Tuesday, September 15, 2009

Living in New York City--1 Year and 1 Day After Lehman Bros. Died

[A The Daily Growler Bulletin: Can you believe, Veep Joe Biden has made another surprise visit to Baghdad (his third "surprise" visit this year) and as a result got his ass shot at while relaxing over beers in the Green Zone. Now what the hell is Joe Biden doing in Baghdad?
Bulletin #2: Just in: Good ole Admiral Mike Mullin just announced that, yep, good ole Gen. Stanley McCrystal says we need more canon fodder in Afghanistan. Why? The admiral with a straight and serious patriotic face says it's because we have to provide safety for the Afghanistan people and to allow the new democratic government there to continue to stabilize. Such bullshit. We heard this same shit in the VietNam War--to the point we put a half-a-million young US boys mostly into that war and we still got our asses kicked! We will get our asses kicked in Afghanistan, too.
Bulletin #3: One of our staff noticed while watching a CBS report on protesters of Obama's healthcare plan marching somewhere--two of them carrying "Obama as Hitler" signs--that one of the protesters was wearing a LaRouche Foundation shirt. By golly, we thought Lyndon LaRouche and his nutjobs were dead--but, they are the "Teabaggers," a sexual connotation having nothing to do with dumping tea into Boston Harbor--white men dressed up like Native Americans--deceit in the White man's nature. Even the Libertarians are ashamed of Lyndon LaRouche.]
Foto by tgw, NYC, 2009

Complicating the Simple
Conclusions I'm reaching--conclusions steeped in age and experience likened unto me--I'm sort of the living Diogenes (a wolf in sheep's clothing)--my blinkety-blinking little intruding light sneaking up on the sets, sneaking among the actors, uncovering their disguises, uncovering their inner-most workings.... "Oh hell," I tell myself, "you're not that blinking brilliant. For instance, you're not of 'the best and brightest,' 'cause if you were, you'd be retired right now to your private island off the Florida coast, lustily alive with billions of bonus bucks and bailout monies in your Cayman Island bank account, another couple of billion in a joint-venture equity fund that will be building golf courses all over Communist China, predicted to be the next big golfing market, bringing ease and relaxation recreations to your Power Elite Chinese brothers--not many sisters in the Power Elite wherever it resides--except maybe your Kennedy wife--you see what I'm drivin' at, you pompous ass?" "But I'm not a pompous ass," I argue back with myself, "I'm a simple man." "Aha, you see," my other self shoots back, "that's why you ain't one of the best and brightest. They ain't simple, brother, they're complicated as hell."

I had to agree with my other self. I'm too simple to be of the best and brightest. You know who the best and brightest are don't you? They're the overconfident fools that used their power to bring this great mixing bowl of a fucked-up nation to its begging knees--"Oh, please, Power Elite male (master), don't let us starve. Please, for a crust of bread we'll wipe your ass after you take a mean dump...er-ah, we'll wipe your wife's ass--or your mistresses's asses--just give us something to eat." To which Mr. Supreme Power Elite will reply, "OK, tell you what I'm humbly willing to do. You can come into my kennels for about 10 minutes and eat with my pack of hounds, which I'm just about to feed just down my castle's wall there, that way. My hounds are eating Kobe steak tonight--so it'll be worth it to you unworthy bastards to endure 10 minutes of fightin' with my dogs over some of those delicious Kobe steaks--why, some of those half-eaten ones are leftovers from the dinner party I threw last night--some of these partially eaten babies are celebrity leftovers. Hell, Warren Buffett, my asshole buddy, couldn't finish his steak and said 'Throw this damn thing out, to the dogs for all I care, I can't finish it'...hell, neither could Billy Jeff Clinton finish his and his was a real prize--why that would have cost you bums $270 in a Vegas casino. So's you all'll be fightin' with my dogs over some choice cuts of prime Kobe beef out there. That's it, just down that cobblestone path. Let 'em in the kennels for about ten minutes, Michael Vick." [Another ex-Con like Martha Stewart who came out of prison and went right back to work.]

