For the cheery minded optimists who constitute the bulk of the art world along with the ironists and those who just plain prefer to keep their heads crammed up their behinds, I suggest you not read further in this post.
“For the USA in particular the signs of bankruptcy have been starkly visible for a long time outside the bubble regions of New York, Washington, and San Francisco. You see it in the amazing decrepitude of the built environment–the cities and towns left for dead, the struggling suburban strip malls tenanted if at all by wig shops and check-cashing operations, the rested bridges, pot-holed highways, the Third World style train service. Most sickeningly you see it in a population of formerly earnest, hard-working, basically-educated people with hopes and dreams transformed into a hopeless moiling underclass of tattooed savages dressed in baby clothes devoting their leisure hours (i.e., all their time) to drug seeking and erasure of sexual boundaries.”–James Howard Kunstler. History in Free Verse blogpost , June 22, 2015
“By now many people, even the ones who don’t continuously watch the financial markets, have probably heard that stock market in the US is in a bubble. Indeed, the price toe arnings ration of stocks is once again scaling the heights previously achieved just twice before: once right before the Black Tuesday event that augured in the Great Depression, and again right around Y2K, when the dot-com bubble burst. On Black Tuesday it was at 30; not it’s at 27.22. Just another 10% is all we need to bring on the next Great Depression! Come on, Americans, you can do it!” – Dimitry Orlov, Pop Goes the Bubble blogpost, June 23, 2015
“The last of the five phases of the collapse process we’ve been discussing here in recent posts is the era of dissolution. (For those that haven’t been keeping track, the first four are the eras of pretense, impact, response and breakdown). I suppose you could call the era of dissolution the Rodney Dangerfield of collapse, though it’s not so much that it gets no respect; it generally doesn’t even get discussed.” – John Michael Greer, The Era of Dissolution blogpost, June 10, 2015
“While Neil Postman and other critical descendants have pitted Orwell and Huxley against each other because of their distinctively separate notions of a future dystopian society, I believe that the dark shadow of authoritarianism that shrouds American society like a thick veil can be lifted by re-examining Orwell’s prescient dystopian fable 1984 as well as Huxley’s Brave New World in light of contemporary neoliberal ascendancy. Rather than pit their dystopian visions against each other, it might be more productive to see tham as complementing each other, especially at a time when to quote Antonio Gramsci “The crisis consists precisely in the fact that the old is dying and the new cannot be born; in this interregnum a great variety of morbid symptoms appear.” – Henry A. Giroux, Orwell, Huxley and America’s Plunge into Authoritarianism Counterpunch weekend edition June 19-21, 2015
“To function in this society was humiliating. I tried to send a package. At Clermont post office I was made to repack it three times, as I did not have the right box (only the post master knew what the right box actually was, but he would never bother to show me). At a train station, a woman who was idle, banging into her smart phone, informed me that the train station does not sell tickets. I had to go out, into the terrible heat, and try to buy them from a vending machine. I could not see–the sun was merciless. I returned, and asked again. “Call the train company and complain,” I was told. “Could I buy my ticket on board?” “No,” I was told. “And if you board your train without ticket, you can get arrested.” – Andre Vltchek, In the USA–”I Cannot Write!”– Counterpunch weekend edition June 19-21, 2015
And in the link below Jon Stewart loses his cool? What’s the world coming to? Imagine how intolerable the world would be if all these cool comedians lost their cool? Good he’s leaving his job, because if he wants to continue with this kind of downbeat stuff no doubt his audience would eject him anyway. Note how little audience laughter he gets here…. You can just feel his ratings sinking into the toilet. Or did he already leave his job? It’s hard to keep track of these cool comedians. You can’t go into a coffeshop without running into half dozen of them. Anyway, it’s clear to me if he keeps up this somber stuff and lecturing the American audience the guy’s gonna end up doing a blog nobody reads at some point. At least apologizes for not making any jokes. Let’s hope it never happens again.: