Sinclair the Prophet
I've been avoiding News for several weeks...which means that I have limited my news consumption(unpack that terminology!) to a once a week perusal of Huffpo and Alternet and Right Wing Watch, with a weekly binge-watch of Rachel and Chris Hayes.
I have heard things floating in from the living room in the morning rush to get ready for school, as well...as I attempted mightily to not hear them(by blasting such disparate gems as Scheherazade(sp-2-(Rimmsky-Korsakov(sp-3))) and various Strauss Waltzes).
It is to no avail....the Republican Party is in total chaos, which should surprise no one, at all.
“Circus” doesn't even begin to cover it.
Watching a week's worth of Maddow this morning, I keep thinking of Sinclair Lewis.
From “It Can't Happen Here” to “Elmer Gantry” to “Mainstreet” to “Arrowsmith” to “Babbit”....he was fucking prophetic.
He managed to zero in on the vapid materialism and jingoistic non-sense that has come to define us, as a nation, and he did it almost a hundred years ago.
I admit that I do not care for his style...I find him hard to read, and am constantly reminded of Middlemarch...which I also didn't enjoy reading...but his portrait of the Ugly American is spot on, from where I sit.
The Vulgariat...the Hillbilly Borg...the Lumpenbillies...
“Know-Nothing-ism” as a thing to aspire to while apparently hating everyone, including themselves.
The Democratic Party has it's large problems, of course...Hillarious as the face of Corporate Shillery...portraying a “Liberal” as a Brand, devoid of meaning.
But the Dem's existential crisis is nothing compared to the GOP.
They embody the Stupid and the Liar, all mixed up together.
To be an effective Liar, one must have some intelligence...and an ability to remember one's lies.
This is impossible if one is also Stupid.
….unless the folks you are lying to are even stupider:
( please cut and paste, it's worth it)
During the Bush Darkness, I thought it couldn't get more surreal....that the dangerous ideologues who emerged during that era were the nadir of American socio-political discourse.
The near-Fascism evident in those folks...and their local analogs...was frightening.
Then came Tea...
and I watched as the GOP fractured, and the “Conservative Movement” devolved into a gaggle of shouting illiterate assholes, so very proud of their ignorance and so certain in their incoherence.
As I've lamented so often...here was the Anti-Enlightenment personified.
“Get Back into the Cave!!!” is their rallying cry.
The “Freedom Caucus” that currently has it's claws around the throat of the GOP is a minority...not only in the Electorate as a whole, but in the GOP, itself.
The True Believers would fit into a couple of drunk tanks, and yet they have managed to break the US Government...paralyzing Congress to such an extent that nothing can get done.
If Boner of Orange decides to quit on schedule, the impossible scenario of there being No Speaker of the House becomes a reality....which means that nothing at all can get done, because the House will not be able to legally convene.
Will anyone notice, after 6 years of so little getting done, anyway?LOL.
Whom will the shouters and mouthbreathers blame?
Will it be Obama's fault?
Petty and Stupid, the Tea People I know are oblivious to what's actually happening...to them, Obama is an Evil Dictator and the country is in Ruins, over-run by Muslim Mexicans and Communist Libtards bent on making them have Gay Marriages while outlawing “christianity”, and taking all their guns.
“ They were like the Sunday-afternoon mob starting at monkeys in the Zoo, poking fingers and making faces and giggling at the resentment of the more dignified race... They were staggered to learn that a real tangible person, living in Minnesota, and married to their own flesh-and-blood relation, could apparently believe that divorce may not always be immoral; that illegitimate children do not bear any special and guaranteed form of curse; that there are ethical authorities outside of the Hebrew Bible; that men have drunk wine yet not died in the gutter; that the capitalistic system of distribution and the Baptist wedding-ceremony were not known in the Garden of Eden;... that there are Ministers of the Gospel who accept evolution; that some persons of intelligence and business ability do not always vote the Republican ticket straight;... that a violin is not inherently more immoral than a chapel organ... 'Where does she get all them the'ries?' marveled Uncle Whittier Smail.”- from “Mainstreet”
The GOP, and by virtue of their 40 year hegemony on “Thought”, the rest of us, are wallowing in confusion...and this is not unexpected.
The entire Counter-Revolution was based on contradictory lies, incoherent obfuscation and rank hypocrisy. The Coalition of “Establishment GOP”, Big Bidness and the Lumpenbillies was never about Truth and the American Way...it was about getting and keeping Power.
The latter of the three legs of that shaky stool were either blind to this reality, or purposefully pushed it below their awareness.
The Reagan Mythos was, rather, about Believing Real Hard in things that do not make sense when scrutinized and help up against one another.
“A village in a country which is taking pains to become altogether standardized and pure, which aspires to succeed Victorian England as the chief mediocrity of the world, is no longer merely provincial, no longer downy and restful in its leaf-shadowed ignorance. It is a force seeking to conquer the earth... Sure of itself, it bullies other civilizations, as a traveling salesman in a brown derby conquers the wisdom of China and tacks advertisements of cigarettes over arches for centuries dedicate to the sayings of Confucius. Such a society functions admirably in the production of cheap automobiles, dollar watches, and safety razors. But it is not satisfied until the entire world also admits that the end and joyous purpose of living is to ride in flivvers, to make advertising-pictures of dollar watches, and in the twilight to sit talking not of love and courage but of the convenience of safety razors.”-Ibid.
After all these years of Liberals being driven into obscurity(some of it deserved), and leaving the Coalition of the Worst America has to Offer in complete control of the Government and worse, the Mind of America, here we are , today...the top 3-4 GOP Presidential Hopefuls are blatantly Ignorant, Pandering and even closer to being outright Fascists that even I would have predicted.
The front runner, in spite of all his foot in mouth disease, is the perfect example, as I've said, of Lewis' Buzz Windrip:
“He was an actor of genius. There was no more overwhelming actor on the stage, in the motion pictures, nor even in the pulpit. He would whirl arms, bang tables, glare from mad eyes, vomit Biblical wrath from a gaping mouth; but he would also coo like a nursing mother, beseech like an aching lover, and in between tricks would coldly and almost contemptuously jab his crowds with figures and facts — figures and facts that were inescapable even when, as often happened, they were entirely incorrect.”-from “It Can't Happen Here”
As I've said recently, Trump could win the thing.
According to my surveillance, if Sanders gets the Dem Nomination, what used to be called Reagan Democrats will join their frothing brethren in championing Trump....which would likely spell the end of the USA as we know it.
“The Senator was vulgar, almost illiterate, a public liar easily detected, and in his "ideas" almost idiotic, while his celebrated piety was that of a traveling salesman for church furniture, and his yet more celebrated humor the sly cynicism of a country store.
Certainly there was nothing exhilarating in the actual words of his speeches, nor anything convincing in his philosophy. His political platforms were only wings of a windmill.”
― Sinclair Lewis, It Can't Happen Here
- ► 2016 (24)
- ▼ October 2015 (6)
- ► 2014 (42)
- ► 2013 (61)
- ► 2012 (99)
- ► 2011 (42)
- ► 2010 (45)