Post# 636 A BRIEF TREK INTO THE TRUMP DIMENSION

We have long agonized in vain, concerning the following bizarre conundrum: How is it rationally [or even, reasonably] possible that an ignorant, incapable, and neurotic troglodyte, like Donald J. Trump, can garner enough voter support to be elected to the American Presidency and thereafter, retain millions of ardent followers. In his execrable four-year term, he, inarguably, has met the required definitional criteria for such descriptive adjectives as incapable, ignorant, neurotically egocentric,  immoral, and bigoted. From a societal perspective, far more societally damaging, than this list of repulsive traits, congealed in his semi-amorphous conglomerate of errant persona, was Trump’s denigration of the foundational existence of “Truth,” notably exemplified by his own serial mendacity.

Donald J. Trump, together with his cultish followers occupy and mindlessly function inside the parameters of a new, uncharted, and undiscovered, dystopic dimension. As inhabitants of such singular dimension, they share identical predilections to subjective perception of [un]reality and [alternative] facts. This perverse Trump Dimension is inhabited anthropologically and culturally, by an ignorant, populist specious of atavistic or post- Neolithic man, collectively known by mainstream America, as “the underbelly.” Loyally, and fraternally eschewed in said dimensional zone are: expressions of intellectual thought, curiosity or progress, creativity, societal responsibility, empathy and sensitivity, established mores and reasonable behavior, factual reality, scientific endeavor and the search for knowledge, aesthetic appreciation of literature, art and serious music, acceptable taste in language and behavior, respect for truth, love of mankind and belief in universal equality and legal justice, the quest for international brotherhood, appropriate respect for reason or the development of mature perception.

The above cited traits are universally deemed to be societally objectionable, except for the inhabitants of the singular venue of the Trump Dimension; accordingly, the Nation’s shameful adherents to such execrable characteristics and values, [“the underbelly”] are long term or permanent residents of that dimension, faithfully rendering due homage to its orange-haired miscreant namesake.

When necessary to buttress any non-factual [“alternative truth”] assertions or declarations, all bonafide underbelly occupants of the Trump dimension, are enfranchised, if not, duty-bound, to freely assert any, casually conceived alternative facts or to conjure up some unsupported conspiracy which will have an assured and reflexive, universal acceptance by other Underbelly Members. Two of such illustrations are evinced by the myth that “liberals” are worshippers of Satan and, and child sex traffickers, or, that there is a Zionist conspiracy to take over the World, funded by George Soros. However,  in our view, the most serious and damaging of such schizoid delusions to date, was the mythically concocted, charge of fraud, allegedly  perpetrated by the supporters of Biden, who were falsely accused of a  purported rigging of the voter totals, thus stealing the victory from Trump, [irrespective of its accurate tabulation in three professional certifications]. 

On January 6, 2021, hundreds of angry militant and riotous denizens of the Donald Trump alternative dimension, violently [upon invitation by the miscreant Trump], embarked on an unprecedented  [but failed] attempt to “stop the victory of Donald J. Trump from being stolen” by  storming the Washington, D.C. Capitol Building. They were successful in loudly and violently, shouting their deluded message, in also the perpetration  of four homicides, many serious  personal injuries and damage to government property, but were denied their delusional victory. Joseph Biden, purported protagonist of their false accusations of fraud, was properly and constitutionally declared, President of the United States.

We are mindful of the dreaded possibility that the faux- “patriotic” members of the Trump Underbelly might launch a second attempt to revisit their previous failure, by a reprised attempted coup and may be, conceivably, expectantly awaiting another martial invitation from the neurotic and multi-delusional Trump. Nevertheless, we maintain the expectation that, in the existential interest of the preservation of our democracy, sufficient punitive and deservedly retributive justice will be meted out to all riot participants and their inciters, inclusive of the Orange-haired Nero, which will serve as an effective and enduring deterrent.

-p.

Post # 635 LEGISLATIVE CHICKEN SOUP

If any earthly substance were to contend for the prized ideal of a curative “panacea,” we have no doubt that chicken soup would rank first among the odds-on favorites. This traditionally super “comfort” food is recognized as the undisputed, evidence-based,  most salubrious response to any version of upper respiratory pathology, such as runny noses, sore throats, flu, coughs, and colds, as well as nervous disorders and advanced cases of chronic nostalgia. In some sub-cultures it performs other existential functions, such as, “keeping away the evil eye.” Aside from its apocryphal capabilities as a ubiquitous cure-all, it is generally conceded that, in all  its nuanced iterations, a tasty bowl of chicken soup, reigns as the king (or queen) of comfort foods. While candidly, the scientific jury remains in deliberation as to its curative properties, its value in calming, often improving, man’s perceptive, is universally conceded. 

We would, at this point of the present writing, request advance forgiveness for the forthcoming, contextual sea-change; from a savory, calming and tasteful subject, to a most unsavory, disturbing, and extremely distasteful one, mandated by our intended theme. In common with all right-thinking and moral American citizens, we are saddened and outraged at the daily reports of bigotry and painfully shocked by the unspeakably evil and felonious acts of racial homicide, perpetrated by bigoted white police officers against unarmed black citizens. The present subject, admittedly, is galaxies distant from the wholesome subject of chicken soup; however, we will make relevant both contextual references.

