The Devil pens a motivational letter to his minions in America.
Through means I am unable to disclose, I have obtained a copy of the Devil's New Year's missive to his minions in America. Though it appears He delivered his letter on January 1, it has taken me until after Lunar New Year to obtain a copy. The Devil's gleeful anticipation of America's ruination by 2015 should give us pause.
To my fallen angels Beelzebub, Lucifer and Leviathan, princes of Hell's demons, and to my minions, lackeys, toadies and sycophants in America:As you know, the new year usually finds me quite despondent, as the Prince of Peace's influence waxes most atrociously around his birthday. But this year I am in fine spirits, nay, let me even declare myself absolutely giddy, for the destruction of the United States of America draws ever nearer.
Though my minions have long sown festering seeds of hate and disharmony in that now-benighted land, only recently have my favored weapons of destruction--leverage, debt, half-truths and endless, preening justifications for self-aggrandizement, greed, sloth, lust, pride, envy, anger and gluttony--have been unleashed to worm their way into the stricken heart of that Republic.
My most treasured hopes of destitution and conflict in the U.S.A. are nearing fruition.
First, my minions in the Federal Reserve--such loyal servants!--and the Federal government have continued to flood the land with leverage and debt, spreading the seeds of destruction under the false guise of prosperity. What a delicious irony, that the fools doomed to eternal damnation in my Empire believe themselves prosperous as they absorb the poison of exponentially rising leverage, debt and phantom collateral.
They have made a mockery of the rule of law, openly flouting "no one is above the law" by letting financial crimes go not just unpunished but rewarded. There are two sets of laws and two sets of books now firmly in place, one for the financial Elites and their political toadies, and another one for the tax donkeys beneath them. This blatant injustice that roams the land like a foul, slobbering beast will eventually ignite the firestorm I seek.
American extravagance has surpassed even my highest expectations, as purveyors of luxury goods reap record profits, and the childish desire for instant gratification has become the unspoken ruler of the land. Convenience is now worshipped as a god, sitting triumphant beside entitlement, greed and willful ignorance.
Convenience is, as you all know, the name of a peculiarly slick slide into Hell.
One of my favorite sins, gluttony, is running amok, with half of the people groaning under their own weight, sickened and weakened. My loyal minions in the fast-food and packaged food industries have followed my plans to perfection, and my lackeys in the marketing and media have fueled the instant gratification and ignorance which insidiously undermine even the greatest empires.
Pride--oh, how the Americans excel at hubris and pride! The Federal Reserve chair, bless her doomed soul, has declared herself confident about an economy that is nothing but a confidence game. Oh, what joy to hear her lies spoken with such confidence!
The mere thought of the word greed cause me to chuckle delightedly, as the U.S. excels as a haven for greed without bounds, a greed so boundless that the entire universe would be insufficient to satisfy its bankers, hedge fund managers, high-frequency traders, Imperial factotums and politicians. How happy I am to see their greed grease their way into Hell.
I feel like dancing a jig when I hear the unbridled sense of entitlement which has poisoned the American spirit. Cloaking their greed and avarice with rationalizations--"I was promised," "It's my right," "I deserve it"--brings them closer to me and my Domain with every bleated plea for more, more, more. It is wondrous indeed how my secret invention, "free money," debilitates once-independent souls, and places them on a one-way street to servitude.
Anger is now overflowing everywhere, building my empire with every thoughtless word. Politicians rage against each other, the people rage against the politicians, and behind the scenes my servants in the political action committees feed the anger with billions of dollars in campaign donations. How amusing to see the politicos lay claim to noble ideals even as they scramble on their knees to collect the millions tossed at their feet to do my bidding.
Oh yes, my bidding, for their greed, pride and anger are my bidding. By all means, politicians, do my work: give tax breaks to the ultra-wealthy, let financial crimes go unpunished, allow the financial Elites' looting to go unhindered, transfer the wealth earned by the citizens' sweat to the Central State's financial Elites when their trillion-dollar bets go bad--fuel the anger which will tear you from power, and tear the country apart.
I laughed with glee a few years ago when One Beholden To Me announced that he was doing "God's work"--how I love twisting together irony and lies! He fooled no one, of course, for even the most deluded souls know he is doing My Work, not the Lord's, but they are too distracted by games and ginned-up contests to care. Nothing has changed since the corrupt system tasted a whiff of what lies ahead in 2008; oh, how deliciously the lies and the debts are piling ever higher!
Not caring is doing my work, too, of course; in fact, it one of my favorite tools.
The nation bled itself for a decade with unwinnable wars, sacrificing its best youth on the altar of endless war--how can I not rejoice at this orgy of death, destruction and sowing of hate? The feeble liars at the nation's helm print endless sums to fund war and to prop up vile tyrants, but offer nothing for libraries or literacy or the curing of malaria. How can I not rejoice at a nation which finds trillions for war and next to nothing to fight the diseases of the poor residents of former colonies, including that Prince of Disease, ignorance.
As for sloth--that millions are being paid to sit around watching television instead of being productive creates the perfect breeding ground for resentment, malice and envy. How perfect to pay people to sit at home and rot away, with only their discontent and despair for company.
As you know all too well, idle hands end up doing my piecework for free.
It was almost beyond my dreams to find the nation's wealth and politics so dominated by a tiny handful of wealthy financial plutocrats--they are doing my bidding without hindrance, though I see by their troubled sleep that they know where their greed and rationalizations are taking them. To channel the nation's wealth to a few hands--what better way to nurture envy and anger?
