Back there in time, one of the first bulky industrial computers was installed at one of the Lebanese banks with techies behind a glassed wall fiddling with the contraption as it blinked its lights and made purring sounds. One day a smart alecky fellow saunters by and asks the techie through the microphone: “What does this thing do?” The techie answers: “You can ask it any question and it gives you the answer.” So the fellow says: Shoo fee ma fee? (What’s going on?) There was a short period of silence after which the blinking lights and purring stopped and the computer Crashed! I have mentioned some version of this joke in one of my old posts, but thought it very applicable to our state of affairs nowadays!
Along these lines, and as she was scrolling through her phone and reading the news, my smart daughter says: It is as if the World is a Septic Tank that exploded and all the Poop is overflowing and engulfing us! Of course, I would have used a more expressive word than Poop, but my daughter is polite! Anyway, all this frothing going on while the Talking Head Yentas in our media pretend to relay the News with mostly frivolous, superficial yakety yak. Nothing with Honest Context; nothing to make you Really Think; no Dissenting Views; Willful Blindness; Censorship galore and Rah-rah-rah for Joe Biden’s war mongering efforts in Ukraine where we are, in fact, facing off with Putin. And are we planning to face off with Xi over Taiwan? Really? Facts are that we have a legacy of about 196 Interventions and Wars just in the past 70 years, and, prior to that, we had an almost equal number of wars, massacres and interventions mainly on Mexicans and Native Americans proving, once again, that we, as a nation, are a Merciless and Violent People. Shameful and Preposterous!
Do you remember the several articles during the Pandemic’s height that portended how Humans will become more Compassionate, Kinder and Nicer after the Virus recedes? Well, for one the Virus is still around, and for another there seems to be Less Compassion, Mean and, actually, quite Evil behavior. Example: the over thirty-five mass shootings that have occurred since January of this year (Gasp!) don’t even seem to faze us anymore! What’s up with that? Frankly, inept Political Leaders here at Home, and Across The World, are putting all of Us at great Peril as they conduct their malfeasance behind closed doors and then lull us into complacency with consumerism and nonsense! In some cases, they are portraying the Totally Bizarre and Ridiculous, as in the Insane Behavior of many of our Congressional Representatives who are under the Leadership of Kevin McCarty, and a Congress that has been overtaken by Radicals who are Anti Everything except their wicked agenda: Anti Science, anti-Books, anti-History, anti LGBTQ and Transgender people, anti-Abortion, anti-Jews and Muslims, anti-Reason and Progress, anti-Ethics, Morality and Honesty. Pray tell me what is the difference between them and the Taliban, because they seem to have a lot in common!
Yes, I’m Ranting! Can’t you see how Political Leaders in many places across this world are behaving like Schoolyard Bullies rather than Mature Adults? That instead of Talking they prefer lobbing Bullets and Bombs at their perceived Enemy, or their Own Citizens if they deem that necessary? Hello? Are we living in the Jungle? No, wait! I shouldn’t say Jungle and Insult the Animals!!
This is why I found myself tearing up on January 16 as I was watching Democracy Now and the remembrance of Martin Luther King, Jr. Day. While King’s Mountaintop speech is the most well-known and quoted, the speech I was listening to was one he made on April 4, 1967: Beyond Vietnam. In that speech he chastised the US involvement in Vietnam and our war-mongering efforts throughout our existence as a Republic. It is a mesmerizing speech that I urge you to listen to (https://www.democracynow.org/shows/2023/1/16) And here we still are: warring and meddling all over the globe and pretending that we are fighting to bring Freedom and Democracy to the World! That hasn’t panned out quite well so far, has it? To the contrary, we have supported Political Leaders who are Thugs and Oppressors, created orphans, raped girls and women, uprooted and traumatized Humans, corruption galore, destroyed and dysfunctional cities and communities and a whole lot of resentment and chaos. How can we continue on this path of the Powerful versus the Powerless?
I had contemplated voting to re-elect Joe Biden as President for a second term. I hereby withdraw that statement. True that he restored a certain sense of respectability and decency to our White House and to the country as opposed to the previous chaos and disruption. However, his war mongering efforts in Ukraine have left me totally turned off and quite disgusted! We all know that only Negotiation will end that devastating war which shouldn’t have taken place at all to begin with. There are no Winners here! And the only Losers are an Innocent Ukrainian People. Isn’t that the case in all wars, while Politicians remain unscathed? While all the Military Industrial Complex with its entire gamut of lethal weapons production, its corporate nabobs, its retired cold war mentality military advisors and experts, all the connected and well to do and their coterie of rah rah rah talking heads and media hosts remain unscathed as well? A few thousand will die? A million? More? Who cares about such people anyway??!!
Meanwhile, and as most Politicians prove their ineptitude every single day and across the world with their Lies, Deceit and Violence, we have to cope however we can, dodge the bullets – literally, in some cases – and hope that the computer – which we have rebooted multiple times already – doesn’t Crash again, and that the Poop from the Septic Tank doesn’t continue engulfing us until we somehow manage to Vote the Corrupt Politicians out! Out!
3 thoughts on “Lies, Deceit and Violence”
Hala, I’m so concerned about the rise of right-wing autocrats the world over, not just here in the USA. I’m a pacifist, but I doubt that the autocrats are interested in negotiation. I also believe there are attempts at negotIation going on that we don’t know about. In the meantime, countries cannot be allowed to continue landgrabs. It’s just plain wrong.
Our former president made blatant, even out-right ridiculous, lies acceptable in our current political arena. Yes, it’s always gone on, but at least there used to be consequences. I just don’t see those people negotiating anything in good faith.
It’s too bad that our news isn’t news anymore. It’s largely opinion, which in inherently biased. One has to search for reliable sources.
I suppose the oldest generation has always thought the world was going to hell. But that doesn’t make us wrong now.
Very well said dear Hala .
I always look forward to reading your posts.