We've been trained to perpetuate the Sell and the Buy.Originally published Aug 5, 2014 - environment-msn.newsvine.com
By David Mitchell (bikeamtn)

 

 

 

 

A Symptom of a Much Deeper Dilemma – the truth is, there are two basic objectives to business; 1- Be the best at what you do. 2- Reap outrageous money in doing it.

Finally, the reality of ‘inequality’, bogged down in a deception of smoke & mirrors rises to the surface but it’s just a symptom of a dysfunctional society. I recently made a personal milestone on an old theme, that ‘there’s only one planet we can call home’ but the great reveal was in identifying the connecting social/political mechanisms that result in a dysfunctional society. It seems that after every conceivable form of man ruled empire, the certainty of mankind’s ability to sustainably rule the planet fades away as insurmountable evidence of Anthropogenic Global Warming (AGW) bears with it the threat of abrupt climate runaway and extinction by his own hands. How can this be?

– NASA-funded study: Industrial Civilization Headed for ‘Irreversible Collapse’.  http://www.theguardian.com/environment/earth-insight/2014/mar/14/nasa-civilisation-irreversible-collapse-study-scientists

– Melt of Key Antarctic Glaciers “Unstoppable”.  https://www.nasa.gov/press/2014/may/nasa-uci-study-indicates-loss-of-west-antarctic-glaciers-appears-unstoppable/#.U3EZkihiOSo

Our modern civilization (led by US industrialization) was led astray by greedy powers for the sole purpose of commercial gain with disregard for planetary sustainability as we and our children are its trained consumer assets to perpetuate the Sell and the Buy. This (now out of control) development is like a cancer on our planetary organism as the human foot-print of our activity with industrialization, waste and pollution are quickly becoming no longer sustainable for our earth. We’ve sold out as a viable planetary care-giver within natures balance. The attitude is prevalent in daily social behavior and our demand yet wasteful uses of energy. Ask yourself; why the obsession for big business mentality in exploiting everything under the sun, from medicine, for-profit education and the war-machine to sports and leisure while humane social programs like public education or vocational training for sustaining humanity are failing and broken down and the blame for this placed upon the underprivileged themselves, yet policy-makers repeatedly take away social programs to fund subsidies for the influential. A dysfunctional society, dysfunctional governance and a dysfunctional planet preoccupied with More, Bigger, Faster and New.

The True Cost - behind our clothing is an untold story.

See; ‘The True Cost’ – a documentary that explores the impact of ‘fast-fashion’ on people and the planet.  https://youtu.be/OaGp5_Sfbss

– “The Social Security Administration projects that its trust funds will be depleted by 2033.” (‘Social Security: It’s even worse than you think’ – Tom Anderson CNBC 5/9/2015)

All this is Not New; Edward Bernays had shown to business and politics how to read and manipulate the inner desires of the masses, transforming “these desires into wanting things we don’t need by linking mass-produced goods to our unconscious desires” and becoming – “the all consuming self” which has now dominated our world. “There is a Policeman Inside All of Our Heads, He Must Be Destroyed. 1960s – As dissenters of Freud began to come to prominence, so too did a younger generation who were determined to fully embrace and flaunt their inner desires. Following on their lead, corporations and their advertisers morphed their message from one of conformity to a celebration of the individual. In so doing, they showed that the tenants of Freud’s theories could be successfully manipulated regardless of the temperature of the times.” (See the documentary ‘The Century of the Self’ by Adam Curtis); See also research by Solomon Asch and ‘The True and Only Heaven: Progress and Its Critics’ by Christopher Lasch

 

Good business modeled corporations will strive to achieve the 1st-objective in business, that good business means the best products that people need and success is ensured as consumers exercise their power by rewarding businesses practicing good business, buying their goods & services and that growth cycle brings more jobs but the Greed Factor in bad business modeled companies produces a senile/inept approach at balancing the two objectives, as the primarily focus is on ‘Reaping of Outrageous Money’ for its CEO’s and shareholders. These companies are also inept at hiring/utilizing a talented work force in reaching the 1st-objective of ‘Being the Best at What They Do’. This is also a systemic failure in risk-management – the mentality of choosing to bare the least burden and cost in protecting the consumer or environment over its goal for profits.

