Tools of oppression; instruments of empowerment

The social landscape of our society is replete with a vast array of tools political, economic, technological, and cultural that cumulatively conspire to ensure the maintenance of the current arrangements of wealth and power that are operative in this nation.

In the political realm such devices as gerrymandering, judicial appointments, the massive and unceasing stream of contributions to those in the Congress and in other levels of subordinate governmental responsibility whose legislative agendas and executive decisions support the retention and expansion of the affluence and policy predispositions they embrace, remains unabated.

Continuing efforts of various state governments to suppress the capacity of minorities to exercise their constitutionally accorded capability to vote on behalf of those who govern them and those issues that require the electorate to determine their fate. The allocation of substantial financial resources to sustain and improve the quality of public education to those schools in affluent and middle-class locales and the provision of meager funds to sustain those institutions in geographical areas where poverty is extensive.

The sporadic and paltry efforts by many local governments to create and maintain those programs which equip the unemployed with the requisite skills to obtain employment in a society that continues its technological evolution. National policies which are designed to disenfranchise many who as the result of the health care legislation the Congress endorsed during the Obama administration gained access to uninterrupted medical services are deployed to deprive this initiative of the financial and administrative support for its maintenance.

The selective revision of numerous standards and indices which redefine poverty levels to permit this White House to trumpet its success in reducing the numbers of those who are impoverished in the U.S.. Census questions which are designed to discourage the participation in this decennial exercise to determine our nation’s population and thus diminish the fiscal allocation and political representation of those affected

The intentional rejection and discrediting of the massive body of scientific data that confirms the reality of “global warming.” The pervasive behavior of those senior administrators within the EPA to repeal, rescind, or disregard those regulations to protect our environment and thus enable the rapacious and unrestricted ability of mammoth corporate entities to expand the scope of their commercial activities at the irreparable expense of those wilderness areas and undeveloped expanses that comprise our collective national inheritance.

Via the mechanism of “continuing resolutions” Congress perpetuates the annual renewal of those policies relative to the distribution of federal resources that support corporate welfare and deprive those in the middle-class and the poor of those funds required to strengthen their membership in this quadrant of the economy and enable those imprisoned in the financial basement of this nation in a posture of collaboration and individual effort with various agencies and institutions both private and non-profit to exit the dehumanizing and cruel precincts of suffering and hopelessness their current existence reflects.

Within the private sector mammoth financial institutions that stand astride our economy provide credit instruments with usurious interest rates attached to the access of these funds, in many instances an annual percentage rate of approximately 25%. is de rigueur. Hedge funds and other components of the “shadow banking” entities which by design skirt important requirements of the various components of our federal regulatory system, are orchestrating the exponential increase of the debt corporations are assuming that is approaching the levels which were extant immediately prior to the Great Recession of 2008,

Fortune 500 companies continue in an unabated posture the allocation of enormous sums of capital for the purposes of repatriating their stock from public ownership, providing huge dividends to shareholders, and maintaining compensation packages to senior executives that in some instances exceed by a ratio of 300 to 1 the median wage of employees within these commercial institutions.

These entities are also responsible for an annual expenditure of approximately 3 billion dollars to engage the services of lobbyists in the nation’s capitol and in other states where legislatures preside over budgets and populations that are significant.

Moreover, a stream of revenue which emanates from these companies and private sources fuels the activities and initiatives of PACS, foundations, think tanks, and print and electronic media outlets to influence and shape public debate and the broader national dialogue regarding both a catholic support for policies and political decisions which expand and solidify the consensus of Americans to maintain the status quo and to refute and reject those proposals which mitigate their influence and wealth.

Cultural issues relative to immigration, racial supremacists, religious exclusion, abortion, anti-Semitism, and other contentious issues in a de facto regard serve the purposes of these plutocrats for their existence and intensification ensures that the civility and capacity for compromise which is inherent in the formulation and adoption of social policy cannot evolve.

Drug and alcohol abuse serve to distract and incapacitate those among us who have been excluded from viable and self-sustaining economic opportunities and educational options which could reintroduce them to lives of relevance and self-worth, and thus their energies and rage in these states of addiction and inebriation cannot fuel the requisite national campaign for the transformation of our society that is evolving.

Obsessions with social media and the mindless cable offerings innate to “reality television programming” such as wife swapping, the exploits of housewives in luxurious settings, and other programmatic vehicles that extol affluence and inflame the envy and desires of virtually all of us who do not live in these circumstances distract us from the tasks necessary and the sustained, focused, and disciplined efforts which the creation of a culture in which social justice is ascendant requires.

Video profiles of sexual deviation and pornographic opportunities have proliferated in both their abundance and exotic variations which the web provides, which further dilutes our consciousness and resolve for engagement with the world and its inhabitants

The preceding enumeration captures much of the total spectrum of the tools of oppression and conformity which the elites in this nation continuously deploy to ensure their perpetual hegemony at the apogee of the cultural structure that is America, though it is not exhaustive in rendering the totality of those mechanisms that they utilize in the service of the retention of the status quo.

In the next installment of this post I shall delineate a comprehensive recitation of those instruments of empowerment that we the populace of the United States have access to that can serve as efficacious antidotes to the previously rendered portrait of impotence and horrendous inequities.