America: Nobody Seems to Notice…

Talking about how rigged our country is, George Carlin in a blazing speech throws in this refrain:

Nobody Seems to Notice, Nobody Seems to Care

He repeats it a lot, so it must be important. The Zoo is right on, this is must see.  So go take a look.  Then come back.

Its called the American Dream, because you have to be asleep to believe it.

Carlin correctly attacks the idea we have a choice in the elections.  We don’t.  It’ll be Mitt Romney as the “compromise” Republican, aptly the most disingenuous in the field, or the Huckster, a false prophet theocrat who is already being dressed up as “too liberal” in a transparent attempt to make him more palatable.  On the Dems side it will be Hillary, the quintessential establishment candidate.  And those are just the politicians.  We don’t elect the people who truly control the power in this country.  Hell, with the advent of voting machines with hackable audit trails and the press blackout when the mischief from 2000 carried into 2004, even the election we do take part in is a sham.

And the owners, as Carlin dubs them, don’t want an informed populace.  Bullshit like “Intelligent Design” and “Teach to the Test” and attempt to dismantle the Department of Education are all aimed at keeping us stupid and obedient.  It works hand in hand with the media oligarchy.

But he is wrong about one thing.  Listen to the crowd in that video.  Listen.  They are cheering.  They hear and echo every spark of Carlin’s speech.  We do notice.  And I suspect the idea that nobody notices, nobody cares, is part of the same damn apathy lie that sucks the resolve and hope out of our political reality.  Well I don’t believe it.  If we find the media suspect, if we find polls suspect, then why believe this is a country of idiotic bumpkins too stupid to know or care how fucked up everything is?  Why not feel the raging energy of real patriotism, and trust that across America there are millions who think as we do, feel as we do, and desperately want to act?

Look around you right now.  Look at your family, friends, co-workers.  The people you meet in bars and on metros, in grocery stores and just wandering around.  Sure there are some who willingly trade political consciousness and will for a condescending security blanket, but there are just as many if not more who are awake, who burn to take this country back.

So we do notice, Mr Carlin.  And we do care.  But faced with such well placed and articulated cynicism, our question is:  “What can we do?”.


13 Responses

  1. There is a term for all of this “willful ignorance”.

  2. “is”

  3. I don’t think it’s “willful ignornance.” I think it has more to do with the fact that the majority of the people in our country live paycheck to paycheck, with the knowledge that any bit of misfortune could ruin them and their families.

    Worrying about the military-industrial complex, our faulty electoral system, or the corrupt elites that govern us is really a luxury of people who have some form of security or stability in their lives. Most people are too worried about the day to day of living to deal with the fact that our country is falling apart piece by piece.

    If we’re serious about achieving meaningful political change, then we first need to use the existing system to provide a measure of material security to people.

  4. I agree with most of that, but I wouldn’t say getting rid of the department of education is aimed at keeping people stupid. The department seems to be able to handle that just fine.

  5. Well put Brian. That department in particular has managed to pervert our children’s knowledge on many issues. New math, basic history (Paul’s accurate comments on Lincoln is a prime example), and social studies among others. The mismanagement of the education of our children by the government is shadowed by the mismanagement of the funding for the same. The sometimes forceful policy of discouraging parents from home schooling their children is another beast that must be slain.
    Integrating illegally immigrated foreign nationals into the school system and allowing bilingual studies is also an educational obstacle for our children. Not giving credence to the illegal immigration policies in school is even further proof that something is wrong. Ask the American Indians what happens when you don’t control immigration. The list goes on but my kids have graduated now so I guess it’s not my biggest problem atm but it’s still not a bad thing to get rid of that bureaucracy.

  6. ralfast,
    There is some willful ignorance to be sure,
    but I think most of us DO care, tremendously.

    We need to provide the space for people to become involved. Absolutely.
    (And I think we have a better chance of it by framing that way).

    At the same time, even without that security people are often a lot better informed
    than the media gives credit for.

    It is absolutely aimed at keeping people stupid.
    Just as keeping it the way it is does the same.
    We need to change it, not get rid of it.

    Michael D,
    Allowing bilingual studies is not an obstacle. That’s rubbish.
    As is your fearmongering about immigration.

