Religion, capitalism: the bullshit undermining democracy and hope

I am beyond worried.  I do not believe anymore that democracy is going to survive.  I do not think that an election alone will begin to save it.  We have the candidate who is the end game.  He could leave the scene tomorrow and it would signify hardly anything.  There are, in this country, a significant number of people who still would have Donald Trump as their president.  There are a significant number of people who believe that Trump would be good for the United States of America.  Their vision would make them pathetic if it were not so potent, so attractive to so many.  That many will be around after election day.  They have been around and made viable by us, we the people who somehow allowed the tea party to rise to legitimacy despite the ideas that were the tea party’s ideas.  We have allowed for the NRA to become a bigger than significant player in the process by we the people make the laws by which we allow ourselves to be governed.  We allow for perpetual war, begun with one war that we should never have begun to fight.


Our “sensible” politicians gave credibility to a president who was not credible, who was not the kind of person who should ever have been president.  We made due with a president who was not very bright who turned to advisors who cared nothing about democracy, who before our eyes made decisions that led to the deaths of many and to greater wealth for a few, amongst them the loudest advocates for war, amongst them individuals who would go to any length to justify what was patently unjustifiable, an invasion of Iraq that did nothing but make hatred of us a rallying call for those we have to fear because their hatred is so profound, their brutal acts against humanity justified to them through reference to the same kind of god God fearing Americans used to justify hatred of people whose ways and whose ideas they did not like, would not try to understand because it was against their beliefs to do so.  Religious freedom became an excuse for stupidity and that stupidity became a major pillar of a political party that was tolerated when it should not have been.


Our people, good numbers of them, saw the goodness of George W. Bush and the rest were far too respectful to those who did.  Good numbers of people voted guns before children and valuing of human life.  The process, if it wasn’t broken, would have produced some good sense measures to end the senseless slaughter of innocents by those who were free to buy weapons of mass destruction no matter who they were or what they had done in their lives.  Some good folk protested in Congress, sat down, took over the floor.  The whole nation of sensible people should have been there with them to “plug the loopholes” in gun law so ridiculously liberal that it is absolutely impossible to keep anyone from acquiring high powered weapons no matter how young, no matter how mentally stable, no matter how incapable of good reason they might be.  We fucked up badly and it looks like there is little reason to hope that we can do what is necessary to make things better, at least for a long, long time to come.  Mr. Lapierre is a formidable adversary of sane thinking and he continues to be an important person in our political system.  We fucked up really badly.


The only way to possibly get at our problem, and we are the problem, is to kick our own asses and make ourselves confess to what we have wrought by fooling ourselves into thinking that things in our country were really okay, that the problems would, somehow correct themselves.  Delusional and still delusional!!!  Did you hear what was said at the Democratic National Convention?  American is great and still the greatest country in the world!  Damn!  The “world” must be one hell of a mess.  And it seems to be a mess and much that is a mess we need look at and be bluntly honest in assessing our role in making it a mess.  And the notion that capitalism is not only good, but what is best.  Didn’t a Dick like Cheney and his Haliburton war tell anyone anything about capitalism and how when it mixes with governance (congress really is bought and sold and not by socialists or communists) government is absolutely corrupted?


And then there is the solution, the only good solution available, the only humane solution, education and education in the United States of America, despite all the good work by all those caring educators, hasn’t begun to educate people well enough to not get tripped up by the Cheneys and Bushs, the Billy Grahams (wow!!!  Now there is a toxic mix that received the blessings of so many, a racist, anti-Semite, sexist lunatic who make enough money off feeding people bullshit to keep his worthless enterprise alive for the generations to come.  Hello Franklin, you are absolutely insane, but respected nonetheless for you are a man of the cloth) and, yes those Democrats, those of the Democratic party who have had their hand in it, who preach that church is good and so is money, that education should be about jobs and resources thrown at entrepreneurs who will make everything better.


Democracy will not survive because we now believe in bullshit and have become a bullshit nation.  We bullshit ourselves by our tolerance of outrageous ideas that are taught as true enough in our schools and by our media and in our political debates.  George W. Bush at an early press conference where he gained confidence in the goodness of his ideas, his policy, the actions he took as “leader of the free world” and he said he prayed every night and was guided by God.  Shouldn’t that have been considered insanity and reason for impeachment?


It was not.  We tolerated him and we tried to get along with those who supported him and his cronies.  We didn’t do much to shame them for their lies.  We didn’t take away their riches.  We didn’t even ask how it could be that so much that was bad could come from those who we were willing accept despite their beliefs and the attitudes toward others that they said were shaped by their belief in a deity.


It is time for truth telling.  Donald Trump is evil but he is not the meaningful evil that needs to be purged from amongst us.  The true evil is stupidity and stupidity accepted as some kind of acceptable logic.  Inhofe and his friends can get their way by arguing against the legitimacy of science, arguing that the fucking lord is who we should turn to in order the understand how we should proceed.  The evil is in showing respect to those who should be condemned for their word and their actions, Wayne Lapierre and Franklin Graham, Roger Ailes, Rush Limbaugh, Dick Cheney, the fools who run Hobby Lobby, and we who should know better but constantly are overrun by the likes of those named above.


Democracy has been dying for a long time now.  Religion and capitalism have killed it by preventing at every step the creation of an educational system that would serve democracy, that would do what is necessary to help we the people acquire the skills, knowledge, and attitudes that would allow us to make sensible decisions, use our right to choose to choose wisely and to choose for what is best for the good of the whole and not for what is good for a few stupid assholes.


Do we have it in us?  I doubt it.  The solution will be a Clinton and Clinton will carry on the tradition but with enough of a twist to cause the “sensible” to say “she is doing the best that she can and that has to be good enough.”  Bullshit!

By lafered

Retired professor of education concerned with thoughtfulness

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