|USA Edition||Today Is Saturday December 7th, 2013|
|We know now that Government by organized money is just as dangerous as Government by organized mob - Franklin Delano Roosevelt|
|Browsing Materials Tagged criminal bankers||Organized In Date Order||[ 2 items ]|
|First Item||Earlier||Middle Item||Last Item|
I feel like I’m living in a foreign country today. Make an error in driving and you either get the finger, or worse . . . make a credit card payment a day late and the bank thinks they have the right to mug you . . . take your family to a ball game and someone has the balls to charge you $10 bucks for a [expletive] beer.”
My question was simple: “Do you feel your country has changed in your lifetime?”
The answers were neither simple, nor subtle. Not when I originally asked people three years ago, nor when I asked them again earlier this month. What mostly changed in what I heard in 2009 and in March of 2012 was the level of people’s anger.
When I first asked three years ago the phrase I heard most was “I’m pissed.” Now the polite way of saying what people are thinking is more along the lines of “We got screwed!” I don’t claim that my sense of what Americans are thinking is in any way scientific, only that it was as consistent for people in California, Texas, Indiana, Florida, Idaho, Illinois as it is inside the beltway.
So here’s what I learned from people on the street and on the phone and by email. Among those I asked there remains today a significant age skew in how strongly, and on which issues people feel alienated. Those under the age of 30 seem far more inclined to accept things as they are as long as they personally benefit. Those over 40 have stronger views. Those over 60 were, to put it mildly, highly animated.
My sense of what I heard was that both old and young Americans feel under the thumb of dysfunctional government, criminal bankers, corrupt politicians, irresponsible insurance companies and opportunistic business management. If any of these people said something good about media or journalists, including Newsroom Magazine, I missed it.
But none of what we heard then or now prepared me for the breadth of complaints, or the depth of people’s feelings of alienation, dislocation, dismay and despair. America is damned angry at the failings of its institutions to do what’s right.
What I hear is widespread bitterness — driven in large measure by a sense of political betrayal. I hear this from liberals. I hear it from conservatives. But it’s those who cling to centrist political views who are most vocal.
Three years ago those I asked about how they felt about the financial crisis — and how government handled it — were largely angry at bankers and either or both the Bush and Obama administrations for bailing out the [expletive] bankers. My sense is that 2009′s passions against bankers has taken a new turn. Ordinary Americans — people who live outside the beltway in Illinois, Florida, California, Texas, Indiana, Idaho and Colorado — are incredulous about the failure of government, especially the Obama administration, for not prosecuting those who figuratively screwed the entire nation in pursuit of their own self-interest.
“I don’t know where we went wrong,” one professional man proclaimed in 2009, “but I feel like I’m living in a foreign country today. It’s like the whole country is constantly on the make — anxious to score as long as there are no consequences. Wham, Bam — thank you mam.”
“What are you driving at?” I asked, thinking his condemnation a bit too pat to be fully rational.
“America’s gone to hell,” he all but shouted. “Today it’s all about one-time transactions in which someone — usually me — gets screwed. This ain’t the country I grew up in.”
“How’s that?” I wondered.
“You saying you don’t know?” he argued.
“I’m more interested in how you see it.”
“Make an error in driving,” he said, thrusting his hand upward, “and you either get the finger, or worse. Make a credit card payment a day late and the bank thinks they have the right to mug you. Take your family to a ball game and someone has the balls to charge you $10 bucks for a [expletive] beer.”
I understood his point — for I’ve heard it often.
Today our nation is showing signs of economic recovery which is very good. What it’s not showing is much understanding that we, each of us and everyone of us, contributed to the financial collapse, elected the politicians who did us wrong, invested our savings in the banks most likely to make money.
We know we are angry — of that I’m certain. But what we don’t know is that we chose to be willing Johns out for a good time.
But unlike real Johns we Americans financed our lustful pleasure affair with debt — both personal and governmental.
As with all Johns — we loved the excitement, enjoyed the pleasure, and hate the consequences.
|Governance & Privacy|
|International Monetary Fund||Federal Reserve||European Central Bank||United Nations|
|Justice Department||State Department||Defense Department||Treasury Department||Transportation Department||Homeland Security Department||Commerce Department||Energy Department||Interior Department||Securities & Exchange Commission||Federal Trade Commission||National Institutes Of Health|
Seeing Is Believing
Thinking & AnalysisCritical Thinking
U.S. MilitaryAir Force
Legal & CourtsFederal Courts
Judgments & Opinions
House Of Representatives
Library Of Congress
United States Senate
HumanitiesBusiness Of Life
The Human Condition
OpinionCivility & Values
Conversations With America
Food For Thought
Contact UsOffer A Comment
Letters To The Editor
About UsAsk Newsroom
Errors & Omissions
Standards & PracticesCode Of Ethics
Government, Institutional And Commercial News Standards
Newsroom Magazine Founding Contributors
Newsroom Magazine USA Edition | Copyright © 2006 - 2013 Newsroom Publishing, Inc. | All Rights Reserved
Newsroom Magazine Is Powered By YourColo Data Power Station Servers
Newsroom Publishing Content Access Monitored By Tracker CMS Metrics
Data Power Station Load When This Page Was Delivered Was 9.16 % Of Allocated Power Station Capacity
SQL Queries For This Page = 153
Page Generation Time = 1.1 seconds