Monday, October 03, 2005

September 31, 2005

Culture of Corruption
Culture of Crazy?

Many of us out here knew they were crazy all along, just not enough of us to keep them out of office. Tom DeLay, the former bug exterminator from Sugarland, Texas, Rep. Dan Burton, R-IN, who freelances as a CSI tech in his back yard using a high power rifle and watermelons, who in their right minds didn't know these guys had screws loose?

Over the past decade the GOP has become a veritable crazy-person factory, spitting nuts into positions of power, populating think tanks with them and even planting a giant Macadamia in the Oval Office itself.

Now the evidence of their insanity is piled high around us like stinking trash in the fourth week of a New York City garage strike. It's everywhere. You can't miss it. We have nuts to the right of us, and nuts even further to the right of us. We have:

* Leaders who actually believe that Clarence Thomas is smart enough to sit on the Supreme Court.
* Who really believe the earth is only 6000 years old and that Noah really got pairs of all animals on earth aboard a boat he built in his backyard,
* Who really believed they could send an army from a self described "Christian nation" into the heart of the Muslim world to force-feed them democracy, and that they would not only swallow, but leave us a fat tip as well,
* Who really believe that shoveling money from the national treasury into the pockets of the already super-rich would produce a fat, happy robust working middle class,
* Who really believe that private health insurance companies, that only want to insure people unlikely to get sick, will eventually solve America's health care crisis
* Who really believe that the way to solve America's energy crisis is to rip up the earth in search of the last remaining drops of an already nearly exhausted, non-renewable, resource,
* Who really believe that melting ice caps, soaring atmospheric and ocean temperatures are not tied to human generated greenhouse gas emissions – and are willing to bet our lives and the lives of all future generations on it.

Crazy -- all of it. Just plain crazy. And the craziest part is that no one on the other side seems willing to stand up and just tell them that. Right to their faces, tell them that they are not just wrong, but crazy. Where are the sane people in Washington with the guts to say, "No! Sorry, this is not some kind of intellectual exercise, some college debating tournament where one side makes a rational argument countered by the other side's rational retort. No, it's not.. Because their beliefs do not...not, not, not, rational in any way. Trying to rationalize with an irrational person is a waste of time. Anyway, they don't deserve respectful response. They deserve to be ridiculed on the Daily Show and Leno. Because when something is provably wrong, and someone not only stubbornly clings to it, but wants to impose it on the rest of us, it does not mean they are open-minded, or intellectually curious, or thinking outside the box. It means they are thinking outside the asylum.

People who stubbornly believe the provably wrong need to be put with folks who think they are Napoleon and that the CIA spies on them through their TV. The last place they belong is in public office.

Quick, someone call Bellevue! By now I'm sure you heard about "Mr. Values," Bill Bennett's remarks on the radio yesterday that, "if you want to reduce the crime rate, if that's your goal, you could just abort every black baby." Okay Bill, then if that's so if we want to reduce stupidity, we could just abort ever Republican baby. (By the way Bill, how's that nasty little compulsive gambling habit of yours going? )

Crazy. They're just flat out crazy. Yet they keep finding their way into public life and public policy making positions. Which of course means that at least 51% of us are crazy as well. How else can it be explained?

How crazy are we? History will record that, at a time when everything was going swimming, we were at peace and our national treasury was brimming over with surplus cash, we decided it would be just the ticket to put in charge a failed Texas businessman and /recovering alcoholic, whose only claim to fame was that he was the pampered son of a former President. Yep, we hired a guy to run the most powerful nation on earth who wore ignorance as a badge of honor and whose fractured English makes Bullwinkle the Moose sound like a Shakespearean scholar.

That's how stupid at least 51% of us are.

It reminds me of that classic 1966 movie, King of Hearts, in which the Allies enter a French village just recently vacated by the Germans. The last thing the Germans did before leaving was to unlock the loony bin. All the crazies came out and assumed the now vacant public offices. When the the Allies arrived they just assumed that these nuts were the town fathers and ... well hilarity ensued. That was comedy. This is a tragedy.

Right wing "full-mooners," have always been in government, just not in these numbers. Some place in the Congressional record is supposedly buried a statement made by a member of the Senate back in the 1800's when a bilingual measure was pending. This Senator was agin' it because, as he supposedly said, "If English was good enough for Jesus Christ it should be good enough for everyone."

I don't know if that's true or legend, but it's no more or less crazy than some things we hear today coming out of the right, such as teaching so-called "Intelligent Design" in science classes that fertilized eggs are people or that brain-dead patients require an act of Congress to keep them artificially alive. It's the kind of stuff you'd excuse if these were 14th century folk, who just as strongly believed the earth was a platter orbited by the sun, but not out of 21st century politicians.

No, they are not "adhereing to Godly values," or "protecting the sanctity of life," They are crazy. C-R-A-Z-Y.. crazy.

Even the most obvious contradictions don't shame them. They are same folks who, in one breath boast that America's strength is due to its diversity – E Pluibus Unum, you know -- and in the next breath they claim "we are a Christian county." Well, which is it fellas? How can we be E Pluribus Unum, and not also be a Jewish country, a Muslim country, a Buddhist country, an atheist country? We can't be a little bit E Plurabus Unum. We either are, or we ain't.

But, don't try to explain that to crazy person. They eat contradictions like that for breakfast.

And so it's gone for the past ten years, beginning when Newt Gingrich unlocked the GOP loony bin and welcomed the nuts in. Eventually we reap what we sow, and it would appear that the harvest is in full swing. Tom DeLay, Bill Frist, Scooter Libby, Karl Rove, George himself, are each suddenly up to their necks in trouble of their own crazy-making.

So, as the Democrats on the Hill spread their "GOP culture of corruption" talking points, consider this; maybe the corruption is not the point, but a by-product, a predictable symptom, the very kind of behavior one would expect from individuals who can embrace pure fantasy and fancy while rejecting reality, scientific data and even their own eyes and ears. Someone like that is capable of rationalizing any kind of aberrant behavior.

In other words, are we talking a culture of corruption, or a culture of crazy? I say it's crazy and I encourage anyone who considers himself or herself sane, to stop arguing with these people and, if they can't get them to seek help, at least get the hell away from the controls.

See ya next week.