Saturday, January 30, 2016

Behold! It’s THE Voldemort of Capitalism!

Kevin O'Leary, the self-titled "Voledmort of Capitalism", is the ideal political absurdity for any Canadian looking for a Trudeau nemesis to liven things up. Why should our neighbors to the south have all the fun?

He's as ridiculous as they come - a bald, short man with a comb and a height restriction, beady-eyed and prepackaged with a seductive list of satirical potential, courtesy of the spectacle he's already made of himself on TV, radio and in print – all before he's even done anything yet, other than "suggest" in his trademark over-the-top style a possible interest in the Conservative Party leadership race.

It's a meaty list of ingredients, too. A gift from the gods of mockery. It includes a track record of cringe-worthy bloviating in interviews and written material, as well as in his role as a reality TV line-prodded investor puppet, who can't think any deeper than looped catchphrases, such as "nut bar" or "nothing burger". He doesn't appear to read or critically consider anything that doesn't support his greed-driven biases and instead focuses his intellectual "prowess" on deciding if, in his own words, this is "a TV moment or a money making moment".

The result of O'Leary's loose-lipped hubristic babble, narcissism and contempt for the downtrodden of this world is a body of material that reveals him for the slave he is – a man shackled to the cult of self, who prostrates at the alter of greed and calls it freedom.

With this illusion of freedom on his side, he feels completely justified hurling cheap, degrading insults at fellow human beings. He expresses bigoted opinions, displays poor insight, inferior intelligence, questionable judgment, equivocal integrity, spectacular grandiosity, indifference to the suffering of others, and has a bizarre, almost fanatical worship of money – the kind of fanaticism normally reserved for the religious zealot.

He christens himself "The Merchant of Truth" and refers to money in the language of totalitarian theocracy,  ordaining it "Absolute" with a capital A, preaching that it's a "fixed law", like the law of gravity, and claiming it "the blood of life".

Power tends to corrupt, and Absolute power corrupts absolutely. 
Great men are almost always bad men 
~ Sir John Dalberg-Acton

O'Leary goes so far as to say that "the only thing that matters in life is money" and you must "sacrifice everything, including your mother if you have to, for financial glory". He views dollars and cents as holy "soldiers", a personal army he sends out to pillage and rape. Those he sees as financially "stupid" he calls "cockroaches" and snickers, pleased with how witty he seems to think he is.

It also pleases him to frequently make mention of shooting both people and animals, execution style, and sending them to hell, on what authority one can only imagine. Upon hearing such irreverence, though done in jest,  it is difficult to stop the mind from wandering to images of Nazi death squads shooting mothers who used their own bodies to protect their children at death, just as they did at birth.

Mother holding her child close just before being shot by a Nazi.

O'Leary laughs about all this cockiness.  He thinks his divination of money and flippancy towards the sanctity of life is a joke, and he a clever wordsmith, not seeing that he is the joke, one put on television to dance for meaningless pennies at the cloven hoof of infernal amusement.

Hades awaits.

In the meantime, as the underworld stands by anticipating the inevitability of his death, our hapless lost soul defends the Golden Calf with the fervor of a Stockholm hostage clinging to his captor, and the conviction of a Jim Jones follower selling live monkeys door-to-door in the hopes of generating seed capital for a shiny new Church of Avarice. Its ornate gates, of course, open to only a select "elite" who take great delight in slamming the door on the desperate faces of starving children, environmental refugees and wounded victims of terror. There are 3.5 billion people living in poverty? Fantastic! Incentive!

When O'Leary isn't celebrating abject destitution or confronted with other poverty related statistics, an Oxfam report, the widening chasm between the haves and have-nots and how such gross inequality is actually bad for the economy of a country, or really any of a myriad of global woes and inhumanity that can be traced back to the same wealth-hoarding of a cruel few at the expense of an anguished many, he explodes in plutocratic indignation.

He has the audacity to accuse genuine social justice advocates, activists, writers and academics of promoting theft. He sarcastically, in his usual emotionally-charged, straw man style of lowly thought and hyperbole asks if we should just go ahead then and "kill" all the uber-rich one percenters and "steal" their hard-earned coffers for the "crime" of being successful.

Those who refuse to rise to the bait of O'Leary's inanity and would like to find real solutions to the catastrophic inequality, exploitation and environmental damage crippling the planet and creating needless mass-scale misery, "Mr. Wonderful" calls "left wing nutbars" and "communists". He sneers they are nothing but Robin Hood style anarchists and thieves who aim to take from the deserving rich and give to the undeserving poor. There is nothing original here. It is the go-to script of the crony capitalist bent on keeping the bamboozled masses docile and the thinking progressives muzzled, which no one disseminates quite like the late satirical master George Carlin.