Concerning President Obama's meaningless speech on our recovering economy, I couldn't listen to it it was so realistically immature and on-the-other-side-of-the-fence from me misdirectionally. It made me shiver with disgust for the irony that this man could have become leader of the world he was so worldwide popular, with billions of people hoping he would unionize the world and bring us all peace on earth and good will toward all men and women. Some down and out whites and blacks were beginning to see him as Jesus. Some radical rightwing fundie Christian soothsayers (like our own fun fundie reverend, Brother Jack Van Impe) were beginning to tag him as the AntiChrist. The irony being that that was the direction he could have gone but he didn't. The wondrous world situation he could have created--illusionally or whatever (I like wev better)--yet he chose to simply ignore the fact that his predecessor was a criminal faux president who with his wreckless promotion of a philosophical cause forced on him by his both mental and physical superiors (his Pappy's New World Order pals). He promoted this American-created philosophy to the point he went wild and crazy mad and began showing his insane ulterior motives for starting what he seemed to be hoping was World War III--brought forth full in our faces when he suddenly became our Commander in Chief and started singing his war chants--because of the 9/11 attacks, but also immediately threatening attacks against Saddam Hussein--for why at first? For trying to murder his daddy (old Saddam's at one time big pal). But 9/11 was his excuse to take dictatorial command over both our representative government and We the People personally. No one has yet fully assured We the People in any way that those attacks were staged from within our own secretive governmental organizations in cahoots with perhaps some Middle East secret forces--who the hell knows?

We the People were at least hopeful when Barack Obama won the election, but now we have become so confused by how complicated the Power Elite politicos have made so many of the things happening to us; things that we never imagined would happen to us and now we're left spinning in the middle of a going nowhere road with tons of pep talk speeches from a president we thought was gonna right all the wrongs G.W. Bush had forced on us. G.W. Bush, a natural-born liar; a spoiled little rich brat by inheritance; a rich daddy's cowardly son who had the bold-ass nerve to go AWOL from the US military and get away with it; a spoiled brat rich boy who as governor of Texas delighted in killing over 150 men and one woman, a Tex-Mex woman, and of course the men he executed were of a majority of blacks and Latinos; this is a man who during Election Day was losing big to Al Gore--to the point ABC called Al Gore the projected winner in Florida--to which the Bush Family immediately called ABC and told them that since G.W.'s brother was governor of Florida, it should be impossible for a Dumbocrat to win in Florida--and at that point, G.W. Bush and the Repugnicans literally rigged the votes in Florida in favor of G.W. Bush--NEED I GO ON AND ON? ON is NO spelled backwards--anyway, We the People expected Barack Obama to correct the wrongs this faux president before him had imposed on us.

We progressives-liberals-lefties-and-indies all are now so utterly confused they are mentally unable to figure out...to comprehend...any thing happening against us from day to day to the point we are tucking our heads back into our shells like turtles, praying to the liberating gods for direction--like Whitney Houston has been confessing for the past two days on the all-new Oprah season opener show--Oprah's getting her gal pal Whitney to talk--"You talk, girl"--and Whitney is talking to Oprah about the Power of God and how that saved her from her 14-year hell marriage to her true SUPERMAN, Bobby "I Spit on You, Bitch" Brown. The Power of God gave her the strength to walk away from that old true man. that old Devil man, and give her love and affections and sexual desires to that new invincible man of hers, the superman she calls "The Lord"--a superman who when she makes love to him on her knees every night before she goes to bed doesn't smack her around and spit on her and shit.

Ask the normal one of us [did anyone notice in President Obama's "Yeah, Wall Street" speech he said things were moving back toward normalcy?] what the hell the difference is in a depression and a recession and you'll get as many answers as you have fingers and toes, all of them probably wrong. The answers, I guarantee you, will be confused and more complicating than solutional.

Like this business of Lehman Bros. and Bear-Stearns being sacrificed to the gods of Wall Street--like why weren't they bailed out? A never-answered question. Or like: why were they left to fail and General Motors wasn't or AIG wasn't? All of this is answered by that good ole fightin' millionaire dude on our side, Michael Moore, in his latest film, Capitalism, a Love Story. I just heard him talking about it after its opening in Toronto last night. He mentioned right off the bat why Lehman Bros. and Bear-Stearns were allowed to die on the Wall Street-gods-controlled vine and not AIG or General Motors. Moore says it's because Lehman Bros. and Bear-Stearns didn't pay their Wall Street dues or got way behind in their dues and then said they couldn't pay 'em.

