The Written Peace: Open Forum of July 18, 2008
Actually, I was never exactly gone, mind you. I lost my ISP (that's a genteel way of indicating that I could not pay the bill); one of my Web hosting services finally cut me off; and, as if all that weren't enough, my cell phone carrier finally had enough of my delinquent payments lifestyle.
Oh, yes, I almost forgot: my truck broke down.
Were I to have had a dog and a Bible, someone would probably have shot the mangy animal and confiscated the good book.
Times are difficult, and they will become even more so over the coming years. I predicted that stormy times were coming long before the mainstream media and its wise pundits even so much as hinted that clouds might be on the horizon. A lot of good that did, of course. Now, all the geniuses are sounding greater or lesser degree of concern, alarm, or mild panic, and there will be Dragonslayer Awards for all the bright economists, financial analysts, politicians, and pundits who, not all that long ago, could not find their own backsides using both hands and a road atlas.
The American economy is in worse shape than you think, gentle readers. The good news is that, right now, it is not as bad as it will get; and the still better news is that the mainstream media will likely never tell how bad it is, even when it gets downright brutal. That means many people will see their own difficulties as somehow atypical, even shameful and embarrassing. This sense of alienation from a larger society of people who can make it will be reinforced by financial institutions, credit reporting agencies, laws, courts, law enforcement agencies, the media, employers, and other instrumentalities of the detached but exclusively relevant world from which the injured are becoming more and more separated.
A critical mass of wholesale rebellion against this catastrophe of dissociation would occur only if enough people talked to enough people, and they all realized, first, that theirs was a common and pervasive misery and, second, that they, themselves, bear great responsibility not for the circumstance of their own degradation, but for the process by which that degraded world came to find them wanting and thereby justified in unleashing upon them its hateful wrath. Absent that second revelation, the one about their own inherent responsibility for hiding in their little shells while the seeds of destruction were being sown, the American people are never going to grasp just how radically they must alter both this government and their interactions with it.
It will be far easier for people to elect one of the two pathetic excuses running for President and expect the ascendant shill of choice to come up with a grand solution to everything, a solution that will require little in the way of pain and much in the way of pandering to mass desires for self-gratification, strawman blame-laying, and promises that life will get back to normal in short order.
The truth of the matter is that George W. Bush is nothing more, and certainly nothing less, than the necessary product of a society that has lost its way. That he and his Right-wing authoritarian cohorts could not be stopped, that he and his vicious, incompetent enablers will get away with every vile thing they have done, is proof positive that the sickness lies not in their hearts, but in the soul of a body politic whence arose the monstrosity of their kind, their era, and its outrages.
John McCain and Barack Obama both supported the new Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act (FISA) legislation. Damn them both; and damned be a political process that sticks in our faces such trifling fools who think our constitutional rights are theirs to legislate away in the frothing hysteria of law enforcement run amok in cruel technologies the destructive power of which neither politicians nor judges have even the most rudimentary of grasp.
Late tomorrow, I shall publish "Manifesto in Black," an essay declaring the pervasive, uncontrollable nature of prevarication that informs that which comes from this government. I have had enough of the mealy-mouthed approach to addressing the ills of this society and the failures-in-waiting standing before the American electorate. The appeasement of civility is the surrender to destiny, and I am not presently of a mind to go quietly.
Especially since I just paid my Web hosting service provider.
Bandwidth is freedom.
Say what you have to say; this is an open forum, and you need to speak your mind, even if you are of a mind to say, "Go Barack!" or "McCain rocks!" Go ahead: sorely test me. The night is young, the dance floor lights are on, and the espresso bar is ready to crank the brutish brew that will sustain us all in this, the first and last stand of the New American Century.
In the gathering night of Empire, the Dark Wraith says, "Let the good times roll."