A YouTube video from FreeMarketAmerica is making the rounds. It's called "If I Wanted America to Fail," and it is a very, very expensive and slick piece of political propaganda. It appalls me that it showed up on one of my FB "friend's" posts as "a powerful video that should be watched." In some ways, though, I agree, it should be watched, but only as a tool for exposing the lengths that corporate America will go to in order to convince the American people to act against their own interests. Below is what I wrote as an answer to the video. Unfortunately, the 500 character limit on YouTube will not allow an adequate response on their website, so I must do it here (and on Facebook):
This is incredibly ridiculous (but incredibly slick multi-million dollar) propaganda that has almost no factual basis unless it is as satirical irony for the grotesque destruction that these false prophets for false profits have perpetrated on the American people and the world. I lived through the days when schools had to close because the smog in LA was too dangerous to breathe. The corporate-created double-speak that calls these predators "job creators" instead of the actual destroyers of the American economy and social infrastructure needs to be seen for what it is.
That so-called "free market" that built the middle class, was, in fact, a highly regulated market with strong unions. When the union-busting policies and the "lower taxes for the rich" mantra were introduced, the middle and working classes had seen decades of increasing prosperity; since Reagan introduced us to Arthur Laffer, Howard Jarvis and Milton Friedman, we have seen our incomes stagnate, our cities crumble, our states go bankrupt, our social safety net destroyed, our media consolidated and corrupted, and our political system derailed all in the name of the "free market" and unfettered greed. If the petroleum and energy companies were held accountable and were required to instead of exempted from actually building in the real costs of their destruction of the environment, our so-called "cheap energy" would at least triple in cost.
The hypocrisy of this video couldn't be more blatant. This is not espousing the cause of mom and pop enterprises or bright young entrepreneurs. This video and its spiel are touting and promoting the interests of giant multi-national corporations who, in the name of ever greater and more unscrupulous greed, continue to wangle giant tax breaks and subsidies, legal loopholes to exempt criminal behavior and protection from prosecution. Simultaneously, they are closing down factories in America; "sheltering" their profits "offshore" to avoid contributing to the general welfare of American society; eliminating health care and reneging on the promised pensions of American workers; attacking public sector workers and their unions while promoting the privatization of even fundamental government responsibilities like education and the military; and shipping jobs overseas where even basic worker and environmental protections are eliminated by totalitarian regimes which we support with our policies and our commerce.
If I have not made it clear already, this kind of "black is white," science-denying, worker-baiting, prevaricating propaganda promoted by ALEC and the US Chamber of Commerce sickens me. These liars could care less if America fails, and they have proven it every step of the way as they have perpetrated the biggest transfer of wealth in the history of the world from the working and middle classes to the idle rich and the predatory and criminal corporate plutocracy. In their movie, they slip in that they are aggrieved that they are not allowed to take their environment-destroying, ill-gotten "energy" and sell it to other countries. Why? To help America? No, to reap unconscionable and unfettered profits. The whole Tar Sands pipeline is designed to allow petroleum products to be shipped out of this country; it is not intended to help our energy solutions.
In one sense, I guess, the video does demonstrate a great entrepreneurial strain in American history; that is, the ability of the rich and powerful to take away rights, freedoms, and protections from everyday Americans, while taking the money that they saved from eliminating your healthcare, reneging on your pensions, demanding ever greater "efficiency" (more work) for ever-dwindling compensation. It further demonstrates this American entrepreneurship by spending some of those billions of dollars extracted from your pocket to market distortions and lies to convince you that TOO MUCH regulation created the Exxon and BP oil spills or the Enron debacle, or that it was too much regulation that brought down the financial markets, brought on the housing crisis, and created a jobless recovery. Yep, they spend your money to sell you the idea that THEY are the REAL AMERICANS who have your real interests and the interests of America at heart.
If I wanted America to fail, I would swallow their lies.
“The Greatest Threat to Democracy is Hypocrisy! Seek Truth! Speak Truth!”