Thursday, December 29, 2005

United against unity

Every philosophy also conceals a philosophy; every opinion is also a lurking place, every word is also a mask.


“We are not a nation of the common good” says Representative Joe Negron; “we are a nation of individuals.” He’s a Republican of course, who talks about the essentially Christian nature of the United States and the need for sacrifice as long as it’s only the sacrifice of human life.

He was arguing, when he spoke those words, against the practice of condemning private property and transferring it to private developers for the “common good” For the most part, I’m also against the practice, not because it’s not the province of the Government to promote that common good, but because I fear the inevitable corruption that has become nearly the norm.

What ever happened to e pluribus Unum? It seems that in every way, this administration has done every thing it can to divide us and subdivide us and turn us against ourselves, while demanding national unity in support of it. Of course Negron didn’t mean to reveal any underlying strategy; he’s only pandering to that kind of people who feel overburdened by the cost of civilization and who cherish the fantasy of being the lone mountain man, surviving by his own effort alone and beholden to no one.

He does reveal, by ignoring the central contradiction between “nation” and “individuals,” the irrationality from which so much Republican dialectic arises. The notion that we can have a nation, a civilized nation which pays no attention to promoting the public good, is scarcely worth talking about. The real question is where the balance lies, where the limits of private rights are, but that discussion requires admitting that all things cannot be described by zeroes and ones: black and white, Liberal and Conservative, Christian and heretic.

Balance and measure are not popular themes for this administration anyway. We have a President bent on ruling by fiat and grasping for the power to set aside any rights or guarantees or protections. What better smokescreen for the great and mighty Bush to hide behind, than the anger and rage of the rabble his supporters like Joe Negron stir up? “Look out for yourself, you owe nothing to anyone, your brother can keep himself, you should be protected but should have no responsibility to those who make up your nation. Ask what your country should do for you and screw everyone else.”

As a tactic, it makes good sense. As a philosophy, it’s self contradictory. As truth, it isn’t.

Bury my heart

Today marks the 115th anniversary of the Wounded Knee Massacre. It's well to remember the great sea of barbarism and hypocricy upon which our nation floats.


Crankyboy said...

Hey Rep. Negron, you know the answer to "Am I my brother's keeper?" is actually "yes." What an ass.

Intellectual Insurgent said...

The rugged indvidualism they preach is remarkable given their demanding for strict uniformity of thought among the masses. You can be an individual, but only if you agree with us on everything.

Capt. Fogg said...

Yes, Lock-step individualism. They can reconcile opposites by simply saying contradictory words over and over and over, until it becomes truth.

Crankyboy said...

Reminds me of a quote from M*A*S*H:

Maj. Burns: It's (homosexuality) not normal.

Trapper John: What's normal Frank?

Maj. Burns: Normal is everyone doing the same thing.

Trapper John: What about individuality?

Maj. Burns: Individuality is fine as long as we all do it together.

Crankyboy said...

We are looking more and more like Imperial Japan with the Yakuza in charge.

Capt. Fogg said...

Come to think of it, we've never seen Bush or Cheney or Rumsfeld with their shirts off, have we.