Watching today’s 24-hour TV news cycle is like booking a misguided ocean cruise to OVERLOAD ISLAND. Through some momentary weakness in escapist judgment, you find yourself captive to a 40-inch screen where a multi-level ship the size of a small metropolitan city sails choppy seas mid bouts of septic dysentery, toward some overrun tourist destination ripe with graft, seedy characters, and over-priced trinkets. Life in the USA right now is truly a Dramamine-lovers adventure—all witnessed from the semi-comfort of your favorite recliner!
Daily reviewing our present ship-of-state’s nightmarish voyage in high-def pixels is not a pleasant experience, nor is it one from which we can easily escape. As with any “What was I thinking?” cruise, we’re stuck here for the duration of the journey—short of icebergs, Poseidon-tipping waves, or total engine failure (which could actually happen if Mueller is successful).
So I was thinking this morning after hearing the latest Trump and family escapades blaring from our flagship’s communications deck, that something about this particular time period in history feels too familiar and equally too uncomfortable. Yes, I did live through the Nixon impeachment but I was a very young adult and not as plugged into political concerns then, so that aspect is only vaguely similar to me.
And back then, Mr. “I’m-not-a-crook!” actually was determined to be one, and eventually he was forced to resign. (One can only hope THAT part is similar.)
But reliving that long ago, disastrous, presidential situation is not the discomfort I’m feeling about this present-day news barrage. What seems the most unsettling to me is the inner anxiety level associated with the current presidency—a disturbing discomfort that I’ve also felt during some of the most horrendous times of my life—like the hopelessness felt during a loved one’s terminal illness where you are constantly living with a deep sense of dread and foreboding at the eventual, heart-rending disaster you know will come.
And I’m not alone in feeling this way, because to me this feels more like a collective anxiety than personal one. I think we ALL are feeling overloaded with dread over the future we anticipate ahead.
Every day’s biggest news headlines strike warning gongs within us, but psychologically what may be even worse is the constancy of such negative press coverage. We are being desensitized daily to this rampant administrative insanity and incompetence. When chaos is ever-present wherever you look, then comparative, rational judgment is in short supply.
We are being numbed and lulled daily into the alternative realities expressed during White House press conferences and spokespeople explanations that bear little resemblance to known truthful accounts. But many administration-sympathetic people watching are simply accepting those blatant falsities like it is normal fare, because to do otherwise is to admit their own initially poor judgment—that they had been duped by a conman. And admitting that key point is not going to happen because it counters basic human nature. It’s far easier to blame it on others rather than seeing the horror of the situation for what it really is.
Every morning I turn on the TV and hear the commentator’s same incredulous gasp on delivering the latest news on Russian ties to White House staff and family, or the childish, unscrupulous behaviors of a seventy-year-old, authoritarian, narcissistic, ego-maniac who controls the world’s largest arsenal of nuclear weapons.
The main problem is that we at home, aren’t even surprised by anything he says or does any longer—we view the latest insults, attacks, and mindless rants as simply the perpetual ramblings of an unstable mind—who just happens to be our nation’s leader. The present standard of acceptance for his oratory skills is so low that if he can simply complete an unscripted, eight-word sentence without veering into non-coherency (or last fall’s election results), he gets a pass. The base measure for acting “Presidential” has been lowered to frat-house escapades of rich kids contemptuous of anyone who is not themselves.
In effect he’s grabbing us all by our private parts, simply because he can, and no one is slapping his face at the assault (or better yet, breaking his wrist to prevent him from doing it again). No one. Not yet anyway.
His perverted, chaotic, dictatorial rule has simply become “ho-hum” acceptable behavior for those in congress willing to deal for promised future rewards from him.
But this is NOT acceptable behavior!
So why are so many others accepting it?
That’s really the question I want answered. Why are his congressional party-members condoning his dangerous, erratic behavior with our allies and adversaries? Why are they allowing his malicious and vulgar crudities to continue without countering him; without punishing him vocally, if not in actual resolution?
It would appear that our ship’s navigational system has completely shorted out. Day after day, we keep circling the same stretch of ocean, hearing the same storm warnings, being tossed about on those ever more violent seas.
Congress needs to take control now and bring this captive-laden, nightmarish ship-of-state safely back to dock again, because being fellow crew members in collusion with the Captain’s treasonous intentions, is sanctioning a course to disaster for everyone.
Do they not see this?
If Captain Ahab wants to play harpoon-chucker with his Big White Whale (Kill the TRUTH!), then put him where he belongs: in a rubber dingy alone from which to do it.
Don’t bring the entire ship aground just so he can build sandcastles on the beach with Vlad.
Do your jobs! Protect the nation—protect the constitution—protect the people you represent!
Protect our democracy for ALL of our sake!
Because if you don’t, then WHO WILL?