||Issue No. 145||19 July 2002|
Two Wings Flapping
Interview: In The Tent
Bad Boss: The Desk Nazi
Media: Hold the Presses
Workplace: Putting Bullies In Their Place
Industrial: Women and Work
International: Whine and Dine
History: Black Adder
Review: Bad Movie
Poetry: I Remember
The Locker Room
Week in Review
Hooray for Frank!
Reform or Die
Bush has just completed a round of pat set pieces preaching the need to raise Corporate Responsibility standards. The trigger of course, is the growing number of corporate collapses where the dodgy ethics of those at the top have played as big a role as the vagaries of the economic cycle. Bush pal and campaign benefactor Kenneth 'Easy' Lay's Enron kicked it off when it was discovered that the company balance sheets were triumphs of creative accounting. Then good ol' boy Bernie Ebbers' World.Com hit the wall when it was learned someone had confused the words profit and loss. Soon it seemed that everyone was getting into the act, cooking the books, maximising share options, giving themselves interest free loans.
But wait; something's gone wrong; the whole stock market starts contracting. The people, it seems, are losing faith in a system that is beginning to resemble a pyramid selling scheme, where the one's on top skim millions and those holding up the structure end up with nothing. Something must be done to stem the tide; the markets must be brought to book. This is a job for The Prez, America's number one statesman bringing some sanity back into the game, unveiling a vision to restore confidence in the greatest racket in history.
George W looks serious when he jibbers about ethics but the markets keep falling. What's gone wrong? Could it be that the man has just a tiny credibility gap? Could it be that a man who sold $1.5 million in stock from a company on which he was a Board member months before it was going to the market and despite a written undertaking not to sell, is not the perfect salesman for a responsibility pitch? Could it be that a man who chooses as a deputy, a chief executive of a company whose accounting practices are under current review from the SEC lacks the moral stature to tell his countrymen and women how to keep their books in balance?
Michael Moore sums up Bush better than we could ever hope to in his scathing homily: 'Stupid White Men' (Regan Books)
"George, I have a theory about why and how all this has happened to you.
"Instead of having to earn it, you have been handed the presidency the same way you've come by everything else in your life. Money and name alone have opened every door for you. Without effort or hard work or intelligence or ingenuity, you have been bequeathed a life of privilege.
"You learned at an early age that, in America, all someone like you has to do is show up. You found yourself admitted to an exclusive New England boarding school simply because your name was Bush. You do not have to EARN your place there. It was bought for you.
"When they let you into Yale, you learned you could bypass more deserving students who had worked hard for twelve years to qualify for admission to college. You got in because your name was Bush.
"You got into Harvard Business School the same way. After screwing off during your four years at Yale, you took the seat that rightfully belonged to someone else.
"You then pretended to serve a full stint in the Texas Air National Guard. But one day, according to the Boston Globe, you just skipped out and failed to report back to your unit - for a year and a half! You didn't have to fulfill your military obligation, because your name was Bush.
"Following a number of 'lost years' that don't appear in your official biography, you were given job after job by your daddy and other family members. No matter how many of your business ventures failed, there was always another one waiting to be handed to you.
"Finally, you got to be a partner in a major league baseball team - another gift - even though you put up only one hundredth of the money for the team. And then you conned the taxpayers of Arlington, Texas, into giving you another perk - a brand- new multimillion dollar stadium that you didn't have to pay for.
"So it's no wonder you think you deserved to be named President. You didn't earn it or win it - therefore it should be yours!
"And you see nothing wrong with this. Why should you? It's the only life you have known"
You said it Mike. George W Bush embodies the American Dream - to be born rich and live life with the reckless certainty that immense wealth brings. Bush is a fine representative of the corporate elites; he is of them and with them. It's just that when the time comes to bring them to some sort of account, he lacks the credentials to raise anything but eyebrows.
|Search All Issues | Latest Issue | Previous Issues | Print Latest Issue|
© 1999-2002 Workers Online