Publisher’s Note: Shapiro finished this post *before* the leak of Justice Alito’s opinion overruling Roe and Casey. I’ll be writing about that later today. You’ll be hearing a lot about Alito’s sneering and sarcastic draft opinion and its real world impact in the coming days.
Back to Shapiro:
We have been hearing a lot about oligarchs the past few months, mostly the Russian version that Tsar Vlad the First surrounds himself with and that now find themselves bearing the brunt of the outrage since the Russian invasion of Ukraine. We haven’t heard as much about the ones here in the West, where democracy reigns, for the moment, and everyone is equal, for the moment.
An oligarchy, from whence an oligarch crawls out from, is a system of government in which a small clique of well connected men (the oligarchs) attempt to rule over the majority of people. Before going any further, yes it’s men, not women. Maybe it’s a matter of genetics or hormones but I can’t think of a single female oligarch.
The oligarchs here in the West are men who have made a lot of money, usually in the field of media, and are now attempting to change the very concept of democracy in America. Up top you see three of them. Jeff Bezos made his money selling books on the cheap then expanded into selling everything on the cheap and then bought up the Washington Post news group. Elon Musk started in tech, making money by charging people to use their own money (PayPal) before deciding to make electric cars and space ships and then deciding in a moment of pique that he wanted to buy Twitter. Mark Zuckerberg, the baby of the bunch, made his money the old fashioned way — he stole an idea from someone else, built it into one of the richest companies in the world, and now sits atop the gleaming ladder that is Facebook.
In Russia oligarchs are in need of Tsar Vlad’s largesse to control the masses. As much as they’d like to do it themselves from their luxury yachts they need the thumb of the government to be weighting down the scale in their favor. Here in the West our oligarchs have no such need. They can simply decide something needs to happen and lo and behold a few months or weeks or days or even hours later, it happens.
Or did you think Donald Trump became president because of a groundswell of public indignation against “the ruling elite”? And by the way, Trump is NOT an oligarch. He’s just the tool of the oligarchs.
Which brings us to the fourth oligarch most responsible for today’s political climate and the only one, at least publicly, that connects between the oligarchs of the West and Russia. I speak of course of the wonder from down under, Rupert Murdoch.
Rupert took possession of a small newspaper in Adelaide Australia after the death of his father and turned it into the largest media empire in the world. No need to run down all the outlets he owns, but it’s his largest holding, Fox News, that has done more to injure the concepts of liberty and justice in the modern world. He is the preeminent expert in right wing propaganda and he has used that position to inflict his version of a “new world order” on the peoples of the West.
I for one am sick of it.
If you believe the Tucker Carlsons of the world it’s because Rupert Murdoch made you believe it. As good as the New York Times triptych on Carlson was (and El Jefe de First Draft’s rundown of it) it really failed to slam home the point that Tucker Carlson is Rupert Murdoch’s chosen voice. Murdoch himself installed Carlson in the prime 9PM slot so he could be the last voice heard by middle America as they drifted off to sleep. Murdoch wants you upset, outraged, and willing to do whatever it takes to make sure HIS version of the world is the one that comes out on top.
That’s not democracy. That’s oligarchy. As the poet says:
Poor man wants to be rich, rich man wants to be king, and the king ain’t satisfied till he rules everything.
But then again, everybody wants to rule the world
2 thoughts on “Oligarchs ‘R Us”
How about the Oligarchs who are making bank off of the publicly owned assets…i.e. The National Parks? Looking at you Philip Anschutz, owner of Xanterra. You know, the guy who cuts off the water fountains at Grand Canyon so you have to buy $7.00 water bottles.
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