In addition to the shocking tragedy of the widely disseminated, George Floyd murder and the numerous other pernicious, prejudice-based, acts of police homicide, the un-American right wingnuts, have seen fit to promote a tactically undemocratic program to limit, or deprive, black American citizens from their Constitutionally based franchise to vote. The chronic pathology of ignorant and hateful prejudice, as catalyzed by four shameful years of the Donald Trump Presidency seems, ominously and unabashedly,  to have metastasized; and the extant “cockroaches have come out of the walls,” spreading their egregious offal on State Legislatures and to many members of the U.S. Congress.

Congress has recently drafted two relevant bills, purposed to ameliorate the evils of both described categories of tragic and undemocratic, practices. H.R 1 is aimed at protecting the universality of the  American franchise to vote, and H.R. 4, “The George Floyd” bill,  is focused on urgently needed, police reform. We are unreservedly in favor of both [in fact, of every Bill and Legislative Act, enforcing the exercise of universal liberty and freedom]. In addition to their positive intention, they publicly articulate the standard morality and uniform expectations of mainstream society. For these and other reasons, we support these two legislative measures. However, based upon the sad history of the Nation’s less than successful experience, by such legislation, we are concerned with the extent of their empirical impact.

It is, sadly, almost a tautological truth that prejudice persists in the contemporary United States. This unfortunate observation seems to prevail throughout American history, observably irrespective of Statutory prohibition by Statute. A partial, but illustrative, list of some of the relevant Statutes, [not to forget the Constitution itself] clearly prohibiting racial prejudice, enacted in the approximately 150 years since the era of  Reconstruction Laws, includes: The Civil Rights Act, The Equal Pay Act, The Voting Rights Act, the Fair Housing Act, The Education Acts, The Equal Credit Opportunity Act, Various Federal Non-Discrimination acts, and several more. The impact of these illustrative Federal Acts [and a plethora of State Statutes prohibiting discrimination, e.g., in health, housing, wages, employment, licensing and so many others]  sadly and, empirically have not proved sufficient to erase bigotry.

Considering the historical fact that the provisions of the U.S. Constitution, together with the enactment of a myriad of relevant Statutes and decades of legal progressive precedent, have not significantly curtailed race and religious prejudice, we then would wonder, what reasonably, can be the empirical impact of H.R. 1 and H.R. 4? Are we, as optimistic, well-intentioned good citizens, haplessly continuing to commit the hobgoblin act of “foolish” consistency, as wryly observed by Ralph Waldo Emerson? It would appear notable that America’s underbelly of bigots, neither read nor respond to the strictures of Statute; but only to their own overriding, inbred and ignorant perceptions. Are such moral, legislative enactments merely momentarily soothing, like ingesting a savory bowl of chicken soup?

The proposed statutes should, of course, be resoundingly passed; but other, perhaps more promising, and effective solutions can also be devised, possibly: longer mandatory periods of schooling, regular, periodic psychological vetting of police and owners of firearms, and mandatorily harsh penalties for assaults committed by reason of color, race, ethnicity, and sexual orientation. Additionally, people who espouse hatred ought determinably, be ineligible for judiciary, legislative or political office, uniformly denied licensure or engagement in civil service and municipal employment and prohibited to broadcast on the media. There is an existential need for meaningful, creative, and empirically effective measures to protect our American democracy and every one of its upstanding citizens, without exception.

-p.

Post # 634 OF THEE I SING [2]

Readers, old enough to remember the decade of the 40’s, may concur with our recollection, that the prevailing atmosphere of the Nation (or at least, what we saw of it from Brooklyn, New York) was distinguishably different from that of today; good events and not-so-good ones were far simpler and at least, easier to understand. Families living together in the neighborhood knew and cared for each other. Meeting a neighbor, in the street, guaranteed a friendly salutation, if not an extensive conversation on family, friends, employment, or the price of coffee. The neighborhood policeman was an amiable and positive assurance of extant normality and community security. Movies stereotypically portrayed the neighborhood cop, often Irish, as a familiar and reassuring, blue uniformed, fixture  in the resident neighborhood, who in the obvious pretense  of gruffness, shoo ’ed youngsters to school, lest they be marked, “late.” He was known for pleasantly responding to requested directions, for heroic acts of saving lives, delivering babies in extreme emergencies, and protecting the law-abiding citizen.

The significant extent of the intractable,  change in society since the 40’s, may notably be exemplified by a sea-change in the traditional image of the policeman. Today’s cop is no longer the familiar, friendly neighborhood guardian, but an impersonal monitor of citizens’ presumed inclination  (especially, people of color, or divergent nationality) to commit acts of criminality. The media has sadly and shockingly disseminated the many horrendous acts of prejudicial homicide, against people of color, at routine police stops by prejudiced members of the police. Such shocking events are an inarguable demonstration of a new and unsavory breed of Municipal police. Long gone and forgotten is the wholesome image and behavior of the cheery, paternal Irish policeman; today, the honest citizen (especially, the citizen of color) fears the police, every bit as much as he fears the felonious criminal. The constabulary sadly and ominously has evolved in atavistic fashion, backward from responsibly caring guardian to armed and occupying military overseer.

