Sunday, May 8, 2011

I'm Baaaaaack!

Whew, what happened to this blog? I didn't just fall off a cliff somewhere, I just took a 4-month sabbatical from Careless Whispers. And by "sabbatical" I mean being too damned lazy to write my own blog. How messed up is that? I've been meaning to get back on track and resume my random rants, and this time I'm going to do it. I missed writing my blog and promise to do better in the future.

Part of the reason I stopped blogging is that things really have gone to hell in the world of politics, until very recently. The elections in November 2010 marked the Ascendency of the Terminally Stupid, and voters have unequivocally proven AGAIN that it's impossible to overestimate the stupidity of the average American. Despite the fact that Republicans have repeatedly shown over and over how hostile and destructive they are to middle-class Americans, what do the voters do? Elect a bunch of the most regressive, neanderthal-like Tea Partiers to Congress, as if they are going to save the world or something.

The Republicans entered into an unholy alliance with the TPers, just like they enter into unholy alliances with every other right-wing crackpot group they can dredge up, and they rode the (unexplicable) voter appeal of the Tea Party to a majority in the House of Representatives. But what is different, and very encouraging, is that the Repubs are experiencing "buyer's remorse," and that keeping the TPers happy and goose-stepping in formation behind them is going to be a lot harder than they thought. Their blubbering, dithering "leader" Rep. John Boehner is nowhere near as charismatic and qualified as he needs to be to keep that unruly mob of cretins and mental cases in line. He is just one major screw-up away from watching his weird Coalition of the Inbred implode and split into two factions - the Crazy and the Crazier - thus allowing Barack Obama to coast into a second term. We can only hope that will happen.

The Republicans also have seemingly shot themselves in the cloven hoof with their batshit-crazy plans to solve the budget deficit by a whole witches' brew of draconian measures, like privatizing Social Security, replacing Medicare with a completely insane voucher system and getting rid of a whole spectrum of programs and services which directly help the elderly and the poor. And, at the same time, awarding the super-wealthy with lots of tax breaks and dumping more money into the Pentagon to fight costly, protracted and ultimately unwinnable wars. In a barely-believable demonstration of the old adage that says, if you repeat something often enough it will become true no matter how preposterous, the tired, boring Republicans are still flogging the dead horse of trickle-down economics, the decades-old, blatantly ridiculous and widely discredited piece of economic hucksterism that says if you make rich people richer, it will filter down to all levels of the economy and make everyone happy. The only problem with that is that is HASN'T WORKED IN 25 YEARS and it never will! Every single economic indicator available says the same thing - Americans are economically worse-off than they were 20 years ago. But, sad to say, so many ignorant, disconnected and disinterested voters in this country seem to think it's true, and will repeatedly vote for Republicans who are working so very hard AGAINST the voters' best interests. Why, I absolutely don't know.

Wait, yes I do know. It all comes down to the three G's: God, Guns and Gays. The Republicans are all about social conservatism, and their mantra for the past four decades is to frighten old white people into believing that a bunch of atheists are going to take away their guns and recruit their children into homosexuality and close all the churches. They keep hammering away at those social issues and convince voters the American way of life is in imminent danger because of the "others." Republicans are undisputed masters of the "us-and-them" game, pitting stalwart, conservative Americans against vast hordes of liberals, gays and gun-control freaks who are at this very second pounding on their front doors, demanding surrender of all they hold dear. And for so many voters, these are the only issues they can even remotely understand, so they figure that voting Republican is going to save them. But what they don't understand is when you vote for a Republican because you agree with their stance on gay marriage, for instance, you get a whole lot of baggage along with the candidate that you didn't know or didn't count on.

But more amazingly still, the conservative front line when it comes to completely destroying this country has moved into a new frontier, the state governorships. In a number of states, most notably Wisconsin, Michigan and Ohio, new Republican governors and GOP-controlled state legislatures have embarked on an astonishing, mind-blowing campaign of fiercely conservative legislative actions which have, among other things, stripped the collective bargaining rights of public worker unions and allowed for the take-over of towns and cities that the governor has unilaterally deemed to be in "economic crisis". That includes nullifying the will of the voters of their cities and throwing duly-elected officials out of their offices. That by itself is a breathtaking usurpation of the democratic process rarely seen outside of third-world dictatorships like Myanmar or North Korea or at least a dozen places in Africa, or anachronistic, repressive monarchies like Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates. And yet, it's happening right in the American heartland. How the hell can something like that take place here?

The usual freak-show cast of political characters is still around, unfortunately. The eternally vapid and loathsome Sarah Palin is still polluting the scene but fortunately her star has fallen considerably and she is now viewed unfavorably by a majority of people in her own party. Just how disgusting and messed-up are you if even other Republicans can't stand you? And it couldn't have happened to a nicer bitch. Unfortunately, the even crazier and more repellent Michelle Bachmann has seen her political stock go up, and this batshit-crazy scarecrow now has her eye on a Presidential run. God save this country if she gets anywhere near the White House, things would truly be lost and I will pack up all the rabbits and head to Prince Edward Island in Canada.

We are also being treated to a supersized-version of the Theater of the Damned, as the execrable, annoying and low-class Donald Trump makes noise like he wants to be President. The late, great Spy magazine had him pegged 30 years ago when they consistently referred to Trump as a "stubby-fingered vulgarian." I'm not going to say anything more about him because he and the dead animal on top of his head need no embellishment, but again it shows how irretrievably broken and dysfunctional the American version of democracy can be, when any cheap, tacky blowhard thinks they can be President. Throw in the usual array of right-wing creeps like Romney, Huckster-bee and Gingrich, along with other third-string players like Pawlenty and the infinitely cringe-inducing Rick Santorum, and you have the makings of the most inept, repulsive and potentially destructive slew of jerks and assholes that the world has seen in a very, very long time.

But, as much fun as political rants can be, after a while it seems as if you are just beating your head against a brick wall. And the result of that is the wall pretty much stays the same while you have a massive headache to deal with. So I stopped doing political rants because there was just so much bad stuff going on that it seemed pointless to rail against it. But things have taken a turn for the better last week with the death (I prefer the word "extermination") of Osama bin Laden in his lovely little compound in a nice suburb of Islamabad, Pakistan, where he lived for years right under the nose of Pakistani intelligence services and within walking distance of the leading military institute of that country, and not in some cold grubby cave somewhere. I may write more about this in another post but suffice to say that in spite of the fact that Obama has been almost universally hailed as a courageous, skilled and resourceful leader, there is a large faction of conservative cockroaches who refuse to give him his due as the President who finally brought bin Laden to justice. And that is solely due to their racism and their refusal to admit that a black man can be a fantastic leader, a great President and a loyal American. And that, more than anything else, will cause this country to fail.

So, I won't be doing as many political rants as before, but I will be doing more posts on non-political topics. I hope to write more short stories and talk about rabbits and write more humorous stuff. I hope everyone who grants me the great favor of reading my blog will enjoy it. It is very good to be back.

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