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Did Socrates say "Know Thyself", or was he misunderstood, as all are. Show Thyself is all we can do. The knowing is unknowable.  

I am filled with joy.  It can't be helped.  

Became a Farmer, Builder, Musician, Tank Commander, Librarian, Lawyer and Minister. I have failed at many things. And now retired.  Filled, just filled, with Joy. 

Sunday, July 29, 2007

When Power "acts", it creates new realities...

When Bush was first sworn into the Whitehouse, I recall several interviews with staff in which the "new reality" fix was expressed--Karl Rove boasting that they intended to "cause" the future; they moved from mere prediction to creation. David Suskind reported the neo-con nonsequitur:

"When we act, we create our own reality...
We're history's actors...and you, all of you,
will be left to just study what we do".

Of course, this generative Reality is not new, it has always been the prerogative and responsibility of Power to work and ravel with "reality". What Rove missed is that Reality is a physical "what" without which his sine is non. Even if Reality is a gerund, it is interactive and reflexive. Reality is not just a plastic fundulum of "meaning different things to different people". Reality is not Rove's dog to hunt, and now it is a chicken coming to the home he ruined to roost. Rove was as wrong as those who claim there is a "Jewish Physics" or an "Oriental medicine". Sorry, it's just Physics, or Medicine, or not. Many have taken Rove's words to be merely hubristic. Actually, they show criminal culpability.

The criminal syndicate running the Whitehouse was right about many things, mostly in an ironic fashion. Our present circumstances--our Reality--IS the result of their actions. They did MAKE history, with remarkable speed and thoroughness: When Bush came into office, the US Government had a budget surplus; now, we are faced with a larger debt than all previous administrations combined. When Bush came into office, Americans could travel virtually all over the globe with a fair degree of respect and admiration; now, we are universally despised, our values viewed as "myths", and we hate ourselves. When Bush came into office, Al Qaeda's bases in Afghanistan had been bombed (while Republican's Senators screamed "wag the dog"!) and Bin Laden went into hiding; now Al Qaeda is an international franchise of forces striking at will throughout the world which has become its training ground and Bin Laden is one of the most popular and recognizable faces on the planet--an almost Christlike figure (for those who can still stomach irony).

Of course there is more. When Bush came into office, the US Constitution was viable and invoked; now it is irrelevant and moot, and made so by our own Supreme Court. Two other great democracies -- England and Israel -- have been pulled down with America by their loyalty. Desperately-needed land reform in Africa and South America has been institutionally delayed. Genocide is practiced with impunity. Drug companies and so-called "insurance" corporations have destroyed the "health care" system so that poor care has become extraordinarily dear. Manufacturing jobs are outsourced to a degree that has become a national security concern (buying tank and aircraft parts from China). The NYSE is itself propelled into a leveraged buy-out boom in which virtually all companies are takeover targets for "flipping" with cash borrowed from lenders freed of any "regulation" or accounting. The lenders themselves extend "creative" credit to "new homeowners" who cannot afford to repay the loans because the average wage is dropping. Corporate CEO's are making stratospheric salaries unrelated to actual "business" or productivity (as those words are commonly understood). Energy and power utilities have been caught pillaging consumers on a scale never before approached. Government power and assets have been put into the hands of people who have no inkling of "public service", but who do have a robust sense of self-interest.

The point is that Rove was right about "making history". We now have a history of self-defeating greed and overreaching from which recovery is not likely or even possible in the circumscribed space and foreshortened time frame left to us. If it is of any consolation, we who are about to die have the comfort of knowing that at least we did not "elect" Bush to office. Twice. He stole the election. Twice.