Do You Plan Ahead for Your Vacation?
by James L. Secor, Ph.D. & Minna vander Pfaltz
What we have here is a failure to think.
What we have here is a failure to think past the moment.
In the event of failing to plan, to think ahead you end up without enough toothpaste or your soap–hotel soap is so wanting!–and you end up with nothing to munch on or drink on the night you arrive and need “that” drink. Because you don’t know anything about the town and hotel food and drink is outrageously expensive. Or you forgot your flipflops or your dinner suit, whether that be lounge lizard leisure or formal or just easy cotton wear. Or, or, or.
What it amounts to is that by not planning you end up paying. Like my landlord who will not replace the screen in my window who must then, down the road, pay for de-bugging, debugging that didn’t need to be done before the screen was ripped from its cradle by a vicious storm and not replaced any time soon.
This is the situation we are in at the moment in the US. We are not thinking past the getting rid of Trump moment. If he falls, it will be civilly as the House Republicans are so wound up in their Republicanism and Ideological obsession that they will not move for impeachment, even as the evidence mounts for traitorousness, for treason.
What happens after the fall of Trump? Will all the king’s men be able to put the state back together again? Or would that be “cannot place Humpty Dumpty as he was before”? Or “Couldn’t put Humpty Dumpty to rights”? A nice knock-down argument? For Trumptdumpty is, via his being president, the symbol of the State.
First is VP Pence. But he will fall as well due to his involvement via lying and lying and lying again. Lying with the enemy.
That leaves Paul Ryan, a little man who hates everyone and is proud of it. A man who would stoop to mass murder in the name of Ideology (the fact of having an idea). For a devout Catholic, that means he’s on a fast track to hell with no hope of a Purgatory stop-over or an eventual out. With his social policies, he is no better than these terrorists who are, in fact, no more than murderers, mass murderers, blowing up whatever and whomever wherever for the fun of it, praise be to Allah. Too, he does it in the name of the State–Red State America. Paul Ryan, who is a Communist.
He believes in Red State America. The only other Red States in the world are Communist. His idea of stripping government down so it is government for the government, for the governors and their corporate handlers, with the people getting nothing is very Communist. Go live in a Communist country where the government is for government’s sake. I have. There is some glitz to cover up the want but you don’t have to go far to see the want: it’s just around the corner. We in the US hide our want. We ban our want. We criminalize our want. Our want: the failure of our society.
Americans need to pay attention to their government and its shenanigans. One of the greatest machinations is the manipulation of unemployment. The retired are not counted as, well, they were not working to begin with. And those who have exhausted their unemployment relief and yet have no job are not counted as unemployed. Off the record equals out of sight equals out of mind. Another way to hide want. Putting someone to work for minimum wage though they have dependents is considered employment–forgetting that they are still relying on social services to survive. The end product of this unemployment vacation preparation is skewing of the statistics to pretend that the facts are not so bad as they are. That is, this is Rose Colored Glasses syndrome. Indoor sunglasses.
But Paul Ryan’s government will not care, for if you are not working, you are not working for the State–the Red State america–and, therefore, you don’t deserve to eat. As it were. A very Communist sentiment. However, neither he nor any other politician has read The Communist Manifesto or any socialist/sociological thought, a very different thing. That is, Communism and Socialism are not the same thing. Because these politicians can read but don’t they are ignorant. And they are dangerous. Thus saith Twain.
Communism is a 19th century utopia and, like all utopias, is a failed venture. Utopias fail because they require no change (Cf. Marc Hodac, The Seeds of Their Own Destruction, Rod McNair, Why Has Utopia Failed and Jean-Marie Huriot & Lise Bourdeau-Lepage, Utopia, Equality and Liberty: The impossible ideal; perhaps, The Plague of American Authoritarianism by Henry Giroux might help).
That is what we have to look forward to with Paul Ryan, the Republican Ideologist and Demagogue who stands smiling his thin lipped lizard smile behind Trump, waiting, waiting, waiting for the time to stick out his tongue and capture his meal, which he will eat alive. Once this man becomes President there is no constituency voting him out, though there may be some voraciously selfish Senator who will invoke the Twenty-fifth Amendment, that Ryan is unfit to be President, only to see it flounder. Because most everyone else is a Republican Ideologue.
But, then, perhaps that isn’t in the cards, for there is that little moment of interference involving Nunez that he has already lied about. Although there is nothing new about politicians lying, what is different about this crop of weeds is that they lie to our faces while handing us the proof of their lie. I am not a weed, clogging the life out of my surroundings, sayeth the Kudzu.
So, okay. We’ve thought ahead enough to know that we don’t want Paul Ryan as vacation from Trump. We must think of a way to get rid of him or his consideration–not very likely as America is a nation of reactionaries: let’s wait until “it” happens.
Who’s next in line for President?
