There are a great many crises in the United States that should occupy the attention of the media. Rents and housing prices are skyrocketing across the country, healthcare costs are out of control, thousands of migrants are being deported en masse in shackles, COVID is still killing 1,500 people a day and gas prices are through the roof. But if you’d listened to the media at today’s White House press briefing, the biggest issue facing the American people is little Timmy not getting the latest Mandalorian funko pop in time for Christmas.
Over the past few days, the media has begun hyping up the possibility of supply chain issues affecting product availability for the big Christmas shopping season, as if not being able to indulge in our yearly orgy of gluttonous consumerism is the worst possible thing that could befall our nation.
Those drummed up concerns were taken into the White House press briefing this afternoon as worried reporters demanded the Biden administration be responsible for the abundance of treaties, muncheroos and stocking stufferinos around the holiday. “Based on everything being announced today, can this administration guarantee that holiday packages will arrive on time?” asked CBS reporter Ed O’Keefe.
This question is absolutely ridiculous. President Biden is not Santa Claus. and he is not personally responsible for the globalized supply chain that is just now emerging from over a year of pandemic-induced slowdown and is unable to keep up with demand.
Psaki responded by rightfully pointing out that “we are not the Postal Service or UPS or FedEx. We cannot guarantee. What we can do is use every lever at the federal government’s disposal to reduce delays and address bottlenecks in the system, including ports and the need for them to be open longer hours and we can continue to not only press workers and unions but also companies to take as many steps as they can to reduce these delays.”
CBS's @EdOKeefe asks Jen Psaki if, given the supply chain issues and back-ups at ports, the White House "can…guarantee that holiday packages will arrive on time."
Psaki: "We are not the Postal Service or UPS or FedEx. We cannot guarantee" they will be there by Christmas. pic.twitter.com/QK2QXD258Z
— Curtis Houck (@CurtisHouck) October 13, 2021
With everything going on in the country right now, it is absurd to see the media wringing their hands and drumming up a contrived Christmas scandal three months out from the holiday! And you know, maybe it wouldn’t be the worst thing in the world for the American consumer to not be able to immediately satisfy whatever consumeristic urge pops into their heads at any moment.
The American people by and large live a life of outrageous luxury that is fueled by the exploitation and extraction of the nations in the global south, and someday we’re going to have to learn to survive without soothing the alienation of capitalism with empty purchases.
Colin Taylor is the editor-in-chief of Occupy Democrats. He graduated from Bennington College with a Bachelor's degree in history and political science. He now focuses on advancing the cause of social justice and equality in America.