What’s the point?

So, news reports are coming out this morning that National Guard response to the January 6th insurrection were delayed because of rule changes the day before. While that explains only a part of the incomprehensibly inadequate law enforcement response on that day, it opens a tiny window on the scope of the many layers of bureaucracy involved in this debacle. When one peers through such an opening, you have to wonder exactly what you’re seeing. Are you seeing a conspiracy? Are you seeing a second-level (or top level) effort to undermine democracy by making the certification of general election results impossible? Are you seeing the mere conglomeration of random chaotic elements that were energetically bound to create a desired result? Or something else? Personally, I could go long and hard in the wondering about all of this, but…I got stuff to do and at some point, I’m going to have to step away from this keyboard. But…

…I have to go there, at least briefly. I can’t forget that a while back, which now seems like a thousand years ago, the former POTUS was opining about the possibility of civil war in this country. I can’t remember the exact trigger for that discussion, but I believe it had something to do with government’s role in providing social aid for citizens. This was pre-COVID. As usual, part of the argument was that government (national) shouldn’t be responsible for setting that kind of policy, that it was up to the states. So, if some states opted to not expand Medicaid, that was up to them. Hm. Given that reasoning, it should have been no surprise when the White House opted out of composing comprehensive policy for pandemic response. But I digress.

At any rate, the mention of civil war stands out in my memory, no matter why it came up. There was the distinct blush of acknowledging the rage of so many who had their backs against the wall financially, but a veritable pallor in recognizing the root cause of those circumstances. Despite official reports of job growth and economic bloom at the time, there were a LOT of people out of work. Unemployment at the time, however, didn’t look the way it looks now, and most folks could still go out and have beer and wings at a sports bar, or at the football stadium. So, there was some anesthetic that, I believe, numbed response to the ongoing pain of so many who remained jobless even then. To add insult to injury, the glowing reports of economic growth didn’t match the depletion of social services, so there was even less assistance – and more blame – for those needing a way to survive.

The glowing reports, in my opinion, seemed to create a false bubble of positivity and many were encouraged to hide their heads in the warm sand of the vacation excursions. Somewhat like the Wicked Witch in the Wizard of Oz gleefully directing Dorothy and her posse through the poppy fields…the poppies…the poppies will put them to sleep. The poppies, in that fantastic world, were more than likely opium, and put them to sleep they did. While the Wicked Witch continued weaving her web to further imperil the hapless travelers when they awoke. While the Flying Monkeys were doing pushups and getting ready to wreak more havoc. I hesitate to call U.S. Senators flying monkeys, because I haven’t seen any of them become airborne yet, but the havoc-wreaking energy seems to be very similar. But again, I digress.

By the time COVID response hit, it hit hard, and when states had no choice but to shut down, the bottom fell out of the false bubble. We didn’t have the colorful, hazy film of soap to cover the reality of the dirty water we were swimming in, and … despair began to set in. Many who truly believed that life was good for everyone had no choice but to face the reality of the day, and nobody liked it. The emotional toll has been nearly insurmountable for a lot of us, and a retreat to fantasy is what has been required in many cases. I believe that’s where Q-Anon comes in, that’s where believing that today is going to be the Second Coming of a chubby, scowling, and naked Emperor. That’s where all of us are afraid. Very afraid. Politics is politics, but nobody expected a pandemic. We can argue about taxes and policies and job growth all day, but the pandemic has pushed us into a new level. Our reptile brains are activated, because this virus can kill people, and it has No amount of money or privilege or material possessions can grant us immunity from this microscopic collection of proteins that can end us. And that’s a whole nother ball game, where a couple of folks have even learned to take off the Rolex before descending into the inner city in search of an early dose of the vaccine.

Back to the civil war thing, though. As I watched reports this morning about rule changes for the National Guard, that prevented them from responding in a more “nimble” fashion on January 6th, I had no choice but to wonder if that could have been a concerted effort to at least enable the violence that we saw unfold. There are so many reports of these usually inconsequential pixels of the bureaucracy that were modified, or stood down, or unfunded just prior to the insurrection. Having worked in local government in my lifetime, I have seen things like this happen. It doesn’t happen the day before, either…it goes on while everyone is asleep in the poppy fields. I have no choice but to compare the response of law enforcement in various metropolises, included D.C., in relation to the protests and riots following George Floyd’s death with January 6th. I have no choice but to recall seeing militaristic response to protests, generally lumped together under the BLM banner, with laser sights visibly marking protesters’ bodies, canine units, heavily armed officers in full riot gear, military tanks. Seeing the absolute, and terrifying, inadequacy of the response of a handful of Capitol and D.C. Metro Police officers abandoned to resist the thousands of revved up insurrectionists on January 6th has to make you wonder. It has to. There are myriad justifications for why the response on January 6th was what it was, and none of that seems reasonable to me. When protesters – peaceful protesters – were forcibly cleared from the Washington Square area near the Capitol to enable a photo opportunity for the POTUS (the infamous Bible shot, in front of a church that didn’t give permission for such use of their edifice), you have to wonder. And wonder I do.

