100 times the cost, for half the experience:
It’s an age of miracles!
This linguistic transition is a major case of C. Wright Mills’ liberal practicality, a.k.a. dunder-headed chickening-out by would-be lefties.
It is also a major vector of conceptual error and misdirection.
Not the least of such errors is the presumption that the word “neoliberalism” is “very common, recognizable.”
Balderdash. The word is certainly rampant in the sphere of what remains of the left, but we all know, or at least ought to know, how isolated and ignored we are. In the wider world, to use the term “neoliberalism” is to speak a foreign tongue, as well as to suggest that one’s ideas and claims are so confusing as to need their own special introductions.
Everybody drawing breath knows what capitalism is. “Neoliberalism,” meanwhile, always requires at least a long, convoluted paragraph of explanation as a preface to its further usage.
So, one has to ask: Are we trying to stay moribund?
And while we’re at it, pray tell: When was it that capitalists ever favored or pursued anything but the package of things that supposedly define “neoliberalism”? There remains the powerful, long-running liberal myth of the post-WWII Golden Age of caipitalist acceptance of equality and welfare state programs. That, however, is simply false history. At the level of overclass motives and policy prescriptions, there was then and is now nothing “neo” going in the boardrooms and the private jets.
The Reagan Restoration was — and remains — a real thing (even though it started under Carter), but redoubling is not invention, and laissez faire/free trade (the liberalism of the concept, as distinct from the newer, wider modern meaning as a tag for those who think capitalism isn’t perfect and needs some public correction) has never been the only, or even the main, practical essence of capitalism. The state, despite the ideology and the fake history, has always been right in there, and massively so.
This whole “neoliberalism” thing is, to lift a phrase from E.P. Thompson, an orrery of errors. The sooner we drop it in favor of simplicity, clarity, and directness, the better. Kind of like “consumer.”
Over 30 million residents of the United States are still uninsured, as planned by the architects of the Heritage Foundation’s successful plan for averting
civilized behavior public, single-payer medical insurance.
Those few who gain insurance under
RomneyObamacare generally gain shitty insurance with high “deductibles.” According to The Wall Street Journal:
“[T]he share of the population with high-deductible insurance plans has grown significantly since 2009. That year, around 22.5% of respondents had private coverage that required them to pay a larger share of their upfront coverage costs in exchange for a lower premium. In early 2014, some 36% had plans with an annual deductible of at least $1,250 for an individual or $2,500 for a family.”
And those who get this magical gift of terrible coverage for access to the unrestrained U.S. medical
racket profession? Here they are in the Soviet pose that comes with their victimization ability to seek new insurance:
And the other big result of
RomneyObamacare? Also as planned by Heritage, per today’s New York Times:
“[S]ince the Affordable Care Act was enacted in 2010, the relationship between the Obama administration and insurers has evolved into a powerful, mutually beneficial partnership that has been a boon to the nation’s largest private health plans and led to a profitable surge in their Medicaid enrollment.”
And they say planning can’t work…
So, in a display of a very slight drying of the wet noodle he has for a backbone, Zerobama now — after being careful not to mention the topic during the recent The Bi-Annual Election Show — “asks” that the FCC classify internet service provision as a common carrier. Of course, not only is this an “ask,” but Prez Z specifically also says the FCC should, despite the proposed new (but long overdue) classification, continue “forbearing from rate regulation.” “Forbearing from rate regulation,” of course, means renouncing price controls.
The unregulated regime of corporate capitalist-dominated internet service provision in the United States imposes an indefensibly but predictably slow and expensive internet infrastructure. Yet, even if the FCC were to ignore its corporate masters and grant Zerobama’s humble request, he asks that they do so only if they render themselves unable to use the main benefit of common carrier designation — price control!
Meanwhile, the U.S. Postal Service wastes away in the desert, dabbing at its shrinking, rusty thimbleful of water droplets. Imagine what the corporate profit ranchers would do to prevent us from upholding the U.S. Constitution and allowing the USPS to deliver the modern mail at the lowest possible cost and with the best modern technical standards.
Of course, liberals have always favored regulation over public enterprise, for the all-too-obvious reason.
Science fiction has hinted at such transitions, but they may be nearer at hand than you might presume, here in our market totalitarian culture. Check out the new brain substitute from your friends at Amazon.com:
Television, of course, could very justly be seen as another brain substitute. But it, at least, is generally used with the awareness of its idiot boxery. This Orwellian device invites its smiling victims to congratulate themselves for how cutting edge it is to surrender your last few scraps of self-directed inquiry and action over to the corporate behavior-programming/commodity-pushing nexus.
But, of course:
“The most expensive midterm campaign in American history stumbled into Election Day on Tuesday with voters’ interest at record lows…
“[C]andidates in both parties have done little to inspire the electorate.
“For all the money and nail-biting races this year, the outcome is not likely to result in a drastic change of policy.”
[The New York Times]
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