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Re: <nettime> Fwd: [CTHEORY] Article 136 - The Digital Death Rattle of
E. Miller on Fri, 21 Nov 2003 23:20:38 +0100 (CET)


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Re: <nettime> Fwd: [CTHEORY] Article 136 - The Digital Death Rattle of the American Middle Class


The problem is that it's not just the elite supporting the policies that
shift even more power and wealth to the elite.  There's a large degree of
complacency within the middle and working classes in the US, possibly
because the benefits of globalized labor and production are clear to all
(hey, cheap TVs at Wal-Mart!) while the disadvantages are much less
apparent.  

I've heard the condition described as 'cognitive dissonance'.  Cut taxes AND
increase services!  Ship jobs overseas AND have a rising national standard
of living!  Pay nothing for software AND have a highly-paid corps of
US-based software developers!

As a nation we're compartmentalizing our experiences into comprehensible
chunks using an ideological framework (either free-market or religious) and
often simply discarding the bits that don't fit.  So it's not only the
elites that like the idea of an "easily digested structure of nobles and
serfs."  It's also ideological comfort food for the other classes, because
the myth of unfettered Horatio Alger-ish individual mobility says that YOU
TOO can be a noble, if you just work hard enough.  Not that I'm saying
anything new here, but the sad thing is that it's been said for decades but
the American national psyche is highly resistant to inconvenient
observations undercutting the individualistic mythology and belief systems.

I'm starting to think that the complexity of globalized
social/economic/material systems has eclipsed our ability as humans to
sufficiently understand and manage the systems.  That ain't good.

Eric


On 11/20/03 3:19 PM, "David Patterson" <cptanalog {AT} fastermac.net> wrote:

> At last the "elite" have found a way to eradicate us pesky middle-class
> citizens and get back to their own easily digested structure of nobles
> and serfs. The US will soon have a societal organization which even
> George W. can understand. Sieg Heil!!!
> 
 <...>

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