Such perverse morphing of the community police, tragically, seems to be directly parallel and in sync with an observable sea-change in societal interactive relationships in American society. Citizens were envisioned, by the philosophical and optimistic Founding Fathers as responsibly and socially, debating their divergent political opinions; the results thereof, useful, in the decision-making by a Nation, “by and for the people.” The unforeseen result, however, was the development of a rancorous and antagonistic divisiveness into hostile, insular tribal camps of common opinion (“groupthink”). This unfortunate divisiveness, significantly catalyzed by the four-year term of the bigoted and ignorant, Donald Trump not only seems to endure but for some has fully metastasized to the stage of unhealthy and ominous paranoid conspiracy theories. It was this pathological development that led to the unprecedented violent, anti- democratic January 6 insurrection. If those participating, self-styled “patriots” know nothing about the definition of “socialism,” they know astoundingly less about the definition of the word “patriot;” which,  by the way, is not contextually related  to the word, “paranoid”.

The temper of the times has empirically changed, in the order of countless sociological eons since our selected comparative decade of the 1940s, when all America in fraternal fashion, pulled together in the common existential need to win the Second World War. We have written, previously, of our dutiful childhood after-school activity patriotically, collecting rubber and metal from the community for the war effort, in lieu of playing ball. In the Nation, at such time, everyone was conjoined in a common patriotism and fear of the Axis powers.

The current American atmosphere, uncomfortably, reeks with existential danger to the continued existence of our Democracy. This time, it is not the annihilative threat of Hitler and the Axis, as it was in the 1940s. The present arch- enemies of our Democracy are exemplified by the horde of discontented and reductively ignorant members of America’s underbelly, incredibly, spurred on by a former American President himself, its celebrity inspiration and managing functionary. Donald Trump and his many sycophantic followers’ delusional conspiracies and their foundational denigration of truth, human enlightenment, and universal equality must be soundly and unconditionally repulsed, as was the enemy Axis of the 40’s. It may empirically be said, “ We have met the new enemy and it is us”.

In this precarious era, it is not possible to render assistance by simple acts such as collecting empty tin cans and old rubber, as done in the 40’s, in support of our Nation’s military effort. Confronting the contemporary challenge of domestic terrorism does not require materiel, but rather, the pro-active engagement of enlightened American citizens in the prevention of police and civilian acts of un-American bigotry, and by publicly articulating and demonstrating our ardent support for the current definitional aspirations of our Constitution and the State and Federal Statutes, designed to be morally protective of universal American equality.

-p.

Post # 633 MID-MAY LETTER, ELVIRA SWINE TO PAMEDEMIC

Wistful Vista, Ohio

Dear Pam:

Haven’t heard from you for quite a while. so thought I would drop you a note to make sure that you and your family are well and happy (I never worry about the smelly goat). All of us Swines, back here in Wistful Vista, are fine and dandy, things here are just same old, same old. But I have some other news. Your previous house was just re-sold by your purchasers to a very nice, Greek American couple with three children. The new owners are Nick and Anna Filaxis, and have three young children two girls, Arista (10) and Cassandra (7) and a boy, Nicholas Jr (4).

We understand that they relocated to Wistful Vista for employment reasons.  he wife, Anna Filaxis is a licensed dietician and was hired to fill the open vacancy at the High School. Nick is a licensed dentist and bought the local practice from the retiring dentist, Philip D. Molar, DDS. Molar’s practice has been successful for 31 years and I hope that Nick will also do well there. I understand that he is a skilled and experienced dentist, plus also does orthodonture, despite his unfortunate challenge. On first meeting them, I was a little shocked (Pam, you can be sure I kept it to myself!). He is the very first dentist I have ever met whose mouth is entirely toothless.  He also told me and Abel that, because of a very rare pathology of the gums, he was medically forbidden from ever wearing dentures. As a solution to the professional image problem, he said he always wears a white surgical mask when in the office and mostly tries not to smile when not wearing it. Anna offered to teach me to make souvlaki, if I like it, I’ll send you the recipe.

Any new information about your across the road neighbors, the  Salpeters? They sure are mystery to me–  what with not going to church on Sundays and all and keeping that old smelly goat. I tried a few times to discuss them with Abel, but he just snores louder when I go near to him on his rocking chair.

I heard the weather is too hot in El Paso, here it is comfortably cool but much too rainy.

Regards to all from both the girls.

Sincerely,

Elvira S.                                                 

Post # 632 OF THEE I SING

As we read history, it appears that the U.S.A  became a major power after the Second World War. After bailing out  England and France by dint of its defeat of Nazi Germany and Hirohito’s Japan, it saddled a knight’s charger and took on the role of the defender of freedom and a staunch enemy of autocracy.

The temper of the times has eternally been discernable in its contemporary literature and arts. We will refer to the morphing of the context of literature and the arts, in this essay, merely to better convey the nuanced general sentiment of the respective times.

In America, the literature and art following the two World Wars reflected an upbeat in tempo. The Nation having just recently attained the apex of its domestic and international strength, was broadly optimistic in its expectations of continued superiority, militarily, commercially, and in perceived moral image. As expressed in contemporaneous literature and art, the National self-generated hope made for novelistic happy endings, right regularly triumphing over evil, the cute, the shy, good guy ultimately getting the pretty starlet, and dear grandpa miraculously recovering from his dire pathology. This somewhat Pollyannaish National mood, as thus reflected in the context of the literature and arts in the 40’s and early 60’s arts, has been academically catalogued as the “Modern” period.”    

In this same period, despite the admittedly slow progress in the empirical attainment of full and meaningful equality for people of color, women, and mixed gender citizens, the Nation, nevertheless, continued to express its avowed principled aspirations by promulgation of Statutes, [such as the 1965 “Voting Rights Act”]. Such efforts of government, together with the sincere actions toward the accomplishment of such goals, by the greater number of right-thinking citizens, continued to entitle America to its signature role as a Nation, ascribing to the principles of liberty and universal equality.

