In America readers of the most prominent newspapers and magazines read all about Putin’s empire finally crumbling, the Russians taking over Africa with “nuclear bombers,” and President Trump gifting Putin the whole world. Meanwhile, the land of the free and home of the brave has more problems than ever. The ship that sailed toward the American Dream, it’s plowed into an unmovable iceberg. Here’s a candid look at a “Titanic” tragedy so few understand.
“Russophobia Goose” Tales
The New York Times, Newsweek, CNN, Fox, Reuters, Foreign Policy, and a horde of other media outlets are still selling copy about the devious Putin monster from Mother Russia. Their viewers and readers bought into this with hard-earned subscription dollars, therefore the Russophobia must continue. Nobody’s into the hopeless case of truth and changing attitudes across our great nation. Everyone’s just fine with broadcasting the same circus. It’s all a big diversion, you see. A fairytale created to obfuscate reality. The reality that America is dying.
Now read this. A Yahoo! Finance report about significant sectors of our society dying prematurely from so-called “deaths of despair.” According to the report from The Brookings Institute, the mortality rate in America is going up, not down. Trump’s new great America is a land where almost 20 prercent of prime-aged males are out of the labor force. The United States is actually the only wealthy country on Earth where the mortality rate is rising. I’ll bet you did not know that.
At the same moment in which a tens of millions get pounded by Trump-Putin collusion fantasies, the whole state of Kansas is vaporizing. No, I am not kidding. A news story from The Journal Gazette tells how rural Kansas is just dying. Jim Mclean from KCUR-FM radio cites experts familiar with the population decline situation in rural Kansas. Journalist Corie Brown’s comment is the most telling:
“As I’m driving around to these small towns, I realized there’s no one here. The small towns that epitomize America’s heartland are cut off from the rest of the world by miles and miles of grain, casualties of a vast commodity agriculture system that has less and less use for living, breathing farmers.”
But that’s Kansas, and who cares about Kanzas, right? Who cares about corporate farms “hollowing out Kansas” or Iowa, or Nebraska, or the Dakotas? How can anyone care about the heart of America being owned by stone-cold Wall Street investors? How can they, if the media has us focused on a Vaudeville act or a political circus?
Boston “America’s walking city” has crumbling sidewalks so messed up over 100 people per year fall and then sue the city for damages. The city settles most out of court, but there are 140 pending cases where Boston the city may be liable. Then there’s the Kaiser Family Foundation (KFF) study that shows that “the average annual premium for a job-based, family health insurance plan is now $20,756 — 54 percent higher than it was just ten years ago.” Furthermore, since 2009 premiums for businesses have gone up 71 percent. And get this, Americans enjoy the 29th best health-care system in the world just behind the Czech Republic. “MERIKA!” Hell yeah. Make her great again – MAGA.
The Situation is Grows Worse.
What’s happening in America is as systematic as how the human body starts to shut down in the final stages of some deadly disease. A recent New York Times piece by Pankaj Mishra throws out this conclusion.
“The world’s oldest modern democracy leads the free world in its helplessness before the dissolution of its most cherished beliefs and values. Rejoining the tormented history of modernity under an obsessive liar [Donald Trump] America has accelerated its most insidious tendency: nihilism.”
And yes, The New York Times does still provide some superb non-fiction stories. As for Mishra, the Indian novelist, is one of the most brilliant thinkers in the world, even if he gets it wrong sometimes. He represents a half of the American epoch that strains and pulls at the other half – the tens of millions of disenfranchised Trump minions. The dynamic, far-left versus far-right will end up ripping the U.S.A. to shreds. And the problem is not what either side gets wrong – it’s what they get right. The liberal world order was not based entirely on bullshit.
Underneath the Trump rallying cries and the Killery Clinton raving about Russian interference in our elections, American institutions are falling apart at the seams. Trump, no, all of Washington is pumping gasoline into a giant fleet of big red, white, and blue Cadillac headed off a cliff. We’ve elected people like Democratic congresswoman Katie Hill, who’s become a celebrity on account of the Nazi Iron Cross she has tattooed on her breast, and because of a throuple relationship with Hill, her husband Kenny Heslep, and a staffer named. Morgan Desjardin. Forget Jeffrey Epstein and portraits in oil of former President Bill Clinton in high heels, the whole shebang in Washington is rancid.
Middle class, middle-aged men are not the only ones “offing” themselves or doping themselves up in record numbers, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recently found that from 2007 to 2017, the rate of Americans ages 10 to 24 who died by suicide rose by 56 percent. As I type this, an American child’s chance of earning more than his or her parents has nosedived from 90 percent back in the 1960s to 50 percent today. 20 percent of America’s children are at risk of going hungry. The elites’ earnings have skyrocketed in the last couple of decades, while America’s middle-class wages are basically stagnant.
