Tag Archive for materialism

The Gods of Greed

The coronavirus pandemic is still wreaking havoc on the human population across the planet with the death rate at close to 6% globally. The United States now leads the world in coronavirus cases by a large margin with over 500,000 cases and in deaths with over 21,000. Not only has COVID-19 exposed the incompetence of the Trump administration, but it’s revealed the true abhorrent nature of right wing propaganda media outlets like Fox News, a.k.a. the Republican Propaganda Network, and has destroyed the myth of a strong economy that American CEO/Dictator and petulant man child Donald Trump has touted since day one of his clusterf*ck of a presidency.

Trump has taken over the media since the coronavirus outbreak and on a daily basis shown that he is a truly horrible, tone deaf, uncaring heel. He openly has pushed for the use of hydroxychloroquine as a possible cure for COVID-19 despite medical evidence to the contrary. He has openly tried to gaslight the public in saying that he was always concerned about the coronavirus pandemic when he clearly mocked the media for touting its danger back in January and February, calling it ‘the next democratic hoax’ and stating that the virus will go away by April. (Editor’s note – we were skeptical back then, too – but at least we’ll admit we underestimated the original situation). In typical Trumpian fashion, he has blamed everyone but himself. His daily briefings are nothing more than political rallies where he crows about what a fantastic job he’s doing and that his ratings are higher than ever. He even brought out the My Pillow guy to prop him up. In Trump’s warped mind, over 21,000 (that’s seven 9/11s, folks) deaths in a two month span is a good thing and apparently we should congratulate him. Remember when he tweeted in 2014 calling for Obama to resign because of his handling of Ebola which resulted in two American deaths. No hypocrisy there, eh?

Fox News has also been doing its part in the gaslighting of America, too. When the pandemic first broke back in February, they openly called it a hoax and nothing to worry about. Twenty-one thousand American deaths later, they’re walking back their comments like Michael Jackson doing the moonwalk. Trump bootlicker extraordinaire Sean Hannity even had the gaul to say that Fox has always been concerned about the coronavirus, conveniently forgetting that there are video records showing the contrary. Fortunately, they’re getting sued for spreading lies and misinformation to the American public about coronavirus. Will justice be served and Fox be driven into the ground? We can only hope, but like John Oliver recently revealed on his excellent show, there are more bat shit insane right wing networks like OAN waiting in the wings to take Fox’s place.

The true emptiness of our capitalistic society has also been exposed with this pandemic. People have been trying to make boatloads of money off the shortages of paper products from the panic buying last month in the very definition of disaster capitalism. The stock market has lost much of its gains of the Trump era despite billionaires pumping money into the voracious, insatiable maw of Wall Street. Pundits like tin foil hat king Glenn Beck have even put forth notions that people should sacrifice themselves in order to save the stock market. Senator Ron Johnson of Wisconsin has even suggested that people are going to die anyway, why not sacrifice yourself for the stockholders of America. And somehow, disgraced former Fox News propagandist and self-proclaimed history detective Bill O’Reilly has appeared back on the air and has been blathering the same kind of thing as Johnson saying that the deaths have been people who ‘were on their last legs anyway’. What a compassionate conservative christian!

That’s where we are, folks; our leaders and right wing media pundits are actually suggesting we lay down our lives for profit. For those christians out there, is this what Jesus would do? With the coronavirus pandemic, we now know that to the Republican party, certain people in America (a.k.a. the non 1%ers) just don’t matter and they should sacrifice themselves on the altar of capitalism in order to appease the Gods of Greed; the capitalistic overlords on Wall Street and plutocrats of corporate America.

The Gods of Greed: In order to save his precious stock market while simultaneously improving his all-important TV ratings, American CEO/Dictator and top notch medical professional Donald Trump and his horde of sycophantic Republican lackeys try to convince the American populace that granny and gramps must sacrifice themselves to the coronavirus pandemic on the altar of capitalism in order to save the lives of our greedy corporate overlords and the avaricious plutocratic gods on Wall Street. Rated R for Rapacious.
The Gods of Greed: In order to save his precious stock market while simultaneously improving his all-important TV ratings, American CEO/Dictator and top notch medical professional Donald Trump and his horde of sycophantic Republican lackeys try to convince the American populace that granny and gramps must sacrifice themselves to the coronavirus pandemic on the altar of capitalism in order to save the lives of our greedy corporate overlords and the avaricious plutocratic gods on Wall Street. Rated R for Rapacious.

