Plutocracy and aristocracy Vs. Socialism and a Civil Society

We are losing ground and while we are losing ground we are losing our way toward a civil society. The progress that we made in the last century are vanishing and the glistening city on the hill is tarnished by none other than greed and injustice.
Of course I understand that many people who are my contemporaries will not see the situation at home with the same lens that I view America with; but I am writing this plea in the hopes of finding common ground. I do not want to divorce the right and I am not only standing for the left, but I can no longer believe that want stands for centrists policies are good for any one except the ruling class.
I concede that 99% might be a stretch and certainly when I glibly refer to the wealthy I am making a common mistake and the right should take me to task. I am not opposed to “the wealthy”. However, I am opposed to a system of banking and corporate greed that perpetually makes it’s wealth on the backs of the civilization at large.

Capitalism is not the enemy and being rich is not a crime.

Corporatism and fraud and money scheming and inside trading as well as derivatives and shaky hedge funds that bet on the losses of its own constituents — these are not among my favorite things. Furthermore, I can not understand why anyone would be in favor of a system that leans towards these lack-justice financial mechanisms. I hear stories every day of how this one lost all his credit and that one is paying on a house that is underwater or this bank can sell a house bas is with no disclosures when you or I could never to that, if indeed we even wanted to do that.

Fair play has left the market and as the right cries that it is regulations that have soured our economy, the left is equally convinced that it is unmitigated deregulations that have caused the fall. What we are seeing, nonetheless is a world where money is fast “trickling” up ward and settling into the pockets of the already mega-wealthy. This while millions of other Americans are heading into a winter of such discontent that there will be no coal for the furnaces and no decent food on the tables and no available health care for well over fifty million people.
50,000,000 million people are poor or entering poverty this year.

I heard an announcer asking a republican candidate what should happen to a woman who has lost her job and therefore her health benefits and the response was, “she should get onto her husband’s policy.” Is this a sin or a crime to be so clueless as to not understand that good people can run into hard times. And, is it so much to expect of a society to establish safety nets for those unfortunates who fall from grace and are in need of a helping hand to get back up. And what do you tell the 10% or so who have no work because there is no work. Whose health care policy do they get onto.

It is as if, a certain crust of the society has had it so good that they can not understand how it is possible for someone working all week at minimum wage to end the week with not enough money to house, feed, clean and take care of his family.

The division of the world into haves and have nots is a growing condition in our global aristocracy. The condition of poverty is not a choice any more than being homosexual is a choice. Some conditions are born into people and if our world is not interested in helping to eliminate this condition of poverty, the wealthy will see that as the number of proletariats grow the condition for revolution also grows. When a civil society can not make room for all of it’s members, then at some point the population that has been left behind out of carelessness will rise up against the ruling class and the poor will have no mercy for the rich that have carelessly abused them.

The only way to avoid an ugly global civil war will be to grow the awareness that class structure needs to up hold and protect it’s middle classes. When the efforts of the middle class unite with the strength in numbers of the world poor there will be an up rising. This is not an empty threat. This is a growing reality.

Right now, Occupy Wall Street Is a struggling infant just attempting to get up on it’s feet. But as this movement grows into it’s own, the shear strength of numbers will begin to reflect the inevitability that violence will escalate. Human nature is an animal nature and it moves in all cases toward survival. When the conditions are ripe an explosion of resentment will erupt from the masses. Marie Antoinette lost her head for carelessly uttering, “let them eat cake.”.

Civil disobedience does not have to be a constitutionally given right. Pushed to the brink the human being will fight for it’s dignity. All we need are numbers. If we are willing to stand up and believe in what we see, and if we are willing to pass that knowledge forward, we will see an uprising that will remove the greedy and the unjust from power. I think that occupy wall street is that movement that will host it’s own Tea Party by the next American spring.

Stand up and be willing to be counted.

Dr. A. Dussault
Charlestown, rhode island

Psychology Has No Soul* & the human herd of have-nots

In psychoanalysis and other forms of depth psychology, the psyche (pronounced /ˈsaɪkiː/; etymology: Greek ψυχή psykhe “soul, mind, breath, life”[1]) refers to the forces in an individual that influence thoughtbehavior and personality.[2] The word is borrowed from ancient Greek animating principle, and here refers to the modern ideas of soulself, and mind. The Greeks believed that the soul or “psyche” was responsible for behaviour.