Yet, unsightly blemishes on our history, like the McCarthy inquisition, Nixon and his “plumbers,”, the divisive and unpopular Viet Nam War, an eternally wide disparity in economic status, disparate views on immigration, disputes over the environment, and other contested issues, cultivated a growing disillusionment with politics and politicians, and gave rise to a new, more realistic mindset. This development can also be seen as reflected in its contemporaneous literature, termed “Post-Modern,” in which the America’s reflexive mom and pop, apple pie state of mind, was superseded by a grimmer, pragmatic perception of reality. The implicit trust in government and elected officials, became somewhat tenuous, in many cases, with good reason. The realistic and down-to-earth context was useful and was positively productive of many upright and empathic citizens involving themselves in activities dedicated to ameliorating society’s traditional injustices.

Two successive four-year Presidential terms of Barack Obama gave right-thinking citizens a much desired feeling of confirmation of the historic promise of America, and of unwavering trust in the vital conceptions of truth, competency, and justice in government. By contrast, however, there has eternally co-existed a perennial cohort of the “underbelly”  of our Nation [viz., the inadequately educated, poorly informed, “flat earth,” discontented portion of the population]. This traditionally useless, category of citizens historically, and mercifully, had existed in an amorphous conglomeration, seldom voted but consistently, and emphatically, gave voice to their shared feelings of hateful, atavistic bigotry.

The unexpected elevation to America’s Oval Office of  Donald Trump, an unscrupulous real estate grifter and former host of a second- rate television game show, was a disastrous inflection point for the Nation and a precursor of dark days of existential peril. The ignorant and egocentric Trump was elected by the combined efforts of the denizens of the underbelly of America with the financial support of many large industrial polluters who, sociopathically, value profits over human health and life, and, like Trump, opposed government regulation. The unprecedentedly large “flat earth” vote, by individuals who normally do not vote, was ensnared by Trump’s tactically demagogic “snake oil” promises of Valhalla and his natural, innate ease to mutually identify, in common, with the reductively ignorant voter.

We have written extensively, on the sordid period of the Trump Presidency; on his incapacity for office, his egotistic ignorance, his degradation of education and science, his patent bigotry, his immorality, and his trampling on Law and the Constitution. We have suggested in earlier writings, that more enduring and irreparable damage was his societally existential damage, to the fundamental nature of “truth.” This insecure, ignorant, and tactically defensive neurotic easily won the highly coveted gold cup for serial mendacity, while disparaging the existential nature of factual truth in general, including, more specifically, the responsible media.

We have stated, above, that the election and Presidential term of office of Donald J. Trump was the inflection point for a truly existential and unique challenge to the existence of [our] Republican Democracy. The initial crack in the democratic seal, was initiated by the amalgamation of the previous disparate and amorphous conglomerate of the unruly, reductively ignorant “underbelly” of America, supporting his election, and, in their continuing, unwavering support. His destructive and dysfunctional, four years of “disservice,” was rewarded with their joyful approval of his unorthodoxy and, in addition, the tactical praise of numerous sycophants who sought his favor for self-interested reasons. They bought his red MAGA hats, attended his lavish functions, cultishly defended his tasteless statements and behavior, and worshipped at the temple of his truly disgraceful, but, perceived by them, personally relatable, persona. Even the prudish, Christian white evangelical groups, unanimously granted him a permanent pass, or renewable, Religious Indulgence, applicable to his multiple acts of adultery, sexual abuse, and mendacious behavior. America had, at no time ever witnessed a similar moral inconsistency and immoral franchise, for anyone, [especially from the inquisitional, White Evangelical Christians] most especially, a President of the United States. In some venues, the disreputable, Donald J. Trump, irrationally and alarmingly and effectively, became an ”untouchable.”

After four long, nightmarish, years of his term, the latter-day orange follicled Nero, was mercifully, defeated in his desire to win a second term. The winner, Joseph Biden, by bright contrast, is possessed of a capable, empathic, and morally directed persona. Predictably, the element of truth, and the acceptance of the Constitutional virtue of the peaceful passage of power from an outgoing President to his successor, weighed less on Trump’s neurotic, Nero-like scale of  importance, than the delusion that he is not a “loser.” This mass of miscreant protoplasm, thereupon, on the sole basis of his neurotic conception of himself as an eternal winner, declared to the American public, and most tactically, to his populistic, ignorant, and cultish base, that the election was “fraudulently stolen” from him.  This delusional act constituted the first such existential crises in our Nation’s democratic history.

 To continue our penchant for literary reference, it was Mark Twain who said,” A lie can travel half-way around the World, while the truth is still putting on his shoes.” But Aldous Huxley is noted, to have  declared, “Facts do not cease to exist simply because they are denied.” Since we have elected to use literary references to portray the tenor of the times, we might, permissibly, say that what transpired after Trump’s outrageous and democratically unprecedented public, declaration, unquestionably, certifies the wisdom of both authors’ observations. Frighting and irrational, Trump’s request to his underbelly base to “Stop the Steal,” was actually adopted by such witless malcontents and, immediately was widely disseminated as truthful [Twain] although Trump’s assertion [made without any factual support] was discredited by three, professional audits which uniformly found that the procedure and count were accurate. [Huxley].

