1143 Intellectual Welfare
Just ask them: Corporations and multi-billionaires are today’s Aristotles and Einsteins. They are the intellectual centers of the modern American universe and they are the source of all meaningful thought.
And the ordinary people who echo their meaningful thoughts are today’s intellectual welfare recipients.
Welfare = pay for no work for those who need it or those who can game the system. Intellectual welfare = thoughts for the thought-free who don’t want to think or can’t.
Welfare, of course, doesn’t really exist. It originally was called “Home Relief,” and was meant to help depression era families stay afloat until they could swim through the economic morass of the 1930s.
Then they changed the name to “welfare,” which was a much broader concept, covering more people for more reasons. And finally, it became “Human Services,” which covered everyone human.
Intellectual welfare circumvents all those twists and turns of name and goes to the heart of the matter: some people can’t or won’t think and they need to think because that’s the way the brain works. So they take welfare and echo the party line put forward by the Koch brothers, Rush Limbaugh and all the rest of the fonts of wisdom we have available.
Who do you think is funding the NRA, “right to work” laws (how Orwellian is that phrase!) Who do you think is funding the push for “austerity” that has ruined the already terrible economies of Britain, France, Italy, Greece, Ireland, Spain and Portugal?
We have this thing about “it failed over there, so let’s try it here.”
This brings to mind the definition of insanity attributed to the real Einstein: doing the same thing over and over and expecting a different result. (Big Al didn’t really say that. But he endorsed the idea.)
So now we have the sequester. Watch the job losses pile up. Watch the glacial economic recovery melt before your very eyes.
While we’re in a quoting mood, let’s quote Aunt Rant, grandmama of the modern conservative movement (which she emphatically and repeatedly slammed.) Well, not a quote but a paraphrase from one of her Los Angeles Times columns: (They) feed people poison as food and poison as the antidote.
In today’s world, intellectual welfare and austerity are both the food and the antidote.
--Call the movers and cancel, would ya’ honey? The whole state of Florida is built on limestone and clay, and you never know when a giant sinkhole will open and eat you alive. We have to find a safer place... like maybe Staten Island.
--Who to hire as a lawyer from hours of watching the Jodi Arias trial: If you’re a crime victim, you’ll want Juan Martinez as prosecutor. If you’re accused of a crime, you’ll want Joey Jackson.
--You know we’re in trouble when the President of the United States, in search of a budget chief, turns to Wal-mart, which he has in budget director nominee Sylvia Burwell, head of the store chain’s foundation. Expect the budget office to be open 24 hours and have greeters in the office suite to make sure no one steals anything. All employees will be part time, get no benefits and will be forbidden from joining a union.
I’m Wes Richards. My opinions are my own but you’re welcome to them. ®
Please address comments to firstname.lastname@example.org
© WJR 2013
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