We have lost the essence of psychoanalytic theory.  In our zeal to move the body of knowledge to being acknowledged as a science, we have removed the mysterious and the unknown.  In fact the very word “PSYCE ology” is the study of the soul.  But in the last one hundred years we have progressively lost touch with the concept of soul and have moves our concentration toward the egoic thought making aspect of the brain.

In the definition above  psyche or soul is meant to be seen as “the force” behind our behaviors.  Psychology and in particular behavioral health management has removed the force from study and has spent its research concentration on cognitive behavior rather that the study of the force that moves behavior.

Behavior is visible, the force behind behavior is a mysterious concept that cuts across all of sentient life on the planet.  The mysterious force is the drive force and its essence can only be studied by looking at the implications of the force rather than at the force itself.  Much like we understand gravity or the magnetic field, we can only study the drive by watching the induced implication.

As psychoanalysis was essentially highjacked by the American Medical Profession of the 1930’s and 40’s, the American model of capitalism parading as democracy , became the method of research.  I mean that all behavior is reduced to the amount of capital that it can raise.  Our education system, our transportation system, our churches and our hospitals need to make money for the stock holders.  Psychoanalysis, of course, all to readily joined the parade.  At one to two hundred dollars an hour for four to five hours a week, only the fifth avenue rich were able to take advantage of its perks.

As the social work movement joined the parade they became the nurses of psychoanalytic practitioners.  Many psychiatrists employed two, three, or ten social workers and they did the clinical work while the medical professional collected the bulk of the dollars.  That very practice caused the profession to be owned and made available only to the quite rich.

In the Ivory Towers we had a different conflict emerging.  Academic Psychology became interested in the science of this practice.  As a result only those aspects of the clinical service that could be measured were kept as central to the theory.  If it could not be measured in a Newtonian Physics kind of research method the technique was abandoned.

Well for me, that amounts to clipping the wings of a bird to make it more efficient.  It is very much like what is happening in the rest of our economy. The soul of our values, the psyche of our American ethics has shifted from promoting the liberty of all to promoting the advantage to stock holders. The recent statements made by the chairman of the Federal Reserve speaks to our conflict.  The economy will recover, but the unemployment rate will remain close to where it is currently hovering.  We have permanently increased the number of people who will remain outside of the perks of the economy.  How like Egypt, how like Libya, how like small dictators through out South America.  We are moving our nation to look like the economy of Brazil.

We are not allowing ourselves to know that the days of the Great American Empire are over.  We are in a state of denial about where and how we are moving away from democracy and toward a form of plutocracy where the very wealthy elite not only run the country, but are able to gobble up all of the resources and garner the bulk of the capital.

You may wonder where I am going with this information.  I am concerned that most of psychology has become irrelevant.  The manner in which the information of the profession is delivered is inefficient.  Essentiality who we are and what we can accomplish is already built in to who we are and where we are in the evolution of the human condition.  I think that Psychoanalysis is developing a mandate to become more political than it has been in the past one hundred years.  The story of analysis is the story not only of the individual psyche but of the soul of our very social foundations of our societies.

Psychoanalysis has discovered truths and conditions about the human situation that can help reduce human suffering.  Psychoanalysis can and ought to become a voice for the disenfranchised.  It is no wonder that schools of social work divide out into two distinct bodies of thought.  A social work education can provide direction to community organizers in the same way that it can provide information for how to work with the defenses of an individual psyche.  As we see the politics of nations move ever and ever closer to the concentration of power, we have a social mandate to attempt to educate the population that the conservative agenda as it is currently being presented is skewed far to the right of what is needed to take care of the population at large.  As we move toward global economics and the eventual  President of the World, the masses will be left behind as if they were herds of wildebeest or buffalos.

The planet can not sustain the population growth and still have a capacity in resources to remain vital.  The earth, the world as we know it, is moving towards a condition that can not sustain itself.  We are growing in an infinite manner and grabbing from a finite resource.  For many years i have sat on a concern that felt nearly anti-american to consider.  But consider this.  If we think that the oil wars are a tragedy, and they are; the water wars will devastate the planet, pinning even the most spiritual against encroaching power grabs.  We will fight machines like in the movie Avatar while guarding our most precious resource, the human soul.