Trump, in the despotic mode of an autocratic leader of a Banana Republic, and in emulation of the Fascist tactic of the “Big Lie,” declared the false and tactical claim of “stolen election,” and sought retaliative action by his loyal base. Responsive to his illegal and immoral “call to arms” Trump’s deluded supporters, on January 6, 2021, chose to enact a violent and deadly insurrection against the Capitol Building and its occupants, loyally spewing the delusional Trump mantra, “ Stop the Steal.”

 We earnestly hope that the despicable orange inciter of this venal insurrection himself, the organizers, and all participants [including the various Christian White Supremacy groups, and the other affiliated and non-affiliated, self-styled “patriots,” (read)  “criminals,” espousing the causes of bigotry and hatred]  will be severely and appropriately punished.

However, a far greater threat was posed by the massive horde of underbelly puppets, who acted in cultish deference to the delusion of a would-be autocrat. Impugning the foundational basis of the vote is no less than an existential threat to the basic and underlying foundation of democracy, itself.

To quote author, Elie Wiesel, the opposite of “love” [in this case, love of our democracy] is not “hate”, it is indifference. A call to action in the protection of democracy should be the signature mantra, of every self-respecting and freedom- loving American citizen; tragic and irreversible damage is predictably inherent in the irresponsible of choice of more comfortable, or passive complacency.

-p.    

Post # 631 [poesie] *QUOTIDIAN DAYS

The hummingbird’s transfixed by red
An infant snuggles to his suck
Down bends pussycat to the bowl
I’ll take coffee with toast and cheese.

Trees imbibe deep in ambient soil
Hopping birds, hell bound for seeds
Horses chew bag- hidden oats
Cows content to chew on cud.

Might this breakfast portend a variant day–
Or yet more, of yesterday’s re-run
Better look again, the Sun’s back up,
To serve until the Luna light.

The Sun shall set at eight o’clock,
A gibbous Moon, arrive at nine.
The dark again precede the light, and
The hummingbird return for red.

*[Quarantine ennui]
-p.

[Leonard N .Shapiro May ’21)

Post # 630 THE NEW GOSPEL

Welcome back to the Dark Ages. You came at a most propitious time. You can witness the subsidence of a deadly plague and as an extra bonus, attend a public ex-communication [Cong. Liz Chaney] for the proven commission of public acts of heresy. We are certain that you will be well pleased and profoundly fortified in your evangelic enterprise.

The current, superseding, Holy Testament, the “Gospel of Trump” has recently attracted millions of ardent devotees and is the new prevailing faith. It conveniently substitutes simply bowing at the altar of Trump, for the wasteful and bothersome act of consulting and referring to accumulated factual knowledge. In contrast, the sole requirement of the religious canon of this new and convenient dogma is an unwavering belief in proclamations of Donald J. Trump, albeit, flexibly altered from time to time. Appropriately devout, religious shrines have been established at Palm Beach’s Mar-A-Lago and the Fifth Avenue Trump Building for devotional services.

In the past, all organized religions, and even enlightened agnosticism, have consistently and unreasonably demanded some acceptable standard of literacy. In organized religion, the devotee was tasked with reading what is called ”The Good Book,” also, prayerbooks, psalms sheets, copies of sermons, and Church notices. The agnostic was expected to study enlightened essays and literature. In the New and (and popular) Gospel, by merciful contrast, the sole demand is unwavering faith the [unsupported, inconsistent] words of the Deity-like, Donald J. Trump. In this special and rarified instance, the words, “Faith” and “Knowledge” are markedly synonymous and empirically redundant. Keeping posted with Trump is staying currently informed; any reality to the contrary is definitionally false and illusionary, schizophrenic, or, frighteningly worse, heretical.

We would describe “Religion” essentially, as a socio-cultural system of identifiable or designated behavior and practice, morality, belief, ethics, and worldview. A religionist, when philosophically or logically required, will eternally be most willing, to obediently substitute faith for factual or empirical knowledge. The contemporary, mindless sycophantic followers of the new Orange Oracle, constitute more than a “cult,” [as previously designated]. By reason of its expansive numbers and general impact, we would, now more accurately, categorize the bizarre phenomenon, as a  “Religion.”

Incredibly, our Nation’s Constitutional structure of a two-party system must now be said to have atrophied into the bizarre phenomenon of one political party, and a religious opposition, viz., Trumpism. The latter, inclusive of groups of white Nationalist bigots and other deluded, “pseudo-patriots,” most of whom are poorly educated and reductively ignorant. No conceivably worse nightmare could have been contemplated by our Founding Fathers who, keenly aware of the tragic historical experience of Europe, wisely and scrupulously, refrained from any reference to a Deity in the Constitution. One wise founder declared, When you put God in, you put man [“Rationality”] out.

Only in this “Mad Hatter” epoch, or perhaps, in this advent of a reprised” Dark Ages,” could Donald J. Trump, the triple-certified loser of the last Presidential election, be able, with the assistance of his loyal base[ the inadequately educated or informed, reductively ignorant, flat-earth population] and, perhaps, some holy orange incantations, to transmogrify himself into a populist religious deity, requiring as proof of religious affiliation, the acceptance of his unreasonable claim of a fraudulent election.

