lot for himself.  In time of course his greed grew even more, so he began expanding his business holdings until he owned every major business in the San Francisco of 1849.   

You see it is the very nature of corruption that it cannot permit any opposing voices; because those who corrupt know full well that if fair play & honesty were invoked they would never stand a chance.  Power corrupts, and absolute power corrupts absolutely!!  Take Monsanto for example; if GMO's are healthy and harmless as they claim, then why is everything they do shrouded in secrecy and corruption?  Why did they seek & receive immunity from prosecution or lawsuits?  Why is Monsanto so heavily entwined into our federal government?

If they gave prizes for corruption, without a doubt the Veterans Administration in Arizona would be near the top of the list for their recently discovered habit of keeping two sets of waiting lists for those needing medical help.  They had the original waiting list of Vets, backlogged many months waiting for help, which was embarrassing for sheer incompetence alone - then they had the "magic" waiting list to show publicly that they were seeing sick & dying Veterans in a timely manner!

Corruption has infected & gridlocked political administrations around the world, as well as the corporations who seek to control them.  We all know this, but we also know we're powerless to stop it (as individuals), and that corruption tends to fight very dirty when called out, so we remain, the silent majority - keeping our heads low and just trying to have as good a life as possible under the prevailing conditions.  That's a little like pitching camp on quicksand.  You might be alright for a while but sooner or later it's gonna suck you in, then it's too late. 

Yes as individuals we may be powerless; yet in unity there is strength - and power.  Case in point: India and the Gulabi ~ "The Pink Gang."  In a society where women are considered to be inferior to men the crime of rape is a daily common place event in many areas.  This has been the status quo, so there is literally zero recognition by police and government officials.  Those who seek justice are ignored because those in power consider rape as a privilege; not a crime.  Outrage & frustration brought the local women together as a street level political action committee they named Gulabi, The Pink Gang.  With their membership growing astronomically these women take to the streets to protect women and persecute rapists; and they are becoming a growing social force in India.

Then there are those 200 kidnapped girls in Africa; taken for the sex slave market.  Hogtied by corruption and guilt, the government of Nigeria is moving at truly glacial speeds to find and free these 200 girls, as all their families can do is plead for their children to be returned.  Of course they won't be returned because they weren't taken for ransom but rather retail.  Sad to say that buying & selling human beings still exists in 2014 - even sadder to realize how huge that marketplace really is.  Money that big is nothing but motive with a universal adapter on it.

Corruption is getting away with shooting your lawyer in the face when you disagree with him, and as such Dick Cheney is undoubtedly the king of corruption; at least in this country, but he can't ease up because there are some in the shadows who by comparison make him look like a beginner.  Corruption is being a member of congress or senate making untold millions annually who consistently votes against raising the minimum wage so the defense budget gets all the funding it wants.  Corruption is silencing all voices of dissent & opposition, killing those who will not be intimidated.  Corruption is shooting a president out of office instead of voting him out.

What if corruption was a real, living thing of some sort; perhaps a tiny spore in the air that feeds on broken souls & tarnished integrity, with an ever increasing appetite for more?  What if this virus thrives with a human body as host, invading the brain where it can influence motivation and snack all day on those tasty hopes & dreams?  What if corruption is something like that, something not our fault, but some kind of illness without a cure?  It's a stretch I know, but anything seems better than admitting that greed & corruption are part of basic human nature.  We're always so good at obscuring the traits of humanity we find distasteful. 

In the end I suppose it makes sense to join the silent majority, don't rock the boat by trying to unite people against a soul killer like corruption.  A big waste of time really; because first of all when you call it out - corruption fights nasty, and if you try too hard to awaken your slumbering friends you'll soon be about as popular as a snake in a sleeping bag.  Bad way to wake up, so it's a lose/lose kinda situation all around.

Corruption appeals to a great many because it exploits another basic human nature; that of feeling better or more special than other folks.  Those who feel so superior also usually feel exempt from having to achieve great things in the traditional way of working hard.  Being so obviously special negates the need to play by "fools rules" anyway, so why not jump to the head of the line any way you can?  Maybe we're all mad here!

For the rest of us who haven't yet caught the disease there isn't much good news, our side looses folks to the other side every day as corruption has become the defacto currency of the entire planet.  Don't expect it to change, it never will.  If we are still looking for some kind of salvation it might help to remember two things:

Prayers are not always answered in the order received,
They can kill us but they can't eat us ~ That's Illegal! 

May the Source be with You!

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