Rot, as least as far as fish are concerned, starts at the head. Corruption is so rampant in the U.S. Government Inc. that Americans can no longer discern truth from fiction. The Congress, the President and the Supreme Court, lie with impunity, and without fear of legal reprisal or accountability. Network news is a melting pot of misinformation as congress, and its corporate managers, are proving the old maxim "nice guys finish last."
When the borders that define right and wrong - truth or lie - are no longer clearly discernible moral and ethical considerations are reduced to, at best, perhaps some occasional twinge of conscience. "There is no rule against distorting or falsifying the news in the United States." Thus the gauntlet was thrown down by a Florida Appeals Court in 2003.
Two investigative journalists, working for a Fox News affiliate, refused to falsify a report that exposed one of the station's advertisers for lying through its teeth. Fox News owner Rupert Murdoch prevailed at trial when the reporters brought a wrongful termination suit. His self ascribed license, to enable lying over the American people's broadcast spectrum, was qualified as a quid pro quo of anything goes. An impromptu poll: would Americans prefer the truth over lies?
When truth becomes a distant and increasingly meaningless consideration, the lie takes on a life of its own. Going back and trying to reinsert truth is like stuffing tooth paste back into the tube. Like any rot, or cancer, the spread of corruption is exponential. A nation that accepts the dishonorable as a condition of free market capitalism has but a short distance to fall. The American people, in the final analysis, are the guilty party. The poison works from the inside out. The absence of leadership is only a symptom of the larger illness. The corruption has reached the point of no return when right wing regressives are convinced the sky is falling because such imbeciles as Limbaugh and Beck say so.
The Congress is largely composed of precisely those kinds of people who are most unsuitable for elected office. They are motivated to their positions of power, not by inspiration of moral and ethical regard, or even patriotism. Their motivation is one of personal opportunism, and any consideration of the national regard escapes them completely. They can only conform to their narrow view of what's best for themselves.
Congress confirms its delusional nature by presenting spectacular caricatures of itself. It begs to be taken seriously as it wallows in its pretentious self regard. Each member will rush forward to assure anyone who's listening that they, unlike the others, hold the interests of Americans dear. Thus the vast conspiracy is reduced to an imbroglio of divested interest. Yet Congress persists, like a knat or mosquito. It labors to maintain its fiction as it demands, like any fiction, the suspension of belief.
Congress sets up a deafening racket over health care reform. Single payer! The public option! But the shouting has never been about providing health care to Americans. There is bi-partisan agreement that tort reform must accompany any version of health care legislation. Tort reform is all about barring the court house door from ordinary Americans. Health care is the vehicle Congress will use to sneak tort reform under the public's radar. Any self respecting, regressive right winger, will welcome tort reform with enthusiasm.
The democrats conspicuously struggle to bring health care to all Americans. The republicans fear the insidious advancement of socialism. Better thousands die than such perversion prevail, and campaign contributions from the health care lobby dry up. It's a government takeover Americans are ceaselessly told. Granny will be euthanized if the liberal plot known as health care reform passes into law. There is a cloying, suffocating moral superiority, emanating from the republican side. The insurance industries version of health care reform will eventually pass, but not until sufficient noise is produced to carry on the subterfuge that Congress is pretending to representation.