Saturday, July 26, 2008
Long Time Gone
Several posts got started during this summer hiatus, but they still languish unfinished like so much else in our lives and our land. Like the houses that stand forlorn and half-complete up and down California, the spanking new neighborhoods blasted by foreclosure, bankruptcy and fraud.
Or like the career of the Dixie Chicks, their rise never really complete because it was blasted by the ignorant and the fools and the go-alongs, the get-alongs, the fearful and the frantic. I have seen them a couple of times and have felt they would never want for any work at all, way too much talent to be shunted to the sidelines, and yet... Too often in Modern America the best and the brightest are pushed away, pushed out, forgotten, forlorn.
I've been very impressed with Obama's Progress -- almost a Royal Progress -- through the lands benighted and enlightened this last week or so. He certainly makes a brilliant appearance, and the contrast between his openness, good humor and energy (they called it "vigor" or "vigah" back in JFK's day) and the crabbed snottiness and utter lonliness of Bush's ventures abroad could not be more acute. And yet, as he made his way from one stop to the next, it seemed like he was turning in to a Bushevik, right before our eyes, offering very little in the end that wasn't already part of the Beltway Palace Program. Actually, the Palace and the Camp Obama have been assimilating one another for some time. So much so, it's hard to find points of major difference any more. His nemisis and rival, Princess "Scarlett" McCain, even adopted his "16 Month Withdrawal" timetable, but it's a "withdrawal" so frought with caveats and leave-behinds and force protections and so forth, it quite obviously is intended to perpetuate the occupation of Restive Mesopotamia into the very long-term future.
No, the primary difference between Bushevisim and Obamism at this point is that crucial matter of Personality.
Nothing wrong with that. And yet obviously we're now dealing with a status quo candidate, not a "Change" candidate at all. Status quo at least in the context of our Imperial adventures and conquests, the irrelevance of the Constitution and so on. The Important and Serious Matters that maintain American hegemony. You see.
Obama is running for King-Emperor. Republic? Presidency? Hah. Old Fashioned. Get with the New Modern Program! Forward!
Once under way, it's very hard to stop this sort of "change". It may wear itself out in time, in fact, it probably will, sooner rather than later, as the economic situation in this country deteriorates further and the security situation of our overseas empire fails to improve. Just as the Soviet Union was undermined and brought down by this sort of internal and external bleeding, so might America's latter day experiment in Empire. The World would just as soon have it so. Our hegemony, at least under the lash of Bush and Cheney, has been a global nightmare and horror.
But there is so much left unfinished, so much still to do. We have so far to go. Still.
Listen to Glenn Greenwald's interview with Daniel Ellsberg on Salon Radio. If you were around back in the day when Ellsberg did something very brave, lots of memories will be jogged. If you weren't around back then, his story should curl your hair. His question: Why isn't there anyone in government now -- ANYONE -- who will do the equivalent today of what he did then? What has happened?