Sore Losers Or Lousy Choosersby Michael Patrick Brewer on Mar. 23, 2010, under Alternative Care, Health, Politics
“Baby killer?” I have not heard that since my days fresh out of Vietnam, at least not with the same vitriolic force as these members of Congress are imbuing in their language.
“Por mi Dios,” my Mexican compadres say. How low can we set the bar for behavior before Mom calls the kids in for their daily chores?
Do these guys know there is a war going on, and the enemy is watching and listening to this family feud? Do they know that our soldiers have TV’s in Kabul? Do they know that the Al Qaeda record every little tristful aspect of American politics for their recruiting efforts?
For you conspiratorial thinkers, you might even suggest that the health care debate has been arranged by our enemy, first to divide us and then to distract us from the conduct of war. You know, war, the one that sucks off all our health care money. But of course we are more concerned with the dumber than a door knob Texan who spouts, “fess up baby killer, so we can get your face tattooed on our back.”
Just an isolated incident they say. Well, it was just a few isolated incidents that sparked the Watts Riots. I was there in August of 1965. It was just an isolated incident that caused the shooting at Kent State. I was not there, but the image is seared in my memory for life. I could not fashion a country that could be so angry. We have now made the Varsity Anger Squad.
You may ask, where are the similarities? Anger is an incremental affair. Collectively it is a function of symmetrical escalation. In this case an escalating chorus that is manufactured and paid for by thousands of lobbyists and millions of dollars. What is the end game of this mounting dysfunctional anger? Is it the National Guard? You smirk? Read the laws that govern the inciting of a riot and you will note the that many of our talk show pundits are teetering somewhere between the First Amendment, which states, “the right to peaceably assemble,” and a blatant violation of State Statutes that govern mob behavior.
I presume the constitutional scholars in the Tea Party will take the word peaceably in its literal sense, and adhere to the State laws which they currently idolize.
Remember, they are watching. As we import our government in a box to Afghanistan the Taliban are watching. The Hamas, who won in a democratic vote, are watching, while we lament that majority rule is not democratic. Huh? Their laptops are burning with anti-American rhetoric and we are giving them the sentence structure. This makes Jane Fonda look like Mother Theresa.
“We are 24 hours from Armageddon,” said Congressman Boehner. “They look at this country as one big criminal act,” says Rush Limbaugh, the self imposed titular head of the GOP and National Security and all intractably angry men.
“We are turning back the clock to the ghost of communism,” Congressman Nunes said. Does that mean that the ghost of Joe McCarthy will visit us? Or does it simply mean we will have to stop conducting business with the Communist countries who make our clothes, our refrigerators and the computers we are tethered to all day? Vietnam and China are pleased that we are so distracted with our ‘Hatfield and McCoy’ antics. Communism is just fine over here in this import/ export room.
The Bank of Singapore just helped bail out Wall Street. How totalitarian is that? Why are the PR firms who manufacture this outrage and subliminal support of indecent behavior not incensed about the Global financial take over of our sovereignty? Distraction has become the name of the game and 24/7 cable news is the de facto third party lending all of its support to tracking the mounting platform called permanent anger sans content.
“Totalitarian tactics,” they scream, as we buy our children’s school supplies, our underwear and the uniforms for our beloved college and professional sports teams from their factories. This makes the fears of socialism look like Mr. Rogers neighborhood. If you want to be pure in the elimination of socialism in America, then we must eliminate all College and High School Sports…now! They are all run by State governments. The Tea Party Pointman needs to go on the court at the Final Four Basketball Tournament and shut it down. it is Socialistic to the bone. I will let my pals in Indianapolis know they are coming. I can arrange for some free rooms, like the ones that are prepaid for all of their gatherings.
While Paul Krugman lauds the courage inherent in the passing of the Health Care Bill declaring that reason prevailed over fear, and George Will, who I admire, decries its passing, “this bill is a museum of hoary artifacts of liberalism’s antics,” erstwhile, my grandson cannot get health care because of a pre-existing condition, my Marine pal cannot get life insurance to insure the future of his highly disabled son, because he is diagnosed with PTSD. How’s that? So the citizen-soldier who defends his nation and is wounded in the line of duty, cannot get insurance from the nation he just defended! Does that not level all rhetoric from the Ivory Towers of punditry? What would that Texas bigot scream at him..”Baby Killer?”
So my point is that the mounting crescendo of anger, indecency and diatribes spewed with impunity must soon expire or we will be a snake eating our own tail. This is what I mean by lousy choosers. It is the choice of behavior and decorum that has made this country great. Programs come afterward.
It was the late Ronald Reagan who said, “deficits don’t matter, people do”
If only these self appointed seers had a plan, maybe the anger would abate. That is what I mean by a permanent zeitgeist of anger without content. That, my friends, is called an illness and requires treatment.
Doctors call it Intermittent Explosive Disorder, and many of these episodes of trumped up agitation, irritability, irrational outburst and retaliatory, explosive behavior our sweeping the nation. ” Symmetrical escalation,” is the term used by the anger management gurus, and we seem to be reveling in the mud puddle of anger. Is there a doctor in the house?
Most of the behavior we have witnessed in the past 48 hours would not only be sanctioned at your church, your school, your boss, or by your commanding officer, but you would be tossed from the room. Why so much impunity? Has the bar of decency and decorum really been lowered that far?
IED, (Intermittent Explosive Disorder), was first accepted as an illness and defined as such in 1980. Curiously the same time that Post Traumatic Stress Disorder was given its imprimatur. This definition is currently being updated, revised and combined with a new condition called Temper Dysregulation Disorder. Many clinical psychologists believe that anger is not a stand alone mind state, but is coupled with the emotions of sadness, shame and grief. For years, professional therapists have coined anger as the chameleon emotion, because it masks so many other aspects of ones life.
As outlandish as it may sound, I am suggesting that the halls of the congress and the senate be populated not with Tea Party activists, but with a platoon of volunteer psychologists who can help our elected officials choose the right behavior without the shackles of their own uncontrolled emotions.
The nation is begging for a different kind of Poet Laureate, an individual who has the intellect and observational talents of a Robert Frost, and the compassionate clinical mind of a Carl Menninger. Without this type of leadership we will never again be the “United” States of America.
A local billboard says it well, “Don’t Make Me Come Down There– God.” And yes, they are watching.