America the self-pitying? Or just plain stupid?


Paul Wallis, Sydney Media JamTo us foreigners, America’s apparent total refusal to see the obvious from 2016 is baffling. Trump will come and Trump will go. He’s not the long term problem. The problem is America’s total failure to face any kind of tangible reality, or do anything about it, for decades.

It’s a horrible shame. Things could have been so much better. Ignorance and real, applied stupidity have done the damage.

America’s horrible list of failures

America has successfully failed to face:

  • Trashed generations which could have been so much more.
  • Lost, bungled wars of all kinds despite an effective military.
  • Its own deliberately generated hatreds and polarizations.
  • A culture of intellectually bankrupt financial management.
  • The plague-like spread of organized crime and corruption at all levels.
  • The culture of dishonesty which is now poisoning every single fact.
  • The industry of greed which perverts basic daily business at all levels.
  • A truly psychotic business management culture.
  • Ridiculous prices “because we can” for critical basics like health and education.
  • Unspeakable generational poverty and demonizing of the poor.
  • Stunningly talentless maladministration on every level of government.
  • Colossal waste of people and resources on a fantastic scale.
  • Chronic insularity at the expense of all known facts.
  • The institutionalization of the Rust Belt and the mentality of Failure Incarnate that it represents.
  • Serial corporate law breaking in all sectors.
  • Careerism and related life models based on a world which no longer exists, at great expense.

THE great American novel. Should be used as a political primer until 2020.

Arguably worse than all of the above is the unquestioning acceptance of failure in every possible form. Not one damn thing has ever been done about any of it, all the way back to Nixon.  It’s self-inflicted. Whole generations of weak, facile, astonishingly stupid and even more astonishingly untrustworthy people have made it happen.  Others have allowed it to happen. Guilt is shared.

Consider this little litany, which is just a sample:

  • McCarthyism, the All-American mechanism of oppression still used today
  • Vietnam
  • Watts riots
  • Watergate
  • Enron
  • Lehmann Bros.
  • Insolvent banks
  • GFC
  • Sub primes
  • Municipal bonds
  • Hurricane Katrina/FEMA
  • 911

You can’t have this level of constant, unmitigated, catastrophic national failure by accident. The reaction to decades of failure has been equally pathetic. The only visible reaction to 60 years of obsessive failure has been for someone to occasionally pop out like a cuckoo clock and say “O woe is us”, and disappear in a puff of utterly useless self-pity.

America vs its own success?

For a culture based on success, America has totally ignored the downsides of success. Past success spoiled America in a deadly way. The prosperity of the past was a good excuse to let things slide. They slid. Who cared about some war in a country they’d never heard of, or some riot somewhere? Everyone was comfortable, and comforted by the theory of trust in something called America. The future was going to be so much better, too. It isn’t, in case you hadn’t noticed.

Experts by the shipload from 1945 onwards warned of future problems and were unanimously ignored in all practical terms. From Silent Spring to global warming, ignorance is highly paid bliss.  Ignoring experts is now standard practice. (They’re still warning, but at least they’ve stopped expecting anyone to listen, let alone understand a word.)

The bottom line is that Americans wax lyrical about a vision of America and simultaneously bemoan the inglorious actual failures. Absolutely nothing is done, and more failures inevitably emerge. It’s no coincidence. Failure generates failure. Failure evolves, like a new disease. The next big financial crashes and the next political disasters will be created by failures happening right now. Face it and fix it, or fail again.

Paul Wallis, Sydney Media Jam, Paul Wallis books

SMJ is finally re-published in a sort of reduced form, still a lot to do.



Regressionism, or how to stop living and start worrying


Paul Wallis, Sydney Media JamRegressionism is now fashionable. It’s the last refuge of the total loser, the escapism of the ignorant, and the curse of humanity. Trump didn’t start this. It’s been around throughout history. It’s also the intellectual maggot’s rear end of human existence. The longing for a non-existent past, wedded to a disgusting dishonesty. Most of the people who market this Nostalgia for Nobodies crap don’t believe in it any more than you do. It’s business, like anorexia, diabetes, and about as healthy as both combined.

