One year ago many of us were riding the emotional high of the Barack Obama win, unless you were a rapture-ready-rightie disappointed that Palin/McCain would not be in power to hasten the return of the "Messiah." Most normal Americans were happy, secure in the fact that Raisin Brain would soon be ending his illegal occupation of the Oval Office and relieved that the Cheney Cabal had not successfully devised a method for retaining Executive Branch power by (further) thwarting the US Constitution and declaring Martial Law. Last holiday season seemed a happier, simpler time; full of the hope and promise of meaningful change, and a restoration of our once great American ideals, sense of justice and standing in the world.
Flash forward to the end of 2009 and we seem to be suffering a
collective case of what Mike Malloy calls "anticipointment," that depressing
combination of having hopes raised only to have them ultimately unfulfilled.
For example, the possibility of single-payer health insurance dried up faster
than last year's holiday poinsettias, with Obama seeming to give up that fight
before there even was one. And now even the idea of a public option seems a
faint glimmer as we prepare to settle for some vastly diluted version of the
strong health insurance reform we anticipated this time last year.
One year ago we celebrated the holidays with hopeful messages to our troops abroad, confident that the insane Bush Terror Wars would finally come to an end and we would soon have our loved ones safely back home with us, possiblyby the holidays this year. Instead we have an escalation of our presence in Afghanistan and more bloodshed and violence in that country as well as Iraq, and no end in sight to the unwinnable, immoral, undeclared conflicts that have lasted longer than World Wars One and Two combined.
The Flying Monkey Right's desire for national failure and the warhawks' cries for unending carnage seem to be coming true. Perhaps we set the bar too high for the new administration. After all, it took up to eight years for the Bush Crime Family to cripple the economy, erase all of the Clinton-era surpluses, destroy our standing in the world with illegal detention and torture practices, refusing to join the global effort to combat climate change, circumvent the Constitution to weaken civil liberties and our right to privacy, and kill and maim tens of thousands of our troops (and innocent Muslim civilians) in two wars.
It is too much damage to expect one man -- in one year -- to erase. So, why do we still feel a sense of disappointment? Maybe it's simply fatigue. This time last year we did not believe we would still be standing in war protests, or unemployment lines, or holding on the phone with our insurance carriers begging to know why our claims were denied. Our reserves are depleted from the fights on what seems like every possible front: socioeconomic, political, military, ideological and all the rest.
It is emotionally exhausting and we need a break. No wonder mindless television shows are so popular today, they provide at least a momentary distraction from the ongoing tedium of news stories that reinforce the growing reality we all dread -- that there will be no meaningful change to any toxic government policy, no true reform, no miraculous recovery or restoration of our Republic, at least not in the foreseeable future.
But no matter, word is Tiger Woods is a sexaholic with a veritable harem of girlfriends scattered about, and is bribing his wife to remain married to him. We'll talk about that instead.