Watch: MADE IN CHINA – How US Jobs Vanished
to Offshore Manufacturing.  hosted by Ted Koppel

MADE IN CHINA - US Jobs Vanish to Offshore Manufacturing.Jobs Vanish – The great downsizing by severing of the corporate limbs to enhance profits for shareholders and it’s CEO’s must have felt insanely good as the euphoria continued in the fleeing of big business to overseas turf and largely decided for the elimination of healthcare benefits for starters with a bonus in exploiting the loophole of stashing profits offshore (out of IRS reach) totaling nearly $2 Trillion in 3 yrs. China officials (perhaps citing Japan’s economic climb to prosperity under Dr. Deming) welcoming the vision of a new prosperity, replicated the industrial boom as the US and others pushed manufacturing jobs offshore. Years later, as environmental harm and health threats emerged in the absence of any EPA, OSHA or DOL regulation, a growing income inequality flaw stalled the consumer ideology norm which helped to trigger China’s financial boon to bust in cities of ghost towns – it’s a text book case (you think the Fortune 500 companies cared to mention a downside).

 

‘The Takers’ – A Dysfunctional Business Model was born out of the great downsize strategy which favored the dumping of a talented and skilled staff for one of minimum skill, minimum pay with minimum benefits. On the notion ‘more is better’ greed further pursued as executives began skimming profits to serve their own interests in a stock buyback scheme. This new breed of CEO’s and shareholders (coined the ‘Takers, not Makers’ was exposed in a reported by William Lazonick, a professor of economics) began squandering corporate profits which eliminated most chances for the company to reinvest in its workforce through employee training and pay-raises. Today’s employee promotion plan is a mixed formula of doing the work of two or three under a salary of one as the looted profits reduced financial resources, which also justified a trend for cutting annual pay-raises. The proof is in the fact that today, most work on a 90s wage in a 21st century cost of living and the strategy here motivated for the sake of executive salaries and shareholders in the rate of nearly 500%. All of this was short visioned as the new young and green workforce turned out not to be as skilled or nearly as resourceful or dependable as the seasoned workforce it had replaced (and having coined this as the ‘Generations XYZ Paradigm’ work force, I’ve been researching how this has spawned a new breed of task masters to orchestrate a productive workflow – the details to follow). So now you have the newly added crisis within a technological age among a currently active non-technical or engineered workforce against a pool of unemployed skill-talented people looking for work amid a new ‘dysfunctional business model’, for businesses won’t touch them as its counter to the strategy of trimming out skilled, salaried and benefited workers for those of lesser pay. But hey; businesses are making a ton of money, CEO’s at 500 % pay and governments are in a good market for making deals with big business and lobbyists on Fed funding and bailouts that translates to the money pockets in politics.

 

And There’s Our Addiction to Oil – 1930s; In a tobacco style champion and cover-up ploy, oil company giants bought up (and burned down) the electric street-car industry across the country, leaving millions of Americans without an option to public transportation except for their buses and a dependency for ‘their oil’. See the documentary ‘PUMP’.

Profits Before People - BP Gulf Spill 2010Now some will attempt to debunk this claiming, that ‘the human element’ has the ability to resolve and rebound or cite the commercial value in finding an answer within current ossified industries but they are overlooking the factor of greed and with a track record for catastrophic failures in risk management, the future looks dismal (here’s a few quickly reminders: BP Gulf oil spill; $61.6 billion in penalties and compensation (cost to life and the planet; unfathomable) – Hurricane Katrina; “Documents released today by Congress show that two days before Hurricane Katrina devastated New Orleans, the White House received detailed damage forecasts from Homeland Security officials predicting that the city’s levees might be overtopped or breached.” ABC News, Luis Martinez, 01-24-06 / NOAA agency, New Orleans gave a 24hr warning of “human suffering incredible by modern standards”. [estimated true death toll of 3,500, a cost beyond belief] – Superstorm Sandy; cost $2 billion – GM Ignition Switch/Safety System Failure linked 124 deaths and 275 injuries – GMC Fuel Tank Defect fires and a dysfunctional society as exhibited by economic inequality and the sociopath seeking fame by horrific destruction of life, etc. – also on the rise) and all of these symptoms of a dysfunctional society. ‘The point is’ – as our planetary sustainability hangs in the balance, is justice only given to a few supremacists who choose profits over not sending humanity to the wasteland and of those whose moxie is driven on the concept that ‘the one who swindles all the cookies from the jar first, wins.’ Is it not a fact the prevailing outcome between these constructs in life is what placed humanity on a perilous course in the first place?

