Monday, August 13, 2007

While the clock is ticking and I hold only 14 more days in my cupped hands, summer slumbers outside my window. Some days I might as well be watching a movie where the director inserts a graphic cartoon calendar with pages torn and blown away by a whistling wind. Yes, I waste time and the mental image is cinema. Nice touch. Goes to show how real life and movies are entangled. Or at least in my imagination.

I was thinking ... (okay, you can probably stop reading now...) the other day about censorship and movies and television. It's not the violence that creates the issues. It's not the drugs. What's happened for years is the reflection of a lifestyle that is truly unattainable by the average person. We are not all going to be Rich and/or Famous. By virtue of sheer numbers, it's not gonna happen. Images of wealth and wealth's byproducts (all that STUFF to own, use, toss out like rotten tomatoes) flood the airwaves. What is missing? The work ethic it takes to actually attain said wealth (outside of inheriting, which is mostly how wealth is achieved, but let's not even attempt to explain that one to the great unwashed/uneducated/average cave dweller).

My thoughts traveled this circuitous route via low interest, or even "no interest" home loans. Not that people actually thought, "here's my free lunch" (because they have been programmed to believe such exists). No. My thoughts roamed to the banks and why they have a need to produce and sell such unethical products. Why have we come to this? Money for free. Except it isn't. What makes fake loans attractive? The culture of the Rich and Famous. We can have it all, baby. And have it now. And buy, buy, buy. Cha ching. Bling bling. Without paying.

I walked into a public restroom at the Nevada stateline. I'll bet over a hundred people were parked or pulling in and out of the gas station, on their way to Las Vegas. These were not Rich People. I don't have a solid clue, but I'll say from my perusal, these were mid-to-low income. You'd have to wonder what they were doing, but you would already know. Rich and Famous. Las Vegas. Paved with gold. For the taking. Free money. You bet. You win. High rollers. Gangstahs. Bitches (and that's a word I hate, but that's what they call themselves, which is so demeaning, they have no clue). Gas costs too much? Can't afford to fill that tank? Hey, we'll make that and more in... Las Vegas. Cheap, tawdry, alluring. Just like those Bank Loans.

"Money for nuthin'...." not very many people got that was all sarcastic, did they?

Consider the musical interlude over and let's get back to bank loans. And when the buyers discovered the truth, what did they do? Carry on? Fight back? Maybe. However, the numbers seem to show millions of foreclosures. Millions. And who do you think is going to pay for this? And what is ALREADY happening to the economy?

Loans are scarce. Prices will tumble. But hey! Our property has already been revalued for taxes (which surprisingly went up to accommodate the rise in prices precipitated by the false demand and price hikes on houses). And China is pissed at being dissed in polite society. We send our labor to China so the goods are made cheaply so we can buy, buy, buy more STUFF (remember... being Rich and Famous means constant Acquisition). Should we be angry that China cuts corners? Or should we shut up and keep buying? Inquiring minds want to know.

Yeah, Rich and Famous trumps violence and sex on t.v. and in the movies, as far as I am concerned. We want to be Rich. We want the low prices. We sent the jobs to China and Mexico and India, but we want to be Rich here. Now.

When did the work here stop and the buying begin? Check it out. Probably about the time television brought us the Beverly Hillbillies, Dallas, and Lifestyles of the Rich and Famous.

p.s. China actually OWNS us, so maybe we really do have to shut up and buy those toys with the lead-based paint. Or they'll call the loans or devalue their currency and we are all in the Great Depression. Oh, you don't understand? Well, that's another "chalk one up" for the USofA. But that's also another topic for another day.

End of ramble. Thanks for listening. Want a quiet, normal vacation where we aren't Rich and Famous and we enjoy simple pleasures, like reading a book? Come visit us in Vermont.

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