It’s always sad when reality turns out to be, well, real. There’s a strong human desire to build fantasies that fit some preconceived pattern of how things should be. In the right setting that can be a good thing by creating goals and objectives that can gather followers and slowly build a consensus on how things should become. In times of great change this seems to turn in on itself becoming a slow spiral into denial and ignorance driven by a desperate desire to hide in some melancholic, dreamlike past. Except melancholy can turn ugly because the lost past is a personal loss and is actually an imagined past seen as a denied future. And a lost future means someone must be made to pay.
That, of course, is where we are in the US today. The basis of the past that is being denied existed in a different world and was structurally limited for everyone except the white male population. A slot was allowed for white female participation with careful gender specifications. A critical set of lessons were not learned in the first two hundred years of this nation despite the high ideals encoded in the founding documents and the brutal suppression and genocide of indigenous and imported non-caucasian peoples became institutionalized as invisible. The steady growth of the nation and successful creation of materialist wealth justified the systems for enough of the population that blindness to diversity became permanent. The construction of a justifying philosophy of greed and constantly repeated mantra of opportunity, despite the obvious limitations and growing distortions, held through much of the twentieth century. And it is this worn myth that was used to manipulate the most exploited parts of the old working and middle class for political power. This was done by an intellectually bankrupt Republican Party that had substituted white supremacy, the mindless greed of a kleptocracy, and the twisted beliefs of bigoted, exclusionary religion for legitimate, conservative ideals.
But major phase shifts deal with failed ways of seeing the world and, even more so, myths erected in the name of those failed world views by replacing their language with new. Enough people begin to see the problems rather than the illusion that they start to look for a better way. And there is always a better way . Each human generation goes through a version of this as they see the limitations of their parent’s ways of explaining problems and the ideals that they use to judge the world. The old ways don’t answer the questions that need to be asked and, often, don’t even recognize those questions at all. If you aren’t asking the right questions any answers are meaningless. With fundamental change the gap between historical myth as justifier of a failing system and the struggle to find a new consensus that asks the right question to have hope of new, working answers builds extreme social pressures. Reality begins to destroy the myth usually seen as the emperor’s new clothes.
Obviously we have some very hard reality coming down on us exacerbated by the people who were able to hijack the government of this country in the name of near total denial. The very process that made that possible was, never the less, agreeable to a significant minority. The extremity of accepting a competing imperial state’s technical assistance in a coup to place a clearly incompetent and minority group in power solely on the basis of it’s lip service to the myth is indicative. However illegitimate the election there were enough people ready to believe it to doom this country and the planet to what may be a terminal disaster. That fact that their delusions were so strong as to attempt to deny physical reality is clearly not a realistic expectation. And reality is not subtle as it comes with rising seas, 150 mile per hour winds, and growing threats from slightly smarter fools now with the weapons we invented for profit. Capitalist systems can only see short term gain and are always incredibly surprised when the consequences of that come home to roost. We have two hundred years of very ugly chickens arriving by the day and Trump was the leader of the flock.
The clarity of the new reality after months of stunned confusion is exciting but only until you remember the people that are clinging to the tattered veil of the old myth. Compassion and mindfulness will make it overwhelming for us all as millions are driven from their homes by massive “fake” hurricanes intensified by human global climate change, come in rapid succession. Even the bulk of the owned, mainstream media is struggling to build climate change back into their reality. It was originally there as a straight scientific theory and then fact but had to be rooted out as the myth wouldn’t allow it. You can ignore causes and deny facts but it's not legitimate to ignore news of billion dollar storms,widespread destruction and growing death lists.
But great effort is being made to find some diversion from the new reality. Threatening nuclear annihilation on North Korea worked for a couple of weeks but can’t compete with giant, fake hurricanes that are suddenly real in your own backyard. It’s already being deemed as insensitive to talk about climate change while people are experiencing and then digging out and burying their dead from the effects. The logic of that insensitivity is not readily apparent but at least it’s an attack of some form. The best the that the Trumpists can come up with seems to be an attempt to again manufacture some sort of voting suppression play over college students voting while resident in New Hampshire. That is a sign of desperation as well it should be.
