Thursday, January 12, 2006

Irony strikes again: Bird Flu in Turkey

Disclaimer: This post has nothing directly to do with its title.

The end is nowhere near here, but somehow it is easy to believe it is.

Watching the History Channel's show on John Lennon tonight brought home the differences between 1972 and today. The difference is not that the FBI isn't spying on us. The difference is that in the Viet Nam era there were tens of thousands of protesters living in ways that made the FBI's monitoring attempts very difficult.

Today we politely blog from home, secure that our aliases present to the world only the face we want seen. We are fools.

The Republic our founders so quixoticly handed off to us some two hundred plus years ago is dying tonight in Washinton D.C. "Conservative" legal scholars are dancing in the streets and Democrats are standing by the hospital bed offering milquetoast and off-topic rebuttals.

The majority of our contry is asleep at the wheel. Out here in the hinterlands of the liberal blogosphere we are heartened by stories of yore, Nixon's landslide in '72 before his ignominous fall. Well, for years before his fall there had been civil unrest rocking the easychairs of the middle-American householders. Today there is only a feeble bleating. The absense of the Draft and its concomitant deaths makes all of today's challenges to democracy seem abstract.

Today there is a growing sense of unreality as ever worse offenses against common sense and the principles of Liberty and Justice are only pooh-poohed, and yet the day-to-day living of basically all of us remains unchanged. Our lives are unaffected by these viscious blows to our collective dignity because quite frankly, we've mostly given up that dignity years ago. We sacrificed it piecemeal, taking jobs we knew were complicit in the moral quagmire of modern business because we were bereft of better choices.

Even those of us who haven't compromised ourselves this way have grown somehow used to losing. We have seen the futility of every kind of straegem and organization. We have witnessed the rise and dominance of hard cash and plutocratic control and we have despaired even as we railed against it all. And we have watched television. We have sat benumbed as it all floated away. There is no fabric of public gathering left, and without fabric, a tapestry can tell no tales.

Somehow, though, we all believe in the fable of Nixon's fall. We believe that bad guys lose, even if good guys don't necessarily win. This irrational belief may someday be our best strength, if it ever motivates enough people to stand up. With impending news of a court that will endorse even the most foul and blatant eviscerations of Democracy, I hope that people are ready.

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