, a set of narratives, cherry-picked data and heavily massaged statistics (the unemployment rate, etc.) designed to instill the reader's confidence in a narrative that serves the interests not of the citizenry but of a select few pillaging the citizenry.
Herman Melville masterfully captured America's culture of cons and con artists in his 1857 classic , which I discussed in (October 4, 2006).
America in 1857 was a simmering stew of con artists, flim-flammers and grifters exploiting the naive, the trusting and the credulous, and that remains the case in 2019.
That "organic" produce from some other country--did anyone test the soil the produce grew in? It could be loaded with heavy metals and be certified "organic" because no pesticides were used during production. Are there any nutrients left in the soil or has it been depleted? What's in the water used to irrigate the crops?
The point of the con in offshored "organic" is the higher prices fetched. This is why it's critical to ask of every narrative, story, product and data set: , to whose benefit?
93 million people aren't even counted any more--they're statistical zombies, no longer among the living workforce. If the unemployment rate were calculated on the number of full-time jobs and the true workforce (everyone ages 18 - 70 that isn't institutionalized or in prison), the unemployment rate would not be the absurdly delusional 3.7% claimed by the bureaucratic con artists.
loaded with the same low-quality ingredients and high salt content as junk food.
we really really really keep all your data private, except for what we sell to marketers for immense profits, which is, well, all of it.
the live entertainment of elections sells a lot of ads and enriches the corporate media, but nothing actually changes: the Deep State runs the federal government and Deep Pockets run state and local government.
trillions of dollars in new currency and credit have inflated assets to absurd levels, all to create the illusion that everything's getting better in every way, every day. (See chart below of the "everything bubble": $1 million decaying bungalows, stocks at all time highs, etc. )
we want to believe the elixir will make our aches and pains go away, that the new face in politics will clear out the rot of corruption, that rising prices for everything means we're getting richer and so on.
Orson Welles' weird and wonderful documentary reminds us that a successful fake is essentially identical with : so the S&P 500 hitting 3,000 means we're all getting more prosperous, right?
And today virtually everything is fake, a con designed to trick or distract the marks (us) from the looting, plundering and predation of those running the con for their own self-interest.
That we fall for the fakes and cons is understandable, given that's all we have left in the public sphere.