Australia On The Barbie

These are trying times not just for the United States, but for the entire world. Tensions are high in the Middle East with America’s assassination of Iran’s general Qassem Soleimani and Iran’s retaliatory attack on U.S. bases in Iraq, not to mention Iran’s accidental shooting down of a commercial airliner. There is the impeachment saga of Donald Trump and his continuing attempts with help from his flying monkey lackeys in the Senate at distracting Americans (see Iran attack).

But probably the most gut wrenching events happening now are the wildfires in Australia. We’re environmentalists here at the Bucket and it’s depressing to see the loss of so much wildlife to these raging fires, which are exacerbated by climate change. Estimates are that possibly one billion animals have been killed by the conflagrations which are consuming wide swaths of eastern Australia. Some threatened species like the tiny dunnart, potoroo and glossy black-cockatoo are being pushed to the brink of extinction. The damage is devastating and heartbreaking.

But the most frustrating thing about it is that the conservative leaders in Australia, much like their conservative counterpart Republicans in the United States are big time climate change deniers. Prime Minister Scott Morrison has received a boatload of flack for his handling of the crisis. He actually took a vacation to Hawaii while Australian citizens grappled with the fires. Of course, Morrison blamed it all on a “breakdown in communications”. He was also roundly booted from a town in New South Wales where citizens, fed up with the government inaction, heckled him thus driving him away from their town. In our estimation, Morrison deserves every bit of criticism. His and other corporatists attitude is to protect the fossil fuel industries at all cost and to ignore the obvious results of climate change, flippantly dismissing bushfires as something Australia always have had, this year it’s just a little more severe. But Australia’s summer temperatures have broken records for the last several years and the hot, dry air is only making the bushfires that much worse.

The crisis is real and Australia is in danger of losing not only its unique land wildlife but also its diverse sea life as well. The Great Barrier Reef is also in tremendous peril. The leaders of the world need to stop being greedy and consumed by materialism and the pursuit of capitalistic wealth. Like we’ve said over and over here, there is no planet B! If the living plants and creatures on this world die, we die! Since humans have commandeered this planet, it’s our responsibility as its ‘smartest’ species to make sure all life survives. Capitalism is killing life on this planet. It’s time for our leaders to pull their greedy fricking heads out of their greedy fricking asses and pass laws, a.k.a regulations, against polluting industries throughout the world.

Australian Prime Minister Scott Morrison laments the possible extinction of the fossil fuel industry if climate change is addressed while a kangaroo, a koala and an endangered potoroo have a few choice words for the PM.
Australian Prime Minister Scott Morrison laments the possible extinction of the fossil fuel industry if climate change is addressed while a kangaroo, a koala and an endangered potoroo have a few choice words for the PM.

Soulless Capitalism

Facebook’s CEO Mark Zuckerberg recently came under fire for stating that he won’t fact check political ads in the upcoming 2020 election thus clearing the way for possibly more election interference from foreign agents. The Mueller report clearly stated that dubious foreign entities played a part in the 2016 election by disseminating false information on social media sites and even hacking into some election systems in Florida. To her credit, Elizabeth Warren challenged Zuckerberg by purposely running a fake news ad on Facebook to draw attention to what a serious problem this is for democracy.

We shouldn’t be surprised though. We’ve commented before about how unregulated capitalism (a.k.a. no laws to check corporations or corporate power) breeds colossal amounts of greed, avarice, selfishness and corruption. We’ve become a SEGUMUCA nation. More people than ever are trying to get rich quick using whatever possible method, even if it’s illegal. Just watch some episodes of American Greed. It’s enough to make you sick. Capitalism is nothing more than indirect cannibalism.

So Mark Zuckerberg is no different than Donald Trump or any greedy capitalist serving in his administration(Wilbur Ross, Steve Mnuchin, etc…) or unethical Republican in the House or Senate who looks the other way while Trump commits crime after crime. They worship the almighty buck and will support all others with the same money-grubbing, materialistic mindset. These callous automatons are only interested in our data so they can make more money off of us schmucks in the middle class who do all the work. And right now, these greedy, soulless capitalists are in complete control of this nation.

