In the course of his latest entry on "Clusterfuck Nation," a marvelous blog for the pessimists, or should I say realists, among us, Jim Kuntsler is considering the difference between our present society in America and the one that listened to FDR during the depression of the 1930s. That generation was dutiful, docile, and diligent. (And I might add, able to read and write for the most part.) Unlike the present generation of Americans, much more likely to take to the streets with their guns, prejudices, and hatreds, not to mention their ever-present and overwhelming ignorance.
Today [Kuntsler writes] we're a nation of tattooed barbarian "consumers" with no impulse control, a swollen sense of entitlement, ruled by a set of authorities ranging from one G.W. Bush to the grifter-billionaire pantheon of Wall Street CEOs -- now heading into secret bunkers with their stashes of krugerrands, freeze-dried veal Milanese, and private security squads armed with XM-8 carbines.
Doesn't sound too hopeful, does he? He never does. Why should he? My guess is most Americans who notice what's happening--do you really want to contemplate the millions who won't notice anything?--will conclude that things are just bound to get better. Look at the market yesterday! Up over 940 points, the greatest single-day rise ever! Look at the price of gasoline going down! See? Everything's working!
But there's not a single reputable commentator who says we're not in for a huge readjustment in the very way we live in this country. Kuntsler is just one, and one of the gloomiest.
But also this is not what Americans want to hear. So our corporate masters, and their lackeys the politicians and the mass media will doubtless be plying us with tidings of good cheer every time the Dow pokes up a little or some number divested from the reality of people's real lives can be cited as evidence that things are going to get back to the way they used to be. But don't believe it. Even is Kuntsler is only half right, we're all in for a very bad time, except for our masters down in their bunkers.