America: From a truth-based, to a faith-based nation

Forget it; get it out of your head! Neither impeachment, nor censorship, nor the mildest reprimand can come to our Nero from the august dwellers of the Senate. Let the nation burn, be reduced to ashes, while Bush plays the lyre from Capitol Hill reciting verses that give an inarticulate, simplistic and cross-eyed view of the world.

As for Senator Feingold… as much as he wishes to get the cards on the table, and do right by us, his Democrat peers will only let him play solitaire. They are waiting in the wing for their turn at the helm and the corresponding increase in power and influence. For now, they’re quite content as guests of the emperor, so why should they take any chances, or dirty their hands? Edwards, Hillary, Kerry and other presidential contenders who have yet to reach political menopause, keep telling us how much they care; but they are only willing to walk the path that will lead them to their ambitions. As birds of a feather, they must be careful not to soil the other birds’ plumage.

Why take chances now? Two years will go by fast enough; then, these solons in their purity togas will ask us for our vote. And, as it happens time and happens time and again, we’ll be faced with the recurring choice prevalent in our political system of having to vote for the lesser evil among two hypocrites. That is, assuming we can identify who’s the lesser one.

Unquestionably, politicians know us a lot better than we know ourselves.

America never had a monopoly on truth, far from it. But Americans, for the most part, did have a love affair with truth, or at least a strong, passionate interest in searching for it. That was ages ago, something which has now come to pass; and faith has replaced truth, becoming the glue that keeps the nation together, even if the faithful are forced to reside a universe apart. From reality, from doing what’s right!

Ours is faith in a government not of the people, but of special interests. Ours is faith in a government that caters to our basest instincts, not our lofty aspirations. Ours is faith, blind faith, in a government that the more perverse and corrupt it becomes, the more it destroys our spirit and dehumanizes us.

Political couch potatoes, that’s what we have become. Wimps’r’us: the 90 percent of the nation’s citizenry who are subservient to the wishes of the other 10 percent. We are all believers, no way to deny it, whether it’s Jesus Christ that we follow, or the goddess Apathy; or render cult to both while pretending to be monotheistic.

It seems that we have turned in our citizen-badges which deputized us to uphold both our freedoms and a hopeful future for our children. Instead, we have accepted a sheriff who is not just the sole interpreter of local law, but who has also become a much-hated international outlaw. Wars à go-go and preemptive strikes are not imperialistic acts according to our leader, but rather patriotic necessities in defense of the nation’s best interests; and an accelerating socio-economic inequality, domestic or global, is also given the seal of approval by his White House, as long as wealth and power are accumulated by those determined to be best qualified to optimize their use.

Two days ago, while researching material for a novel, I came across a column with the catchy title, “AlliesWon’t Wipe out Race” by the then war analyst of the local newspaper [The Columbian]. In that editorial page of April 19, 1945 [just two weeks prior to Germany’s unconditional surrender] columnist DeWitt Mackenzie was trying to answer a statement-question by a “distinguished citizen” that read in part: “There are a lot of folk, including myself, who deeply regret that when this war is over there still will be Germans left alive.” Charitable, this distinguished citizen!

There was just a sentence from one of the ensuing paragraphs which rendered a verdict worthy of reflection. Mackenzie wrote: “Indeed, all Germans must stand responsible morally for the Hitlerian crimes, since the people as a whole at least have condoned his evil.” That made me wonder… was Apathy the goddess Germans venerated, or was the god Nazism; or did they worship more than one god?

The Allies proved to be measured in their punishment response towards the Germans after the war. Let’s just hope that whoever passes judgment on us, be it on this earth or on judgment day, proves equally lenient… for Americans must also stand responsible morally for Bushian crimes. And these crimes extend not just to the obscene Iraq adventure but other social, environmental and economic evil that has befallen us all, Americans and non-Americans alike.

Censure the president? Are we nuts? The ones needing censure are us who are watching the nation burn to the ground… and don’t seem to give a damn.