Sunday, July 18, 2010

Dreams die when you let 'em.

Once upon a time way back in the mid-20th century, we dreamed that by the 21st century we would be in "the future," a vast wonderland of space travel, flying cars, peace and love,  improbable accomplishments and major step forward for the race of man. In all those dreams, America was the bright beacon which shone its light forward to an even better day.

What we have instead--I find this story both incredible and as disheartening as any I've read in a long, long time--is a long slow (or maybe not so slow) slide back toward the dust bowl and a nation on the verge of collapse. Not only is our infrastructure, the very backbone of the nation, old and crumbling, we are tearing it down. We have come to this. We are the dying giant too blind to see what we have become.

One of two major political parties is poised to take over at least part of the government before the year is out and is intensely committed to carrying out policies which will take us down even faster, just so long as, heaven help us, their rich and powerful patrons are not, god forbid, asked to pay the taxes their wealth warrants.They are taking The Big Lie to new levels, using the fear and desperation and, yes, racism of the gullible and uneducated to drive the country backwards.

I am an old man. If I did not have children and grandchildren, I can assure you that, at this point, I would happily watch the stupid and those who prey upon them continue to take apart this once proud and productive nation and sink the whole thing into the mire of their mindless hatred without reservation. Bad person that I am, I would take particular delight in laughing at those who took pride in paying not attention and sat by mindlessly and allowed their world to be sacrificed on the altar of someone else's greed.

But that's not an option. Children and grandchildren I have.

What I am losing is hope.

1 comment:

  1. Good column and a great title as well. I've said it before, we have already seen the best days of this country. The more fearful thing is how far will things have to go getting worse before something changes.

    Will the jingoistic and silly idea that this really is the best country ever invented, created or whatever cause this place to go out in flames rather than find change to more meaningful and better society? I fear for the worst as resources continue to get rarer and more expensive. Not to mention as the unlettered idiots that support the likes of Sarah Palin and such ilk fill the countryside screaming about mine,mine,mine, forgetting that a society and a country is a WE not a ME.

    This place is doomed, in the long run. ALL empires and governments eventually fail, fold or fall. This one will be, ultimately, no different.

    The only question is when and how.