Back in the 70s, after the murder of Sharon Tate and others in the horrific days of the Charles Manson Family, Manson’s philosophy was raised to a high level of scrutiny. Most people wrote him off as a psychopathic and criminally insane aberration, but I recall very distinctly why he seemed so inordinately depraved to me. First, he had some kind of inexplicable hold on his followers, enthralling them beyond all reason. Women uncharacteristically murdered for him, mutilated themselves, and did not accept that he was an abusive wraith with no moral compass. At least a couple of them are still in prison, denied parole at every eligibility hearing. Manson’s goals, as he proudly stated them, had nothing to do with these women…had nothing to do with anything but Charles Manson and his gratification in realizing total control over these people. But, his ultimate goal, as he described himself, was “helter skelter”. A race war. He was going to engineer horrific murders and crimes, blame it on Black people, and that would start the ultimate race war, armaggedon as far as he was concerned.

When I hear references to the President of the United States surmising that another civil war in this country is not undesirable, I get he same feeling of depravity and hopelessness that I felt when hearing Charles Manson calmly describe his vision of helter skelter. But Charles Manson had control of fewer than 50 acolytes. The President of the United States could steer millions of people to his way of thinking. And in some respects, he did just that. There are still people who truly believe that our current elected President is illegitimate, that election results of the last general election are false. That last year’s Presidential election was fraudulent, rigged, not valid. Reality doesn’t seem to be any part of the equation; it’s too painful.

I am sure there are some people out there who are waiting for this day to end with bated breath, on the outside chance that a cataclysm is about to occur, sort of like the Rapture in some Christian belief structures, where the illegitimate ruler is ousted and the true Savior is reinstated, to sit at the hand of God. (can’t remember whether it’s the right or the left hand of God, but no matter) The religious symbolism cannot go without mention – deposing the false leader, and reinstating the one true leader, sounds an awful lot like sectarian vision of the second coming of Christ. I’m sure there is evidence in the Book of Revelations for visions that can be attributed to the progression of this prophecy…and the association of many who believe in this apocrypha with this sectarian Christian tenet is clear. I do not discount anyone’s beliefs, or faith in them, right up to the point when they infringe on my right – or anyone else’s – right to life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness. What does God need with a riot helmet, or a Congressional lectern? What does God need with a flag? If God is omniscient and omnipotent, what does God need with anything mankind can contrive? To my feeble logic, it’s laughable to presume that we humans could produce anything tangible that could not be instantaneously manifested by an all-powerful deity. Me thinks we are victims of our own hubris.

There was a space hurricane over the North Pole of the planet for around eight hours yesterday, or day before leading into yesterday. Apparently, this hurricane dumped a boat load of electrons into the atmosphere. I’m no scientist, but I think negative charge is not always a bad thing. Excess negative charge can repel all kinds of stuff that’s not good for us, and there is some talk about excess negative charge that can repel things like viruses and other microscopy. Negative charge also creates static, and if you’ve ever had your clothes sticking together after being in the dryer, or touched a metallic surface after sliding around on carpet, it’s really annoying. Maybe that’s what’s going on with all of us…we’re sticking together, and it’s really getting on our nerves. We’re not used to sticking together, and it’s not all that comfortable, and probably a tiny bit painful. When my socks stick together right out of the dryer, I usually give them a violent shake until the charge clears. Maybe that’s what we all need…a violent shake until we clear the charge. Sometimes when I shake my socks like that, it doesn’t really work, and my socks continue to attract unwanted objects of opposite charge for a time. So, maybe we need to be stuck together for a while, have some other stuff be attracted to us, and let the charge clear of its own accord. I’m just not quite sure about that. Not sure at all.

Published by annzimmerman

I am Louisiana born and bred, now living in Winston Salem, North Carolina. Fortunately for me, I was already living in NC before Hurricane Katrina decimated my beloved New Orleans. An only child, I now feel that I have no personal history since the hurricane destroyed the relics and artifacts of my childhood. As I have always heard, c'est la vie. My Louisiana roots show in my love of good coffee, good food, and good music. My soggy native soil has also shown me that resilience is hard-wired in my consciousness; when the chips are down (or drowned)...bring it on.

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