Dreamless Falling

May 10, 2012

Creatures of the future in the hardcore words from the dangerous mind of Dick Mourdock, who whipped Dick Lugar in Indiana on Tuesday:

“What I’ve said about compromise and bipartisanship is I hope to build a conservative majority in the United States Senate so that bipartisanship becomes Democrats joining Republicans to roll back the size of government, reduce the bureaucracy, lower taxes and get American moving again.”

In that the reality of the US government’s dysfunction.

(Illustration found here).

The so-called Tea Party movement, which began a scant three years ago, is most-likely the most-destructive force in US governing — Matt Taibbi wrote about it best two years ago: Vast forests have already been sacrificed to the public debate about the Tea Party: what it is, what it means, where it’s going. But after lengthy study of the phenomenon, I’ve concluded that the whole miserable narrative boils down to one stark fact: They’re full of shit. All of them.
The problem, though, is that these people are the real ‘shock and awe‘ on the lives of the mass of US peoples, leaving no doubt there’s no compassion there in terms of every-day Americans, even if they unwittingly cut their own ignorant throats.

In a few years, maybe less, the Republican Party will be no more — even if George Jr. was an asshole, at least he stayed within the bounds of a somewhat concern for a common human decency, but the Tea Party doesn’t at all.
Former Senator John Danforth, a Republican, on Lugar’s defeat: An effort by some, and apparently a large number, 60% in Indiana, to purge the Republican Party and to create something that’s ideologically pure and intolerant of anybody who does not agree with them — not just on general principles, but right across the board.
The Tea Party is indeed full of delusional shit.

History created the deep-poo the US is wading around in nowadays, from President Obama’s election in 2008 (and the rise of the public lie via Sarah Palin) and the Republican party itself only after Obama’s defeat, not governing — all that after effects of a country held in a nasty, incompetent grip for nearly a decade by George Jr. and his boys.
Obama’s win was indeed a change, which swept the country but not like none of us had ever figured.
The country was already experiencing a divide before the 2008 election, but it’s really shown itself the last three years.

One of the better overviews of our modern times came from George Packer writing in the New Yorker in a piece posted last September, aptly titled ‘Coming Apart‘ — US peoples never had the chance for internal digestion of the future.
A few snips:

The events of September 11th, as grim as they were, offered the prospect of employment to a generation of working-class Americans who were born too late for good factory jobs.
If the Bush Administration’s “global war on terror” had gone the way of the Second World War, mass mobilization in the armed forces, combined with mass production in the factories, would have revitalized a stagnant national economy and produced a postwar boom.
This didn’t happen.
Without a draft, the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan have been fought by less than one per cent of the population.
The Pentagon, which wanted to keep those wars limited and short, avoided planning for large-scale manufacturing, even after its necessity became obvious.
In 2004, Secretary of Defense Donald Rumsfeld was questioned by a scout from the Tennessee National Guard about the lack of quality armor for his unit’s trucks.
“You go to war with the army you have,” Rumsfeld replied.
Even after this remark became infamous, the production of armor proceeded slowly, almost grudgingly, and troops and vehicles remained dangerously exposed for years.
Most new defense jobs at home turned out to be in data collection and intelligence, which required college degrees and specialized knowledge, or in the low-paying realm of airport and building security.

In a two-year period, the House’s impeachment of Bill Clinton and the Florida recount that was stopped by a similarly divided Supreme Court, handing the Presidency to Bush, had suddenly made America’s great democratic institutions seem flimsy and entirely partisan.
During the 2000 election campaign, the news media came up with a new, color-coded way of dividing the country—into red and blue.
On the economic front, America was in a recession, the dot-com bubble having already burst.
A culture of speculation and debt on Wall Street was beginning to suffer from its own lopsidedness, with unprecedented fortunes in technology and finance accumulating at the top, and incomes in the middle flattening out, as blue-collar jobs moved offshore.
The problem of income inequality was worsening, thanks to enormous tax cuts that had been passed into law that spring.
The budget surplus of the Clinton years was vanishing.

The attacks of 9/11 were the biggest surprise in American history, and for the past ten years we haven’t stopped being surprised.
The war on terror has had no discernible trajectory, and, unlike other military conflicts, it’s almost impossible to define victory.
You can’t document the war’s progress on a world map or chart it on a historical timetable in a way that makes any sense.
A country used to a feeling of command and control has been whipsawed into a state of perpetual reaction, swinging wildly between passive fear and fevered, often thoughtless, activity, at a high cost to its self-confidence.
Each new episode has been hard, if not impossible, to predict: from the first instant of the attacks to the collapse of the towers; from the decision to invade Iraq to the failure to find a single weapon of mass destruction; from the insurgency to the surge; from the return of the Taliban to the Arab Spring to the point-blank killing of bin Laden; from the financial crisis to the landslide election of Barack Obama and his nearly immediate repudiation.

The Bush Administration collapsed in the late summer of 2005 — not in Falluja or Kandahar but in the submerged neighborhoods of New Orleans.
The response to Hurricane Katrina gave Americans such a devastating picture of official failure that it suggested something fatally wrong with an entire approach to governing.
Iraq, of course, had provided evidence of high-level arrogance, incompetence, and neglect for two years, and Afghanistan for even longer than that, but, because these places were far away and American troops were risking their lives to serve the nation, the public wasn’t ready to withdraw its support.
When the footage came out of the Gulf Coast — when, for the second time in four years, a great American city looked like Kabul or Kinshasa — it was Iraq in fast motion, and right around the corner.
Government at all levels, but especially in Washington, had failed to plan for the worst outcome, even when the entire country saw it coming.

Read the entire piece, it’s long, but well worth the time — the US has near-about folded into itself since Sept. 11, 2001, a time seemingly so far, far away, and so way-long ago.

An American Dream that never was has become a wide-awake nightmare.

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