I see a major inflection point in the next few weeks
It’s going to get very tiresome as the deniers ram through executive orders attempting to block reality and increasing misery for millions including their own followers. They have no choice. Their collapsing view of this planet cannot allow the changes that have already taken place. What little logic remains to them must be held on to. But reality is coming hard and fast as predicted and it will spread as more of the phase shift builds in geometric progression. Unfortunately few people understand this.
I see a major inflection point in the next few weeks. Unless we are incredibly lucky the storm damage will be far beyond the ability of an increasingly damaged federal bureaucracy to handle simultaneously with its internal destruction. As I’ve said previously, hundreds of thousands of homeless people, in the wake of the storms, that are denied support and insurance that was available until this year are going to reach an epiphany about the role of the public institutions that we own. Who the hell are they working for? And, no, they are desperately needed so don’t tell me that you are going to destroy them for my own good. Adversity making me strong and the destruction of our social infrastructure making me free to become my own millionaire while I die from polluted water is not going to play well. Let’s hope it’s not as bad as i fear it cold be. But that is not all. . .
Remember the problem of North Korea. This is not a simple problem and the brutal reality is that almost everyone in any position of international authority is considerably more intelligent and less mentally disturbed than Trump and his collection of vicious opportunists. One of the greatest bits of true advice is not to underestimate your opponent. Kim Jong-un may not be a nice person but his position as the third generation of a family of dictators who grew up being trained to use people and to eliminate them as soon as they became a threat makes him a very dangerous person. He appears to be fairly intelligent and seems to be playing Trump like a violin much to the amusement of Putin.
This is particularly hard is Trump’s incompetence is most complete in international relations. Other than the location of properties he has put his name on it’s obvious he has little idea where these places are or why they are important. It’s important to remember why the Kim family’s goals have always been. Kim Jong-un has no interest in picking a fight with US except to remove US support for South Korea. He, and his father and grandfather, wanted and wants only to create a hermit kingdom the size of the Korean peninsula hence his massive army and military capabilities bought with the starvation of hundreds of thousands. As everyone on the planet now knows Trump is a swindler and has absolutely no commitment to any agreement. This was often termed “honor” in the past but that word has no meaning for people with Trump’s specific mental condition. This, of course, plays into the hands of a trained manipulator. Kim is betting that he can scare Trump into cutting South Korea loose. Trump will walk away and the Chinese, who have just moved military and naval forces into Korean waters for “exercises”. China will need to act decisively to keep the Korean peninsula from exploding.
One option that has struck me is for China to broker a reunification of Korea with Kim Jong-un in titular leadership but with Seoul and South Korea in a special economic zone modelled on Hong Kong. Putin would have to come in for that to work but that is affected by his level of control over Trump. As you can see this is already far past the ability of the Trump regime to understand not to mention Trump’s remaining hardcore supporters.
And last, but not least, it appears that Mueller is working a very complex timing scenario. There is, even on the surface, vast criminal evidence against Trump’s entire family operation. He and everyone involved in his campaign are walking dead. But how do we handle this? Paul Manafort seems to have been squealing like a stuck pig for weeks. Trump’s sons can’t open their mouths without incriminating themselves. Too many criminals with far too much marked money, if not blood, on their hands so where do you start. From the discussion I’ve seen it would appear that action may be taken by New York state to prevent presidential pardons but this will be the standard conspiracy approach to pick a weak link (again, where to start) and have that link provide the iron clad evidence to bring down the whole gang. But Trump may try to fire Mueller as special counsel in the confusion following Irma or the next giant hurricane.
The entire US political scene has become a classic plate spinning act. Which plate falls first. And what comes after? But Saturday nights are when we worry about all the disasters in motion. It’s time to look at the future again beyond the disasters as this complex, nonlinear process is moving to a very new reality.