Regressionism prognosis, aka boredom incarnate

Regression from the all-time highs of human civilization can only go one way. Exactly where it shouldn’t go; down the drain/sewer/monologue. We have a situation where literally anything is plausible, based on some sort of spiel from the vast gap in understanding.

This is also business; it’s all about doing the demonstrably insane in the name of money. Call it religion, call it finance, call it obscene. Take one more look, and you can see it’s inevitable. Train people to be grotesque, and they’ll be as grotesque as they know how to be, because that’s literally all they know. Society has been churning out the no-think citizens like French fries for decades.

How else could you convince people to eat toxic food, breathe toxic air, pay a fortune for toxic education, and call nursery rhymes with kitchen appliance backing tracks music? How else could you believe people who’ve spent the last few decades hating the public are somehow going to save it?

Regressionism is nothing new. It's been around since Candide was written.

Regressionism is nothing new. It’s been around since Candide was written.

Regressionism is turning in to a way of life, globally, mainly because it’s being presented as a credible option. There’s no need to recite the endless examples of people who have never heard of basic rights or anything else in that range of products.  To regressionism, god is a spreadsheet and an expensive career path to nowhere but more of the same. That’s the reality for so many people, and much as that sucks, they understand it better than a nebulous future they can’t see.

Consider a world where nothing is possible and being a human being is simply irrelevant. You’ve got it. This is Snowball Earth, for any kind of progress. It’s buried under the glacial ice of a middle class ideal which even at its best barely aspired to be much more than a commercial for itself.

Regressionism vs Progressive

Progressives please note –

Delivery of change has to be tangible, clearly marked, and accessible.  

Above all, progress has to be inclusive and credible.

Paul Wallis, Sydney Media Jam,It can’t be just another damn ideological billboard for nothing. The brand  image of the remote know it all, completely wrong or not, is hardly reassuring to people who don’t even know who you are.

The bad habit of ten dollar words (you can get change out of ten dollars, remember?) which simply make people feel left out and looking stupid is no great asset, either. Tell someone trying to find something to eat that they should “consider personal imperatives in an existential context” and you deserve to have rocks thrown at you.

To quote one of the most useful questions ever asked – “Who needs it?” Who needs progress? Everyone. Do they know why they need it? Obviously not. Get the damn act together, and prove it.


Regressionism weaknesses

Regressionism does have a built-in self-destruct. The other lesson of history, that thing you’ve been trained to ignore, is that it never lasts beyond a cut-off point. The cut-off is when the regression is made obsolete. The culture of the 80s, for example, crashed when digitization came in.

That’s good news. It’d be easy to replace this tedious load of senile, smug dysfunction with damn near anything that delivers. All you need is something which makes money and provides any kind of financial or other practical freedom.

Regressionism has another fatal weakness. It fights progress, which is also inevitable. Eventually, it’s out of step with any kind of functional reality. Bottom lines don’t take prisoners. The same people now promoting regressionism as a cure for everything  that makes life worth living will be the first to jump on the bandwagon of the next wave.

Are regressionists stupid? No. They’re facile, two dimensional, and utterly useless to anyone but themselves. That, in fact, is the formula for success in regressionism, banal as it is.  In this game of historical poker, low cards can win, if there’s enough of them, and unfortunately for humanity, they know that.

They’re also totally disloyal, untrustworthy, and self-serving. You wouldn’t trust these people anywhere near your toilet. They support nothing but themselves. If progress delivers for them, they’re all in favour of it. Regressionism, like disco, will be gone in seconds the minute some hard cash shows up.

This will end, probably sooner rather than later. Regressionism has a very short shelf life, even when based on nothing but profitability. The only reaction possible now is change. Whether it comes in four years or eight years in the US or anywhere else, the Dunkin Donut phase is now running.

