Mini-Me: US Public Enraged & Spinning Apart?

Cultural Intelligence
Who, Mini-Me?
Who, Mini-Me?

Huh?

We, the people are violent and filled with rage: A nation spinning apart on its Independence Day

School shootings, hatred, capitalism run amok: This 4th of July, we are in the midst of a tragic public derangement

Salon, 4 July 2014

EXTRACTS

But the American emphasis on individual conscience and autonomy also gestated a liberal capitalist republic that has reduced individualism to market exchanges in ways that are now destroying both individuals and the society.

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The moral silence and often bankruptcy of states and markets leaves citizen-leaders to be nourished and trained all the more intensively in institutions that stand somewhat apart from the state and markets.

. . . . . .

Whether ressentiment erupts in racist violence, sectarian fanaticism, anti-Communist witch hunts, totalitarian show trials, politically correct cultural revolutions or sadistic escapism, its most telling symptoms are paranoia and routinized bursts of hysteria. Under the ministrations of gifted demagogues, its grievances and pain assume a fleeting brilliance that soon collapses, tragi-comically or catastrophically, on its own cowardice and lies.

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This time, we’re all in bed with the enemy. In “The Cultural Contradictions of Capitalism” 40 years ago, Daniel Bell — no anti-capitalist, but prophetic enough about the worship of Golden Calves — argued that free markets no longer make free men because “economic liberalism has become… corporate oligopoly, and, in the pursuit of private wants, a hedonism that is destructive of social needs.”

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Although there’s plenty to regret and respect in the traditions we’ve lost, there’s no turning back from the “moral condition” and “career” we face as citizens. We have no choice but to keep faith with the republic and one another. If Americans have a manifest destiny now, it’s to lead in weaving a new republican fabric that markets can serve but not subvert.

Read full article.

See Also:

Graphic: Preconditions of Revolution in the USA Today

Revolution @ Phi Beta Iota