From my Writing Room
Copyright © 2021 by Uwe Bahr
Children sent to school with guns, a silly never-ending abortion debate, a congressman posing with his family in front of a Christmas tree, all with guns in hand: profit-hungry gun manufacturers with a criminal National Rifle Association (NRA) as their umbrella of protection take precedence over the welfare of the American people, while at the same time the protection of unborn life is prioritized as the noblest of Christian values. The insanity of all American contradictions is supported and directed by the donors of a targeted policy that in the end ensures the greatest possible financial gain for both sides. At the same time, most Americans are apparently unwilling to recognize that their society is vegetating under subversive neoliberalism.
How should they know? If they already associate the term “socialism” with the most ludicrous notions, then how should they grasp the facts about neoliberalism in their very own country? An essential factor is: There is no realistic approach to tangible socialism in the United States; instead, neoliberalism is pervasive. The specter of socialism is meant to ensure that a perception of real existing neoliberalism cannot arise in the first place.
I know both forms of society all too well; I have personally lived among them and experienced them first hand. The second experience occurred in a place of freedom where I least expected it: the United States of America. For in the past, living far away in a completely different world, we looked longingly to America in the firm belief that this was the freest country on earth.
In my “first life”, I was involuntarily exposed to socialism in the German Democratic Republic (GDR) for 28 years. I didn’t see anyone there who was really enthusiastic about it; we were walled in, separated from relatives in the free part of Germany, and there was no escape without a high possibility of endangering life and limb. In 1989, the barrel overflowed, and the long-pent-up popular anger was discharged in an astonishingly peaceful manner. The realization had already grown in us long before: Socialism is indeed a dictatorship, therefore it has no human face and it does not work also because there is no freedom for individual creativity due to the nationalized means of production. Moreover, people in the masses do not function according to predetermined moral norms. For similar reasons, Christianity as a whole has continuously failed in its own demands, with very few people able to live according to Christian ambitions (read the first paragraph again).
I experienced the excesses of neoliberalism for more than eight years in a company called “Walmart”; a lawless space without any legal protection for the working people, some features strongly reminiscent of the GDR with intimidation methods the order of the day, here and there. Of course, in the end you could “merely” lose your job at Walmart, while in the GDR personal freedom was at stake – a disproportionately higher price. In terms of labor, however, the working people in the GDR did have rights, which I could not see in any way at Walmart.
The deception about socialism is spread in the United States as deliberately and purposefully as is the concealment of inhuman neoliberalism: in the media, in the schools, in the churches, by politics anyway, because the political caste is the essential part of the whole, similar to a referee in sports who has been bribed by one of the participating teams. As shocking as the realization is, but it has been possible in the land of the free and the brave to create a broad stratum of ordinary people whose thinking is directed to the restrictions of microcosm and who willingly allow themselves to be trimmed in almost any direction – except that of reality.
The real disaster of the present is the Republican Party’s nearly unconditional agreement to neoliberalism, thereby dealing a deep blow to the old idea of conservatism on American soil. Large sections of the Democrats are not lagging behind. This is how a country is divided from the top down. Those who speak out against it risk being assigned to socialism, a form of society that is not applicable to practical life anyway.
Thus, a conducive discourse about the country’s problems cannot even take place, especially since every opinion in the U.S. is subject to the principle of deeply divided two-party rule. Even wearing a mouth-nose guard because of Corona some interpret as political orientation.
How conditions are supposed to change for the better under such circumstances is a mystery to me.