Monday, December 5, 2016

Suffering for Others' Sins

Today in America all the clocks are striking 13.

“There’s no such thing any more as facts,” said Scottie Nell Hughes, an influential member of the new leader-to-be’s ruling team.

The former chief of his political campaign said the Pussy Grabber’s serial lies were “presidential” simply because the president-elect said them.

As a people we have been taken through a looking glass into the land of Tweedledee:”If it was so, it might be; and if it were so, it would be; but as it isn't, it ain't. That's logic.” 

Or back into George Orwell’s 1984: “What you say or do doesn't matter; only feelings matter.”

What is most disturbing is not that this terrible, irrational thing has happened to our country; it is that most of the millions who voted for it do not give a damn.  

When the person who will lead the country demonstrates his open contempt for the protocols of diplomacy, and his ignorance of contemporary world affairs, they applaud.  They continue to believe that the new regime will “make America great again.”

“Ignorance is strength” in Orwell’s 1984.  The prospective Secretary of Education in the new regime is Betsy DeVos, a billionaire who wants to make America great again by destroying its public schools, as she already has done in the city of Detroit.

“War is peace” in Orwell’s 1984.  Retired Marine Gen. James Mattis, appointed to be secretary of defense, has already served the cause of American greatness by ordering the Mukaradeeb wedding party massacre, when American troops shelled and bombed a wedding party in a small village on the Iraq-Syria border, killing 42 civilians.  He was among the first commanders in the history of warfare to use depleted uranium and white phosphorus on civilians, leaving a legacy of cancer and birth defects.

“Freedom is slavery” in Orwell’s 1984.  Sen. Jeff Sessions, an unreconstructed confederate from Alabama, will head the department of justice in the new regime.  Even in a Republican-controlled Congress he was considered too racist to be a federal judge.  His department of justice will create and perpetuate injustice.

In Alice’s looking glass land, “everything would be nonsense. Nothing would be what it is, because everything would be what it isn’t.”  And so in the new regime, the secretary of health and human services, Tom Price, will serve humanity by dismantling the health programs that provide care for more than 130 million Americans.  The man who would oversee the ethics and fairness of American businesses, Wilbur Ross, is a billionaire who brought us the Sago mine disaster in West Virginia, where 12 miners died.  Ross refused to shut down the mine despite 12 roof collapses in 2005 alone, and 208 citations for safety violations.  

Chris Hedges, perhaps this country’s most important contemporary writer, put it this way:

Trump and his coterie of half-wits, criminals, racists and deviants play the role of the Snopes clan in William Faulkner’s novels “The Hamlet,” “The Town” and “The Mansion.” The Snopeses rose up out of the power vacuum of the decayed South and ruthlessly seized control from the degenerated aristocratic elites. Flem Snopes and his extended family—which includes a killer, a pedophile, a bigamist, an arsonist, a mentally disabled man who copulates with a cow, and a relative who sells tickets to witness the bestiality—are fictional representations of the scum we have elevated to the highest level of the federal government. 

As in 1984, “the past is dead, the future is unimaginable.”  It is in the hands of con artists and mafia capitalists, of hate-mongers and post-truthers, of conspiracy theorists and ethically-challenged billionaires, of men and women who are contemptuous of the law except as they can bend it or use it for their own enrichment.

Hughes, who proclaimed the death of fact in these new United States, explained that “everybody has a way of interpreting” what is true or not true.  But, as Friedrich Nietzsche warned long ago, “whichever interpretation prevails at a given time is a function of power and not truth.”

In public utterances, the Pussy-Grabber has promised to round up Muslims and undocumented immigrants, to order “waterboarding and far worse,” to exercise unprecedented presidential authority over everything from foreign policy to flag burning.  Orwell again:  “The object of persecution is persecution.  The object of torture is torture.  The object of power is power.”

Millions of Americans either refuse to see all of this, or see it and find nothing wrong.  Some of the punditry tell us the problem is us, we never listened to these people, and now we must listen and learn.

Bovine excrement!  These people have nothing to teach us!  The regime they have installed cares not a whit for the common man.  They have given us over to the Snopeses.  They deserve their fate — but the rest of us, alas, will have to suffer it along with them. 


  1. "Bullies, billionaires, and bigots." -- California Assembly Speaker Anthony Rendon describing the cabinet picks

  2. We are a nation in which a large majority if not an absolute majority of the population is not only indifferent to the truth but positively revels in flagrant untruths.  In which age-old standards of good character and intellectual integrity are not merely obsolete but mocked.

    How can such a population possibly be capable in any serious sense of "self-government?”