“America is not Broke.” ~ David Telfer McConaghay

Via elephant journal
on Mar 15, 2011
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Photo: Brett Hoven

Friends, please pay attention.

To the video below, yes, but more than that.

(Oh, this is just a bonus; scroll down for the more important viewing)


The Time is now for heightened vigilance.
There is little occasion for distraction or apathy.

Photo: Patrick Finnegan

There is an abundance of misinformation out there, oozing from your TV and scattered all around the interweb. It is all too easy to stumble upon subtly falsified sources of fear, all too easy to find nefariously tweaked editions of reality being foisted on the (somehow still) unsuspecting public.

One of the most common myths is that of scarcity, the grand-scale deception named ‘overpopulation’. I call B.S.

We live on a supremely abundant planet, with each and every individual born to an Earth Mother whose sole destiny is to shower us with blessings. Hmm, a crispy apple comes to mind. Avocados.

I will say this more plainly: there is no shortage of resources. The potential exists for every person on the planet to live their life free from fear of hunger or pollution (environmental, emotional or otherwise).

Allow me to insist that global peace and prosperity is an entirely plausible scenario; there is nothing radical about such a thought. The noble application of technologies already in existence but purposefully suppressed, combined with a child’s sense of right & wrong could, would and surely will yield unending abundance for all, with plenty of space to play and grow safely.

The primary issue is distribution. And without going all global geo-political conspiracy theory on you, can we agree that the free and fair distribution of resources hinges on the existence — or lack — of the most basic, humanitarian morality?

That is, can we cultivate the collective understanding that we are one human family, and thereby agree that not a single member (much less the vast multitudinous majority) of that family should be made to suffer unnecessarily in exchange for the exorbitant comfort of a few others?

And yet, this is how it works. “400 obscenely rich people… now have as much loot, stock and property as the assets of 155 million Americans combined” (MM). This is shameful to the highest degree. Everybody knows it’s corrupt. And yet, it continues…

I’ve ranted on this before, but I will ask again: How difficult are these decisions? Place yourself in the shoes of a world leader, and imagine you are asked to choose between mass starvation due to your continued hoarding of resources, or, accept a reduction in your personal net worth in exchange for increased equality and sharing of essential resources.

How long do you need to think about this?

The problem is obvious; the solution, not so much. Yes I know, there are roadblocks. However, we must start with the common recognition that the current system (meme, if you will) is highly dysfunctional. As Michael Moore so passionately points out, we want to once again be “the United States of America, not the Corporate States of America.”

The United States of America. The United States of America. The United States of America.

Let us begin with enough self-respect to see that the way things are are not the way things necessarily must be.
Let us go beyond hope and truly embody the knowledge that we deserve rich, fulfilling lives, and nothing less.
Let us stand together, unmoving in the conviction that healthy food, clean water, suitable shelter, and guided access to humanity’s complete wealth of knowledge are included among the fundamental, inalienable rights of every person born on this planet.
And know that this is not actually very difficult to achieve!

Believe it! In fact, I imagine it will be far easier to live as I’ve just described than it is now, as we slave to pay for precious petrol-gas, and then give back half our income in tax while scraping by to buy GMO corn-syrup poison for our dearly beloved.

Won’t it be effortless to be generous when you are no longer besieged but only supported on all sides by loving family? It’s so easy to give freely when you know there’s always more where that came from, already on the way to you.

These are seriously simple concepts — practical, too — though not from within the imposed scarcity paradigm. Thank Heaven it’s only an illusion, ready to dissolve — indeed, already dissolving before our very eyes. Can we stay calm amidst the drama?

What would happen if world leaders all spontaneously altered their behavior to align with these simplest of humanitarian principles?
What would happen if the imagined amounts in various bank accounts became moot?
If the hoarding of wealth was entirely off the table, and our leaders felt called to act with the sole intention of improving the lot of all humanity?
How rapidly would the state of our agreed-upon reality change?

The essence of this mode of behavior was concisely stated a while back, by a truly divine man in whom many current “leaders” publicly profess their sadly (I have to say it) perverted faith — Jesus of Nazareth advised that we simply: “Love thy neighbor.”

That’s it; that’s everything, right there.
Maybe, “Do unto others as you would have them do unto you.”
The Golden Rule. That’ll do too.

What else do we need to know?

Can we start now?

What if?

This cannot become a blame game, for that is equally as self-defeating as our unwitting submission has been until now. Until now… If we are to demand it of “them,” we must first bring it forth from within, no?

Remember, the only appropriate response to callous, inhumane hate is unconditional Love. The time is now for vigilance, yes, but also radical non-violence. Remember, Mahatma Gandhi showed us beyond a doubt how “non-violence is a weapon of the strong.”

So just for fun, let’s assume we are already so empowered…
Are you visualizing this with me?

What would happen? Because I’m curious, I’m asking…
(please, respond with your comments. somebody, anybody, everybody!)

