Serving the Metropolitan Area
By Jack Parnell - retired Congressman and Independent Presidential candidate
Syndicated by Acme Features
Now and agin’, I confess to hauntsomeness
by those "Better Communities" of Ms. Barbara Johnson, no less than by Mr. James Reston's "General Good" ... virtuestans of left and right... as both
make habits of portraying nasty circumstances in terms of the children's shows
on PBS. But contentious politicians... no less than sports-entertainment
figures or the interchangeable scarecrows as shuffle in and out of boy bands,
Apprentice III with Billy Bush or Am-Idol... these are ever with us, fire-ants
drawn to the picnic. Like Trump’s diump, Hillary's villary or thousand points of Bush lite, like straight talk
Geniality sells... especially where affinity replaces productivity. When the incentive to produce tangible wealth diminishes, as posited the late Mancur Olson, "the incentive to seek a larger share of what is produced increases.
"The divisiveness of distributional issues can even make societies ungovernable."
Defective Americans... as fail to kill themselves, take up Islam or zone out on smuggled pills (or go up some clocktower with the shootin' irons and start blasting at a schoolhouse or multiplex)... crave artificial communities to join (whether Tweeter, the NRA’s bitter Pennsylvanians totin’ AK-47s to church or among them neat retreats of sweet elites). Thus the proliferation of 12-step groups, where people confess defectiveness, then slop around blamin' relatives and teachers as damaged their self-esteem. There's communities of one... Dick Nixon walked beaches in dark shoes and a business suit, that other Tricky Dicky shootin' quail, hittin' a lawyer... and golfers who play to maim and destroy, like the Picts intended golf to be played in the first place. Rappers... I tune in to WBTY when it comes in clear from over the line, up in Evansville... and am impressed, if not cheered, by the sheer persistence of playa-haters, gangstas who seem to have no other reason for being than to shoot up people they think of as having more fun in life than they do. "To be a martyr, that's something," boasted the mother of a recent Palestinian suicide bomber. Not so different from them old right-wing golfers like Alice Cooper and Marilyn Manson, these!
"As a species," suggests Naked Ape fellow Desmond Morris, "we are not biologically equipped to cope with a mass of strangers masquerading as members of our tribe."
The social critic Vance Packard repeatedly predicted that the artificiality of the 50's would provoke some sort of backlash, as did occur in those 60's. Then came back-backlash, now so popular among aging playa-haters, as find their children’s music too loud and bones too achy-breaky for all-night orgies of sex, kat and whatever's passing for entertianment at the minute. Of course the nostalgia as some of us pine for is a past as never quite existed. "Man cannot avoid looking backwards as forwards," Mr. Darwin said, and one of his most vehement foes, a local Kentucky gentleman of faith, agreed by telling me he missed the Communism. In fact, he applauded the Jazzies and mourned Osama; he wished a new Stalin or Hitler would come along... too, somewhere... to get America "right by God" - anybody's God. Remember: Dennis Hopper… Captain America and Frank Booth… died collecting Warhols, selling investment opportunities and shilling for Bush Two (Cheney I could understand, but Doubleyou?) and, after Bruce Jenner changed his name and sex to Caitlyn, she went into the tank for Ted Cruz, then for Djonald Unchained until POTUS revealed his true colors!
At least technology's makin' the prostitution obsolete. Well before the dawn of Net voyeurism, Mr. Packard arrived at the conclusion that people increasingly preferred television characters to flesh and blood neighbors, relatives and friend inasmuch as they were more pleasant and diverting than real people. Also, those who were not could be turned off! "Perhaps," he allowed, "we are witnessing a withdrawal syndrome." Same story, different… but more narrowcasted blogcast… mediums these days.
So, if 'Murkans would rather cocoon with smartphones, narrowcast talk radio, Internet and cable porn, interaction with others can still take place remotely... prob’ly by sex with robots, someday… but, in the mean-while, advocatin' gumment persecution of those other guys, as is called "Communitarianism" (never to be mistaken for the flat out Communism). Fast-talkin' fellow Amitai Etzioni invented or, at least, marketed this term... Communitarianism plays among both neo-liberals and compassionate conservatives because it says, with a wink, that it will do things to things nobody much likes; broken windows, graffiti, gum on the sidewalks, dogdada... not so different, truth be told, than what our own CNC block-militias promulgate…
Communitarians mean, of course, they want to do mean things to people, mostly as come poor and dark as them that slink through The Donald’s nightmares. Now some spoil-sports contend it's all about putting Aryanism (if not the exactly that Arianism as slunk underground after the Council of Nicaea in 325 AD) back into communities, but I will point out that our 21st century Leni Riefenstahl, Dinesh Di Souza, seems to like the concept, as did the former-Aygee Ashcroft's Vietnamese Deputy. Judge Long Dong Thomas, too.
It's the code talking. Boys from good homes as write their names on schoolhouse walls get the parents called in and maybe billed for damages so they take the keys to the Tundra away for a week or two... those from the wrong side of the tracks get five years in some adult prison, a lifelong ticket to joblessness and a fifty-fifty crack at AIDS (or, thanks to our munificence in welcoming about half of Russia's criminal population, tuberculosis... as poets used to call "consumption"). You got patriotic parking spaces, now, for “Government Officials” and “Combat Veterans” to go along with the handicapped spaces at SmartMart and Etzioni waxes sentimental over truck stops with special stools and showers for "Drivers Only", tho’ it's a short, slippery step to taping signs back up over the public water fountains.
Desperate times, as he calls ours'n, "call for something beyond the pale."
One very pale Communitarian
Things bottom out, as usual, in Alabam' where State Public Safety Director, Jim Alexander codified ticket-writing quotas as a minimum one per hour. "We have to do evaluations and the only way for evaluation of troopers is what kind of product he puts out," Jim said. (The italicism's mine... you know, there was a day when product meant bread and beef and beans... steam, steel beams and beer and s’mores. No more! No dreams. Not here!)
Most upright citizens, Amitai says, so hate crime that they'd support police checkpoints in "drug-infested neighborhoods". Not in their own pale Rush Limbaugh, Internet oxy-contin 'hoods... thick with the gentry of a sort that even Adam Smith, Capitalism's right invisible hand, called "decadent agglomerations of merchants, commonly ambitious of becoming country gentlemen!", each with five to eighteen bottomless prescriptions for their feelgood pellets... but over there, on those people's mean streets.
"You don't know it's over," Ralph Reed, that cute munchkin of the MicroTimeTM Pit (as sidetracked his own political career playin' hide-the-casino with Native American-type Indians), gloats over fallen communities of surplus Americans, "until you're zipped up in the body bag."
Which talk of body bags
brings me round to the role of the Second Amendment in resolving contradictions
through discrimination: "A well-regulated militia, being
necessary to the security of a
A gallows on every streetcorner? Watch crime rates plummet through the basement into the sub-basement and some of those cockroaches in Congress book the first flights available to Zurich or the Cayman Islands!
"People want to improve their community," as remarked Paul Samuelson in Barry Bluestone and Bennett Harrison's "Deindustrialization of America", "not abdicate from it."
CLICK the CATFISH to go to PAST and PRESENT EPISODES of "BLACK HELICOPTERS" and to OTHER JACK PARNELL COLUMNS