Zeitgeist – The Movie: A letter to the editor

My comments appeared, once again, in today’s edition of the Lagniappe (Where I am now three for three!). I wrote in response to Managing Editor Rob Holbert’s column from the previous edition about a Wal-Mart employee getting sued by her employer, the story originally appeared in The Wall Street Journal. The following link is to his column: http://www.lagniappemobile.com/article/1221.

To the editor:
Thanks for informing us about the disheartening case of the Wal-mart employee, Deborah Shank, and the company’s zealous pursuit to recoup their expenses paid out by its self-insured health plan for Ms. Shank’s medical treatment.

I would like to correct one misstatement you made about the world’s largest retailer and its 250,000 employees by labeling them as “indentured servants.” I believe that term is a mischaracterization and is showing too much of your sensitive side to this Goliath. “Indentured” offers some hope of freedom after working for a fixed period of time.

Wal-Mart’s employees are much more like slaves receiving small reparations each week while the plantation owner continues to “take home” hundreds of millions of dollars in compensation each year to one of his many estates. There’s no emancipation for any of these workers or for the rest of Americans working in Corporate America under the present conscienceless system known as Capitalism. No one is ever set free, not even the CEO.
They are slaves every one of them to this corrupt system.

Ted Burnett

Note: An abbreviated version of this letter to the editor appeared in the November 7, 2007 edition of, The Lagniappe, an alternative newspaper that is published in Mobile, AL.

Dear Editor,

I would like to share information on a new film with your readers that was recommended to me. The online documentary, Zeitgeist (2007), can be downloaded and viewed at the following link: http://zeitgeistmovie.com/. This nearly two-hour long conspiracy film is one-part claiming that Christianity is a myth designed to distract and captivate society’s attention while concentrating money and power in the name of Jesus. This film’s unsupported and unsubstantiated explanation to the origins of Christianity made more sense to me than the version that I was repeatedly forced to accept each Sunday morning while growing up.

The second-part claims that 9/11 was just the latest in a series of planned and organized efforts over the last one hundred years by man designed to create a “New World Order” by triggering wars and financial crisis like the Great Depression for the financial gain of a few powerful men. This small, but evolving group has come together to control the key financial mechanism in this country and in a few others over in Europe thus controlling society for the purposes of enriching themselves at the misery and slavery of the masses. This film lists some of history’s usual suspects behind the rigged system – including industrial and financial barrens of the 1920’s and now some of their heirs.

One organization given as an example was the creation of the federal banking system, by an elite group of men, among them was Prescott S. Bush, the late-grandfather of President George W. Bush and the late-father of President George H. W. Bush. This central bank, a non-government organization, liens money with interest to all banks and to their customers, thus it puts all borrowers and the nation into immediate debt and at its mercy. The film states that our Founding Fathers witnessed this same enslaving system practiced by King George of England and the negative impact it had on the American colonies. This financial system was one of the many contributing factors to the American Revolution.

According to the film, the Federal Reserve Bank, referred to as simply “The Fed” at any time can and has manipulated the economy by expanding and contracting the money supply. This is accomplished through the use of interest rates. By creating bank runs this leads to economic collapses and depressions, in the national economy, resulting in the consolidation of troubled corporations and banks being bought up for pennies on the dollar. Today, its sole focus is on keeping the economy growing at all cost. Another source of wealth generation for the group has been the war machine, when the United States wants to go to war it has to borrow money from The Fed, once more, with interest.

Today, the goal of the war is not necessary to win them, but to sustain them, as was the case in Vietnam and, now, in Iraq, allowing for billions of dollars to be made by a few wealthy corporations who are supplying our armed forces and expanding our economy all the while the country takes on massive debt. The customers ultimately picking up this financial tab will be future generations of unborn Americans. Zeitgeist noted that spreading lies have generally been necessary to trigger public sentiment for past wars, as in the cases of WWI, WWII, Vietnam and once again with the Afghanistan and Iraq Wars.

The film makes claims that each of the major wars of the 20th century including the present ones that led to the United States entering were all precipitated by some fictitious event or surprise attacks that high ranking officials in the American Government were tipped-off to by allies while keeping the American public in the dark. These officials turned a blind eye to the impending attacks to later manipulate of our citizens to support the country going to war.

While many of the claims made by the film’s various sources including the statements given by those interviewed are not backed up by any overwhelming evidence. In its totality, Zeitgeist has a powerful quality, if not an outright disturbing one. I found the film to have woven another thread into our ever-changing world where everything is being consolidated, being globalized and you don’t really know who you are doing business with anymore. Zeitgeist is a fresh, eye-opener and time well spent.

Note: The following letter to the editor of The Lagnaippe appeared on September 14, 2007.

Beware old habits

Dear Editor:

I think the redevelopment of downtown Mobile is a worthy endeavor. However, I see one glaring, fatal and overshadowing flaw with all the community excitement. This construction activity is like taking an old inhabited building, gutting it, and then renovating it, giving it a new façade only to then allow the former residents with their old chronic ways and old attitudes to move back in. At the end of the day, has anything really changed?

The real community leaders should acknowledge and address this long overdue, underlying and rotting condition about Mobile, now or watch this town surely go-bust once more after this current economic wave comes to a crashing end. Look no further than to our last major boom during the Second World War, the build up in this port city with Brookley Air Base and then its untimely closing, while serving as the city’s largest employer, in the early sixties, etc.
The base closing left profound psychological scars on this town and its people for many decades.

“It is all fun and games, until somebody gets hurt.”

Ted Burnett

Copyright © 2007, 2010. All Rights Reserved. “Zeitgeist – The Movie: A letter to the editor” by Ted Burnett.

I am available for speaking, consulting and political advising. My other essays can be viewed at my blog – http://www.toxicnation.blogspot.com/. I can be contacted via email at – tebjr1@yahoo.com. My biography can be viewed at http://www.tedburnettresume.blogspot.com.

I'm an American thought leader and pioneer on the subjects of human, organizational and societal development and health. I write about the role that integrity, dignity, sanity play, as well as, on the topics of spirituality, faith, freedom, happiness, problem solving and risk taking. I produce and deliver original, world-class commentaries on business, political, social and spiritual matters to a global audience of world leaders, chief executives and key decision makers, top faculty and notables in the fields of academia, banking, business, foundations, government (including heads of state, lawmakers and governors), healthcare, media, non-profits and policy institutes. Website: www.thesageofmobile.com