And, yes, I agree with Moore, it is that simple, folks. The Wall Street Power Elite headed by these government-connected execs at Goldman-Sachs (ex-GS CEO, Jim Corsine; Bush's father's pal, Hank Paulson; and good ole boy Clintonista, Robert "Deregulation" Rubin, et al.) decided to let Lehman Bros. and Bear-Stearns take the dive for the rest of the bigger crooks.

So I leave this subject until after I've seen Moore's new film. [Except that just a minute ago, G.W. Bush appointee, Ben Bernacke, a man who Obama just praised so highly last week, announced that the recession is over! I think he worded it though in doublespeak--he said, "The recession is 'all but' over." What the hell does that mean? Nothing? Yes, NADA. It's backward thinking: it means the recession is still going full speed ahead.

And now let me growl and go for the throat of this phony prick, Charles Schummer, my Dumbocrat Senator (D-NY). I watched him strutting around giving his fucking two cents about Obama's speech and what Wall Street has to do and how "By golly we're gonna hold 'em responsible 'cause like the President said, the people aren't gonna stand for anymore monkey business...blah, blah, blah, blah, blah." "Shut the fuck up, Chuck, you hypocritical bastard!" I shout (grrrrrowl) loudly back at his ass. And Charles Schummer is a hypocrite. Why? Because guess who the largest receiver of campaign donations from Wall Street is in our Congress? And I'm not talkin' New York City or New York State, I'm talking the whole USA Congress. You bet it was Charlie Schummer. Now Charlie and his Wall Street goons are going after poor old Charlie Rangel, a black man, a black man who has risen to great power in Congress as head of the House Finance Committee. You see, Charlie Rangel, like President Obama may unfortunately have believed that once he got in the White man's Congress he could start acting and doin' like the White Congresspeople. He paid no attention to what happened to Adam Clayton Powell when he got too big and powerful in the White Man's Congress. The Power Elite through their Repugnican Party wackos--mainly Southern racists--are going after Charlie for doing what? First of all, they say Charlie didn't pay any taxes on money he made off one of his "summer homes" in the Dominican Republic--there are White Congresspeople who I'll bet if you dig deep enough into their finances you're gonna defintely find some tax-hedging going on using summer homes and estates and yachts and things as deductions! Also, Charlie has another summer home down in the Lower Antilles or somewhere like that and their suspecting that Charlie made money off that house, too, and didn't report it. New York City's Mayor Billionaire Bloomberg still makes billions off of off-shore housing speculations--but, hey, that's OK, he's White and still receiving 77% profits off his computer software business--but, hey, shit, he's so popular and free he almost bought himself a shot at the presidency--except that's when he found out he wasn't America's mayor just like Rudi Guliani got the rude awakening that he wasn't America's mayor either when he clumsily ran for the Repugnican nomination--"Booo, you phony asshole," the public hollered back at him.

Also, Charlie Rangel, a Black man, has warehoused several Harlem rent-controlled or rent-subsidized apartments for himself and his family. White folks do it all the time; especially Wall Street junior brokers and actors and actresses. But warehousing apartments is now against the law according to the New York City real-estate brokers who now, thanks to our billionaire mayor and his redevelopment of New York City schemes, rule this city. Did you know it is against the law in New York City for a union picket line to disrupt work at a building site even though that building site is using nonunion and illegal immigrant labor? But then I've already told you New York City is now under the control of the real-estate developers and the NYPD and the FBI.

For instance, yesterday the FBI and the NYPD, under little crooked Shanty Irish Ray Kelly, our police commissioner (check out his record as head of US Customs), raided several private homes in Queens, New York, saying they were looking for an Afghan-Al-Queda-terrorist who had "visited" New York City and then had left town hurriedly. Reread that statement and tell me if it makes any sense to you. The FBI said since it was National Security they couldn't talk about it. Little Ray Kelly got up and he looked so really serious, patriotic, and sincere, and he said well, you see, this Afghanistan citizen had entered New York City and had then left town as quickly as he arrived so under Homeland Security they raided these (yes, Muslim) homes he "may" have "visited" to check and see if as an Afghanistan-Al-Queda-connected-terrorist he may have, could have, and maybe probably could have left behind in these private homes nuclear weapons or weapons of mass destruction with instructive plans on how to use these weapons in the killing of Americans (and I assume by this these White guys mean White Americans).