The newly designated Deity angrily proclaimed to his devotees that Deities do not lose elections and so,  by logical consequence it follows, that the election victory was stolen from him by a fraudulent vote count [the ”Big Lie”]. As a Trump invited, zealous reaction, witnessed with profound shock, on public television, large masses of the outraged and deranged faithful, angrily erupted on January 6, 2021, by perpetrating an unprecedented and violent religious jihad, against the Capitol Building, causing death, injury, substantial damage to the building, and far worse, existential damage to the moral institution of Republican Democracy. The shock expressed by mainstream America responsive to this outrageous and felonious act, unfortunately, did not, it appears, mitigate against a new “shibboleth” [litmus] test, the belief in a “stolen vote” for Republican Party acceptability. This development is consistent with the referenced, delusional, completely unsupported, declaration, tactically issued by their newly crowned Deity; the latter, in reality, an ignorant, incapable, immoral practitioner of serial mendacity.

The American Nation and every one of its responsible citizens are morally and existentially mandated to take immediate appropriately deterrent action, against those who encouraged, and those who participated in the insurrection, viz., the “Christian while Nationalists,” ”The Proud Boys,” “The Oath Keepers” and the other affiliated and non-affiliated, delusional unAmerican and bigoted adherents, to the new and odious gospel of Trump, lest this perilous and shameful dark moment in our history, disgracefully metastasize to the degeneration of our admirable and improving Republican Democracy, to an atavistic, autocratic Banana Republic.

-p.

Post # 629 THE COMPELLING SCENT OF CONSPIRACY

The prevailing anti-democratic dynamic, exemplified in the present writing, it now seems, may  best be  described by the two words, “compelling delusion.” Our present use of the word, “delusion,” may be described as a compelling belief in an altered reality, persistently held, despite objective evidence to the contrary. To our understanding, delusional conspiracy belief amounts to a conjoint tendency to affirm and adopt subjective, mutual interpretations of significant societal events based on questionable or no evidence. As will be observed, it is our empirically derived conclusion that the salient impetus for the propensity to acquire such pseudo- intuitive belief, is bias and reductive ignorance; albeit many participants imay candidly, be aware of the relevant truth, but like sheep follow the flock, not wanting to stand out.

Regrettably, a recent widespread tendency in the direction of unhealthy and delusional conspiracy ideation appears to be the salient societal [political] pathology du jour. Like Covid-19 it spreads easily to a suitably receptive host, yet, unlike the onset of Covid, it is demonstrably false, and not easily preventable.

Although, as stated, the bizarre phenomenon of delusional conspiracy ranks high among contemporary societal dangerous challenges, it is definitively not new. Not many generations ago, in many areas such as Salem Massachusetts, wrinkled old ladies, living alone, [especially those blessed with hairy moles, humps, or other unattractive infirmities of old age], were, reflexively, charged by their respective communities with the god-less practice of witchery, and burned at the stake. In Dark Ages Europe, Jews were falsely charged by delusional groups of conspiring gentiles, with poisoning wells, poor harvests, and for the outbreak of plagues. Enlightened scholars who scientifically chose to dissent from the Biblical declaration that the Sun travelled around the Earth, rather than the obverse,[ the heliocentric theory], were condemned to a cruel death for the delusional charge of conspiracy with Satan, and so on, ad finitem, ad nauseum. In recent history, a great many loyal Americans suffered the destruction of their careers due to false allegations of Communist conspiracy by the psychotic Senator, Joseph McCarthy.

Familiar past examples of delusional conspiracy may additionally be recalled such as: The surprise attack on Pearl Harbor, Presidential Assassinations  of Abraham Lincoln and JFK, the mysterious death of Princess Diana, the 9/11 event, the purported toxic results of fluoridation of drinking water, clandestine  government sightings of UFO’s, the danger of autism from vaccination, deep State Government manipulation, government responsible assistance distorted to a [falsely dreaded]  “Socialism”, and, remarkably, the misrepresentation of Planet Earth as round or spherical planet. [manipulated GPS, etc.]

To the best of our ability to discern, the compelling reasons for succumbing to the lure of the irresistible scent of conjoint conspiracy beliefs, albeit, unsubstantiated and delusional, would appear to be fundamentally based on feelings of insecurity and vulnerability; possibly resulting from assumptions of felt detachment from the “more informed and perceptive” societal mainstream. The benefits of participation in such a conjoint conspiratorial contrivances, in addition, satisfy the neurotic need for felt personal acceptance by others, perceived to be in exclusive possession of covert knowledge, tactically hidden or fraudulently withheld from the general public. It thus offers the much needed, ego-inflating feeling of being among those, exclusively “in the know,” to the exclusion of the purportedly more naïve balance of society; and thus, effectively, is a faux displacement of the uncomfortable feelings suffered by reason of privately acknowledged ignorance.

The unexpected elevation of Donald J. Trump to a four-year term in the Oval Office, operated as an efficient catalyst and encouragement to those members of society, psychologically in the market for, or prone to delusional conspiracy. In addition to his four years of embarrassing incompetence, immorality and colossal ignorance, Trump, an unashamed practitioner of serial mendacity, initiated a war against mankind’s existential institution of Truth. He shamelessly introduced the paranoid concept of “alternate facts, attacked the integrity of the media, most especially the venerable and responsible press. He was elected, in large part, due to an unprecedented, demagogically inspired, part of the voting public, referred to by, us as the “underbelly” of the Nation [ i.e., the inadequately educated, ill-informed, bigoted, flat earth population] together with, and financed by, many sociopathic industrial air polluters who value profits over health and life, and like Trump, oppose governmental health regulation.