Orrin Hatch, Senatorial sneak sniper. Another ideologue. But he’s done nothing, nothing in particular. So, we’re stuck with another Red Stater–unless he says, “No.” After all, he has more power and less stress as a Senator than as President.
Next? A free-for-all with the Cabinet appointees. Here, we’re on solid ground, for most of them will go with the fall of Trumptydumpty as they are, one way or another, involved–and many of them are in the sinking boat of self-importance and ignorance, barely keeping afloat with the tar of influence, i.e. money. A veritable Ship of Fools.
You have to figure you’re not just fucking yourself, your fucking everyone else when you think not about what it is you’re doing; when you think not about what’s coming round the bend. She will be coming round the bend, mind you, but the horses will not be well-reined in. Your vacation gonna be ruined, fo’ shore.
So, how can we keep our vacation cruise afloat? We are not a Disney Line; we cannot let it turn into a typhoid ship; we cannot let it languish at sea or in port. Trump has taught us something, though (For more insights see What Herman Melville Can Teach Us About the Trump Era by Ariel Dorfman).
What Trump has taught us is how corrupt and dysfunctional the government is. Of course, we already knew they were corrupt. But now we get to see that dysfunction and the usurpation of the mandate of the Republic. Like all the king’s men, they are incapable of putting Trumptydumpty back together again, even while working hard to keep him from falling in the first place.
The second lesson is that democracy is the people making choices and voting out those who lied and said they were representing us and, in fact, could care less about us, the people, their constituents. That is, we’ve learned that democracy is the people, not the mechanics of the government.
This rediscovery of who we are–democracy–will go down the drain if we don’t, now, think ahead. Life without Trump will not be a vacation unless we prepare for it in advance. We already know all the king’s men are dysfunctional, perhaps even incompetent for the job. Perfect examples of the Peter Principle?
Unless we think about just what it is we want, what it is we need, and what we will do with the pieces, we will never crawl out of the potage pot. Right now it is health care. Are we to wait for Paul Ryan who will kill us all because we are not worthy? Paul Ryan does not understand that without people there is no government, no land to rule. Or that unhealthy people sicken and die, thus reducing the people needed to govern. Ill people got to the hospital; if they can’t pay, the hospital must treat them. Where does that money come from? The government. Ergo, this costs the government more than if the ill had insurance to begin with. What’s Monsignor Paul Ryan going to do? Slice that government entity and mandate death? Paul Ryan’s government is not the savior he propounds himself–oh, I’m sorry, “it”–to be (Cf. Ernst Cassirer, The Myth of the State).
May be. . .maybe what we need to do is control Trump. We can make sure he doesn’t get any dysfunctional laws to sign by practicing democracy and making sure our representatives actually represent us. As we are doing at the moment.
How do we do this? Let’s look to ancient Japan. Way long before the 17th century and the dictatorial Tokugawa Shogunate that controlled the Emperor, indeed cut him out of actual rule altogether, the Japanese Emperor had not been an active participant in the government of the country. He was corralled by required rites and government meetings and requirements that had to be performed on schedule–as scheduled–and he was kept so busy during the day, every day that he could not cause trouble for anyone. Visits will be official and scheduled for him, the agenda written ahead of time. Length of all interviews will be strictly adhered to. That is, he will be treated like the Japanese do scheduled TV baseball: if three hours of scheduled baseball time is not enough, baseball TV coverage does not usurp pre-programed programs. If the game’s in the middle of the 10th inning and it’s time for Life With Father, it’s Life With Father. (Newscasters do this with their guests: Oops, we’ve not got time for more of you, thanks.) He can be assigned a phone that has no data application, no internet; a phone that is no more than a phone –and is monitored. For we know he’s a treasonous son of a bitch and can’t be trusted. . . and he’s petty and abusive. We can even control when he makes public appearances, much as with the Queen of England’s forays. She must inform the Parliament of her intentions and the members of Parliament have the ability to say, “No.” So, too, the Japanese Emperors for millennia. Easy to manage Trump if he’s found guilty of one thing or another: place him under house arrest.
If you don’t give a blatherer time to blather, he can’t get himself and you into any trouble. All of this protectionism will fall by the wayside with the election of a more responsible President. But, then, that relies on the people continuing to practice democracy and making sure–thinking ahead–that they are appropriately represented. The important elections are local, then federal; the President makes no laws, he is only the Face of the Nation.
Trump is considered a clown by the Chinese. Trump has made clowns of us all. People are wondering what is wrong with Americans that they could elect someone like Trump. All of our vaulted pride and prejudice has been flushed down the drain.
So it is, there are only two choices: we either control this spoiled rotten, blathering, temper tantrum-throwing little boy or we prepare for the worst (Paul Ryan). We prepare for the worst so we aren’t caught out and must make do with frenzied reaction, which is always momentary. Reactionary behavior (politics) is just putting a Band-Aid over the wound. We get wounded by lack of preparation, lack of consideration, lack of thought.
© 2017, James L. Secor, Ph.D.