As for O'Leary, he appears to have little empathy for the plight of another, claiming people deserve what they get. They should have worked harder like his male privilege and lack of conscience allowed him to worker harder and maybe they wouldn't be so hungry. Maybe they too could enjoy a $13,000 dinner on a whim. What weary fools! Fools with skeletal arms too weak to lift the weight of emaciated bodies from the graves of economic inequality, or pry traumatized psyches from the cement of abusive pasts. How dare the oppressed not grovel before philanthropic psychopaths who dangle sustenance out of reach but within sight – how dare they not agree this erosion of the human spirit is "encouragement"!

Crack open your blistered lips, speak from your parched mouths and network! Market yourself even though you were never exposed to the kinds of educational opportunities and upbringings that would prepare you to speak in the language of Kevin O'Leary's Capitalism-Without-a-Social-Conscience: A worldview that ruthlessly commodifies absolutely everything, including life itself.

And commodify all of Canada, without mercy, is exactly what Kevin O'Leary would aim to do if, in this Age of Absurdity, Celebrity and Idiocy, he was actually successful in his bid to one day become Prime Minister, as ludicrous as that may sound –  ludicrous, that is, if not for the mind-boggling ascent of O'Leary's Mother Ship: Donald Trump.

If O'Leary did accomplish his diabolical plot to invade and subjugate Canadian democracy, he has said on more than one occasion that as Prime Minister he'd draw a yearly salary of $50 million. He figures that providing the "CEO of Canada" such outrageous compensation, in addition to offering huge incentives to "bureaucrats" who cut costs and save "him" money, will create "incredible competition" for government positions from the "private sector". The perfect recipe, by the way, that history has taught leads to violent revolution brought on by an impoverished underclass with nothing left to lose, and culminating in the fall of mighty empires and their kleptocratic rulers.

But like all villains, O'Leary is too arrogant to think the lessons of history apply to him and has unwittingly revealed the conceptual stages of an economic plan that would essentially turn Canada into an oligarchy. He brazenly states that he would order everyone in every department to "find me a dollar of savings and you're going to keep 50 cents of that for yourself."

He is certain this will attract the best entrepreneurial minds – greed's alien spawn unburdened by the inner fire of a higher purpose, or the humanitarian principles of a strong democracy that works towards dignity, justice, free expression, prosperity and opportunity for all.

This is alarming because when accumulation of wealth at any cost, regardless of human or ecologic toll is the single objective of a governing body, the vulnerable and marginalized among us, and even the very air we breathe, are reduced to nothing more than byproduct – an annoyance, waste to be thrown in an ever-expanding, sulfuric tailings pond of unregulated pollution and despair.

And sure enough, O'Leary sounds downright joyful at the thought of all the "needless" infrastructure he'd burn like "unnecessary bridges", or the unions he'd make illegal and our union brothers and sisters he'd "put in jail" (he actually said this), as well as the "stupid social programs" (he also said this) he'd eliminate if he ever became Prime Minister.

He further says with the calculated relish of a sadist cradling a vendetta, "Do you have any idea how much slashing and hacking and cutting of costs I'll do?" It's a rhetorical question. He is not particularly interested in dissident opinions that conflict with his narrow point of view.

When presented with such dissident opinions, he  indiscriminately uses the same logical fallacies and intellectually dishonest debate tactics employed by any self-important, hair-triggered schoolyard bully, no matter the credentials of the person to whom he speaks. He does not bother to take the time to know or research the validity of his opponents' arguments and doesn't worry about how patently dumb he comes across. If anything, he seems proud of his lazy ad hominems and willful ignorance. Philistine.

He argues in the same childish, name-calling manner whether he's interrupting his co-host, Amanda Lang, to yell over her thoughtful commentary, debating articulate and well-informed 14-year-old Rachel Parent over the world-saving "merits" of GMOs, or "discussing" with Pulitzer prized journalist, Chris Hedges, the ideological legitimacy behind the Occupy Wall Street movement, or the world-saving "merits" of what Hedges would call the pathology of "unfettered capitalism" and O'Leary would simply enthuse is "great!"

Given O'Leary's callous disregard for others, especially those in need, while simultaneously congratulating himself, could any rational person ever envisage such a man, who freely uses racist expressions such as "Indian giver", come across as anything but disingenuous when addressing the nation after a senseless human tragedy like the recent La Loche shootings of northern Saskatchewan?

This is particularly egregious in the context of O'Leary's plutocratic worldview when one looks at the community of La Loche as a prime example of what happens when a country does not adequately protect, heal and nurture its most vulnerable until they can stand on their own two feet, while at the same time awarding massive concessions to those who are already flourishing.

In a fair, democratic society there is nothing "fantastic" about poverty. There is also nothing "fantastic" about poverty's accompanying ailments of addiction, hunger, poor physical health, reduced cognitive ability, dismal coping skills, mental disorders, violence, suicide, incest, child molestation and rape.

But a man of O'Leary's ilk, who purports to admire another vile piece of filthy rot on his way to damnation, the Sultan of Brunei, has no interest in correcting injustice.  If anything, these abominations masquerading as men revel in the torment and agony of innocent life.

