Your Morning Dooley
By Charles P. Pierce

“D’ye suppose Dorgan, th’ millyonaire, wud consint to it? Whin he entered th’ race iv life he was properly handicapped with a soul to offset his avarice an’ his ability, so that some iv th’ rest iv us wud have a kind iv a show again him. But as soon as he thinks no wan can see him he begins to get rid iv his weight an’ comes rompin’ home miles ahead. But th’ judges say: ‘Hold on, there; yell have to weigh out,’ an’ a little later a notice is posted up that Dorgan is disqualified f’r ridin’ undherweight in th’ matther iv soul.”
— Finley Peter Dunne, 1899.

It dawns uneasily, how readily American consumers augment their shopping cart, isolated from the awareness of the less fortunate. Drive-through transactions buy prescriptions, food, and other goods. Currency for goods or services offers a first level trade abstraction that acquires near perfection when mechanical devices assist to complete the deal. ATMs, teller-less banking, self-serve gas stations, self-checkout groceries, and other self-hyphenated means for obtainment, support interruption-free and private procurement.

Does shopping approach nirvana by way of Internet commerce? Could this be why taxation is excluded for most online purchases? Has web-based commerce, found a strong parallel with religious experience? Does socio-economic class segregation spawn suburban mega-church pastors who preach the gospel of affluence using technological props as audio/visual infotainment?

The modern Republican Party becomes an extended kiosk for the excesses of Capitalism. All that glitters attracts the masses, yet offers the antithesis of social conscience. The “me” generation dreams a role of rugged individual as portrayed in commercials, but the altruist takes note of the sociopathy in this advertised state of mind. Consumers unconsciously drive an economic engine contributing to destruction of the planet and in the U.S. the general public purchases seats in the grandstand, cheering and not realizing the damage done.

Tags: ,

One Response to “The Damage Done”

  1. Mariano says:

    Perfectly described. I developed an aversion to IKEA the second time I visited it: those voids filled with absolute consumer necessities and the self-serve checkouts blinking instructions. A truly depressing experience, a retort to which invariably is: How do you think you get such low prices? I see.
    At places like Home Depot I have always avoided the self-serve counter. The employees themselves, well-oiled and commercially correct as they are, urged me and followed me to the line where I was waiting, to offer assistance in using the self-serve unit. When I frankly explained that the more people use it the fewer employees there will be I actually received snide murmurs and sneers. By the way, the term “excesses of capitalism” is redundant.

Leave a Reply

You can use these tags: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <s> <strike> <strong>