Quote of the Moment

If you meet someone face-to-face and they don't hiss at you and bite you, does that mean you're friends?
- from Serafina and the Black Cloak, by Robert Beatty

Friday, September 28, 2018

American Zombie

I only have a short time before I leave for work, but there are thoughts, emotions that I have to get out and pin down.

Back in 2016, as I stared in horror at an election result I was told could not happen, would not happen - as I watched state after state bleed red - I had a fear, or perhaps a vision. America died that day. It died when the majority no longer mattered. It died when decency no longer was a prerequisite to holding office. It died when party trumped country, anger trumped hope, a warped nostalgia for a nonexistent past trumped the possibility of a better future. It would keep shambling on for a few years, perhaps many years, but inside it would be dead, hollowed out by parasitic worms as it stumbles along, until one day it falls over, empty skin over picked-clean bones, upon the dust.

I wanted to be wrong. Not only because I quite literally have nowhere else to go, lacking exportable job skills and money, but because I was raised to believe in America as an idea that would withstand its tests. I wanted to believe in checks and balances, in the power of the Constitution, in the supposed arc of history bending toward justice.

But the checks have bounced.

The balances are skewed, and skew harder every day, as it becomes increasingly clear that the voice and the will of the many holds no power compared to the money and interests of the few - particularly the foreign few.

The courts were already being packed. With this Supreme Court judicial appointment that seems all but inevitable, the courts - our last bulwark against totalitarianism, our last shred of hope for justice - will fall into line. And in this confirmation, the majority party (majority in the halls of power only) turns to the American people and tells us, once and for all, what matters.

Bipartisanship does not matter.

The voices of women do not matter.

The search for truth - a simple, standard investigation, that would've taken maybe a few weeks (and exonerated their man, if they were so certain he was not guilty) - does not matter.

The American Bar Association - which, admittedly at the eleventh hour, called for further investigations before confirmation - does not matter.

The voting majority does not matter.

The ongoing investigations into Russian interference - the very existence of impartial federal investigative bodies that do not answer directly to the party - do not matter.

Constitutional limits on power do not matter.

Even the appearances of concern for any of the above, the optics, do not matter.

They are beyond all that. Beyond all limitations and pretenses.

All that matters is the agenda, and a longstanding vendetta against progress.

And the worms - if nobody else - will crawl from America's corpse fat and happy.

(As for the delay for the investigation, like the sudden shift in tone from the Oval Office I don't trust it as far as I could spit - and I'm a lousy spitter...)

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