I have been thinking a lot about the people in the media, people in the news, magazines, on the Internet, radio, TV and movies, you name it, even those advertisements you see in the bathroom stall and elevators. All of them wanting to send a message. I have been reading, keeping a visual memory and digesting, some easier than others, every single piece of information given to me. In order to see both sides of the story this is what I believe I had to do, stand back and just let everything thing in, putting all the little bits and pieces together. There is some filtering that is required but eventually you have an idea. Of course we all know it is trying to tell you something, a story, an event or a perhaps a revelation of something that will allow you to fulfill your life, especially from advertisements. Out of each image, type print and verbal input I have found I tend to prefer celebrities to politicians. You may say sure don’t we all? Well most of us do but I wanted to really ponder it, what was the reasoning? Why?
When you see junk food entertainment or actual art whether it is music, movies, TV, magazines or even the news. Those people are trying to tell you a story. They are either retelling an occurrence of the past or present or want to convey what may happen in the future. These stories usually come from some sort of personal experiences. However an ad has only one purpose…to get you to buy something. Think about it, an advertisement wouldn’t be an advertisement unless it was trying to sell you something. Companies are getting trickier some overtly blatant and some very discreet about how they encourage the consumer to buy items. They hand out swag at events, they plaster their name everywhere to the point you see the sponsor of the event in bigger and bolder letters than the title of the event itself.
There is a reason they pay for it; they spend big bucks on getting you to buy what they want you to buy. They have even started changing story lines just to get a plug for their product. It really has over taken the media. Not only that they have over taken our government. That is right, you did hear me right the companies are buying our politicians like they are members of mafia only the CEO is the Godfather. We all know what happens when you don’t follow what the Godfather tells you to do, don’t we.
How are they doing it? This is where the very discreet part of advertising comes in. We have this thing called a super pac. Trying to decipher the legal definition that I have linked for you if you double click on the word is really simple a bunch of people or most likely companies (they have that type of money) lobby to support a bill in the government anonymously. Basically, they are able to pay our politicians legally to start or stop our government. They are funding the laws that are passed, that’s right your beloved turkey you will have for Thanksgiving could be funding that bill that you spent 4 hours on your soap box raving mad discussing that this law should never have been passed because no one with common sense would allow that bill to get that far through the governmental system.
I often wondered how do expansive corporations get their money or how they do make million, billion, and soon to be trillion dollar deals, in which companies are becoming more of monopolies than a competitive business environment. It has to come from us, right, because we are always upset at how much things cost to make and/or provide for us their favorite customer because without us they wouldn’t have a product, so we really push the price of the product. I don’t believe it. Here is why?
In the news you also hear that the price of the product is covering the costs of our benefits including health insurance, loss prevention, labor and the price of the product itself. However if you also put together the other financial news, which most of the average Americans do not, those same companies are posting their best quarter profit ever, they are able to expand in this market, they bought this other smaller company, a new jet was required for transporting the elite of the company while they make business deals on the golf course or over dinner at the cost of several thousand dollars, or my favorite the CEO just bought another vacation home in some exotic place. All for our benefit, really the cost of the product or service is for our benefit? How often do you hear the human interest story of the person who couldn’t afford something because even though they were hard working good people, there was no way to make ends meet. It is especially sad when it has to do with a family member dying because they couldn’t afford health care. That same health care that companies must lay off workers because they can’t afford to pay their employee’s benefits.
This is not news to us because the news does report it everyday if you listen to a variety of stations and formats. However what may be news to you and is new to me is this fact about our government as it is now. I had a friend who actually went to go travel the two hours it takes to get to our state capital and lobby for an issue he felt his congressmen needed to hear. When he entered the capital building stating he wanted to speak with his representative this was the reply he received, “Please sir go into this room and record what you have to say and your representative will hear it when they are able.” This shocked me, it shocked him, and it shocked everyone who hears this story. We are unable to talk to our politicians personally; I expect it from a celebrity but not a politician. I wouldn’t be so outraged until I put that information together with the prank phone call to Scott Walker, I remembered from a few years ago. After you double clicked and heard the funny call, you realize it isn’t so funny after all. Why is it that some influential CEO was able to get a direct line with a governor when a citizen who is in the pursuit of happiness only get a tape recorder in a closet. It is the result of the super pac, the first law I hope our government slashes from the rule books.
A super pac not only puts up lobbying for bills to be passed or not but basically buys our politicians. They fund the campaigns of each politician effectively giving them their endorsement without ever telling who funded it, sounds like a mob boss to me. That same politician is going to basically be bought to get a job and pass a bill, by a company. What is a companies only purpose to make money but again not necessarily for us the people. In my mind these should be separate, why because a company wants to make money for themselves, an effective democratic government is ruled by the people not money.
Does this mean that all politicians are crooks and work for the mob, no not all. In fact, some politicians are very upfront with their supporters as well as some big businesses will tell who or what they fund. However, I am certainly going to trust and put my endorsement into the good of a celebrity rather than a politician, why? I think celebrities whether they like it or not have to live, breathe and be real people as much as possible. Huh? You may ask they make more money, drive expensive cars and stay in the most expensive places. Yes they do, although here is the difference. An actor has to get into the role of a homeless guy in order to make it believable. Some celebrities pull their art from their personal struggling artist days others do research to try and make it real. A singer tells songs of woe, not because someone told them about it in a story but because they lived it. A painter can make you cry through their art because it is a portrait of them screaming. Even sports celebrities have to answer letters and give back to their fans otherwise they wouldn’t go to games. These people give us a sense of belonging because they have gone through exactly what we encounter everyday. When was the last time you wore the face of a CEO as your favorite t-shirt. It just doesn’t happen. Politicians try to be like us but they spend their days being like CEOs holed up behind ropes and private clubs hardly ever having to interact with us, the average everyday person.
There was a time when we revered our politicians when we stood up for them and would do anything they asked but when we have heard about the endless political corruption it is not news so we become apathetic. We have become so passive that most of us are able to say who our president is but don’t even know who works in our own city governments, including me. I would if it was news worthy but it isn’t, unfortunately. Why? We prefer to watch celebrities rather than politics. If it was I may like politicians more. Instead I have to work at trusting a politician.
The news is very interesting, the reporters have to be so objective and equal in their commentary that it is just the facts but I will tell you that they probably know more of the behind the scenes than we ever will because they are limited in what they can report and it will get worse. Remember that monopoly I was talking about click to see an outdated media holdings sheet big businesses have a part in every industry you can imagine and it has gotten bigger Disney just bought Star Wars. Really I don’t mind that businesses get big but when they can buy whole countries, I get worried. We are being bought out. These companies are super pac funders along with several other corporations. So of course a politician is going to answer a phone call from some CEO because they are his boss. Each time they want a job they get funded by them. Effectively when these calls are being made that politician is saying, “Call me anytime my secretary will put you right through.” You would too if it was your boss.
However, the last I heard we are a free nation, a nation that threw tea in the harbor because it we had taxation with representation. Are you still going to let yourself be apathetic and not vote because it doesn’t do any good. Remember we are citizens; we built this country with our sweat, tears and even our lives. If we could build a nation because we wanted to be heard we can do it again. Make them hear us. We are not a bunch of apathic losers that can be bought. Be heard, don’t let the big businesses fund our politicians, don’t let the government be run as a company. We are not its employees but this country’s boss. We live in a country for the people, by the people. Keep it that way.