Thursday, July 07, 2011

George Carlin on the American Dream

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I keep forgetting – and then remembering – how much I love George Carlin. Admittedly, I prefer his more comedic stuff, but his “telling it like it is” material was as brilliantly acerbic as any other comedian can manage. Here’s one of his best moments, describing the folly that is belief in the “American Dream”:

My transcript: (click the [+/-] to expand/collapse →) []

But there’s a reason, there’s a reason. There’s a reason for this. There’s a reason education sucks, and it’s the same reason that it’ll never, ever, ever be fixed. It’s never gonna get any better. Don’t look for it. Be happy with what you got.

Because the owners of this country don’t want that. I’m talking about the real owners, now. The real owners, the big, wealthy business interests that control things and make all the important decisions. Forget the politicians. The politicians are put there to give you the idea that you have freedom of choice. You don’t. You have no choice. You have owners. They own you. They own everything. They own all the important land; they own and control the corporations; they’ve long since bought and paid for the Senate, the Congress, the state houses, the city halls; they got the judges in their back pockets; and they own all the big media companies, so they control just about all the news and information you get to hear. They got you by the balls! They spend billions of dollars every year lobbying! [crowd cheers] Lobbying to get what they want!

Well, we know what they want. They want more for themselves and less for everybody else. But I’ll tell you what they don’t want: They don’t want a population of citizens capable of critical thinking. They don’t want well-informed, well-educated people capable of critical thinking. They’re not interested in that. That doesn’t help them. That’s against their interest. That’s right.

[crowd cheers]

They don’t want people who are smart enough to sit around the kitchen table to figure out how badly they’re getting fucked by a system that threw them overboard thirty fucking years ago. They don’t want that. You know what they want? They want obedient workers. Obedient workers. People who are just smart enough to run the machines and do the paperwork, and just dumb enough to passively accept all these increasingly shittier jobs with the lower pay, the longer hours, reduced benefits, the end of overtime, and the vanishing pension that disappears the minute you go to collect it. And now, they’re coming for your social security money. They want your fucking retirement money. [crowd cheers] They want it back, so they can give it to their criminal friends on Wall Street.

And you know something? They’ll get it. They’ll get it all from you, sooner or later, cuz they own this fucking place. It’s a big club, and you ain’t in it! [crowd laughs] You and I are not in the big club. By the way, it’s the same club they use to beat you over the head with all day long when they tell you what to believe. All day long, beating you over the head, and their media, telling you what to believe,.what to think, and what to buy.

The table is tilted, folks. The game is rigged. And nobody seems to notice. Nobody seems to care. Good, honest, hard-working people, white collar, blue collar; doesn’t matter what color shirt you have on. Good, honest, hard-working people continue – these are people of modest means – continue to elect these rich cocksuckers who don’t give a fuck about them. They don’t give a fuck about you. They don’t give a fuck about you. They don’t care about you at all. At all. At all. [crowd cheers]

And nobody seems to notice. Nobody seems to care. That’s what the owners count on: The fact that Americans will probably remain willfully ignorant of the big red-white-and-blue dick that’s being jammed up their assholes every day. [crowd laughs] Because the owners in this country know the truth: It’s called the American Dream cuz you have to be asleep to believe it.

Things don’t seem to have changed in six years. Except perhaps for the worse.

(via @ggreenwald)