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Saturday, January 19, 2008
Something Wicked This Way Comes
I remember standing in my backyard as a kid one sultry day in late autumn. We lived in Texas on the edge of the Great Plains and it had been an unusually warm spell. The sun was going down, but you could still feel the moist heat rising up from the grass.
Not a blade of grass moved. Birds weren't even chirping. If you grew up in Johnson County, you knew what was coming without checking the weather report. When it came, it was a blast of frigid wind that cut through the thin T-shirt I was wearing like little knives. The temperature began to drop rapidly and black clouds boiled up out of the north.
For some reason we call them "Blue Northers", perhaps for the color it turned your skin. The weather itself was more black than blue and used to frighten me. Our house was a hundred years old and the wind whipped through the walls and pushed up through the floor making the linoleum breathe like some sort of living thing while the wind groaned outside.
But what I most remember were those eerie minutes before the front hit. You knew the signs. You understood what was about to happen, but you just stood there mesmerized, waiting. Like watching the opening scenes of a horror movie.
Lately, I've been watching the news, reading the papers, books and magazines; watching history unfold in front of my eyes. It feels like watching a 'Blue Norther' roll in.
You can see it coming and you know you can't do anything about it. There are forces in the world that wish to determine what we all think, what we all do and how we all behave. These individuals believe that a highly intelligent elite (namely them) can and should make decisions on our behalf so that the world will be a safe and orderly place for us all (and particularly for them).
They call themselves conservatives. They call themselves liberals. They hide in plain sight. They meet in secret to determine which way the world should go. You only see evidence obliquely. When it appears that events are inevitable no matter how much ordinary people may want things to go differently, you see the collective wisdom of the elite at work. They are a vast, unwieldy bureaucracy, but they are all true believers.
Have you noticed that no matter who is elected to govern us, things never change. Here in America, the last bastion of liberty, we are rapidly falling victim to the very ills that led to mass migrations from Europe, Asia and practically every place else on Earth to America. That illness is and has always been the acceptance by the general populace that there is a "ruling class" who control by birthright. In Europe it was taught to children in fairy tales about "real" princesses and princes who, once they discovered they were truly noble, immediately ascend to rule the kingdom and all the peasants are made happy. Tragically, most of our Old World ancestors kept on believing in the divine right of kings even as the royalty became more inbred, effete and insane and brought bloody war and disaster down upon the very people who propped them up. The ones who realized that the divine right of kings was absolute balderdash, loaded up the truck and moved to America as fast as the cattle boats could take them.
Tragically, in our country, the general populace is now beginning to believe in an American ruling class. We obsess over celebrity princes and princesses as surely as any Old World country's citizens have ever obsessed over the doings of their dissipated nobility. We faun over the scions of powerful political and financial families as though they should naturally assume positions of power by right of birth. The Hiltons, Kennedys, the Rockerfellers, the DuPonts - all represent a powerful American nobility who are routinely summoned to councils, forums and working groups to share their thoughts on what should be done to bring order to the messy world we live in. We call actors and musicians to testify before Congress and TAKE THEM SERIOUSLY. It's slightly more democratic than the old world nobility, but only slightly.
The trouble with people treating you like privileged royalty is that pretty soon you begin to believe your own propaganda. The trouble with that is that nobody's that smart. No group of people, no matter how gifted can possibly control the "vast unwashed masses" well enough to insure a secure and happy society. It's a tempting idea, but it won't work.
It's like the feeble attempts we make to engineer complex eco-systems. It doesn't work. Eco-systems are so complex we can never allow for all the unintended consequences of our interference. Apparently only God has the capacity to balance something so vast and complex as a forest or jungle or prairie.
It's the same with human society.No matter how much we try social engineering, we create more problems than we solve. The war on poverty only locked more people into poverty. Efforts to manipulate the economy through price controls failed dismally. Efforts to transform the transportation system through laws that favored one transportation provider over another only succeeded in making us vulnerable to foreign influence and control. We're crippling our small business community through oppressive regulation and a Byzantine tax code that favors large corporations that can afford teams of lawyers and accountants to game the system to their advantage.
The worst governments in history have been those with strong and powerful leaders and lots of laws to "benefit" the people. When the people aren't actually "benefited" by those laws and controls, the people who mention that things aren't going so well get lined up and shot, hung or beheaded. When someone tells you they're doing this for your own good, you want to watch your wallet and your liberty.
America has always been something of a free-wheeling refuge for the tired, poor and huddled masses- a land of opportunity for the world's liberty-loving nonconformists. These guys were tired, poor and huddled precisely because they were trapped in oppressive, top-heavy societies that cared more for order than for liberty. America was the world's last refuge for those who wished to be truly free. America then proceeded to leak freedom to the rest of the world.
The problem with being the last bastion of freedom is that if America falls, there's no other place left to flee to.
Don't get me wrong; I don't believe there's this huge conspiracy to steal our liberties from us. It's not an organized conspiracy - not that at all. It's more of a confluence of desires. These guys want to make sure ordinary people are quiet, compliant and above all, do not rise up and murder the rich folk in their beds. They mean well, but there's also another element in play here.
Wealth and power tends to naturally select for folks who rather enjoy the acquisition and holding of wealth and power. I believe what we're beginning to see happening in the world is the working out to its logical conclusion of the original sin! No, not the tasting of an apple in a quiet garden. It's the one that took down Lucifer, the proudest of the angels - the lust for power! The inexplicable need to be like God- or more precisely to actually be God.
Why do you think our universities, the media, politicians and captains of industry love the idea of socialism so much? It's about control. It's the best scratch for the itch for power. It's smart, rich people keeping the peasants quiet and calm, herding us like cattle.
Well, I'm from Texas and I know what's waiting for us down at the end of the cattle chute and it ain't an all expense paid trip to Cabo San Lucas!
Something is in the wind, folks and when it comes down, I believe it will happen so fast that most of us won't realize we've lost something precious.
When that happens, I for one will start looking for the rescue fleet to arrive....
I don't know about you guys, but I'm ready to go home. This experiment's just about done and it's a time for God to stick a fork in it.
That awful power, the public opinion of a nation, is created in America by a horde of ignorant, self-complacent simpletons who failed at ditching and shoe-making and fetched up in journalism on their way to the poorhouse. -Mark Twain