Blog 1664 – 04.12.2020
Maintaining Perspective or Enough Is Enough
In these quite unusual times it would be easy to lose focus and perspective. As the funny but often true saying goes, “It is hard to remember that the original objective was to drain the swamp when your are up to your ass in alligators.” One of the current President’s campaign promises four years ago was “To drain the swamp” as he referred to the mess in Washington. That has not happened, nor the big unnecessary wall across our southern boarder he also promised. The most interesting thing about showmen and con men can be observed close up in the three card shuffle or the three shell and one pea game where if you find the queen or the pea you win a bigger price than the quarter or dollar you have to put down to play. As with all illusionists the play is deception and distraction.
But do not be deceived or distracted. The sure bet is that you are going to lose and the promise is the lie. But why do we continue to believe it after being fooled over and over again. I submit my best guess. Rather than admitting to ourselves what I believe to be one of those rare eternal truths, that we are the only ones responsible for creating and solving the problems of our lives and for making our dreams come true, we would rather believe in saviors, supervillains, and superheroes.
In this “shelter in place” time, like many of you I have been binge watching TV shows, streaming them into my living room from several streaming apps. I just finished, The Boys, a series on Amazon Prime with an interesting take on modern superheroes. In this incarnation, the superheroes are the bad guys, all a part of a corporate conspiracy to play on people’s fears and insecurities, to con them out of tons of money, and to get in the process a multi-billion dollar government contract to have the superheroes take over the military’s national defense of the country. Who could be better to keep us safe from our brothers believed to be terrorists and fight our wars and imaginary supervillains than superheroes. The series has a lot of interesting twists and the first season ends with a cliff-hanger, don’t they all, hoping the sponsors will pick it up again for another season.
Our current President is no superhero, no matter how the former reality show boss presents himself. He is a lot like an Abraham Lincoln though with a twist, both often failed often and badly in business but found their niche in politics. The twist is that finding himself in a deeply divided time in this country Lincoln tried to keep us together and the other guy is working his damnedest to tear us even further apart.
You current President fans might be thinking, Crazy Dave, why don’t you give the President a break! You mean like he did our last President with his support of and promotion of the false conspiracy theory that our last President was not born in the U.S. or the way his party in the Senate did prior to his election when they refused to do their constitutional duty and even consider the last guy’s last Supreme Court nominee. Sorry, Mister President, you and the Republicans are all out of breaks, in my opinion, and I hope many, many people share that opinion and will shout loudly to you, Mitch and his Senate gang, one of your favorite lines this fall, “You’re fired.”
If you readers are getting tired of discouraging political talk in this supposed to be encouraging word blog, I have two encouraging words for you – we will survive this Chinese Virus, and the President is right to call it that, not to blame it on the Chinese people but because historically we have named most all diseases by their point of origin, i.e. the Spanish Flu, the Hong Kong Flu, the Asian Flu (all three of which did start in the open wet markets of China, maybe that business needs to clean up its act, but also the MERS Virus (MERS stands for Middle East Respiratory Syndrome.) It was first recorded in the Middle East. Why even Lime Disease is named for the city of Old Lyme, Connecticut where it was first diagnosed as a separate disease in 1975. We will also survive You-Know-Who, the President I hope will not be renamed. But, if you are getting tired of reading about him, politics, and the other viruses remember that the Chinese Flu, COVID-19, is a biggie expected yet to infect and kill a lot more folks before it is through, and this is still, many of us think, a very important Presidential election year, with a lot important down ticket votes too. What a difference the last Presidential election made and what an even bigger one this one could make especially if our current President should pull it off again and end up with four more years where even the thought of re-election is not there to check him. Heaven knows his own party has shown little willingness to do so, allowing him to flaunt rules that no President ever dared to before.
We need to stay calm, maintain perspective, and not allow even this terrible virus, the disrupted economy, or social distancing to keep us from doing our duty to each other, our nation, and our world by voting out the current regime in favor of clearer and more compassionate heads.
The Republicans are hoping for and doing everything they can to encourage and create lower voter turn out this year. If they succeed, you-know-who and they will win and we and the rest of the world will lose. I, mostly because I have been on the road almost entirely for the last eight years, allowed my voter registration to lapse. I re-registered last fall and voted in November. Unless the virus takes me out, I plan to exercise my franchise this November and add my vote to the, I hope, millions expressing a desire for a change, a return to more reasonable, well-thought out, and people centered government. That would be quite encouraging to me, and to many, if not to all of us, I think.
Your friend and fellow traveler,
P.S. His business which he was supposed to put into a blind trust to prevent the appearance of conflict of interest is really just selling his name. I did not mention it once in this piece. But if you wonder what it is, it is at the bottom of the stimulus checks. Do not be deceived, they were not his idea, but his not so loyal opposers’. His idea was to temporarily suspend the payroll tax, a genius idea with millions out of work that would have really helped. Congress canned that idea and put forward the better one. He did have the good sense to sign that bill, but not each one of the checks, so no one owes him a vote for that one.