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Copyright 2008 Mumia Abu-Jamal/Prison Radio

Cash Culture

recorded 2/26/08

1) 2:19 Radio Essay - Mp3

Cash Culture

[col. writ. 2/26/08] (c) '08 Mumia Abu-Jamal

    At the heart of the modern American entertainment industry, is the shameless, savage pursuit of profit.

    I don't mean the commercial end, as is usual, but the so-called creative end, as shown by the flood of alleged "reality shows."

    For many of the (as yet) unfamous, one is promised a knot of money; the more one gets, the more one debases himself.  'Eat a handful of writhing worms, and get a thousand bucks.'  While the many shows have various themes, this is its essence; money for humiliation.

    And with the recent writers' strike, we have seen the growth in such programming -- which often needs little or no scripting.

    I'm convinced that such shows do far more than reveal a shadow-side of the American psyche; they reflect the will of the well-to-do; the wealthy few of the society, who demonstrate their power and dominance by such public displays.

    Two thousand years ago, a handful of coins were cast to the teeming crowds as they gathered at the Coliseum.  Then, as now, entertainment reflected the cruelties inherent to their cultures, and how such shows reinforce the positions of the powerful.

    We can look beyond the contours of the idiot box to the outer world in which we live and breathe.  Such shows give us insight into how workers daily are forced to accept humiliations in order to pay for food and shelter.  Such shows merely reinforce this social dynamic.

    Moreover, what is our politics but a grim replay of the same?

    

    Politicians willingly humiliate themselves daily, wear silly hats, and make stupid promised, to get elected.

    These exercises cost absolutely obscene amounts of money. just as the nation slides into recession.  For example, each Democratic presidential candidate has raised (and spent!) over $100 million dollars.  $100,000,000! -- for a job that pays $400,000 a year!

    And, truth be told, politicians, even the seemingly most powerful, are but puppets of those more powerful than they.

    Such is American cash culture at the beginning of this new century, where everything is for sale -- for the right price!

    But just because something is for sale doesn't mean it's truly worth anything.

--(c) '08 maj

 

[Mr. Jamal's recent book features a chapter on the
remarkable women who helped build and defend
the Black Panther Party: *WE WANT FREEDOM:
A Life in the Black Panther Party*, from South
End Press (http://www.southendpress.org); Ph.
#1-800-533-8478.]
===============================


MUMIA'S COLUMNS NEED TO BE PUBLISHED AS BROADLY
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Submitted by: Sis. Marpessa

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[Check out Mumia's latest: *WE WANT FREEDOM:
A Life in the Black Panther Party*, from South
End Press (http://www.southendpress.org); Ph.
#1-800-533-8478.] 

"When a cause comes along and you know in your bones that it is
just, yet refuse to defend it--at that moment you begin to die.
And I have never seen so many corpses walking around talking about
justice." - Mumia Abu-Jamal

For additional information and to order Mumia's new book We Want Freedom,

visit: southendpress.org

Check out Mumia's NEW book:
"Faith of Our Fathers: An Examination of the Spiritual Life of African and African-American People" at www.africanworld.com