November 09, 2012

The Distant Sound of Heads Exploding

Rick Blaine → Ah, that's the new German 77, and judging by the sound, only about thirty-five miles away.  "Casablanca."

What an ear Monsieur Reeeeeeeeck! had for German armament.  I suppose it's because, during the Spanish Civil War, he fought on the Loyalist side, although Franco would have paid him much better.

Ilsa had just said something about her heart beating, an obvious opening for Rick, but he got all masculine and technical in response.  Maybe because his brain was constantly addled by excessive carbon monoxide from all those French cigarettes he was hoovering.

No matter what else happens in American history from this point forward, I shall be forever grateful that I was there when Karl Rove made a complete, utter and irretrievable doofus out of himself, refusing (in the characteristic Republican fashion) to stare reality in the face.  Although the candidate he had been bankrolling through "American Crossroads" (a giant slush fund made possible by sympathetic cheerleaders for unrestrained corporatism on the Supreme Court in their Citizens United decision) was 100 electoral votes behind, although it was obvious that Ohio's vote count was simply going to get worse for Romney, although all "paths to 270" were clearly foreclosed for the Republican, Rove, remembering his fondest days as a bag man for W, could not concede.  I remember the best description I have ever read of Karl Rove's appearance, one penned by Al Franken back in his writing days:  Karl Rove looks like a "giant baby."  Now he was acting like one.

At some point in this chronicle, I related that I looked up the demographic mix at the elementary school I attended in the period 1954 to 1960, in suburban Northern California.  From old class pictures I still had, I could see that back in the Eisenhower era, the school was about 95% white.  Current stats maintained by the state of California paint a different picture.  Albion H. Horrall Elementary is now 64% Hispanic and about 11% white, with the balance a mixture of African-American, Asian and South Pacific Islanders.  

Times change, and with it the suzerainty of the white, aging Baby Boomer.  When I watched Obama give his late-night acceptance speech, transported as I was by his soaring, eloquent bullshit, I realized, maybe for the first time, that only Obama would have been an appropriate choice for the United States at this point in history.  Romney would simply have retarded the move toward the nation's destiny for another four years.

It's been pointed out that only the United States, among First World countries (basically, Japan, Australia, Canada the U.S. and most of Europe) shares a long, mostly unguarded border between itself and the Third World (Mexico, which is used as a transition path also for Hispanics farther south).  This is the primary driver behind America's move toward a new "multi-culturalism," and the old, white commentators on Fox News and elsewhere, tricked by the "parallax of nostalgia," have a hard time coming to grips with it.  The billions unleashed by Citizens United simply aren't enough to stem the tide anymore, and voter suppression, at a certain point (which was passed in Ohio and Florida) actually becomes counter-productive: it simply encourages people (particularly minorities) to vote just to show the Man they won't be denied.

America remains, of course, with all of its same problems, its perilous finances, its declining status among nations, its delusional fixation on safety from "terror," its extreme polarization.  In a way I think Obama has not so much been elected President as Chief Engineer of a Runaway Train.  Having said that, however, I must acknowledge he looks a lot more like Modern Life than the other guy.

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