Psychoanalysis has a mandate to become political.  We have been influenced by a body of knowledge next to none in relation to who we are and how we can survive as individuals, and in the macro sense, as a specie.  I want to close with a quote from  a James Hillman interview.  “I think we’re miserable partly because we have only one god, and that’s economics. Economics is a slave-driver. No one has free time; no one has any leisure. The whole culture is under terrible pressure and fraught with worry. It’s hard to get out of that box. That’s the dominant situation all over the world.”

My sense is that this is where current psychoanalysis ought to begin.  As practitioners of this fading art and science we would do well to teach its precepts in what ever manner we can.  The politics of psychoanalysis as the politics of Zen Buddhism cover the deep seeded roots of humanity as a specie.  Everything that we can be and everything that we are and are becoming is first begun in the stored consciousness.  The common sense of living in a sustainable manner, in a more efficient manner is the very knowledge that society as a whole needs to get it house in order.  We are up against a tremendous force of greed, but with the power of our persistence we can and, indeed, must move toward a more favorable distribution of wealth and resources.

It is the blatant irrelevance of psychology that is worrying me the most about my profession.  The need for the mysterious to be analyzed is as powerful in our selves and in our civilization as is the facts that we currently analyze.  Am I being of any help to anyone is a question that comes up for me with greater frequency.  When I come up against this question, I am not calling into question my usefulness, or the general usefulness of the theories behind our psychologies, I am calling into question weather we might determine a greater efficiency by being more political that we have been up to now.

The splintering of our world into a world of have and have-nots is perhaps the greatest condition on earth that faces man at the dawn of this millennium.  I want to see practitioners of psychoanalysis and analytic psychologies begin to bring their theories out side the consulting rooms and into the city planning offices and into the street of Cairo and Madison.  We are ministers as well as practitioners and social justice is a cause of dysfunction in man that can be addressed not only as a neurosis, but as a social ill.

*…the phrase, “psychology has no soul,” was coined by Professor James Hillman, a student of Jungian psychoanalysis and an eminent writer on the topic of social justice and analytic psychology.

a brave new world: too big to jail

I have seen many political nightmares in my life time.  I can even recall Eisenhower playing too much golf and Kennedy’s Catholicism a near scandal and of course just as a nod to May 4th there was Kent State & the 5 line insertion in the paper that announced an “incident” in My Lai in Vietnam.  We should go on for a few more events, there was the Pam Am incident and the stolen election, and the next stolen election.  There was Mission Accomplished and there was a small insurrection in Iraq  better know as a war and of course, there was Katrina and the bailout of Wall street and the giving of two trillion dollars to the already mega rich as an incentive to help pull us out of a recession….and with many, many missing similar incidents we come to the Gulf, “oil spill” or other wise known as an erupting volcano of crude into the most significant body of water in America.

You can read in several sources that Enron style fraud is being discovered as we speak.

So why so much apathy this time around.  Are we the Kaiser Government before its last decline?  Where are we as a nation, as a people?  Do we come together anywhere?  Is there a common something that would have at least one republican cast his or her own vote instead of the voting block they have become.  I don’t want this article to degenerate into a two sided debate with no compromise possible.  I am equally angry and dismayed by my party and my father’s party.  Where are the Truman’s and the Humphrey’s and the Kennedy’s of our generation?  Do we have politicians left who see and hear the plight of the common man (wages from $6000 to $90,000).

I read recently that the gap between the rich and the poor is steadily growing wider.  It is growing a three times the rate in the last few years.  Our 1% mega rich and our 2% very rich and our 5% wealthy and our 10% well-off, are in a class of their own.  We the underdog democrats as opposed to the blue-dog democrats have very little in common with those people who continue to make money and continue to have ways of generating bigger and larger off-shore accounts that are less and less taxed.  We are governed by a class of people who do not live in the same economic world as the people that they govern.  It is no wonder they are not concerned when the supreme court decides to give corporations the same rights as individuals.  I wonder, does that mean that two gay corporations can not legally merge?

The world of the captains of industry is a world that has no similarity to the world that I live in.  The Great Gatsby had nothing in common with the Sound and the Fury so what is different about today.  In America we have seen family farms taken over by the Monsanto’s of agriculture, we have seen the Enron’s run away with our pensions, we have witnessed banks being bailed out to the tune of trillions while my friends lose their home mortgage.The same bank we bailed out refuses to take a risk on a man who was never late for one payment on anything he ever bought in his entire life.  He was denied a mortgage did not go through.  But the credit reporting companies called his attempt to save money in a re-fi a potential bankruptcy and have raised his credit card interest rate to 20% because he is a risk.

