“There is a cult of ignorance in the United States, and there has always been. The strain of anti-intellectualism has been a constant thread winding its way through our political and cultural life, nurtured by the false notion that democracy means that ‘my ignorance is just as good as your knowledge.”― Isaac Asimov
Many of the founding fathers believed that most of our population was too ignorant, or not intellectual enough, to trust with the running of our country. It was in fact, one of the reasons our constitutional republic is a representative democracy…an indirect democracy. Well. What happens when the candidates and elected officials act like a crazy uncle two thirds of the way into a quart Mason jar of white lightning? A crazy uncle sporting a rifle…or a hammer.
This seems to be where we have arrived at the point where the candidate that yells the loudest conspiracy theory is the one who gets elected. Candidates have always lied but we have a group who are following Hitler’s and Goebbels’ playbook. No lie too bizarre and we eat it up like a fried apple pie at the state fair.
Politics reminds me of a carousel…a merry-go-round featuring beautifully painted horses in various galloping poses. Beautiful, all shined up to take our minds off what is really happening. We ride them round and round to blaring, garish music, hoping for a chance to grab a brass ring. What do we get when the ride is over? Nothing. We are where we started, nothing has changed.
No matter which horse you decide to ride, you arrive right back where you started, no better than you were when you started. It doesn’t matter how beautifully painted or what pose attracted you. The music may change, you may change the colors of horses, but you end up right where you started and politically, we are in deep doo, doo.
Our political system is on a downward spiral. No matter who holds the power, there are only minor changes on a fundamental level. Fundamental change is too hard. It is easier to just slap a thin coat of paint over the horse you are riding and hope the termites and decay doesn’t cause the horse to crumble under you…just one more ride please.
“Politics: the art of using euphemisms, lies, emotionalism and fear-mongering to dupe average people into accepting–or even demanding–their own enslavement.”― Larken Rose
We’re two days away from the mid-terms and the end of political commercials that rely on fear and hatred of the other candidate rather than substance as to what you will do to correct what ails us as a country. They rally their colors with buzz words used to insight anger, fear and division; fascist, communist, woke, Dumocrats, Repugs, etc. Just a little paint to cover our rot.
I don’t know who will win any of the elections this mid-term, but I know who will lose. We, the riders of this system. Our election system may be the best in the world, but it is flawed because we buy the dog and pony show that is being advertised. Geared to emotion instead of intelligence, our partisan two-party system is turning us into the “shithole” country that we so fear.
I’ve fretted about where we are heading as a nation, but fretting is just as bad as spending good money to ride the merry-go-round. We will either grab the brass ring or not, a brass ring that is worth little anyway. The Brass Ring is just a symbol and like the symbol we once were, it is becoming increasingly tarnished. It is a shame; the shining light is growing dimmer. The horses need more than just a coat of paint to keep the carousel from spinning out of control. Maybe a toilet is a better metaphor.
“Democracy cannot succeed unless those who express their choice are prepared to choose wisely. The real safeguard of democracy, therefore, is education.” – FDR
Thunder Along the Copperhead is Don Miller’s latest novel. The year is 1933 and life around Copperhead Creek is harsh. Farm foreclosures, a looming textile strike in nearby Greyston Falls, and violence threaten both Lucas Perry and Sela Jean Morrow’s budding romance. Download or purchase in paperback at https://rb.gy/2s3wbx