Poem: The Great Obliviators by Ron Olsen

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The Great Obliviators
by Ron Olsen

Stuck in Afghanistan
Without an exit plan
While drones fly
Where no soldiers need go

All this after
Vietnam
Iraq
Pakistan
And now Syria, too

We were warned this would happen

The glorification of war
Never-ending militarism
Not to be questioned
Or risk being accused of being less than American

Ike told us it was coming
Back in 61
The “rise of misplaced power” he said
The Military Industrial Complex
Now it’s here

Eisenhower, knew war
Those who now make war do not

But they are locked in
Not about to let go
As imperial America
Bites down
On the world

A pit bull in every yard
An urban assault vehicle in every garage
A gun in every drawer
Pepper spray in every purse
To fend off neighbors
Against the oncoming imagined apocalypse

ISIS beheadings
Plastic sheeting to cover your windows and doors
Smallpox in the mail
Sarin in the subways
Hijackers on our planes

The necessary threat

Without it, there is no fear
And without fear, no motivation
Without motivation
No public funding

Keeping the prophets of fear
In power
Cash fat sociopaths
Caring only for themselves

Gutting the middle class
Keeping the nation at war
To satisfy the greed
Of those whose greed knows no satisfaction
Only the need for more

© 2015 Ron Olsen – all rights reserved

Healthcare – A Poem

Healthcare
By Ron Olsen

When people profit from
Other people’s illness

Disease becomes more profitable
Than wellness

It doesn’t take a brain surgeon
To understand

Sickness perpetuates wealth
Free healthcare results in health

Try and move forward
Rather than back

And they’ll nail you with fear
And rail you with lies

While they pay off the doctors
And give the medical schools millions

To perpetuate
The myth of caring

 

© 2015 Ron Olsen / all rights reserved

 

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Ron Olsen is a retired journalist who lives in Los Angeles.   He writes essays and an occasional poem.   More of his work can be found here.