reprinted with permission by Keith Tucker. What Now Toons
In the long arc of history, the human race hopped off
branches, crawled from caves, then inscribed holy books. Genesis crowned
mankind with dominion "over the fish of
the sea, over the birds of the air, and over every living thing that moves on
the earth." Every darn "living thing," even wee pathogens? The same verse
instructs originals to be "fruitful, and multiply" but also to "replenish the
earth." Come again? Yes, the Creator and first environmentalist, predicting
we'd overdo the multiplying part, ordered mankind to conserve the entire,
earthly nest -- and every moving, living thing. Hear that, climate deniers and
"drill, baby, drill" evangelicals?
Armed with this First Commandment, humanity conquered earth, secularizing the mission into "manifest destiny," then declared dominion the foundation of progress, even civilization. Until now. For it comes to pass that today's elite can't restrain a tantrum-throwing, mayhem-loving minority dying to leap off fabricated cliffs into the unknown. Replenish the earth? This Christian-Tea Party (TP) nation can't replenish our depleted treasury because the anti-tax Norquist religion trumps God and the Constitution, thus civilized order. By TP edict, we can't rebuild, grow jobs, or replenish after a Great Recession caused by predatory bankster dominion. Political regression to the meanness reigns, snarling meanly at hungry, jobless and homeless neighbors. Sequesters sting like penance after sin.
Maybe it's the unlucky 13 ending this year, or goofy stars, or divinities passing wind. Is this our ultimate destiny: to have crawled out of caves, wielded enough power to soil our nest, only to be catapulted off cliffs in the name of faux fiscal patriotism? Is this the divine plan for a species made in His likeness? Didn't angels, like Satan, get in trouble leaping off cliffs trying to go it alone?
Tyranny of the Minority
Having survived the last century, we bore the Age of Bush, blundering into endless, bottomless wars, only four years later to get slapped by Tea Party dominion over rational decision-making. One deranged, rightwing faction brings on economic ruin and the next up makes it permanent? The extension of Reagan's "morning in America" is a nightmare twilight zone. Who stops fanatics from throwing valuables (like national credibility and thus credit) overboard because THEY wrongly imagine the nation is sinking because only others misbehave.
This excess does finally reveal telling parallels between current Tea Party mutineers and 1773 namesakes, in fact a mob of Boston street ruffians worried more about home-grown rum (and molasses) than tea (plus ignobly disguised as Native Americans). Like today's insurgents, Boston's roughnecks figured the mayhem of dumping taxed goods overboard would reduce imperial oppression. Au contraire, as the angry parent over-reacted with martial law. Is not the "sequester" the latest anti-tax spectacle, with its irrational notion the cruder the budget cuts, the better the government runs. Upside down and backwards, like Alice's wonderland Tea Party.
No surprise, then, the mean-spirited wrap cliff-dwelling
ambushes with blackmail -- echoing the unfeeling condescension informing every
GOP trademark. Time to protest when House zealots flout elections, the will of
the people, then broadcast our vaunted "exceptionalism" as no more than
ungovernable gridlock. Compromise be damned: ignite the torches, root out
elitist government (but not patriotic Paul Ryan!), then shove the evil spawn
over the edge and cheer the smash-up. Why, troglodytes haven't gaggled louder
since driving mammoth babies off hills into extinction.
Cavemen, Meet Cliff-dwellers
Here's the big shot in the world's most elaborate system --
global economic commerce -- held hostage by misguided, bean-counting mentalities.
"Government bad, dump it." Thus, taxation becomes "theft" (idiotically echoed
by Speaker Boehner), elections exist only to test rightwing zeal, and
earth-shaking brinkmanship solves whatever outrages one selfish minority.
Except this absurd austerity boomerangs: bad faith induces greater interest
costs, making high-priced government cost even more, over decades, and less
At least Boston renegades took on a genuine, foreign enemy, a tone-deaf, imperial oppressor. Instead, Tea Partiers demonize neighbors and countrymen, working up infantile tantrums against Americans into Trojan horses. "We have met the enemy," they say, and "it's always them." Blame the lunatics down the street who value majority rule or periodic compromise, even know sustained bad faith only widens the divides across fractured united states. None dare call that self-defeating blackmail treason? What if long-term Tea Party wounds outlast terrorist attacks?
Ultimately, TP decrees violate the core Constitutional authority given Congress: "to collect Taxes, Duties, Imposts, and Excises, to pay the Debts and provide for the common defense and general Welfare of the United States." "Common" defense and "general" Welfare make clear the context and intention. So much for replenishing the community, let alone the earth. Isn't there a hypocrisy court for violating dictates from both God and our Founders? Of course, those outraged at modernism, evolution, or the earth's longevity read only the founding verses they favor. Who knew last year's credit fiasco opened the swamp to "taking back our country," as in back to the dark ages of the Great Depression.
Tyranny of the Filibuster
True, Jefferson favored generational insurrections. Maybe our duly-constituted government should be reformed but with a new Constitutional Convention, not by heaving it off the cliff. Time to admit e pluribus unum has been displaced on our Great Seal with "Minority Filibuster Rules." "Out of many, one" is besieged by "we, the gerrymandered few." When huge majorities allows any 25% of malcontents to trample their sovereignty, time also to face a coup d'e'tat, if not civil insurrection.
Item: the Senate cowardly shrunk from ending the "dominion" of filibusters, as a mob of 45 defeats 55. House radicals rule, though millions more voted for Democratic members. Reactionary 1% billionaires dominate the media, buttressed by an extremist, activist Supreme Court that flaunts the will of the people. Without majority rule, there cannot be even the delusion of government for the people and by the people. Sorry, Lincoln, the implied wisdom of the majority rules -- or we descend into dominion by minority might.
Our Wily E. Coyote Jam
Obviously, the elite wizards who concocted the sequester badly miscalculated, wrongheaded how key foolish crusaders run on fairy dust. Scheming Republicans reckon Obama gets skunked when government staggers. Democrats figure reactionaries lose out. Nose-thumbing TP'ers should watch how "Thelma and Louise" ends, thus made to realize the power of gravitational pull from earthly forces. Ask Humpty-Dumpty: falling down, without a safety net, is a shattering experience.
Today's madcap cliff-dwellers failed to drown government in an (election) bathtub so now they take to indiscriminate cliff-dumping. What cold-eyed adults should recall are roadrunner cartoons, with special attention when the oblivious, incorrigible Wily E. Coyote flies off the cliff, realizes he's suspended in mid-air, then plunges, crashing hard a long way down.
"To follow by faith alone is to follow blindly:" Ben Franklin. Today's majority must take dominion over blind leapers who intone "everything happens for a reason." Right, even missing stop signs and driving off cliffs while dreaming of magical uplift. Citizens, unite. We have nothing to lose but our minority chains -- and what's left of the American experiment. Only cartoon figures bounce back from their own fatal folly, idiotically smiling for the next go-round.