To be wealthy and honored in an unjust society is a disgrace ~ Confucius

The only thing that could make the absurdity of O'Leary's fatuity any more sensational than it already appears to be is a sex scandal, or possibly an Ashley Madison honorable mention.

It after all is not such a far-fetched notion that O'Leary would be a cheating sleazebag: He has already proven himself a man of mixed loyalties by largely ignoring his matrimonial Canadian roots and concentrating his philandering interests on a preferential American mistress named Boston – his favorite place to call "home" for the past 20 odd years.

**UPDATE April 10, 2017: Anita Bell, O'Leary's former personal assistant, admits she scheduled "travel" and "products" for his "female companions and girlfriends" while she worked for him. So it appears we don't need The Impact Team to learn of O'Leary's indiscretions after all. A disgruntled former employee does the trick. Source.

As far as the possibility of debauchery and bought silence, this too is not so far-fetched. He fits the profile of a libertine: In addition to his overall creepiness, he has no problem using his vast resources to buy whatever pleasure he fancies; presumably that includes fleshy, silicone-injected females who are open to being degraded for a price. He further fits the profile as a man past his physical prime, who is missing most of his hair and one of his many troubling monikers is "Uncle" Kevin. O'Leary, in addition, is a pompous light-skinned guy of worldly status and celebrity fame, who is small in stature and has an obvious Napoleon complex.

He also not only has the smarmy smile of a lech and the kind of preposterous wealth that morally corrupts, if you've followed him over the years on first Dragons' Den and then Shark Tank, like all the male investors panting on stage, "Uncle Kevin" can barely contain the slobber that threatens to escape his self-control the second a half-naked girl young enough to be his daughter, who either is the pitch or has something to pitch is paraded in front of him. This is especially the case when these girls exhibit the same staid female bells, whistles and augmentations prized by heterosexual males with the cave-dweller mentality of a Sasquatch and the little brain of a peacock.

He, as well, at the age of 57 took a 2-year "break" from his wife of many years, who apparently stood dutifully by while he messed around. Women REALLY need to stop giving men a free pass like this. It just makes our entire gender look weak and stupid.

But that aside, safely separated from his wife, "Mr. Wonderful" could thus jet set and party (and we all know what that means) without shame, as feigned as that obviously would be since he has stated many times that for him money is more important than his wife, children, mother or life itself.

And if the above isn't convincing enough, there is the fact he bribed the Premier of Alberta, Rachel Notley, with a $1 million investment in Canadian oil if she resigns. This then would indicate he is not averse to using his obscene wealth to silence women and make them do what he wants. 

The indomitable Notley, however, was not swayed. She laughed in the hideous face of Voledmort the Capitalist and quipped with the flair of J.K. Rowling herself, “You know, the last time a group of wealthy businessmen tried to tell Alberta voters how to vote, I ended up becoming Premier." 

It would be interesting to know if O'Leary realizes that like most archetypal bad guys, Voldemort's arrogance and lust for power ultimately lead to his downfall.

As iron sharpens iron, so one person sharpens another.

Still, without our villains, adversaries, flamboyant opponents, seedy enemies and motivated challengers, it wouldn't be much of a game. There'd be nothing with which to sharpen our wits and build the muscle necessary to push humanity forward and out of complacency and stagnancy. Thus, in the name of progress, I say to the Kevin O'Leary clowns of the world, bring on the absurdity.

Thursday, January 7, 2016

Leftovers: Lesser Cousins of a Better Creed

The leftovers waited patiently,
In the fridge for their turn.
They did not harbor resentment,
Nor was their banishment of concern.

Except Brussels who saw the writing on the wall;
They knew they'd be rejected and started to pout,
"Through no fault of our own we stink,
Like rotten eggs and old sauerkraut!"

Potatoes tried to console them with sage advice:
Sure, they were the lesser cousins of a better creed,
But rest assured, ALL the leftovers would be
Sought after by gluttony and greed.

The vegetables and their sauces,
Gravy and sausage dressing too,
Congealed under plastic wrap,
Between the mayo jar and last week's stew.

Cranberries, yams and turkey,
Cooled in the old Frigidaire.
The whipping cream and pumpkin pie,
Sat idly by without a care.

But as the leftovers leisurely gossiped
In the crisp Freon atmosphere,
Brussels foresaw a hopeless destiny:
"We're never getting out of here!"

The sprouts had been overcooked,
And gave off their rancid smell.
They would be the only leftover
The gluttons would repel.

The other leftovers humored Brussels,
While furtively rolling their esculent eyes.
Then just as predicted they heard muffled voices,
"You get the turkey, I'll get the pies!"

They could hear clanging glass,
And the fridge door creaking.
With a flood of light the gluttons had arrived,
Whispering and sneaking.

Leftovers were piled onto plates,
And heated in the microwave.
But not the Brussels sprouts 
Condemned to rot in their frigid grave.