In another time, or a parallel universe maybe, the release of the Panama Papers might have meant something. We are seeing unmitigated proof of what is patently obvious; corporations and wealthy individuals store trillions of dollars of capital offshore, thereby avoiding paying taxes.
Their representatives in government write laws with just the right amount of wiggle room. Then their own people parse those rules so finely that the wiggle room is expanded into a blatant crevasse of unethical, yet ‘legal’, financial irresponsibility. The result: constant budgetary shortfalls in practically every country. Meanwhile, the burden for the shortfalls is always placed squarely on the shoulders of the lower and middle classes in the form of cutbacks and austerity measures.
And yet… the level of pushback is so negligible that those pulling the strings are apparently not even required to present a passable sacrificial lamb (other than in Iceland, which doesn’t count because it’s a place where transparency, honesty and fairness are clearly more valued and accessible than in Canada)
I’d ask where the outrage is but outrage is pretty un-Canadian. Why? Because outrage requires connection to feelings. Unfortunately, being under the thumb of the Rational Man Project for some 300 years, we have succumbed to a high level of desensitization. We’re too numb to react even when the truth is spitting in our faces. The thing is, so many of us work for/with these affluent companies and individuals, and/or use their services, and/or aspire to their wealth that our empathetic receptors become dulled. We are comfortably numb.
For so long the Emperor hoped we wouldn’t see he has no clothes. He would create fantastic distractions so we wouldn’t notice. Now, he just walks out of the house buck naked, dick swinging from side to side. Us? We shrug. We don’t even bother covering our children’s eyes. Moving right along. Nothing to see here.
Meanwhile, stewing below the surface, confusion, anger and frustration are the orders of the day for so many citizens. The answer: as more and more people are doing, we must seek out our own empathy and then show those in unconscious cahoots with the Emperor how to access theirs. It’s harder for them as most of them are firmly entrenched in the unconscious ways of the Rational Man Project.
Most importantly, they key to mining this empathy, within and without, is compassion and non-judgment, especially in the face of brutality and injustice. After all, despite what it seems, the Emperor is just like you and me.