Made in China
I was talking to a friend today and he shared with me an innocuous comment, at least on the surface. We were talking about a friend of his, a guy I know through a fantasy football league I play in. My friend told me that this fellow “had just been laid off.” This will be one of the most repeated phrases we’ll be hearing in the days, weeks and months to come. Even though the credit markets seem to be trickling again, money isn’t getting to solvent banks or to consumer credit markets, or businesses on the brink, no its going to failing banks that are using the money to buy other banks. But we’re getting ahead of ourselves here. If all of the economic indicators that I am looking at are true and the next line of casualties are going to be the hedge funds, then it will only be a matter of time when the ticking derivatives bomb will go off, “Just been laid off” will be the most common phrase of 2009.
When Pluto moves into Capricorn the breakneck acceleration of the current economic downturn will only increase. There is no turning back from the momentum of the dominant paradigm and it’s quest to merge government with business and vice versa. This will be a very early theme in Pluto’s stay in the sign of the goat. We’ve just witnessed, without precedent, The Treasury Department (Paulson) and The Fed (Bernanke) just take the government officially into the private sector, with congress and the senate, complicitly backing up the truck, against the voices of the people. Now that the government is in business, how does that reflect upon how people are governed? Because if we stay true to one of the overall energy of Pluto in Capricorn then governance also has to take the shape of something less officially democratic, more of say a version of the new social capitalism of China, where the state is the de facto employer, but not in some remotely nostalgic 19th century version of feudalism. No, it is going to be ultra modern, adhering to models of efficiency, cost analysis, bottom lines and productivity.
The quaint notion of democracy will not be challenged by its failings to stave off the encroachment of imperialism based on its charter, but it will simply be deemed antiquated and not cost effective in its application. just yesterday, Yahoo! ran a piece that equated the current social milieu with that of the times that Roosevelt inherited after the first depression. It was a pivotal moment in the history and evolution of The US. Roosevelt launched The New Deal and started The WPA, which used massive amounts of borrowed money through The Fed to build the backbone of this countries infrastructure, from highways and dams, to power plants. It was an opportunity for the federal government to assert itself deeply into the lives and welfare of the populace to a degree that hadn’t been done before. Sounding familiar?
With the beginnings of The WPA and The New Deal, we also saw the rise of the corporation, an entity who did not exist prior to The New Deal. The whole idea behind corporations was that they were to be temporary entities that would form solely for the single act of accomplishing some very specific project. They were able to gain immediate leverage in the marketplace due to the fact that they needed to perform at the highest level efficiency and get the job done and were given tax breaks and other advantages. Once the job was finished, the corporation was to be disbanded. Uh huh.
So during the Roosevelt admin we saw the inflation of the federal governments role, growing to ultimately supersede the role of the states in governing the populace, regulating commerce and determining public policy. Most of this was done through the establishment of the central banking system and the inclusion of federal taxation, which began to move enormous sums of money into the coffers of the federal government, which would then loan the money to the states for state projects and initiatives. But there is always a catch, isn’t there? Once the money started to flow to the states, it was like a junkie that couldn’t kick. The states needed pork and entitlements just to stay afloat. Now that money does not come without a price to pay. Just look at “The No Child Left Behind” initiative that The Bush admin has masterminded. The Fed said, we will give you money that you need for your programs, but you must let us shape the curriculum and employ a rigorous, test based model. The beauty of the test based model is that the only goal is to pass the test and the way to pass is simply learn the answers that are to be found in the curriculum and the text books that support it. Anything else is generally considered superfluous, so funneling minds into a particular vector of knowledge is a very crafty way of shaping them, because, of course, those kids have got to pass all of those really important tests.
So what is going to happen when as Pluto moves into Capricorn and we will begin to see the jaw dropping effects of un-employment in record numbers? I have no doubt that when Obama becomes president (unless they suspend the election is there any doubt that he will?) we will see a new version of The WPA, a socialized workforce that Obama and his cabinet will employ to insert a new infrastructure. Since we will most likely be plugged into some form or new global or regional currency (see The Amero), the government will ultimately become the largest employer in The US. This is where we’ll see the government/corporate frankenstein will be unleashed upon the populace. Most folks will simply want to eat, so they’ll comply and get re-oriented, I mean re-trained in some new skill and job that will be provided for them, within a salary scale range that will not rise much due to performance or initiative. Getting ahead will give way to getting by and this new aUSterity will be encouraged for the good of the whole. It is a brilliant new model for those that want to widen the gap between the halves and the not-have-a-lots. Not only will it widen the gap, but seal it in place and only reward the compliant and the willing. This is the chinese model, extracting maximum efficiency from a working class that believes that their standard of living is increasing. it is all well and good, but just ask members of Falun Gong and other dissidents what its like to be organ donors on demand.
Will it happen in the same fashion here as it has evolved in China? Of course not, the model will be tempered to fit the post-modern-american-psyche. But it is the ultimate power grab, a sophisticated form of collusion where profits are maximized and governing most of the masses falls under the umbrella of one order, with one solvent economy now available to all. But before we are presented with such a plan, people will have to suffer, grow hungry, get cold and even live in challenging conditions on the streets or in tent cities. Then, at the greatest moment of despair, Pluto in Capricornian agents will spring forward with the panacea for the public, a WPA styled program that will make use of everyones skills and restore a modicum of prosperity. Maximum efficiency across all levels. in addition to the new WPA styled work group, there will also be service oriented youth brigades that Obama is already championing. The greatest asset available will be the will of the individual in service of not just some greater good, but also in the act of doing what it does to simply survive.
You may look at this and say, well this is merely some conspiratorial conjecture and my answer to you would be it is not. it is simply the extension of doing business, maximizing profits and productivity and the ultimate mutation of the corporatocracy in order fulfill those directives. The next president, whether it is Obama or McCain will be tasked to in essence play the role of CEO and each one will deliver according to the background and training they have received. In Obama’s case it is what he learned from the likes of Saul Alinsky, Frank Marshall Davis and Bill Ayers, where the concept of redistributing wealth plays a key role. Here in this radio interview, Obama stresses its importance and how it might be achieved.
The masses are under the sway of Barack Obama and it appears that they will follow him anywhere with a faith that is reserved for iconic religious figures. What happens when that faith is tested and as Joe Biden has almost assured us, that it will be, how will people respond? Will they abandon their will? Their one and only remaining asset in a bankrupt economy? We will no doubt see just how much change people are be willing to believe in. Pluto in Capricorn’s negative manifestation is the rise to ultimate power, but remember, we always have a choice and we can use that energy to empower us as well. We can, if we so choose, create our own social networks and economies of scale based on new, emergent, shared values. But to do so is to nurture the expression of the will in conjunction with others that are committed to the same type of alternative models, like Jacque Frescoes Venus Project. But it does not have to be that grand. It could be a community garden for starters, or a weekly assemblage of crafty neighbors that are looking at how use old appliances and discarded items in new ways, or forming groups that study the healing power of herbs, especially local ones. We can re-invent the idea of community through necessity, a theme that cannot be avoided during Pluto in Capricorn. But we can do it on our own terms, honoring our innate creativity and ingenuity and be richly rewarded as a result.