Donald J. Trump, recently [and mercifully] defeated in the recent election, by the contrasting capable, honest, and humanistic, Joseph Biden was undoubtedly the worst of the several despicable Presidents in American history, even taking Andrew Johnson and a few other Presidential miscreants into consideration. He was, and unfortunately for the Nation, still remains,  the avatar of underbelly immorality, and an efficient and productive manufacturer and instigator of delusional conspiracy memes. His irresponsibly false declarations concerning the Covid-19 pandemic resulted in the unnecessary loss of thousands of unnecessary lives. His statements supporting racial and immigrant bigotry, and colossal ignorance was celebrated by his likewise, reductively ignorant, base of supporters.

Conceivably, the Nation’s most injurious, of Trump’s delusional, false, and dangerous fictions was his use of the fascistic tactic of the “Big Lie;” viz., his outrageous, employment of the fiction that the Presidential election victory was stolen from him by means of a fraudulent vote count. As is the case regarding the etiology of the infectious disease of delusional conspiracy, the paranoid-like declaration was entirely inaccurate. In truthful fact, his errant and self-serving declaration was objectively disproved by three separate and independent election audit companies, uniformly confirming the accuracy and validity of the election count. Trump’s delusional and anti-democratic response to his Presidential loss, contrary to its factually disproven reality, was to unprecedentedly and cynically, proclaim to the public, his delusional and knowingly false claim, that the election was stolen from him. His petulantly angry mantra, quickly adopted by his needy, willing, and chanting  base was, “Stop the Steal!”

Trump’s cultish base, together with certain errant, non-cultish citizens, the latter who, presumably, had the mental capacity to know better, participated in a violent insurrectionist riot, grounded upon the delusional conspiracy, constituting Trump’s completely baseless and neurotic claim. Hundreds of disreputable, armed, and dangerous deluded individuals, stormed the Capitol Building in Washington, D.C., causing mayhem, five innocent deaths, personal injuries (some permanent), and substantial damages to the exterior of the Capitol Building and to portions of the grand lobby and office areas.

It can be said that Donald Trump’s incitement of the shamefully violent riot, by his tactical perpetration of his “Stop the Steal” mantra, including his bizarre, televised call to insurrection, was not only an offense to institutional democracy but also, a World witnessed threat to our Founding Father’s historical experiment in the radical creation of an American Republican Democracy. It is hoped that the obscene violent rioters and their identified chief inciter will be, prosecuted and punished for their outrageous criminal behavior and as an official statement of deterrence concerning the unacceptability of extra-legal citizen action, based upon unsubstantiated or delusional claims.

We, as in previous essays, reference the wise and prescient admonition of Thomas Jefferson, that for a democracy to succeed, it is required to have an informed, educated citizenry. This irrefutable and eternally sound advice has again been demonstrably shown as vulnerable; this time to delusional conspiracies of ignorant tribal inspiration. No responsible citizen should be complacent regarding any attack, conspiratorial or individual, on the vote nor our Nation’s foundational promise.

-p.


Post # 628 PERPETUAL EVOLUTION

Charles Darwin posited his universally accepted (by enlightened minds) evolutionary theory, concerning the Earth’s emerging, developing, and surviving life forms, as studied, and perceived by him in the Victorian Era. We at pliny, would deign to optimistically, suggest that his brilliantly revealed process of empirical evolution still endures and continues to progressively function, specifically with regard to sentient mankind; albeit, less so, as to physical form but, rather, in his eternal spiritual progress in the direction of higher developed sensitivity, secular morality, and societal acceptance of others.

We often wonder about the seemingly, universal understanding that the eons long,  gradual dynamic process of mutational change and development, referred to as, “Natural Evolution,” exists in the limited context as being of finite duration. The evident assumption seems to result in the conclusion, that Earth’s contemporary ambiance, including the configuration and character of its present life forms, both flora, and fauna, during the perceptible past, have attained their static and potentially final state.

Having thus bravely ventured our optimistic and novel general proposition, we would again emphasize our proposal as to such a perpetual dynamics, with the reservation that it specifically and only relates to mankind’s eternal process of gradual cerebral growth and development; and is further distinguished from any physical mutation, relative to the ancient and gradual morphing of his systemic protoplasm.

The underlying and generating engine, productive of Darwinian Evolution as described by him in “The Survival of the Species,” is neither revealed nor definitively known. Those individuals who seem to be instinctively inclined to ascribe unknown phenomena, to Deistic enterprise, undoubtedly, see Natural Evolution through religious spectacles; others of us will merely remain comfortably ignorant. In contrast, our proposed theory of the perpetual continuance of human spiritual and social evolutionary development, is an empirical and experiential phenomenon, having its identified and reliable source as human cerebral energy, naturally expended in man’s eternal practice of human interaction.

The specific venue of our theory’s  eventual, and natural occurrence is not planet-wide, but rather, effectively situated, in the human brain. The brain, as known, is the most complex part of the human body. Such 3 lb. organ is the seat of intelligence, interpreter of the senses, initiator of all bodily movement, and the controller of behavior. As such the brain, inarguably, is the essence of all of the qualities that define humanity itself; and as relevant here, thought, evaluation and consequent action.  

Darwinian [physical] evolution describes uncountably long eons of gradual mutation, best exemplified by the recently discovered tiny late dinosaur which astonishingly, manifested the morphic change to feathers. By contrast, human sociological evolution, is comparatively, rapid, albeit, understandably, not nearly fast enough for those  members of  the human family, who remain, [still] suffering from the atavistic behavior of the Nation’s insufficiently evolved homo sapiens; [the latter, often referred to, by us, as the primitive and atavistic “underbelly” of contemporary society.]