If ignorance were treasure, the American political class must be declared wealthier than Midas, for its ignorance has reached a pinnacle I can truly admire. Ensnared by their lust for power, blinded by their greed for fame and perquisites, they look no further than the next election cycle, dooming their nation to division, disharmony and the desolation of permanent conflict over the dwindling productive assets of this once-great nation.
The people cry out to be saved by the government, as if it was a Savior instead of a vast combine chewing through the wealth of the nation, "investing" it in corruption, parasitic financial Elites, military misadventures, Homeland "Security"--ha, isn't that a jewel, as the nation withers from within--and the steady, unyielding oppression of the remaining productive members of society.
When the people cheer "We're number One," I cheer with them, for pride goeth before a fall. When they believe the half-truths, the illusions, the mispresentations, the misdirections and yes, the outright lies of the ruling class repeated by their toadies in the media, I can no longer restrain my delight, for lies and half-truths are my favored weapons of destruction. The leaders are themselves leaderless, blank, hollowed-out souls doing the bidding of their parasitic masters, focused only on keeping the corrupt and venal status quo together for a few more months, never looking out ten years.
Their worship of greed and self-aggandizement is worship of Me, and their frantic efforts to prop up pseudo-democracy and pseudo-free markets serve Me most effectively.
I delight in shortsightedness, an abject fear of change and transformation, the clinging to failure and pride, and the refusal to face reality.
For the U.S.A. is now an Empire of Debt and Lies, its fraudulent financial system built on misrepresentations of risk and value, and its "economy of confidence" a con game based on illusory wealth, parasitic skimming, government gaming and tax donkeys paying for their Financial Masters' idiotic mistakes.
This adolescent desire to believe the lies, because in believing the lies then nothing need change--this might be my most powerful destructive tool.
A hunger for fantasy and illusion, a fear of adaptation, a childish demand for instant gratification--these are forces I can rely on to lead the once-great country to absolute ruin.
And here is the beautifully evil part, my minions--no external enemy is required.The Americans are destroying themselves with their reliance on leverage, debt, denial, half-truths and overflowing servings of the Seven Deadly Sins, all of which they have elevated to "assets" in their hopelessly twisted values. To be supremely unproductive, a churner of lies and financial trickery, is now the most rewarded and admired state in America.
The spiritual rot is now so deep and pervasive that the people no longer even recognize the decay --they have been lulled into a false belief that this culture of fraud, embezzlement, manipulations, propaganda and parasitic financial Elites has always held sway. This is precisely how a people act when they have lost their way, spiritually and morally: they elevate sins to virtues, and forget the lessons of their past.
And of course everyone claiming that there is no spiritual vacuum sucking the nation dry, that the status quo is simply "business as usual"--they are doing my work, too, for habituating to all that is corrupt and reprehensible, all that is lacking in integrity and honesty, this is doing my work most admirably.
Americans no longer hate me, they hate sacrifice and honest introspection, with a passion that enlivens my enthusiasm for their self-destruction.
How can I not be pleased this New Year? At long last, the destruction of the United States by its own citizens is close at hand. Give me two years, minions, no more than four, and I shall insure they will finally begin reaping what they have sown.
Ignorance, my poor dear Americans, will not save you, nor will your ceaseless pathetic bleatings of excuses, justifications and rationalizations save you from the rank harvest of what you have so assiduously sown for the past five years. Indeed, your excuses and rationalizations push My poisoned blade deeper into your nation's heart with every lie, every excuse, every frantic justification for your own entitlement.
I await 2014 with high expectations, so crack on, My minions; our goal is within reach.
Most sincerely yours,
The Nearly Free University and The Emerging Economy:
The Revolution in Higher Education
Reconnecting higher education, livelihoods and the economyWith the soaring cost of higher education, has the value a college degree been turned upside down? College tuition and fees are up 1000% since 1980. Half of all recent college graduates are jobless or underemployed, revealing a deep disconnect between higher education and the job market.
It is no surprise everyone is asking: Where is the return on investment? Is the assumption that higher education returns greater prosperity no longer true? And if this is the case, how does this impact you, your children and grandchildren?
We must thoroughly understand the twin revolutions now fundamentally changing our world: The true cost of higher education and an economy that seems to re-shape itself minute to minute.
The Nearly Free University and the Emerging Economy clearly describes the underlying dynamics at work - and, more importantly, lays out a new low-cost model for higher education: how digital technology is enabling a revolution in higher education that dramatically lowers costs while expanding the opportunities for students of all ages.
The Nearly Free University and the Emerging Economy provides clarity and optimism in a period of the greatest change our educational systems and society have seen, and offers everyone the tools needed to prosper in the Emerging Economy.
Read Chapter 1/Table of Contents
print ($20) Kindle ($9.95)
Things are falling apart--that is obvious. But why are they falling apart? The reasons are complex and global. Our economy and society have structural problems that cannot be solved by adding debt to debt. We are becoming poorer, not just from financial over-reach, but from fundamental forces that are not easy to identify. We will cover the five core reasons why things are falling apart:
1. Debt and financialization
2. Crony capitalism
3. Diminishing returns
5. Technological, financial and demographic changes in our economy
Complex systems weakened by diminishing returns collapse under their own weight and are replaced by systems that are simpler, faster and affordable. If we cling to the old ways, our system will disintegrate. If we want sustainable prosperity rather than collapse, we must embrace a new model that is Decentralized, Adaptive, Transparent and Accountable (DATA).
We are not powerless. Once we accept responsibility, we become powerful.
Read the Introduction/Table of ContentsKindle: $9.95 print: $24
|Thank you, Carl G. ($50), for your astoundingly generous contribution to this site -- I am greatly honored by your support and readership.||Thank you, Bernard W. ($25), for your extremely generous contribution to this site -- I am greatly honored by your support and readership.|