Nature is indifferent and so is the economy. So, as we are almost nothing but, we are pretty much on our own. Yes, we have each other, but as you know, that isn’t always a good thing. Bet you thought I should have said culture not economy? I think not as we no longer live in the age of nations where there were parts of culture that were not monetized. These days culture equals economy.
OK, you still say that there’s war, a state of cultural being that’s still nationalistic. Nope again, war these days is a cover for what is now purely economic aggression, the usurpation of wealth by the elite from the rest of us, non-elite citizens of both the invaded and invader nations.
War doesn’t have to be a total mobilization of a nation like WWII. In fact, big wars, while obscenely profitable, have serious side effects. Little wars avoid the downsides and can be just as lucrative. First gather an ad hoc nation/base, then from their irrational fears and invidious aspirations create an “enemy of the people.” This foe doesn’t have to be a nation, in fact its better that it’s not. It’s best as an arbitrary grouping, then you can adapt it as necessary throughout your campaign. Examples are journalists, refugees, minorities, democrats, or even the rest of us, the non-elite citizen/losers. Now, simply, wind up your pre-purchased media and politicians, to sow the fear and envy in your briefly resurrected “nation” then harvest your bountiful crop.
I forgot that you also need a “leader” to focus the rage where you want it to be directed. A compensated celebrity endorser works best as you don’t want them to have a real agenda—one that could run counter to yours—you want a face, not a brain here.
The possible personifications for an image describing the latest—and most effective in my life–example of the above tragedy in the making are several. So a singular effigy for this rant is impossible. There always seem to be two—or three—“leaders” at once. Sometimes one aspect dominates, sometimes another, but never one for long.
One aspect would a clown with the baggy suit, phallic tie and car horn from an earlier gilded age. Another is the bull, a beast proudly strutting in a plaza de toros before an admiring crowd ignorant of his impending doom. Maybe he’s even imagining he’s the matador in his traje de luces, a hero in a suit of lights. Which of these is the most telling changes by the day some time the hour.
Sometimes the would-be drawing almost coalesces into something cohesive: a rodeo clown vs bucking bull, but this image of hero vs nature never stays comic long enough to draw. It becomes serious too soon. So, the only way I can tie them all together is to add another character, that of the referee. The ref, here, orchestrates a surrealistic face off between the clown and bull in a magical realistic game with a cell phone as the game’s ball. Unlike in the rodeo scene, this keeps the two metaphors distinct and true long enough to post.
The ref character in politics around here is just a fantasy or a memory. No one follows the rules any more, if they ever did, not the monetized free press, the politicized judiciary or even the disenfranchised (voluntarily and not) citizenry and their “elected” representatives.
Speaking of games people play, politics is our true national past time, as it’s a pro sport like any other. We spend time and money on it, discussing it and getting upset about it and it divides us up in to arbitrary tribes. But unlike the other games we watch, where we are well aware that we are mere spectators, we citizens in a democracy, feel that we have input in the outcome of political games. Not so, dear fans, here too. all we poor spectators do is buy our tickets and watch the elite players play.