You might as well have taken his farm away from him.  Remember the villains in the 1950 cartoons, the black figures twisting their mustaches while cackling a sinister laugh and tying the poor girl down to rail road track.  It is not much different today.  The banks have more sophisticated ways and  a more accepted language for how they steal from us today.  But we are no less being tied down to the tracks.

The bigger they are the harder they fall has been replace with they are too big too fail.  As we transition from the national boundaries that have divided us for many generations, to the new world order of the global aristocracy we will see more and more of the American way of life fall through the cracks, fall to the wayside and in general fall into the gully of the great divide.

Another sinister phrase that does not lift eyebrows when it should is “economic recovery with sustained record high unemployment.”  Wow, now that should not be easy to digest.  Does anyone even hear it above the din of the evenings blue lighted television room.  The announcer looks like he has the proverbial stick up his…..He reports on the death of an American military man with the same energy and affect that he devotes to weather and the sporting scores.  Then goes on to say that another 1,000,000 people have entered the ranks of poverty with no end in sight and tomorrow ought to be another great beach day.

“Really,” says the anchor woman to the well coiffed anchor man, “we need a good beach day.”  She shuffles the meaningless stack of papers and squares them off, bouncing them off her desk top until they are a perfectly neat little stack of 8 1/2 x 11 sheets of paper.  “Well, that does it for another night, don’t forget to tune into the nightly news at 11:00, Gary will have the latest on a tropical depression that he is watching off the coast of Africa.”

Jesus, God the Lord, how dreadful the evening news has become.  Nothing of importance gets said and if a story is brushed upon it is done so with so little affect that even the most curious new hound only gets a flash–a sound bite of a story.  The guts and sinew are gone from our news broadcasts as they are gone from the consciousness of the American Public.  We have become satisfied with superficial, made for 3rd grade reporting and as a result we vote with that kind of superficial, sound bite information.

Do you want to know what we think something awful is?  It is something inconvenient that is happening to me.  Re-bombing Afghanistan into yet another pile of rubble is of no consequence.  An American drone bombs an Afghan village, killing an entire wedding party that gets a 20 second slice of the news.  No wonder we have no idea why much of the world despises American policy, we have no idea what the American policy is anymore.  Who runs the world these days?  Do we know?

Well, I can tell you this for sure.  It is not run by the financially un-influential.  It is run by the people and for the people with mega-bucks.  Our old standard of something good for a good price is gone…what we have left is spin and twist and market.  The product has nothing in common with the sales pitch.  From cigarettes, to cell phones we are marketed to by brand making departments who have never even seen the product let alone try it.  Ad campaigns exist waiting for a product to promote.  We are going backwards

As a nation, as a people we have lost our way.  The American continent is adrift in a sea-change that will so rock the foundation of who we are that in no time at all, we will be looking back and remembering the good old days when we had a President like Bush 43, a man you could be proud to sit and drink a beer with.

The corporations will be the next markers on the global scene.  It will not be Spain.  It will not be France or Germany. It will not be Argentina.  It will be Monsanto.  It will be Halliburton.  It will be Blackwater and they will fly the flag of mercenaries.  Capitalism will look to the left like a labor union did in the 1930’s.  We do not know what the right will be–but, we do know that it will be ultra-right and that it will have very little in common with our current Republican party except that they will have paved the way for a globally deregulated world run at the mercy of greed mongers. Marie Antoinette will be the patron saint of the politicians, and Evita will be the face of the Global Presidency throwing fistfuls of dollars down from the Vatican like window unto the masses–eternally crushed, at least until the next big revolution.  Thomas Jefferson once said that from time to time a democracy has to lose some blood of its patriots in order for the tree of liberty to be properly fed and continue to grow.

I can not see another way out of where we are…We will go much deeper into darkness before we ever emerge from the narcissism that our world suffers today.  As humanism and secular spiritualism spreads its wings, we may see angels from time to time to remind us that the human spirit still lives on, but the apathy that covers our eyes at this point in time is like an un-retractable cataract.  The vision grows slowly dimmer until we fail to see at all what is really happening.