Default Through Immorality by Philip A. Farruggio

by Philip A. Farruggio
Featured Writer
Dandelion Salad
July 22, 2011

They should really include in any dictionary definition of immorality the word empire and vice versa. No matter what empire we study throughout history, they all were formed and strengthened through bloodshed. Do you really think that the Roman Empire was all about superior abilities in commerce and trade, or in actuality their powerful armies and navy that invaded and occupied foreign lands? The Brits did not sail into India and colonize the natives through their abilities in commerce. The Spanish and Portuguese did not sail into the shores of South and Central America and win over the indigenous people with baskets of gifts and exchanges of trade. Violence and repression are the signatures of all empires… especially our American one. Manifest Destiny was another keen propaganda slogan to justify the killing of various Indian tribes and Mexicans who stood in the way of our stars and stripes. Immorality and empire do go (sadly) hand in hand.

You turn on the boob tube or boob radio and listen to the mainstream clap trap about our current fiscal crisis AKA Federal Deficit or possible default. C-Span cameras capture the hypocrites from both political parties ranting and raving about how to solve this shortfall that is fast becoming a freefall. USA Today devotes their full editorial section to this. Yet, nowhere in all the rhetoric and hype do we see or hear the truth as to why we are broke:  A) Our illegal and immoral invasions/ occupations of Iraq & Afghanistan financed by a bloated ($ 563 Billion +) military budget and B) the most skewed distribution of income in our entire nation’s history!  Yet, the phony politicians and media charlatans only focus on the icing and not the cake. The 2 Party and Tea Party ideologues and mainstream media stooges refuse to challenge the same Military Industrial Complex that cold warrior President Dwight Eisenhower warned about over fifty years ago! We have become a nation, a culture that allows whatever current source of fear the leaders can throw at us to cloud our vision. Each day we are terrorized by whoever the new Hitler is out there; ready to pounce on our freedoms. We had Bush Senior’s Noriega, Clinton’s Milosevic, both Bush’s Saddam, and now Obama’s Kaddafi. Does anyone else out there see through this charade?

The second reason for our economic crisis is the one percent of us. Yes, one percent of Americans controls over 40% of our nation’s wealth. We have CEOs of major corporations that earn in excess of 400 times that of their lowest paid full time employee. 400 times! It used to be considered outrageous, in the 1980s, when it was over 50 times. The sad reality is that these super rich folks are being taxed at 35%. In 1960, when JFK took office, it was 90%. When Reagan was president, it was at 71%. What is really a disgrace is how they lump anyone earning a couple of hundred thousand a year into the same basket as the mega millionaires and billionaires. Why should a person who works hard and is lucky enough to earn $ 300,000 a year be treated the same, tax wise, as a CEO FAT CAT who earns 20 or 50 or 100 million a year? Yet, many of the average blue collar and white collar neighbors I speak to all agree that “The rich deserve whatever they can earn. We all have that opportunity “. I ask now if it is immoral that one of us can earn so much, while a few miles away others of us struggle to support a family. So many Americans get up each morning at the crack of dawn, and punch out 8 or 10 hours in a factory or box store for, if lucky, $ 9.00 or $ 10.00 an hour. The top execs at that corporation, or the CEO, can earn what that worker earns in one full year in perhaps one week! Or really, in one day! What would Jesus say about that, I ask all of you who kneel and pray each Sunday?

Empires soar… and empires fall. Remember the quote from Shakespeare: “The fault, dear Brutus, is not in our stars but in our selves! “

Philip A Farruggio is son and grandson of Brooklyn NYC longshoremen. He is a small businessman, activist leader and free lance columnist. Philip is an advocate for the 25% Solution to cut military spending to save our state and city budget shortfalls.  Since the 2000 elections, he has written over 250 columns, many posted on various sites worldwide. Recently, he is finding a home at the fine dandelion salad website. Philip can be reached at