Are Americans unwitting players in a grand experiment? When the mice are us.
Show Date: September 30, 2010.
To help pay for graduate school, I assisted a psychologist who ran experiments with white mice.
It wasn’t very long before I felt even more upset for these little creatures than for myself.
It was a terrible experience. My job was to document their response to frustration, hunger, shock and abuse.
The scientific goal was to so decimate their spirits to such an extent that even when food was presented, the mice were too traumatized to eat. They couldn’t do anything right, because right instantly became wrong – an ominous parallels to how a large segment of the American public is feeling these days.
No matter which direction we go, there’s a shock waiting. We’re hungry for hope, but hope eludes us. In fact, a growing segment expects the proverbial tomorrow to be worse for themselves and their children, not better.
Not so the mega-billionaires, because…how do you lose a few billion? Not so the mega-wealthy who have more than enough to carry them (and future generations) through, including the 50 richest Members of Congress and senior executives in Wall Street “bailout” firms.
Not so corporations – because, as proven during the recession – corporations make money and increase their stock price by cutting jobs or sending them overseas.
No so government workers and those on the public gravy trains. Government white collar workers now bring home twice the pay of their private sector counterparts. Tens of thousands of city workers across the nation received raises while services were being cut.
But here’s the point. If you’re stuck in a cage – shocked, abused, starved of hope – it’s because someone with substantially more power dumped you there and locked the door. One day, you’re a free mouse/person, and the next day you’re part of a grand experiment.
Hungry for a new home? A new car or home? We’ll dangle a meaty tax break. A loan modification? We’ll give you a fat illusion. Health care? We’ll give you a plan that you can’t understand, raise your health care rates and eliminate excess calories from your life.
We’ll raise food prices and the cost of living and convince you that life is getting better.
We’ll dangle 15,000 gifts in front of your children (as long as they’re between 16 and 24), so that your kids can re-elect us – even if you vote against us.
We’ll give your tax money to groups who declare their allegiance. Pretty soon, you’ll wise up. You’ll take the right path, and we’ll even let you pass through to the next flap of the maze. We’ll give you a bit of nourishment, water your soul before it completely dries out. And then, just when you think hope is truly on the horizon, we’ll shock those little paws of yours so badly that you will never dare question us again.
The question is: What can we do for people so stuck in the maze, so demoralized, so hungry for hope/home/jobs that they no longer remember who they were?
To those who can still fight back….