Enough out of me. Here is Michael Moore’s inspiring speech from 5 March, 2011, in Madison, Wisconsin:

Here is the link to his explanatory note entitled, “How I Got to Madison, Wisconsin”

For more, see What Democracy Looks Like according to one inspired/inspiring Wisconsinite farmer.

America isn’t broke. The only thing that’s broke is the moral compass of its leaders. And we aim to fix that compass, and steer the ship ourselves from this point on. (MM)

Clearly hear the clarion call…
Avocados for One! Avocados for All!


David Telfer McConaghay was born on planet Earth. Since that fateful first day of Spring in ’86, he has wandered across its surface in search of something which, when found, kindly insists that he continue searching. His immediate family lives in Minneapolis, MN, though he also feels at home in Washington D.C.; Grass Valley, CA; Bogotá, Colombia; and now, almost Boulder, CO. He completed his B.A. in English & Creative Writing at The George Washington University in 2008. The Sivananda Ashram Yoga Farm (Vrindavan of the West) is the primary source of any yogic inspiration David aka Sri Nivasa may express. He plays on Facebook HERE.


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8 Responses to ““America is not Broke.” ~ David Telfer McConaghay”

  1. tony says:

    awesome article

  2. jaltucher says:

    Important to note that the wealthier a country is the more likely lives will be saved in a natural disaster (e.g. the difference between haiti and Japan even though the Japan earthquake was 100x greater). In a wealthy country the disparity between the richest and poorest will always be great but the important metric is quality of life, longevity, and metrics like safety in disasters. We can't start panicking and demanding change without understanding all of the issues.

  3. SriDTMc says:

    thanks Tony!

  4. Heather says:

    It is energizing to hear a voice of my lost idealism. I used to believe in this so zealously it was part of my subconscious, in my dreams. I didn’t understand why, when I started talking about what I saw as a plausible vision of a world free of hunger and despair, full of hope and love, adults would give me a sympathetic smile and tell me they miss their youth. I wanted to know what caused their perception to shift, and I wanted to avoid that. I failed, sorry 18 year old Heather.

    I traveled to countries with desperately poor people, I got out of my 300 hippies in the woods college, I walked from GA to ME on foot, hitch hiking through towns and talking to as many strangers as possible. I saw so many beautiful things and met so many beautiful people that swelled my heart and illuminated my soul, but it was during those years, I think, that I lost my belief in the whole world living with peacefully, their basic needs met. I met a lot of people who lived with nothing for so long, that even when they had money, even lots of it, they were still in survival mode, wanting more and more, afraid to lose a penny. How do we bring them into this vision in an individualist society?
    I used to think we would need an apocalyptic disaster to put everyone back on equal footing and make them pull together, but while disasters have shown how much selflessness some people have, they have also shown the individual survival instinct in many. Which do you think is the innate urge in us, to care for the survival and well-being of the whole or to care about our own needs above others? Maybe it’s a nature vs. nurture debate, but if it’s the latter, how do we convince others, I’m thinking of the older part of the population, who are already quite set in their ways? Do we just focus on the younger generations or do we even have enough time left to put our eggs in their basket?

    I think if we have any hope of a universal shift in perception, it depends on us finding a way to keep our idealism through the realities we are faced with, or maybe we just create our own reality and hope others will find it so appealing that they want to jump onto our planes of perception as well.

    High fives


  5. TamingAuthor says:

    Insanity! A missive from the upside-down land of Alice in Wonderland. So many errors Elephant might begin a journalistic meltdown that will kill off all life within a fifty mile radius of Boulder.

    If I was a teacher's union member I would give the paper an A. Bravo. If I was a concerned teacher working outside the Brave New World schools, I would send you to do your homework and to correct your mixed metaphors.

    You celebrate Michael Moore? A goofball rich guy socialist who does not use union crews as some kind of intelligent source?

    You say we should follow the example of Jesus and we should watch out for the rich guys who have all the money? But then you lampoon Fox, the only news outlet that incorporates Christian views in its opinions, the only news outlet that documents with actual facts the deception of the rich guys? Unbelievable. Fox is the only news outlet that has documented the work of George Soros (and his unnamed co-conspirators, the billionaire Russian oligarchs) in destroying our democracy, crashing our dollar, and subverting the freedoms we enjoy. Oh, my.

    And who is screaming about population control? Not Fox News, but rather the Bill Gates and Warren Buffet duo who are pushing government control as well.

    Have you done any research on the word utopian and its connection to Marxist socialism that trampled hundreds of millions of lives across the planet in the last century? I agree wholly that there is no need to wax pessimistic based on actual resources — however, if you look at the last century, it is very clear that wealthy elites are fully capable of putting in place systems that result in the deaths of millions. So it is best not to follow in their path… even in the form of their goofy front man Michael Moore.

    It occurred to me that what we are missing are the old traveling carnivals that were big and in their last days when I was a young kid. We need to revitalize them and take this new generation on a field trip and let them deal with carnival con men. That experience is sorely missing. All anyone has to do today is throw up a slogan (Hope and Change come to mind) and the pied piper is in business.

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