It's unbelievable the trick-bagging these professional gunmen use to keep us scared out of our wits of each other's motives based on racial profiling. Turns out, they found no weapons of any kind in any of the private homes they raided under rights given them by this phony War on Terror, Georgie Porgie Puddin' Pie Bush got us roped into. [Anybody notice that though states like Cally-forny-yah and New York and Michigan and Illinois are broke, their legislatures haven't cut their own salaries, nor have they cut their hours or given themselves unpaid furloughs. Nancy Pelosi, for instance, is the richest woman in Cally-forny-yah due to real estate investments; yet, she hasn't lost one thin dime in terms of her stock portfolios, or any of her estate properties and ranch lands and urban properties being foreclosed on; nor is she volunteering to take a cut in her Congressional pay--"Let's see your tax returns, Nancy. I'll bet I paid more taxes than you did."]

You see White New Yorkers don't see New York as an International city and not a true US city. White New Yorkers, and they are in total control--especially of the police and fire departments--and especially in terms of owning the land and buildings and wealth of New York City--are wary of black skin, brown skin, and yes even yellow skin. White New Yorkers don't see that in an International city like New York City you have differences even among all the races--there are social, cultural, and political differences between African Blacks, Caribbean Blacks, and American Blacks--just as there are the same differences between people in the Asian communities and in the Latino communities--and in the WHITE communities, too--differences between the Albanians, the Russians, the Croatians, the Serbs, the Greeks, the Irish, etc.--how many different white factions do I need name? (I was just reading yesterday that there are 140 different languages spoken all day long in New York City.) That's the wonderful thing about New York City to me but not to the Whites who rule New York City. Not to our billionaire mayor who was born in Boston, a village compared to New York City, one of the best and brightest, who envisions a New New York City whose class structure bottoms out at what our mayor calls "the New York City middle-class," individuals making at least $115,000-a-year--the bottom line especially in the mayor's recreated Manhattan, which our mayor is determined to make a White Power sanctuary with protective rents and selling prices so high no poor or lower class or hell even lower middle-class person no matter his color can afford to buy or live in, even though they may have been born and raised here and lived in the same place for 40 years.

Truth is, and it's not complicated at all, We the People as a nation are broke--maybe there are individuals among all of us doing just fine, thank you, but the majority of us are living on the brink. Any fucking little accident, even something as minor as a gall bladder operation, could throw us all on the path to an early demise (perhaps soon they'll bring back debtor's prisons). Any fucking little pissant debt could blow up in our faces and we could lose everything from one minute to the next.

There is no such thing as absoluteness. That is the reason we can't predict the future as far ahead as a fucking hour at a time. One minute some of us are here, bouncing along merrily, gladhanding everybody, and talking about going on and on gracefully in life and the next minute we get a phone call telling us that person just collapsed with a massive coronary and is no longer active on the coil! President Obama has no idea what tomorrow will bring. He has no insight into the future. He's only guessing based on numbers crunched by his administrating staff of well-paid advisors who also have big staffs of lackeys to do their actual work for them.

You see, reality is, we live in a time, unlike our parents, of total speculation. Our futures are based on luck--and we empiricists know there is no such thing as luck--we know percentages--chances. Looking this way at this nation's future: it's bleak, folks. It's especially bleak since President Obama is stuck in the rut of free trade agreements and Reagan economics. Even Pappy Bush called it voodoo economics and one of the instigators of it, David Stockman, has said he was wrong and it didn't work; hell, even old Milton Friedman, the pride and joy of the Neo-Cons, before he died wrote he was wrong--the private world would not take care of the public world without regulations--the private world is a world of criminals. They make their livings skimming monies off the tops of big deals, big free-trade deals, multibillion-dollar deals, or simply put, stealing from We the People--OR, hell, like Bernie Madoff, they even steal among themselves.

The economy may improve. That could happen. But then so, too, could the economy fall back on itself and settle snugly into the worst depression in the history of this country and therefore in the history of the world.

I just read that Philadelphia is so broke they are shutting down the whole library system unless the state provides them with funds. The state can't, of course, because it's broke, too. Our own billionaire mayor says New York City is billions in debt--though he has no accountable reasons why. The whole state of Cally-forny-yah is BROKE. They are so desperate for money out there they are letting people out of prison early by the droves. Not only is Cally-forny-yah broke, but it's runnin' dry of water, too--especially Southern Cally-forny-yah. Look at the almost-devouring fire that attacked Los Angeles recently. More to come. And what about if an earthquake hit 'em right now?

