Friday, October 15, 2010
Eighteen Days Out
The Grateful Dead called its compilation album, "What a Long Strange Trip It’s Been." They could just as easily have applied that title to the election season of 2010. Long, oh yeah. It started roughly twenty-two minutes after the inauguration of President Obama by the media’s lights, and for the right very soon thereafter as the Republicans began to publicly grind out a chorus of mantras and allegation aimed at his political demise.
Strange? Believe me, this has been one of the strangest off year elections in my memory. Take for instance, the Tea Parties that seem to metastases faster than glandular tumors from state to state. They have no platform other than rage against a disenfranchisement that has not occurred. They see Communist-Socialist-Muslim-Nazis under the bumper of every car, and hate President Obama because he is a Kenyan-Muslim-Socialist-maybe Communist-Nazi. Their philosophy, if that is what you want to call it, is like something out of Serling’s Twilight Zone.
Through their psychosis they have the Republican Party on the ropes and the media in their pocket. I keep thinking of Salvador Dali’s painting, “The Persistence of Memory.” In his vision a clock is draped over a branch, another is wearing a suit and a third is sliding like molasses off a raised platform. Clocks are appropriate - how much longer will we have to deal with the false legitimacy of this distorted mental picture?
Indeed how much longer will we have to live out our political dreams in the theater of the absurd? Consider last night’s debate between Sharon Angle (Tea Party darling) and Harry Reid in Nevada. Ms. Angle’s stupidity is surpassed only by her arrogance, yet she is spoken of as a serious candidate for the Senate. Her entire performance last night seemed to revolve around insulting Reid, squealing about the need for an unrestrained Free Market and remaking Social Security in that Market’s image.
Reid for his part stammered and stuttered and demurred like a frightened debutant at her first dance. When Angle snarled at him to, "man up," he could have told her to, "grow up, consigning Social Security to the Free Market and Wall Street is tantamount to financial homicide." Did he? No, he did not. He just kept attempting to elucidate his achievements with ever diminishing effectiveness.
Throughout this election season of darkness and decay lies have bloomed in the halls of power and the hearts of the American people like wild flowers in a field. Obamacare - socialized medicine, death panels, increased taxes, stimulus isn’t working, Sharia Law is taking the place of the Constitution in this country, and our president is a secret Muslim, ad nauseum. In my estimation some of this stuff is laughable, and some is treasonable. Some of it is obviously nuts and some deeply offensive.
Take the fact that within the last day or so the Empress of Deceit, the Queen of Fraud, and the Demigod of Destruction, Sarah Palin, has taken a statement of Michelle Obama’s out of context and used it to imply that the First Lady has never met a member of the Armed Forces nor does she care about them. One of Mrs. Obama’s signature causes is helping the families of service men and women. She has taken more care and done more good for these families then most of us know. I would like to know what Palin has done for them recently other than using them as political fodder.
No matter how outlandish, idiotic, foolish, destructive or Nixonian, the media clings to these lies, these distortions of Palin and her ilk like drunks clinging to a wall because they can’t stand up straight. The media’s powerful voices hardly bother to correct the falsehoods, and this is yet another thing that has made it all so bizarre, so weird, so surreal over this unending election season.
C.S. Lewis said, "Experience is a brutal teacher, but you learn. My God, do you learn." We Liberals have had a brutal political experience. There have been times when it seemed that even the Democrats had no use for us. Still we and we alone carry FDR, JFK and RFK’s banner. That is a heady responsibility and we can’t allow their standard to drop into the mud for buffoons with tea bags on their head to tread upon. We may need another party, a Liberal Party, but not now.
I have learned that many of our leaders are weak, and we must be strong for them. I have learned that our opponents gain strength daily from their deceit, their cruelty and their innate racism aided and abetted by the media. Eighteen days out from the November election and I am sure of one thing, the bitter lesson of the past two brutal years is simply this – if we don’t stand up now and turn out we are doomed to government of the rich, by the rich and for the rich run by Tea Party influenced or intimidated fanatics who consider love a failing and hate a virtue. Please vote!