I was listening to a music stream and The Night They Drove Old Dixie Down came on. Rather than just enjoy a wonderful song on a nice sunny day, instead I thought, “I wonder when we’re going to start writing these types of songs for what’s going on in America right now?” I suppose one possible title would be something like, The Day They Gassed Lafayette Square.”
the world’s become a centrifuge
us whirling out of balance
speed’s increased across the board
without a check on stress
we elements’ve begun to part
our ‘us as one’ to fragments
homogeny begins to slough
in final fail we crumble
when the beacon goes dark
and old men fall back
bleeding heads and hearts align
against the hardened in power
one man with no mercy
and a lifelong ax to grind
erodes more in his term
than a lifetime of honor did earn
Today I woke up to stories about anonymous police forces patrolling the streets of our nation’s capital. When asked who they were, they replied simply that they “work for the federal government”. Further investigation seems to suggest that they are from the Bureau of Federal Prisons. So what are they patrolling for? Who are they tasked with protecting?
This is probably related to the fact that only a few days after the President of the United States steamrollered masses peaceful protesters in from of the White House with tear gas and rubber bullets (citizens and press alike), apparently because His Orangeness was suddenly gripped with the overwhelming urge to go pose with a Bible like a grumpy Billy Mays trying to hawk some overstock.
Of course, that gem had been done in response to news reports that Trump and his family had been whisked away to a bunker for their safety after a horde of protesters broke through some barricades the night before in their attempts to have a word with him.
Needless to say, that too had a prequel: The senseless death of George Floyd at the knee of a white police officer. This event wasn’t so much a ‘spark in a tinderbox’ kind-of-thing, it was more like a “a bonfire in an ammo dump”, if you catch my drift.
Because, why? Because, before all of these things there was the countless other things that have happened. There has been three and a half mother fucking years of this slow moving coup. And they’re getting away with nothing more than Trump smashes a bunch of dishes in front of a camera, while McConnell and Barr run out the back door with the jewelry.
Why has everything suddenly escalated? Why is becoming more authoritarian with each passing event?
The election is coming soon, and the idea U.S. citizens voting almost entirely by mail is now a very real possibility, and therefore a very real threat to the GOP. They weren’t counting on COVID-19 helping to level the voter suppression playing field. But they’re not fighting like this just because they’re worried about losing their jobs.
Nope… They’re worried about a whole lot more than that.
the white house of stain
white-washed with the past
white over white
over white over black
the fool on the hill
he sits by himself
surrounding by all
he loves in the world
and global respect
their bones ground to dust
from indifferent neglect
every word of the oath
was destroyed in a night
his rank fetid orders
on democracy’s life
Stepping back and taking a 50,000 foot view of the current state of things in the United States of America right now, I see an apocalyptic wasteland, crippled by financial uncertainty brought on by rampant disease. As it’s citizens attempt to protest inequality and racially-charged police brutality, additional racial tensions erupt and are made vastly worse by (wait for it… ) riot gear clad police violently lashing out at the citizens they are charged with protecting. All the while, the president encourages escalating tensions by threatening additional brutalities from the safety of the people’s White House.
He said he would run this country like his one of his businesses, right?
The Renaissance came after the Dark Ages because people had started to engage in critical thinking and using something that became known as the scientific method. The natural result was to grow away from the teachings of The Church at that time, because the results science was getting threatened the validity of the Church itself, the authenticity of its edicts, and its iron grip on power.
Now the United States has a leader who is in a position of power he neither earned, nor deserves. And like the church, he is so frightened of being wrong and losing power that he is willing to put countless lives at risk just in order to appear as if he isn’t wrong.
And so, here we are centuries later slowly sinking back into the same dark abyss of magical thinking, selfish prayer and quack ‘cure-all’ medicines. We are again leaving behind rational observation and thought as we bound head first into cults of personality and brand identity, as if they offer something more substantive than a street gang mentality and some Second Amendment bumper stickers.
Yesterday, Donald Trump showed the world just how focused he is on corruption. And never before have a U.S. president’s actions been so illustrative.
We might have doubted how focused on corruption he was when he sent his neighborhood buddy and newly anointed personal lawyer and fixer, Rudy Ghouliani to Ukraine to uncover the deeply hidden evidence of corruption that only someone like Rudy could identify. But, despite our doubt and his having one of the best intelligence organizations in the world at his fingertips, Trump intuitively knew that only Rudy could produce this kind of evidence he needed.
However, yesterday when Donald Trump decided to pardon Rob Blagojevich, Bernie Kerik, and Michael Milken, he was showing the world just how devoted he was to corruption. Trump was resigned to the fact that, despite the deep lessons that he and Susan Collins knew that he had learned during his impeachment, it was necessary for him to forge on and continue to work on corruption in ways that only he alone could.
Don’t for a minute believe that this is somehow a real world equivalent of the mass breakout of Death Eaters from Azkaban. This is a carefully orchestrated summoning of individuals with unique talents, who are now indebted to Donald Trump, and who will help him get done what he needs getting done.
Don’t be fooled by this flurry of seemingly crazy and unrelated pardons, it is by no means a smokescreen for the upcoming pardons for Roger Stone and Michael Flynn. It’s just a happy coincidence in Trump’s personal crusade with corruption. Nor is this some sort of public celebration of his exoneration by Mitch McConnell’s Senate. And it most definitely isn’t a giant middle finger to the millions of Americans who have always been able to trust that in America no one is above the law.
Why do I feel like Mitch McConnell is the kind of guy who has been harboring a deep, poisonous resentment ever since the third grade when he ended up being the only boy in the town’s history who didn’t get invited to the Sadie Hawkins dance.
One day years from now as he lay dying, he‘ll probably even get to have his own little villainous Rosebud moment as he drifts off…
“See Mary Lou! I showed them. I showed them all.”