Truth and justice don't matter to today's capitalists like Mark Zuckerberg; they're only interested in your data and your money.
Truth and justice don’t matter to today’s capitalists like Mark Zuckerberg; they’re only interested in your data and your money.

Another Blameless, White Plutocrat

The big news last week was the rather weak sentence handed down to former Trump campaign chairman and ostrich suit aficionado, Paul Manafort. Federal guidelines recommend 19-24 years sentences for the kind of crimes Manafort committed.  But T.S. Ellis, a right wing conservative judge seated during the Reagan administration, took pity on Manafort and gave him an ostrich feather light 47 months or one month shy of 4 years. Only 4 years! Talk about your privilege for white plutocrats.

Needless to say, there is some uproar about the lenient sentence with many stating that people who’ve committed far less offensive crimes have gotten far stiffer sentences. But the bitter pill to swallow in all this is that other than his tax crimes, Ellis stated that Manafort lived an ‘otherwise blameless life’. Blameless! Are you freaking kidding!!! This man rubbed elbows with brutal dictators and deflected criticism of their regimes thus amassing millions of dollars. Even Manafort’s daughter said he has no moral compass. There is nothing blameless about him. He and Donald Trump are the epitome of the worst of American greed and the capitalistic lust for power, money and material possessions.

Manafort is up for sentencing this week for his other charges linked to conspiracy and illegal lobbying related to the Mueller investigation. Hopefully, the judge, U.S. District Judge Amy Berman Jackson, will throw the book at this greedy piece of dung and let him rot the rest of his ‘blameless’ life in jail.

United States District Court Judge T.S. Ellis boldly mollycoddles blameless fraudster and ostrich suit aficionado Paul Manafort by finally giving a poor, white plutocrat some justice.

United States District Court Judge T.S. Ellis boldly mollycoddles blameless fraudster and ostrich suit aficionado Paul Manafort by finally giving a poor, white plutocrat some justice.

All The Money And Power, No Responsibility

Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez(AOC) has made quite a splash in Washington D.C. The freshman congressperson has managed to tick off the stodgy old corporate Democrats and Republicans while invigorating Progressives across the nation. Perhaps her biggest headline so far is her push for a 70% top marginal tax rate. This means that the top earners in this country, people who earn more than $10 million, would pay a 70% tax rate. This has made most conservative Republicans, like the fine folks over at Fox News, a.k.a. The Republican Propaganda Network, apoplectic. Republithugs and plutocrats alike have stepped forward to denounce the ‘socialist’ ideology of AOC. Former Wisconsin governor and derp-monger Scott Walker embarrassed himself by providing an inane example of the tax rate to school children. Billionaire Howard Schultz has stepped forward to proclaim, with a straight face no less, that this would not be good for him. Ahhhhh…poor little rich man!

Even people on the left have criticized AOC. Whoopi Goldberg, co-host on The View, stated that she needs to hush up and pay her dues. Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi (like the true corporatist she is) has pooh-poohed the Green New Deal that AOC is proposing. Whenever we hear people criticizing this young idealistic woman, we think of the words of David Bowie from his classic song Changes.

And these children that you spit on
As they try to change their worlds
Are immune to your consultations
They’re quite aware of what they’re goin’ through

We think that the only reason these critics on the left are pissed is that they sold out to corporate or monied interests instead of vigorously pursuing the ideological dreams that AOC pushes. Of course, Hollywood is infamous for people having to ‘pay their dues’.  It takes years, sometimes decades for actors and actresses to become ‘players’, so Ms. Goldberg’s comments shouldn’t surprise anyone who has been paying attention for the last fifty years.

The fact is that the 70% top marginal tax rate has been done before very successfully. During the ’50s, the “good ol’ days” as most conservative Republicans would call them, the top marginal tax rate was well above 70% and guess what…prosperity broke out. The interstate highway system was completed. The space program was booted up which kick started numerous industries which employed millions. And it worked because Eisenhower was president and no spoiled, well-to-do corporate plutocrat had the cojones to question the leader of the D-Day invasion. Ike knew what sacrifice meant and he expected all Americans, even the rich, to participate and aid the country. Now the plutocrats and the oligarchs have an entire party, the Republicans, to do their bidding and they’ve managed to steal away the wealth from most of the citizenry of America. The richest 1% owns 40% of this nation’s wealth, the greatest wealth gap in history.

