Lopsided Indiginity

duplicity

I describe myself these days as a “political atheist.” By this I mean I don’t believe in any political party.

Like you, I try to sort out what I believe about the moral and social issues that matter to me then vote for people who claim to believe in principles that (more or less) are in alignment with that.

Problem is, I don’t believe most politicians (of any party) truly give a rat’s ass about what you or I believe, want, or need. I just don’t. If the show were really about us (ordinary Americans) and not about power and greed (this refers both to the politicians who are busy preserving their gig and the ruling class who are busy preserving theirs), then things would be radically different.

All of the outrage over the lies spewing forth from High Office in 2018? I get it. I do. But let me pose a question.

Which do you find more disturbing: the lies that are so obvious a seventh grader can point them out, or the lies that are so carefully crafted and eloquently delivered that you’re applauding and wiping away a little tear as they reverberate in your ears?

They’re equally disgusting, yes? The clever lie is being delivered by a Statesman, likely one with a formidable academic background, and the obvious lie is being delivered by a delusional fool. At the end of the day, it’s the lie you believe that presents the greater danger, though both are a great offense.

Do you really imagine that “your party” and its leaders are the good guys and “the other party” and its leaders are the bad guys? You weren’t lied to about the Watergate break in? You weren’t lied to about what was really happening in the Viet Nam war?

Do you think your party’s leaders aren’t lying?

Do you believe what you read in history books is unvarnished truth? The whole truth?

What is CNN telling you? Or FOX news? You think there is no agenda, no pullers of strings, no money influencing “your” media while “the other guy’s” media is a pack of filthy lies?

Follow the money.

What do you or I know?

We know the story someone else is telling us.

By all means, fact check. By all means, call out bad behavior. Go ahead and be indignant.

But never forget that, within the framework of history, “your team” is as guilty as the other guy’s team. If we catalogue all the lies and crimes of our political leaders, neither party comes out looking saintly.

It’s the “lopsided indignity” that chafes me.

If you’re gonna hate one man’s misuse of power (and you should), you must hate the other man’s equally. Even if he’s better looking and more intelligent. Even if he accomplished things you thought were good. If you’re going to despise one man’s womanizing (and you should), then you must despise the other’s with equal fervor. Even if your guy was the leader of a cause you believed in. If you’re gonna hate one man’s approval of torture, you must hate the other man’s approval of Napalm. Even if your guy said a bunch of neat stuff and wrote a lovely book. One man’s collusion is another man’s drowned mistress. Don’t idolize these people, don’t make of them anything more than they are.

Be an equal opportunity hater of injustice, lies, and misuse of power. That’s all I’m saying, people.

The endless self-righteous political talk (from both sides, from all sides) is incredibly tired and terribly lacking in context.

“I don’t wanna live in a world of darkness, I wanna live in a world of light. I don’t wanna live in a world that’s heartless, I wanna live in a world of sight.” – Steve Miller

Yes, that’s right. All the best wisdom has been summed up in pop music lyrics.

 

 

2 thoughts on “Lopsided Indiginity

  1. The outright lies from a President and a party that have no respect for anything that doesn’t serve their own self interest are an abomination. And, saying that both sides are equally guilty… More like equal opportunity bullshit.

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    1. I agree entirely with the first portion of your statement. Particularly in this moment. But I’m looking at this through a wider lens—I’m considering politicians from both parties acting on the world stage over time.

      Bill Clinton napped while 800,000 Rwandan men, women, and children were slaughtered in a 100-day killing spree carried out mostly with machetes and farm implements. The most powerful nation in the world did nothing because the people dying were too black, too poor, and too lacking in resources that mattered to American interests. His inaction was as a great a crime as the actions of many presidents combined. Do we really want to paint him as a beacon of righteousness when it comes to how he’s reacted toward the plight of people of color?

      Many Republican stances are abhorrent, agreed, and again, particularly in this moment. They are guilty of criminalizing poverty, and unjust wars, and on and on. I referred to Trump as a “delusional fool,” so I’m no fan of his or his party.

      But I’m pretty sure we’ve sent some Democrats to prison, and not so long ago. Democrats got us into, and prolonged, Viet Nam. Many liberal-thinkers today believe our atom bomb droppings were not necessary to put an end to WII. If that’s true, we are guilty of mass murdering non-combatants with a WMD, brought to you by Democrats. I understand there are excellent counter-arguments, but current thinking has shifted in many liberal circles. Intelligent, thoughtful people can disagree without name-calling or thoughtless political bigotry.

      Walt, you’re a student of history, I know you don’t believe the Democratic party wears white hats and never lies to American citizens. That’s all I’m saying here. Don’t worship a party or its politicians. They’re all liars and thieves. They’re just lying about different shit and stealing from different people.

      Why can’t we have different views, without belittling each other? It’s sad. If we can’t come to a place where we seek to understand each other, rather than shout slogans and wear competing T-shirts, well, that is incredibly unfortunate and doesn’t bode well for our future as a free-thinking society.

      I doubt our ideologies are that radically different at this juncture in our lives. My post isn’t about ideologies, it’s about recognizing that neither party has a monopoly on lying, greed, corruption, or war crimes. Gotta hate it all—no matter which party is dealing it.

      All of this political bickering between Righties and Lefties keeps us just distracted enough not to notice that our government is screwing us harder than a thousand Catholic priests on super-Viagra. We have less and less, while the mega-wealthy have more and more; and, despite what they say, politicians from both sides perpetuate that shit because they serve power and have a good gig. Power loves itself, and doesn’t give a shit about you or me.

      I respect you, Walt, and I certainly respect your right to think I’m full of shit. I probably am! But if folks like us can’t have a beer and appreciate each other (differences of opinion included), we’re completely fucked, I mean, the goddamn human race. In my opinion.

      Peace, old friend.

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