I’m about halfway through “A People’s History of the United States” by Howard Zinn but at breakfast this morning I set it aside in favor of the back of the Cheerios box. It turns out that General Mills put its high-minded marketing strategies of promoting child literacy and cardiac health on hiatus in favor of “Star Wars: The Phantom Menace 3-D” merchandising. Instead of a bilingual children’s book inside, this box offered a cheap plastic pen in the shape of begoggled pod-racing eight year-old Anakin Skywalker. It was right on top, too. I didn’t have to open the liner bag or dig through puffed O’s of oat dust or do anything to get to it. I felt like I was acting out a little skit about degenerate corporate commercialism right there at my breakfast table while Howard Zinn peered at me smugly from the cover of his book.