Unfortunately, in doesn’t just stop in America. Because of capitalism, on a world wide scale, just under 50 people have more wealth than the bottom 3.7 billion people in the world. That’s greed, egotism, selfishness, competitiveness and materialism gone amuck in a ‘bigly’ way.

We wish AOC all the best on her Green New Deal crusade and her political career. It’s about time politicians in Washington start giving a damn about our planet and preparing for the future of all species of life. Give ’em hell, AOC!

Modern day plutocrats and their Republican lackeys abhor a 70% Top Marginal tax rate because they want all the money and all the power, but none of the responsibility.

Modern day plutocrats and their Republican lackeys abhor a 70% Top Marginal tax rate because they want all the money and all the power, but none of the responsibility.

SEGUMUCA Nation

Well, the unthinkable has happened in America. What started out as a joke last June, has become a reality. Donald Trump has pretty much clinched the Republican Presidential nomination. Like other sane, reasonable folks, we’re completely surprised and a bit horrified at the ascendancy of this disingenuous, authoritarian megalomaniac. And naturally the blamestorming has commenced. Common scapegoats include the obvious choices like the Teabagger Republicans and corporate media. The Republicans have the gall to actually blame Obama. John Stewart has suggested it’s the Democrats. We here at the Bucket will go one better; we’re all to blame for this fiasco.

That’s right folks. Whether we want to admit it or not, we’re all responsible for Donald Trump because the orange rage monster is the epitome of capitalism run amok. We’ve commented before about the ugly predatory nature of unregulated capitalism.  Upton Sinclair documented it one hundred years ago in the book The Jungle and it still is applicable today. Trump has come to represent everything that capitalism holds dear; greed, avarice, egoism, ultra-competitiveness, selfishness and materialism. Most Americans who have been raised on the belief that capitalism is the only sensible economy for this planet, look to the self-aggrandizing, megalomaniac billionaire, who has had three trophy wives and scores of material possessions like houses, cars, planes, etc… and say “Hey! I want to be like him.” That’s the American way. The rich, greedy plutocrats dangle the carrot and the rest of us salivate and go after it. We’ve mentioned John Steinbeck’s quote about the poor seeing themselves as temporarily embarrasses millionaires instead of exploited grunts. These are Trump’s trumpeters; the temporarily embarrassed millionaires; and of course the plutocrats, like Sheldon Adelson, who will naturally support his fellow billionaire.

We here at the Bucket were kind of hoping that Bernie Sanders, the self proclaimed democratic socialist would have gotten the nomination. That would have made the election a referendum of sorts between democratic socialism against unregulated capitalism. According to polls, in a head to head showdown, Sanders thumps Trump.

We think it’s time that all Americans do a bit of self-introspection, especially conservatives. Conservatives generally don’t do this because in the conservative mindset, they are always right, hence no need to look at oneself in the mirror. Questioning your actions is bad and a sign of weakness. One must do what has been traditionally done forever and ever. And don’t even think of apologizing; that is absolute weakness and worthy of death. But is Donald Trump really who were are as a nation? Are we really like Trump? Are we a SEGUMUCA nation: a nation of Selfish, Egotistical, Greedy, Ultra-Materialistic, Ultra-Competitive Assholes? (Catchy eh?…[sound of crickets chirping]…hellllooooo) Isn’t it time we put the people’s health and welfare, the public good and the environment above profits and selfish, greedy materialistic desires? Maybe if we do that, we won’t look in the mirror, see Donald Trump snarling back and say to ourselves, “Holy Shit! How did we get so fugly!”

Uncle Sam recoils in horror as he looks in the mirror and sees that he has become a selfish, egotistical, greedy, ultra-materialistic, ulta-competitive asshole, a.k.a. Donald Trump.

Uncle Sam recoils in horror as he looks in the mirror and sees that he has become a Selfish, Egotistical, Greedy, Ultra-Materialistic, Ultra-Competitive Asshole.