I also just read where economists are saying our unemployment figures (9.7% as reported by our lying government) are wrong. Unemployment they say is more like 17%.

In my neighborhood, there is a very nice looking, nicely dressed Black man who is always sitting on a park-type bench out by Mayor Bloomberg's rearranged Broadway--once the Great White Way--now the Great White Midtown Bicycle Path and tacky Mall--the Bike Lane on Broadway by my building is wider than the auto lane--and bicyclists ride both ways on it. I don't cherish the idea of being hit and killed by a fool riding a bicycle down a bike path the wrong way, a bike path that cuts me off from crossing the street safely 'cause when the "You Can Walk Now, Fool" light comes on I now have to be aware of perhaps one of those irritating pedal cabs--a rickshaw with the rickshaw boy now pedaling a bicycle rickshaw--comes roaring the wrong way down this bike path big enough to drive a truck through. Mayor Bloomberg, who rides in limos and helicopters, encourages New Yorkers to ride bicycles because he's concerned about our health.

And everyday I see this Black gentleman sitting on that bench. One time I saw him sitting there talking on a cell phone. He has a nice leather bag that sits either up on the bench by him or between his feet if someone else sits down on the bench. I've seen him in deep conversation with people sitting on his bench with him--it's a double bench on which he sits on the south end next to the Muslim street-lamb gyro stand.

We New Yorkers eat Muslim food all day--Halvah chicken and lamb and grilled onions over spicy brown rice or rolled up in a large pita and covered with lettuce and tomatoes and doused in white sauce and hot sauce. A gyro sandwich is $3.50 and a gyro platter is $5.00. Of course, it gives you heart burn, but, hey, it's the cheapest way to eat there is in New York City--that and a dirty-water hot dog covered in mustard and onions and sauerkraut--two and a Pepsi for $5.00. Street eating. I get my Muslim lamb platters from a couple of very young Islamics from Morocco and my sausage dogs from a little Greek woman from Corfu with whom I can talk Eastern Orthodox (Byzantine) philosophy and learn all about how back in Corfu is where her heart resides. She tried at first to teach me a little Greek but like I told her, foreign languages are all a'Greek'a to me.

So this Black guy sits on this bench every day. And then the other night, I did a gig uptown, and got back down to my neighborhood around 2:30 in the morning. And, Holy Cow, there this dude still sat--still awake. I went over and said hello to him and he looked up at me and said, "Nice weather we're having."

So I have a nice-looking, very pleasant-looking, well-dressed Black man living on a park bench just over on the Broadway side of my building. Two other not-so-fortunate Black men, one dressed in holy rags, sleep on cardboard boxes right out in the middle of the sidewalk that runs behind the Stevens Tower, which is a 50-story building whose backside is right directly across the street from my building. The other morning as I went out to get my morning coffee from my young Muslim coffee stand friend, one of these Black men was sleeping right in the middle of the Stevens Tower's loading dock driveway and a truck driver was trying to get him to wake up and move so he could back his truck in there. I walked on and then there was the other Black man in the middle of the sidewalk still curled up in the fetal position sleeping away, his pants having fallen down around his ankles during the night and his big bare ass was there mooning everybody as they walked by him. These Black men are my neighbors, too, and I see more and more of them arriving every day. Rude Boy Guliani bragged about how he eliminated bums from our streets--he also bragged about cutting back on Black crime--and Mayor Bloomberg's way of getting rid of bums is to give them a one-way bus ticket to anywhere in the US they want to go and resettle. The solution is to give them mental health help and clean them up and give them a job. But, oh no! That's not the Power Elite's way. Their way is the way we are living under right now. Their way is for these bums to pull themselves up by their bootstraps! The fact that they have no boots is of no concern to the well-off and well-to-do Power Elite generals.

for The Daily Growler

1 comment:

Marybeth said...

Jim Carroll of "The Basketball Diaries" and "People Who Died", died himself on Friday September 11th at the tender age of sixty. Once upon a time I was a huge Jim Carroll fan, going to his poetry readings, punk rock shows, etc. I own books of his autographed with phrases like "to Marybeth with Love, Jim Carroll". I own everything he ever published and all his albums. I haven't followed him recently and was shocked that he croaked so young and unexpectedly. An NYC Irish Catholic, like myself.