The Republic of the United States of America was founded under the principle of freedom and equality for all – and by all, they meant in the exclusive Roman chic sense of all, meaning white, male, citizens. But unlike the Romans, who had the hippodrome where they could watch their enemies, slaves, and political rivals hack at each other for entertainment - it took the US 220 years to invent Reality TV, 220 years during which the original notion of freedom was destroyed by abolitionists and suffragettes.

So you ask yourself, if freedom was only intended for the few, was founding the republic really about freedom? Of course not! The principles of freedom and the institution of the republic, are both servants to the real underlying principle of the US’s foundation - Capitalism. The Founding fathers, all rich landowners, understood that Capitalism can’t thrive under the rule of the English Monarchy – no, they could no longer be subjects; they needed to be republicans! That’s right, the US was founded by a bunch of rich, white guys who didn’t want to pay taxes, and 230 years later, despite a few minor bumps like the Civil War and the Great Depression, here we are, living in a country where rich, white guys still don’t pay taxes. What better testimony to Capitalism as the true foundation of the US is there?

Time has taken its toll though, and with freedom pretty much granted to anyone nowadays, citizen or not (as long as you aren’t an Arab, praise be to Allah for George W. Bush’s Attorneys General for saving some semblance of the Founding Fathers’ intent), the original ideal of Capitalism has, alas, eroded after all. Nowadays anyone can be rich, not just the white guys. Sure, you could blame the do-gooder abolitionists or the uppity suffragettes for that, but the real people to blame are the Hollywood Jews and their crazy American Dream.

In the old days, everyone knew that the landowners, and later the industrialists, were rich, and the rest of the people got by. Sure, you had the brief Gold Rush anomaly, but in general if your daddy was poor, you was poor. Then, Motion Pictures came along - a new technology that the contemporary rich industrialists initially ignored as not being of substance (much like them 1990s Internets). So, enterprising immigrants launched into it and applied industrialist principles to deliver a scalable product, which was cheap to produce, easy to distribute, and had mass appeal. It didn’t matter at first that it wasn’t very good, because it was easily accessible and cheap. Two things came of this that changed the face of America.

  1. Poor immigrants and starving artists became rich, and more importantly;
  2. They loved to tell their stories of rags-to-riches, and soon people began to believe it could happen to them too – hence, the American Dream.

Suddenly, everybody wanted this new-fangled, Eastern European myth of the American Dream. They thought they could strike it rich if only they could mass-produce something that people would buy, whether they needed it or not. How do you ensure that what you produce has the widest appeal? That’s right - mediocrity. For example, a little known industrialist named Henry Ford understood that he could make more money if rather than producing good horseless carriages for rich people, he produced mediocre cheap cars for the unwashed masses, or the proletariat, if you will.

A new day was dawning for the new rich. Every charlatan with snake oil could open their own works, every steelworker open a foundry, and every tailor open a sweatshop - and everyone else who ending up working for these schmucks could dream of sticking it to the boss and running off with their clients. Lighting struck a second time, and black gold was discovered in Texas. Before you knew it, hillbillies were moving to Beverly Hills. With more rich people available, even regular women got a chance to become gold-diggers and get their own Reality TV shows. It was a great time for America.

But, as much as you’d want it to, no free-for-all (especially not orgies – from what we read, of course) can last forever. There were, and still are, too many people fighting to find a market of masses with their plain vanilla (or shall we say, mediocre) mediocrity. Their pleas get drowned out in the swarm of mediocrity that is fighting for a spot on the shelves of Wal-Mart. But, amid the saturation of mediocrity, the few, the bold, the strong - they rise up to dominate the market.

Levi Strauss, Sears and Roebuck, Donald Trump, Milli Vanilli, and Ronald McDonald are just a few examples of people with bad hair who built empires out of mediocrity. In their genius, they understood that mediocrity wasn’t enough. They had to be the best at mediocrity to stand out in a land where the streets are paved with sparkling, tacky, schlock. They built the image and the substance that had the broadest appeal. They are brand names today, because they showed the US what it means to excel at mediocrity.

Do we, as Americans, enjoy greater freedom because of the equalizing power of mediocrity? Do we enjoy greater prosperity because of our mediocrity? Do the people of the world mock us out of envy, or because we dress terribly and talk too loud? Or are we, as Americans, despite our ethnic diversity, indoctrinated so deeply in mediocrity that we just don’t give a shit? Pass the remote.

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