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("Quid coniuratio est?")
[Following first appeared as "Conspiracy for the Day", 11/02/93]
[From Pacifica Radio]
ANNOUNCER: ...in the spirit of Halloween, political commentator Jim Hightower says what really scares him are the terrifying policies backed by the ghouls on Capitol Hill.
HIGHTOWER: It's Halloween. [chilling laugh] The night the tormented souls roam the land. Demons ascend from the boiling depths of Hades. Grotesque goblins shriek in the darkness. Animals talk in human tongues and unspeakable monsters stalk our homes.
Trick or treat? [maniacal laughter]
The horrors of this Halloween are not in the little, costumed tricksters who will knock at your doors after sunset, but in the real scaries; the things that really do go bump in the night:
Like the hundreds of vampire lobbyists for insurance companies, drug makers, and doctors who are creepily crawling over the health reform bill in Washington -- each one trying to sink fangs into the neck of the bill and draw out the lifeblood of reform.
Or the ghosts of American corporations, like Nike, which takes billions out of our economy, yet has no factories here, no manufacturing jobs, and no presence except Michael Jordan flying through the air. But wait! Now he's gone too.
Then there's that witches brew of toxics in our soil and water, homes and food. Double-double, toil and trouble, fire burn and cauldron bubble! Chemical stews of dioxins, lead, PCBs, benzine, chlordaine -- you name it. Yet of the 620 pesticides on the market, government regulators have thoroughly tested only 19.
It's a frightening scene at our national door this Halloween. First come those ghoulish economists and other humbug-ologists chanting that America is enjoying an economic recovery. Yet each and every workday another 2300 people are handed pink slips, joining the line of millions of Americans trudging down the economic ladder from the middle-class to the "barely hanging on"- class.
And look! Stealing through the shadows, stalking every home, and still demanding payment is that ancient, bone-chilling skeleton from one of Washington's darkest closets: the multi-billionist dollar savings and loan bailout. [piercing scream]
And spooks? Right there on our porch are hundreds, nay thousands of spooks from the CIA! Despite the end of the Cold War, the fall of the Berlin Wall, and the general call for all spooks to come in from the cold, President Clinton's CIA budget is not going down but up. Up! The spook agency now wants to become a spying operation for U.S. corporations.
So go ahead. Answer your door and face the demons. Here comes Frank Lorenzo, the gruesome airline wrecker from Halloweens past, now trying to get his hands on yet another airline. And there's the junk bond finagler, Michael Milken, who's now teaching "creative finance" at UCLA. And who's this? Why it's the new Republican leadership team in Washington: Bob Dole and "the Knute" -- Newt Gingrich.
This is Jim Hightower saying, "Now that's really scary."
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