IMG_3035The twentieth century’s technological advances are often described as victories over the primal facts of nature: hunger, cold, disease, distance and time. But the wiring of every individual into the warm embrace of the multinational entertainment oligopoly is a conquest of a different sort, the crowning triumph of the marketplace over humanity’s unruly consciousness. The fact that the struggle has been a particularly long one does not alter the fact that business authorities seem to be on the verge of a spectacular and final victory. It is fitting that at as the preceding century of horrors closes, our masters rush to perfect the cultural equivalent of the atom bomb, to destroy once and for all our ability to appreciate horror. With no leader but the “invisible hand,” with no elite but the mild and platitudinous Babbittry of the American hinterland, Western capitalism will soon accomplish what the twentieth century’s more murderous tyrants,with all their poisonous calculation, could only dream of doing: effacing the cultural memory of entire nations. For there is no tradition, religion, or language to which business owes any allegiance greater than momentary convenience; nor does any tradition, religion, or language remain that can muster a serious challenge to its cultural authority. It is capitalism, not angry workers, unhappy youth, or impoverished colonial peoples that is “the bull in the china shop of human history”. The market economy, now global in scale, is by its nature corrosive of all established hierarchies and certainties.