A doable answer that won’t lead back to the horse & buggy is possible and social benefit programs that can generate revenue, but I’ll leave that one for another time.

The public does get it however, that a dysfunctional business model with it’s one year product-life cycle of manufactured junk needs to change to a more efficient, greener world and have begun lessening consumer consumption and waste, holding on to ‘well made’ goods longer and rewarding companies of well-built, greener products and the new jobs for these can be there. The problem is, the old business model tycoons not only, not wish to change but refuse to release control over the markets by resorting to political sabotage, blocking any real progress in a green direction out of the greed for money (i.e. President Reagan’s dismantling of the Solar Energy Program launched by President Carter had harmfully setback technology in favor of fossil fuel market subsidies like today’s ‘keystone pipeline’) and only in the best interest of the powerful.

The money in politics has malformed Congress into selective hearing as a narcissistic business mantra has inspired selfishness and indifference with an ineptitude for compassion and empathy.

It is written that America was founded on compassion toward the outcry of humanity – which could not turn a deaf ear. To the many in destitute – it empowered them with the tools for change. The chorus that rang out in building of the colonial new world was about equality, justice and a freedom ideology as exemplified in historic cinematic themes as ‘It’s a Wonderful Life’, ‘Mississippi Burning’ ‘The Milagro Beanfield War’ and ‘Pale Rider’ but just as the wild west had its ‘snake-oil salesmen’, that same swindling breed (an apparent ‘MO’ for the greedy powerful) have made Congress tone-deaf to the plight of its people. As actor Ben Affleck said recently to Congress regarding sustainable aid for the Eastern Congo Initiative (ECI); “this is our values (as a nation), this is who we are”. Shouldn’t Congress uphold these same values found within its constitution when considering the many lives of its own citizens in destitute or under environmental threat?

Is it in the hands of its people? – Leaders today understands how to grab a headline though often short of substance but leadership of a nation must come from an understanding of how things got derailed in the first place in order to set matters straight and have the guts to be truthful about it. Born from this, is an orchestrated derailment of economic equality and unemployment.

[see PBS; “Park-Avenue; Money, Power & the American Dream”; Jacob Hacker & Paul Pierson; Winner-Take-All Politics and the video; Average Joe On Government Nepotism]

The powerful bought their way into meddling with America’s ingredients to suit themselves and when the recipe failed the public’s left as the big loser.

Next Post: 2028 – Has a dysfunctional society, dysfunctional governance reached the end of the line?

The crisis now, is not about a changing fundamental maxim of business or a question of balancing your investment portfolios to reduced carbon exposure, nor is it really just about halting the rise in atmospheric CO2 emissions. In the midst of an historic World War II, countries merged in the effort to combat a global threat as industries jointly diverted ‘business as usual’ goals into an all-out blitz effort to directly assist in conquering a looming threat to civilization. But today’s human dilemma is even more perplexing, as one very astute professor of physics, Dr. Albert Bartlett (University of Colorado) has repeatedly lectured, can the dynamics of industrialized civilization and population really fit within any sustainable equation beyond ‘zero growth’? Dr. Bartlett had wonderfully explains this in simple terms in a video plea to humanity. [see ‘Arithmetic, Population and Energy’ ]

Now would be the time to recall the NASA-funded study: Industrial Civilization Headed for ‘Irreversible Collapse’ (cited in the opening paragraph).  See also; NASA Chief: Humanity’s Future Depends On Mission To Mars

The events currently unfolding are telling, but in the denial of this crisis, have we carelessly missed averting the ‘point of no return’ and is the crisis that we now face irrefutably revealing something more profound about our civilization as a man ruled system of things?

[The above is a work in progress]

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