Lloyd H. Whitling

Trickle-down economics, a hypothesis parading as a theory (as many do), took center stage under Ronald Reagan’s turn at the presidential bat in American politics. In simple terms like we “little” people can understand, economies flourish because monied people are free to get (in practice, steal) ideas, invest in them by buying machinery and buildings, and create products for people to buy. Sounds great, if that’s all the farther you dig. It leaves out the one important element that, as our beerless leaders have been discovering since shortly after George W. Bush took over Clinton’s reins, that must be included if the scheme is going to work.

Customers with the ever desirable funds are necessary for the sale of goods in a marketplace. It is they who inspire the hopeful investors to fund an idea they hope to market. A problem that has perplexed American economics since our rise as an industrial nation has been where to find those well-funded people with a need for those ideas given form in our factories; that is, the products we produce with the skillful work done by our diligent employees.

Efforts to solve it, and the balance of payments problem, have been band-aided by developing other countries into markets. That has crept to a stall by other countries’ growth into advanced stages of industrialization, and by religious wars in those areas yet to be developed.

In other words, America is running out of customers, and trickle-down is becoming exposed as a farce. The strain by our leaders to get the work-force going again shows unspoken recognition by both major parties that money trickles up, and it is products that trickle down in actual practice.

After the Great Depression had ended, many people voiced their astonishment upon hearing (or reading) the poorest peoples’ comments that they had no idea that things were so bad, that nothing had changed in their lives at all during that time. Those who typically station themselves (by choice or by circumstance) as society’s outsiders learn how to scratch out their subsistence the way humans have since the beginning of our residency on this planet. They will accomplish that whatever happens to their self-regarded “betters.” They may never have money or many possessions, but they have the security provided by hard-won know-how and their communities’ support, to which they most often contribute if they wish to maintain their acceptance.

Governments are another group of entities enamored by trickled-down promises that are discovering taxes don’t get paid by those living without incomes. Efforts to spur trickle-up back to life by increasing tax rates get met by increased bankruptcies, abandonment of homes, foreclosures that amount to the same end, liens for which the debtors are no longer present, rising crime rates, a rising sense of insecurity in their populations, and all the other good things that go with a failing governance system.

Obama entered out current circumstances long after they’d had years to fester and develop under the preceding do-nothing regime. He made good-sounding promises while his opponents recited their mantras until long after voters had them memorized. I can imagine that, for him, like for the rest of us, from the outside looking in it looked easy. It looked and sounded doable. And, so, he got elected and we voters thought that would be the end of poison-tainted emails, half-truths and lies originating from the many vested interest groups, and ignorant mockery of things that look too complicated to understand.

What I see wrong with Obama is not whatever he gets accused of by people who long ago demonstrated their own absence of trustworthiness, it is that he is (as “Pale ‘un from I’ll ask her” correctly stated) seeking cooperation from thickheaded rightwing misanthropes who have no intention of cooperating even if he comes up with a gameplan identical to theirs. Rust Limburger announced, at the start, the rightwing’s wish for Obama to fail, just as George W. announced an oncoming recession at the beginning of his own terms. Emails make for a cost-free way the social poisoners can spread their filth and, even if a small portion of their recipients get duped into believing the misinformation in them, those become a force for fascism when they eventually join up with those who became duped into believing the misinformation presented by other messages.

Evil will win in the end. Evil does not require correct information in order to feed upon human minds. Correct information requires years to gather, verify, and learn; and still longer to understand. Incorrect information –lies– can be generated on the spot, and in such profusion it will bury the relevant truth beyond anyone’s awareness that it ever existed. Fascism depends upon that for its advancement, and this country has gotten so buried in political and religious (same thing) bullshit that grass can be found growing from cracks in sidewalks everywhere.

If Obama doesn’t grow some balls pretty damn’ soon, we will never get to see the rightists playing their game in public, and will never get to see them make fools of themselves by getting down to their nitty gritty in front of the world. His mealy-mouthed offer of cooperation disallows him from taking advantage of the memetic forces that drive them. I had hoped he was smarter than that. It looks like he’s pissing on his own feet. That’s what “trickle down” does for you.

At the Bottom, song-lyrics by

Lloyd H. Whitling

Verse 1

I laughed at the homeless couple

On the street, arm in arm,

While they staggered along with their bottle in hand,

Looking for a place to get warm

The lady heard me laugh at them

And she looked to see who I am.

She said, “You don’t look much better than me,

“So, I really don’t give a damn.”


I might be down AT THE BOTTOM,

Looking back up at you.

If I don’t do good AT THE BOTTOM,

You’ll be down here, too.

You’d better remember this, mister,

And you’d better treat me right

Or I’ll have you down here with me, soon,

And you won’t look so good in this light.

Verse 2

I have a friend in a mansion

On a beach in the sand;

And its walls are all cracked and it is falling down

And he is a heartbroken man.

Most of life is like a bottle,

That will hold a cold drink within;

If you’ll tip it up so the bottom’s on top,

You’ll get it all on the chin.

Verse 3

I told my boss to watch himself

And not poke fun at me

‘Cause I do my best when I’m working for him

As ‘most anybody can see.

You might think you’re in your high place

But you have to depend on me

You can’t hold all the branches in space

Without the bottom of a tree

Verse 4

Now, this song could go on forever

With examples I can name

No matter where in the world you might look

It will always work out the same

A farmer must prepare the bottom

Before he can plant his new crop

And a tire that’s flat AT THE BOTTOM won’t roll

No matter how round is the top.

Copyright ©1997 by Lloyd H. and Mary-Lou Whitling. All rights reserved