Sunday, May 15, 2011

Plain English

This country suffers from a chronic, degenerative spiritual disease. Like cancer it has a first cause and then a series of symptoms. In particular the symptoms are hate, narcissism, cruelty, bigotry, deceit, fraud, misrepresentation and elitism. The first cause is greed. I believe without exception that every single one of these symptoms is born of a need to exploit and manipulate for gain. How else can you explain people on the right insisting that Christ was a Free Market Profiteer? That he did not believe in helping the poor, the outcasts and the sick.

Cancer is caused by a cellar disruption of one kind or another. Greed is the result of obsession. I once had a man tell me that he had a right to be greedy in America. I answered that he could exercise his right providing he did not trash my life or my planet. He looked at me like I was out of my mind. That’s when I got it – the man was a bloody junkie. The more greed gets, the more it wants. The more it has, the more it needs. Heroin has a similar effect on people. After the first blissful pop the heroin addict is on the same treadmill – the more they get, the more they want. The more they have, the more they need. As Sherlock Holmes said, “The parallel is exact.” There is only one way off the treadmill, save death, you give up the Jones.

Considering the fact that heroin addicts are primarily engaged in killing themselves, but greed addicts are killing the world we might be much better off with heroin users in Congress and heading corporations. It is appalling and despicable that we are in the hands of lawmakers sick with greed and gluttonous corporations that daily devour our economic freedom only to crap out public policy that works for them alone.

I am told that greed is one of the Seven Deadly Sins. Pagans don’t believe much in sin. We believe in stupid, and greed is stupid. I am not talking about wanting to earn a decent living and provide for your children. I am talking about taking one-half out of the middle to earn a gargantuan living while leaving little or nothing for anyone else. Even though greed is supposed to be a sin, in this most Christian of all countries it is venerated, extolled and worshiped as a cardinal virtue. Like a heroin addict who has five-thousand reasons why they can’t get off the needle, the greedy in this country have five-thousand and one reasons why greed is a good thing. It keeps the Free Market running, creates jobs, gives us the edge internationally, provides incentive for entrepreneurs, whitens our teeth and will replace Viagra.

I am a student of the English language. I have studied it all of my life from its grammar to its syntax to its literature to my beloved Shakespeare. I am disgusted and horrified with the fog of flimflam and trickery that passes for civil discourse in our society. English is a powerful and beautiful instrument that can in its plainest and most unadulterated form sweep away cobwebs and build bridges all in the same moment. It is time that we begin to use it the way it was designed to be used – to make clear our world view and our personal reality unambiguous and succinct. What follows is plain English.

Greed is not good. Whether you view it as a sin or just stupid, it is not good. It destroys lives. It hurts people. No matter what some two-for-a-nickel-Elmer Gantry-sleazy-politician or carnivorous corporate executive tells us, it is not a virtue. Greed is killing this Planet and her children. There is such a thing as right and wrong. Profit cannot make wrong right.

In many religious traditions, including mine, Christ is the bringer of compassion not commerce. To an outsider it seems that he is being crucified all over again by people who use the Bible like a bludgeon and his teachings to shackle millions. He has been spun, sold, bought, bartered and bargained. He is big business and good politics. He is a curtain of righteousness for the wicked to hide behind. He is, in point of fact, everything but what he was a good and decent man who healed bodies and souls. I won’t speak to his divinity because I am not a believer. I will say this, it is time for Christians of good faith and conscious to stand up and fight back openly and loudly and stop letting the children of Mammon costumed as holy warriors hijack and maim their religion. Pagans have been doing it for centuries. We’ll be glad to give them some pointers.

This assertion that greed makes holy the acquisition of wealth is putrid. No face of any Deity is seen on U.S. currency, unless you consider the eye of Horus, which the Christians call the eye of Providence. It is the All Seeing Eye. It could be the eye of Jehovah, or Osiris I suppose. Then again it might be the eye of the Security and Exchange Commission, or even Ralph Nader. Whoever is watching they haven’t been watching very well. It is up to us to cure our disease and realize that wealth is not the only indicator of success – it isn’t even the most important. Money is certainly not more valuable than people or than the Earth. It is not more precious than integrity, dignity or veracity. Faith for hire is no faith at all. Anyone who doesn’t understand these principles should check into rehab like any other junkie – and quickly.

Monday, May 2, 2011

Climate Change

I give you Virginia Foxx, North Carolina, 5th District, I.Q. two points above plant life. This creature vehemently denies the phenomenon of climate change, but then again she hates science like so many members of her cabal. I have come to suspect that their distrust of all things scientific stems from a primordial stupidity. That is to say that they are genetically too thick to understand anything other than their own self-interest.

I don’t pretend to clearly understand aberrations like Virginia Foxx or how she got into office. What I do understand is air, wind, sun, soil and water. I am a master gardener. It is May, but the air is not May air - cool and sweet. It is Rocky Mountain cold like the end of November. The sun is weak, barely able to compete with the intermittent heavy clouds. A furious wind gusts from cold to frigid. I stood in my tulip bed this afternoon and watched ice crystals scatter across the ground. Ice crystals - not the soft, wet snow of May. I am Witch. The practice of the Craft of the Wise goes back in my maternal line farther than anyone can remember. I know the Earth. She is a friend of mine. I know the air, the sun and the water as well as I know the touch of my husband’s hand. Something is wrong, very wrong. So, who the hell do we see about that, Virginia?

Sunday, May 1, 2011

I Dissent

During the Bush Administration, just following 9/11 and beyond, it was proffered and understood by the Republicans that anyone who questioned the president was engaged in treason. Anyone who doubted the wisdom of one of his policies was aiding and abetting the terrorists. The Left gave them hell for this nonsense – as well we should. It seems now, however, that some Lefties are engaged in pretty much the same thing. This is extremely disturbing to me.

I have found while writing online that anyone who questions Mr. Obama runs the risk of being accused of serving the Rightwing agenda at best and/or racism in the worst case scenario. When a Liberal questions the policy of keeping Gitmo open they are whining. When a skunk like Rahm Emanuel tells the Liberal base to sit down and shut up, or go “F” themselves, and the President does and says nothing, anyone who notices is somehow disloyal.

My loyalty is to Liberalism. I grew up in the world of Kennedy. My parents were working people and union organizers. We didn’t have much, but we had our principles and our principles were Liberal. I have taken my faith in the Liberal cause to the streets, to jail, to the courts and once or twice to the Emergency Room. I have paid my dues. I will not be expected to forfeit the doctrine I have held and cherished all of my life for any politician. I wouldn’t have done it for Bobby Kennedy who I worshipped. When President Obama supports Liberal policies, I support President Obama. When he does not, I study, read and think. Then I speak out. That is my right. I have found that people who do the most squealing about their free political speech are only too happy to object to mine. That appears to be a bipartisan trait.

The idea that disagreement with the policies of President Obama constitutes latent conservative leanings, childish temper or hatred for the color of the man's skin is on its face dim-witted. It is an insult to both the accuser and the accused. Do I respect Mr. Obama? Yes, I do. Am I proud of him and his election? Yes, I am. Do I think that he deserves better treatment and protection? I do. Do I or will I blindly agree with everything he says and does? I most definitely, emphatically, indubitably do and will not. I reserve the privilege to exercise the sacred Right to Dissent.