by Chris Hedges
Jan. 11, 2010
Corporations, which control the levers of power in government and finance, promote and empower the psychologically maimed. Those who lack the capacity for empathy and who embrace the goals of the corporation—personal power and wealth—as the highest good succeed. Those who possess moral autonomy and individuality do not. And these corporate heads, isolated from the mass of Americans by insular corporate structures and vast personal fortunes, are no more attuned to the misery, rage and pain they cause than were the courtiers and perfumed fops who populated Versailles on the eve of the French Revolution. They play their games of high finance as if the rest of us do not exist. And it is a game that will kill us.
These companies exist in a pathological world where identity and personal worth are determined solely by the perverted code of the corporation. The corporation decides who has value and who does not, who advances and who is left behind. It rewards the most compliant, craven and manipulative, and discards the losers who can’t play the game, those who do not accumulate wealth or status fast enough, or who fail to fully subsume their individuality into the corporate collective. It dominates the internal and external lives of its employees, leaving them without time for family or solitude—without time for self-reflection—and drives them into a state of perpetual nervous exhaustion. It breaks them down, especially in their early years in the firm, a period in which they are humiliated and pressured to work such long hours that many will sleep under their desks. This hazing process, one that is common at corporate newspapers where I worked, including The New York Times, eliminates from the system most of those with backbone, fortitude and dignity.
Copyright © 2010 Truthdig
Chris Hedges spent two decades as a foreign reporter covering wars in Latin America, Africa, Europe and the Middle East. He has written nine books, including Empire of Illusion: The End of Literacy and the Triumph of Spectacle (2009) and War Is a Force That Gives Us Meaning (2003).
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Yes, I think the rich are going to destroy this country one way or another, but I’d like to say one thing about how the rich live which is restrictive in their lifestyle: They do not have the freedom to go just anywhere. When they go, they are in need of safety such as security guards. They live in walled in conclaves. They are limited to only friendships, if you want to call it that, with people of like wealth. Because of these required isolations, they are denied relationships with “others”. They are subject to worry about not losing their largess (biblical). And….
I would never like to live a life like that!
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Chris Hedges, you’ve got it just about right. However, you better believe that many of these people know they’ve crossed a line and deserve to go to jail. Why that’s not happening… yet, just shows how corrupt every system in the U.S. has become, financial, regulatory, judicial, legislative, executive.
The crash that’s coming is going to make the last one look small. And there will be no question in the minds of the rest of the world that the U.S. is responsible because of the extreme corruption, greed and criminality that’s been allowed to flourish.
Is there time to change direction? Yes… we’ve got about two minutes.