The pity of it is that humanity always seems to do everything the hard way. It would be easy, now, to create a very comfortable, safe, clean world. Even poverty, humanity’s worst and most relentless enemy, could be wiped out. All that needs to happen is someone doing things right. Any bets on when that’ll happen?

The brats of the 2016 election – Grow up, America


Wasp2This would have to be the most inelegant election campaign since forever in the US. What are they voting for, whose tantrums are better? As though it’s not bizarre enough that some section of the US public assumes its limited choices of some rich slumfucker over others, the level of “debate” has gone back to grade school at best, hell at worst.

(Like “coarse wanguage”, do you, brats? Want a few lessons, pig sucker boys? You talk like wannabe frat fags, even when you’re trying to shock. What, are you pretending to be real people? Peasant trash. You’re an embarrassment to democracy.)

The 2016 election is going to be hell, whatever happens. The GOP has brought this mess on itself. That said, the wider US is now bringing the equivalent on itself. This is the nadir of American democracy, in so many ways. Maybe “nobody ever went broke underestimating the taste of the American people”, but the country’s been in much better shape, and much less broke. Take the 1% out of the picture, and you’ve got a pretty sorry-looking nation, economically and in real terms.

Who needs reality anyway, when you've got American media?

Who needs reality anyway, when you’ve got American media?

How much verbiage is going to cure America’s woes in 2016? Do you really believe you’re going to Disneyland? Doesn’t matter how much word-crap you apply; the last 30 plus years of social and economic abuse isn’t susceptible to persuasion. How many tacky little statements will cure the TB problem, medical bankruptcies, pollution, plagues of other issues, and everything else?

Seems the Cliché Factory is big on non-statements and unsupported rhetoric. Can you make a corpse great again? Can you go back to Camelot and watch I Love Lucy again? Do slogans ever mean anything? “Yes We Can” turned in to “…But We Don’t Wanna” in Congress. The entire electoral and governance process is now a zoo for the most trivial vermin.

How can anyone believe that these empty KFC bucket-screwing cockroach droppings will ever do a damn thing? They never have. This herd of vaginal maggots hides in privilege, coming out to claim messiah status every four years. 2016 is just another year for self-enrichment.

How naïve can you be, to assume that everything will get better if you simply believe in more claptrap from the depths of some damn political marketers’ lazy brains? You really think these smug scum can manage America’s ever-more-excruciating global and national issues? They can barely put their own speeches together or get to the end of a sentence without minders and TV production.

Imagine a Trump-like shopping list:

  • Refer to greatness.
  • Refer to genitalia.
  • Equate the two.
  • Insult a few people on principle, if for no other reason.
  • Win primary.

Now imagine a GOP shopping list:

  • Ask Tea Party for permission to go to the bathroom and ask for discount. (Whee!)
  • Try to find out what’s happening in primaries.
  • Run away.
  • Make a few more speeches to a dazed audience, then run away again.

Pretty damn unimpressive.

An American shopping list:

  • Enjoy the crime and poverty.
  • Try to remember what that thing with the stars and stripes does.
  • Spend some quality time trying to find relevance in anything you see or hear.
  • Retreat in to madness or porn.

Life, Liberty and the Pursuit of Happiness? Where? When? America has forgotten who and what it is. The glory days are now folklore. This is no longer the 20th century. The Greatest Generation took that world with them and it’s not coming back anytime soon. This isn’t Rebel Without A Cause; it’s November 22, 1963, repeated endlessly. This time it’s America getting assassinated, every day of the week, by authentic vermin unfit to fall out of the ass of a Wall Street statue.

Grow up, you stupid bastards. This is not a drill. Stupidity is giga-expensive, not funny. A pack of slimy simpering sycophants isn’t a team of fighters. Remember, in any game of poker, there are always losers. There’s always a last card, the one you’re stuck with. You can hold, fold, or find a game you can win. You don’t have to play the game at all.