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L. Frank Baum was a traveling salesman who made up stories to tell his children, out of which grew "The Wizard of Oz."

It clearly is an allegory about American life. One way to look at it is that the tale illustrates the media haze we live in, from a time well before television.

Dorothy, the Cowardly Lion, The Tin Man, The Scarecrow and Toto are in the presence of the Magnificent Oz, projected on a large screen and they are terrified, but determined to seek the Wizard's aid.

Toto, unimpressed by the image on the screen, goes after the heels that can see below a curtain.  As Toto grasps onto and pulls back the curtain, Oz thunders, "Pay no attention to the little man behind the screen!"

We are, in fact, Dorothy, the Cowardly Lion, the Tin Man and Scarecrow.  They are representations of the American public persona.  Us.

We need a Toto in order to see the Immigration issue clearly for what it really is.  It is exactly a Wizard of Oz situation.  

I have attempted to diary and comment on this before.  

Here are two diaries so far:

This is a short one:
http://www.dailykos.com/...

This is a longer one that better details how I got my perspective:
http://www.dailykos.com/...

Part of what I am doing is experimenting with writing and approaches to the subject.  It is very difficult to get any attention paid to this, so I am having to be persistent and to try different ways.  It is kind of like trying to open up a combination lock.  It may take a lot of different tries.

Here's the problem:

If there are no famous pundits, no big time news agencies or newspapers, no headlines anywhere to pre-authorize thinking on some subject, we don't see it as worth thinking about.

Just some person who happens to have figured something out, cannot possibly be paid attention to on something like this unless they have the ability to attain an Oz like status.

Given the subject, fat chance of that.  Madison Avenue was founded on keeping attention elsewhere.

Apparently, even people who participate in the Kos community are not really aware of the way media works at a deeper level on their psychology and do not get that there are certain subjects or approaches to subjects that are completely under taboo and nothing will influence this agenda.  Why, it can't be that way! That would just be too, too, something.  Is it not possible that there can be strategic use of mass psychology?

Think about it. There is a lot of money riding on it.  Billions.  Trillions, actually.  

You have to be aware that if you were a person with trillions of dollars worth of investments to manage, and you were primarily in competition with others on your level who were truly among the most ruthless and cutthroat competitors out there, your outlook would probably not be described as progressive.  You would do well in such a situation to channel your inner 17th century privateering pirate.

Anybody that is really concerned about immigration reform needs to take their brand name blinders off and escape the shopping mall of the mind we live in in order to see reality for what it is.  

When you see immigrants working at low wage jobs, and think maybe this is having an impact on the American economy, you may have something there, but the immigrant is not the cause.  

Your cheaper prices at the grocery store for bananas, your convenience for having avocados from Argentina, and Burger King burgers, and lots of other products coming up from Latin and South America, your consumer economy, your American suburban comforts all rest on the backs of your cousins from south of the border.

When they can't put up with the living hell their lives become as the result of this deal, they have to either try and organize locally to put up a resistance, or give up and start walking north.  

A lot of people have died as a result of this state of affairs over the past century or so.  A lot of people.  In a recent estimate, a human rights watch organization figured that some 200,000 people have been killed just in Guatemala, since the US backed coup of 1954.

A lot of our cousins to the south come to the conclusion that you can't fight this and that America must be where it is at, since it is so powerful, so they start walking north to see what that is all about.  

We are blissfully ignorant.  We think they only come into existence at the point they cross the border.

We do not have an awareness that they have any existence prior to that and assume they have no reasons, certainly none connected with us.  

We also assume we are powerless.

But that is because we are focused on the big screen where Oz tells us what to think.  Look at that guy crossing the border:  That is where to put all your attention.  

Where is Toto when you need him?

Progressive policy reform cannot be real unless and until the curtain is pulled back to reveal the true big picture showing where Washington ought to place its full emphasis.

A huge amount of money is being spent on keeping this picture from the public so that the target will instead be more consistent with keeping workers divided among themselves, which is the traditional paradigm.

The progressive reform we need is hemispheric.  The US has been establishing various kinds of inter governmental investment, incentive, tariff, and trade agreements that have been increasingly interconnected and complex, since at the least the 1980s.  Since then we have NAFTA, GATT, The WTO, the World Bank and a bunch of other arrangements that are largely through the Organization of American States.

The President of the United States and the State Department are primary actors in this arena, as is Congress.

Those entities can and must look at the overall hemispheric picture and look at balancing economic social justice with the needs of corporate profits.  

Until and unless we put that concern front and center in defining what comprehensive immigration reform means, there can't really be any that deserves to be called that.  

All that will be possible will just be name calling and shouting and narrowly focused politicians pandering to the baser instincts and prejudices in their constituencies.  

Originally posted to Stuart Heady on Fri Jun 25, 2010 at 08:44 AM PDT.

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Comment Preferences

  •  Tip Jar (4+ / 0-)

    hope that the idiots who have no constructive and creative solutions but only look to tear down will not win the day.

    by Stuart Heady on Fri Jun 25, 2010 at 08:44:40 AM PDT

  •  Excellent thinking, Stuart. Might want to try (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Stuart Heady, Azazello

    to post when there are fewer big distractions.

    Here's an excellent story btw you might be interested in, showing how the "secure the border first" folks can keep moving the goalpost

    http://azstarnet.com/...

    •  I think it is the media narrative, not the timing (0+ / 0-)

      Anything along these lines gets ignored.  People here like to complain about the mainstream media and about media narratives, but there is a high susceptibility to being led.

      The reason is that we are all people who are intellectually inclined.  Because we like to think, we are responsive to both what is in front of us, and what is specifically absent from our information set.

      Notice how a lot of energy is spent by diarists and commentors on trying to figure out how to get the media to pay attention to what apparently is being ignored or misinterpreted.  Apparently a lot of people believe this is not on purpose and that the people involved don't know what they are doing.  

      The next level of consciousness, that this is a plan being executed on purpose by people with strategic thinking capability, needs to be reached.  

      Currently, this is really a video game in which people shoot letters to the editor at each other without paying much attention to the prospect for truly intelligent dialogue about what is real.  I am optimistic, however, that evolution will occur. I just hope it begins to show signs of improving on the mainstream media sooner rather than later.

      hope that the idiots who have no constructive and creative solutions but only look to tear down will not win the day.

      by Stuart Heady on Fri Jun 25, 2010 at 10:15:11 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

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