    Education has issues, and support for unschooling is lopsided
    across the country (a wise national policy would be really good,
    the rules differ so strongly from state to state).

    But getting rid of the federal level is aimed at placating
    states that want to put Jesus and Dinosaurs together.

  7. Well i agree that if the government did it correctly, it could be good but i just am apt to think if we could do without it then that is better. That could be said for almost everything. Why not just give all our money to the government and have them deliever every service to us? I dont trust the federal government to spend money wisely. As far as illegals in the schools, that is another subject, but I will say if they dont have to follow the laws why have laws at all? and why are you a bigot for wanting to keep illegal aliens out and close the borders? but that is more directed at illegal immigrants in general not kids trying to get an education. But it does kind of bother me we if spend money on illegals.

  8. It’s not fear mongering it’s an eyewitness account. Get out of your sheltered life once and a while and see how normal people live. My generation is ahead of this generation as far as linguistic excellence and command of the English language because we didn’t have to go backwards during class “to accommodate the slow (non) learners of the language”. Get a life Dan, get out of your isolated bubble and look around.

  9. The entire generation, or just a selected few? Are you from the generation of segregation Michael D?

  10. And what about those that where left behind, are they part of your generation as well?

  11. All I can say to that ralfast is, you ask how a man like me, that has worked his ass off his whole life to provide for his family, that is looking at having my life foreclosed on due to pressure from the tax man (state, local, federal), the predatory mortgage practices, the competition of illegal immigrants that don’t have to adhere to the same rules I do in my industry and consequently don’t have the same overhead and consequently can under bid me by sometimes 50+%, is of the generation that didn’t get left behind? I’m being left behind my entire life so yea I’m of that generation.

  12. brian,
    The bigotry comes from the anti-immigrant speech,
    such as wanting to get rid of bilingual education.
    As far as government education or not, at some
    point I’d like to write some thoughts on education.
    My position can best be summed up that I want to increase
    availability and quality, but decrease the amount of control
    schools have over children. I am a huge fan of the unschooling
    movement, but I am intensely wary of the anti-education, anti-secularism,
    and even racism that has come from efforts (historical through to today)
    to reduce public education.

    Michael D,
    Your attempts to frame the discussion in terms of my needing to “get a life” only show that you are only able to see through your own experiences, if in fact your assertions that one has to go backwards in class to “accomodate the slow (non) learners of the language” have any basis in reality. I know in my state, bilingual education existed precisely so native speakers could proceed at pace, and non native speakers could be brought up to speed and introduced into English speaking classes able to run with the pack. So kindly cut the crap.

  13. I’ll cut the crap but you won’t like it as it’s your crap. You’re trying to tell me that by installing people that are not willing to learn the language into a classroom and then lagging the curriculum to allow them to get up to speed is somehow lacking reality? Wake the fuck up!

    It’s not anti immigration speech it’s anti illegal immigration speech. It’s not anti bilingual speech (like taking French or Spanish as an elective) it’s not slowing down the students that already know English to accommodate the ones that don’t even want to learn English.
    How you equate that to being able to see only through my experiences is easily thwarted.

    “Special services for limited-English-speaking students were few and limited until the 1970s. At that point, language-minority speakers and their advocates were arguing for bilingual education as a civil right. They argued that students were being deprived of an education if they were taught in a language they didn’t understand.”
    Article by Sharon Cromwell
    Education World

    If they didn’t understand it’s because they didn’t try. Isn’t English a requirement for citizenship? Why yes it is or was.

    ” Sec. 312. [8 U.S.C. 1423]

    (a) No person except as otherwise provided in this title shall hereafter be naturalized as a citizen of the United States upon his own application who cannot demonstrate-

    (1) an understanding of the English language, including an ability to read, write, and speak words in ordinary usage in the English language: Provided, That the requirements of this paragraph relating to ability to read and write shall be met if the applicant can read or write simple words and phrases to the end that a reasonable test of his literacy shall be made and that no extraordinary or unreasonable conditions shall be imposed upon the applicant; and

    So if they’re not meeting the requirements of citizenship then how are the meeting the department of educations requirements for enrollment in the schools?

    I know I know cut the crap (in other words stop using logic and law to provide the clarity of your crap against you).

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