They’re Telling Us Stories
The “protected class,” the same people who delude us into believing we are “exceptional among humans,” they’re the only ones living the fabled “American Dream.” They accomplish this by fueling the perpetual consumerist machine that’s fouling the oceans and rivers of the planet. The milk us dry. They destroy the planet with our help. The people behind Trump and Clinton, they ruin everything in their path and call it growth and progress. Sierra Club’s Dave Tilford frames this cancerous consumerism well:
“With less than 5 percent of world population, the U.S. uses one-third of the world’s paper, a quarter of the world’s oil, 23 percent of the coal, 27 percent of the aluminum, and 19 percent of the copper.”
We strayed far from the path. America created a humongous unsustainable wrecking ball for profit. And our business and political leaders used branding by powerful PR men to advertise and propagandize the whole affair. USAID and America’s “feeding the world” was once fallacy they used to convince us how “exceptional” we all were the high priests of Americanism passed the collection plate for starving children, and spent the money overthrowing some banana republic for its natural resources. For Exxon or the Carlyle Group, a CIA front organization infiltrated all nations for profit. And some will argue that I am a conspiracy theorists or Putin agent – just for telling you the truth.
I could go on and write a book. No, I could write a series of books with the “proof” that is already out there about America dying of self-inflicted wounds. For this report, I’ll only lit a few more symptoms of America’s downward spiral. First and foremost, the dumbification of our student populations, “massification” and K-12 workforce prep, there’s mountains of evidence our system is crashing. A college degree is now worthless. Our system is propped up financially by hot air on Wall Street, by totally unsustainable and degrading industry such as hydraulic fracking for cheap gas and oil.
Since 2000 the number of fracked wells went from about 23,000 to approximately 300,000 in 2015. The wells poison us, and they’re too expensive to operate in the first place. Since the start of the “Great Recession” of 2008, 99 percent of all job and population growth in America has been in metropolitan areas. America’s rural heart no longer pumps life into the country. 100 metropolitan areas now power our economy forward. And our “experts” proclaim this a “metropolitan revolution” powered by cities like San Diego. Bruce Katz, Co-Director of the Global Cities Initiative and vice president of the Brookings Institution says the California city “exemplifies the metropolitan revolution.” He evangelizes SD as “a great platform for a productive, innovative and sustainable economy.”
San Diego is in a homeless crisis. In San Diego’s jail, an inmate dies from neglect or crime about once a month. San Diego’s growth is misreported as true economic positivity when the U.S. military funneled $26 billion in San Diego in 2018 alone. The newspapers propagandizing San Diego’s low unemployment, they fail to tell readers that our Military is responsible for 340,000 jobs in region. In reality, San Diego is rapidly becoming the capital of what Hoover Institute historian Victor Davis Hanson called, “America’s first third-world state” with widening income and wealth disparities, rampant homelessness, poor schools, rising disease levels, and high taxes. San Diego, as Brookings proclaimed, actually does “exemplify” what’s going on in America. The city, California, and the whole country is one great big unsustainable mess. Call it what you will, the United States is fracturing like Humpty Dumpty, right before your eyes.
Let’s say Vladimir Putin is the ultimate villain. Let’s pretend for a moment the Russian president is the evil super-brain intent on undermining the Anglo-European democracy machine. Would it be economical, pragmatic, and brilliant for Putin to interfere in an America that is burning herself down? I mean, if Putin is this specter of evil we are told he is, then why would he need to waste resources to sink a sinking ship? Taken a step further, what if he works for those Russian oligarchs, as suggested? Would they throw good rubles after bad to do arson on a burning building?
No. Like everything else Washington and Wall Street churn out, it’s all meant to calm the Titanic’s passengers. The ship’s orchestra is still playing soothing classics, as the chilly waters of the North Atlantic sting at the ladies Victorian dress hems. Our Captain has long since drowned down under at his station on Titanic’s bridge, even as the boilers still turn the screws of our once mighty ship. A few of us are looking on from the few lifeboats or life preservers. America, like R.M.S. Titanic, still illuminates the night sky. But for how long? For this writer, it is all just that sad. We sped across the waves of history like Titanic, unsinkable, unshakeable, and beautiful – only to hit the iceberg of reality. America, given the course and speed she took, was doomed from the moment the rudder turning in this direction. And the Russians were not steering or stoking the fires. Maybe you can see my point.
Phil Butler, is a policy investigator and analyst, a political scientist and expert on Eastern Europe, he’s an author of the recent bestseller “Putin’s Praetorians” and other books. He writes exclusively for the online magazine “New Eastern Outlook.”