It is our optimistic expectation that the proposed continuation of evolution of mankind (as specified) will ultimately result in a universal sense of shared morality, respect for knowledge and new science, and importantly, respectful acceptance of others of disparate race and belief. Such outcomes will eventually be brought about,  by the engine of the ongoing, natural, healthy, and ameliorative, inter-active experience [ with “others”] and the consequent development of enlightenment and maturity of experiential perception.

One might briefly consult mankind’s long dark history to already discern a perceptibly small, gradual trend towards a growing respect for the development and use of reason and, concomitantly, the moral acceptance of others of disparate race, belief, and ethnicity. Any quick, cursory review of the stages of man’s past centuries of existence, will reveal dark periods of complete ignorance, superstition and illiteracy, plagues, poverty and want, Church and King repression of the human spirit, inquisitions, bigotry, xenophobic and ethnic warfare, and genocide. It was not very many decades ago, that the New World, itself, chose to replicate the Old, in its immoral institution of [black] slavery. It is to be observed, that although, and to various degrees, many elements of man’s dark history, perniciously, still seem to endure [such as Jim Crow prejudice, antisemitism, xenophobia, superstition] it must be conceded that, in general, such institutional, nightmarish phenomena have been ameliorated or  completely eliminated.

As further illustration, the institutional practice of slavery is now outlawed and morally unthinkable. Nevertheless, despite the passage of civil rights legislation, combined with the efforts of right- thinking American citizens, our Nation is still witness to remnants of Jim Crow prejudice among many ignorant (less evolved) citizens. There is a universally accepted legal, pragmatic, and Constitutional, separation between Church and State, nevertheless, religious dogma, like opposition to a woman’s right  to seek an abortion, and to gay rights subsist. In many matters of moral and equitable principle, mankind has shown markedly enlightened progress,  however, contemporarily, the progress of mankind’s progressive, evolutionary march is yet far from its principled (evolved) destination.

In keeping with our consistently stated belief, we have empirically observed that the ongoing scale of progress in mankind’s moral and spiritual [evolutionary] progress, correlates very closely, with the degree of human literacy, education, and the acquisition of mature perception.

We are hopeful of mankind’s naturally developed attainment of its evolutionary goal in its ongoing evolution toward the naturally inherent and naturally destined final state of universal societal morality and positive rational enlightenment.  

-p.

Post # 627 FRUITION [redux] *

In a recently read article, the author had the disturbing temerity to state: “Man’s attainment of old age can be thought of as the transition to a different person, time sharing the same identity.” The not-so-subtle suggestion of the author would appear to be that man in his later years, is a mere semblance of his former self. Assuming the continued presence of a reasonably healthy body and mind, we could not possibly disagree more. With reference to the latter proviso, younger people likewise, have the potential for a good life, but only if they are fortunate enough to have reasonably good health.

While, admittedly,  multiple decades of life, naturally resulting in physical wear and tear, more often than not, are somewhat productive of uncomfortable aches and pains, such phenomena, in the rational scope of things, do not substantively detract from essential happiness nor sustained persona. In fact, the presence of accumulated wisdom and acquired mature perception of those who have led full and appropriately enriching lives is empirically productive of positive feelings of continued happiness and self-fulfillment. The attainment of old age is decidedly not the presentation of pathological disease.

It requires little argument to maintain that the appropriate perch of homo sapiens at the apex of the evolutionary tree exists, essentially, by reason of natural evolution’s generous gift to him of a singularly advanced brain; the same furnishing the innate capacity for experiential learning [ Sir John Locke], advancement and, ultimately, the prized goal of wisdom. The abundance of animals, situated lower on the tree, exhibit a plethora of fauna, physically stronger, more possessed of endurance, quicker and more agile, with senses such as sight and hearing, far superior to those of mankind. Nevertheless, inarguably, it is the advanced capacity for reason, as opposed to capabilities such as strength, speed, agility and advanced senses, that is the ultimate criterion for such extraordinary distinction.

Concededly, the younger man is physically stronger, faster and possessed of greater endurance than the elder. Nevertheless, as stated, the universally accepted anthropological criterion for superiority of the species is determined by its capacity to learn from experience and its advancement toward the goal of wisdom. Accordingly, can it then be correctly observed, logically and empirically, as in the quoted statement, that a person who has pursued knowledge longer, is less valuable or worse, and merely a familiar reminder of his younger persona?

In time, the criteria maintained by [especially the younger members of] popular society, of physical prowess, stature, and youthful appearance, morph by subsequent life experience, into the more developmentally mature and societally significant elements of personal development, and achievement. These features, notably unrelated to physical prowess, are at some point in life, universally recognized to be of true existential importance.  

Accordingly, we see the experientially wise elder citizen as homo sapiens at his destined stage of fruition. Those who have, in the course of their life, invested elective time in the independent pursuit of personal interests, supplemental to their responsibilities as a responsible family member and a productive, working citizen, have been best situated to acquire the goals of growth, insight, mature perception and experiential wisdom. The elder, physically challenged, slower paced and occasionally achy,  members of society, who, nevertheless, are possessed of decades of valuable experience and wise exercise of reason, indeed, may be mankind at its naturally intended (evolutionary) fruition.

To any reader who would be inclined to solely ascribe the motive of this writing to personal self-interest, we would respond that it is based upon contemplative knowledge available, only with sufficient time.

-p. * [see early essay, “IS IT SOUP YET?”]