With the news that the Tokyo Power company, operator of the savagely damaged nuclear reactor(s) in northeast Japan, having faked the safety reports for over a decade (ABC News, March 20, 2011), the question of public integrity is at the top of some of our minds.
We already know that BP and their cronies in government made light of the regulations regarding the deep off-shore drilling for Gulf oil over at least the last decade. We are now learning that many of the discount bus companies operating in the U.S., when faced with detailed inspection, are seeing both their vehicles and their drivers removed from the road because of faulty safety precautions, and faulty human driving capabilities, "with many offences on their driving records," according to New York Senator Chuck Shummer.
Just last week, we learned that two pilots and two co-pilots and one flight attendant from the Mexico airline have been removed from their positions because they were found to be drunk while operating aircraft.
We have watched for two years, as the Tea Party demagogued hundreds of lies about various pieces of legislation, especially the Health Care Reform Bill, whose provisions they demonized as "death panels" and whose author, the president as "communist" and "socialist" and "unAmerican" because he was not born in the continental United States....and the media simply broadcast their lies, often without editorial comment or correction.
In fact, in the U.S., where Fox news is noted for twisting the tortured truth for political (right wing) purposes, it is only a requirement that the news must be true, in so far as you know it to be true, not nearly as high a standard as "no news may be broadcast that is not true"....a rebric they found when they attempted to establish their foothold in Canada.
We all know that many of the advertising content labels are "just smoke and mirrors" as corporates attempt to hoodwink an unsuspecting consumer with words like "natural" and "organic" into purchasing the latest products.
We also know that, for example from the interview on CBS' 60minutes with Archbishop Tim Dolan that much of the more recent history of the church focuses on the historic cover-up of child predators by the institution.
We know that Wall Street, in league with the regulators and legislators, stripped their financial services industry of the needed RULES necessary whenever the service provided involves the acquisition of clients moeny for services rendered, simply because of the potential for rampant human greed to come to govern the many transactions.
We know that lobbyists, most of them former political operatives, pitch the case for their various clients, using money from those clients, and have more than a little influence on the shape and size of the bills that come from the legislators and become the law of the land.
We also know that, as recently as the last couple of weeks, the Koch Brothers have literally purchased the changes in law and in protocols around both collective bargaining rights and the Environmental Protection Agency and the funding of NPR, as part of a political campaign purchased and delivered for the ideological tyranny of the Right.
Is it any wonder that the public has lost confidence in many, if not most, of the people and institutions that purport to have and to keep considerable influence over much of our lives.
Now, as we learn that many of the 104 nuclear reactors in the U.S. are built on fault lines, similar to that on which the disaster in Japan was built, there will be more public inquiries into the truth-telling of the nuclear industry and its political cronies.
How can one not consider becoming a radical, searching for the truth, in a world drunk on the various "potions" being proferred by the various agencies of "public seduction" that taxes purport to purchase "for the benefit of the people?"