Go Figure

Okay. So, after the “hiccup” of losing 33 points the day after our illegitimate Prez essentially threatened nuclear attacks  on North Korea, the DOW has lost another 200 points. As I wondered in a recent entry regarding the bellicose rhetoric of our speak first then let everyone else explain to him–and the country/world–what his words may have, could have, or indeed did convey, why didn’t Wall Street’s fat cats freak to the tune of a massive market free-fall? The media make note of the whopping 5-day loss of 230 points and draws a lazy line between the belligerent babbling of our resort-embedded, Golfer-in-Chief, and the DOW drop. Actually, August has been a historically unstable month for Wall Street. My guess is Monday will see a rebound (that is, barring nuclear World War III preempting the opening bell).

Rebound, yes, just as Small Hand’s ratings have experienced since his metaphorical muscle flexing intended to intimidate the rotund ruthless ruler of North Korea. Yes, the orange-ish Day Glo, bait-and-switch Tweet Master now can brag of a whopping 45% approval rating, up from 39% before his you want some of this, Un? posturing. Hmm.

Go figure.  

There is no underestimating the American public’s penchant for illogical thinking.

Forget the DOW numbers, as that relates virtually to only the well-heeled, deep-pocketed, privileged–and as Franklin Roosevelt famously called them back in his day–economic royalists. As shown by way of the Great Depression and the more recent Great Recession, they seem immune to market implosions, always able to ride out the storm and come back buying low and gaining back what was lost and more. Meanwhile, the working stiff pays the ultimate price by being crushed beneath the collapsing edifice that inevitably cannot withstand the forces of economic monetary tinkering, deregulation, fraud and greed. As I said, right now, even with the nuclear clock getting closer to midnight really is not affecting these Wall Street elitists any more than a bad serving of  sea urchin at their exclusive Michelin rated restaurant. It’ll pass. Burp…

However, why would another 6% of respondents in an opinion poll gives the Strangelove their approval? I know, I know, we’re a macho country these days, with guns being the most typical arbiter in any dispute, and a seeming never-ending ground game fight for–I’m not sure what, exactly anymore, if ever at all–in Afghanistan, plus military bases in scores of other countries. Okay. I lived through the Cold War. I get the military, congressional and executive branches reluctance to not let our perceived enemies forget we have plenty of power, if not always the best thought out military strategies when we send our troops into harm’s way. But there’s been that mutual assured destruction spectre always haunting the hearts and minds of any 5-star General, Commander-in-Chief and the public-at-large. This atomic logic says if one nuclear missile is shot off, and lands in anger, there is an almost absolute certainty that much, maybe all!, of the rest of the 21st Century “nuclear club” will be forced to respond. And of course, because that “club” isn’t a homogenous geo-political crowd. So, if North Korea’s quite apparently aggressive “leader” follows up on his threats to Guam via missile attacks, then it won’t take the Don-Father to influence the Pentagon to retaliate. In a domino dynamic, China and Russia, foremost, will have to protect their global turf and respond to our response, and then the United KIngdom, France, India, Pakistan likely will be drawn in. There are almost 16,000 nuclear weapons among the U.S. and these other countries. So, the first missile, in accordance with the grim logic of M.A.D., will spell the beginning of then end for everyone. What people the nuclear blasts don’t kill immediately, or are even nowhere near a direct hit, there’s that “fallout” factor. Radiation’s poison will be carried far and wide by the winds. All the post-nuclear apocalyptic narratives will no longer be science fiction. Have a bunker ready? I hear bomb shelter’s are going fast at Apocalypse Now Is Us stores.

There you have it. Our two looney-tune taunters-in-chiefs don’t appear to possess the word diplomacy in their vocabulary. Those 16K nukes are no joke. The threat of the once unthinkable nuclear endgame narrative, from the satirical Doctor Strangelove to the somber and chilling Fail-Safe are no longer cinematic cannon fodder. It’s right in our faces, folks. Especially those 6% who evidently think being a tough guy who just happens to have the launch codes and likely has no idea what consequence his words can have, I have to wonder about all of you. Because you’re all fucking nuts.

We’ll see. Maybe the financial markets will collapse related to the escalating war of words between the two most apparently dangerous men in the world at this moment. I’d rather have economic, rather than radioactive fallout. Then again, I don’t have much skin in the money game. But I do have actual skin I’d prefer not to have melted or slowly rotting away after the mushroom clouds dissipate. Are you thinking I’m an alarmist? I suppose if you’re quite young, that might seem the case. We shall see.

In the meantime, is there a bomb that only kills the war mongerers but leaves the rest of us unscathed? 

There should be. But there’s not. Go figure.


About jharrin4

mass communication/speech instructor at College of DuPage and Triton College in suburban Chicago. Army veteran of the Viet Nam era.
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1 Response to Go Figure

  1. Likely the Donald places the scientific understanding of death, multigenerational severe illness, and environmental destruction that nuclear warfare causes as something he can choose whether or not to believe in. As with climate science, Trump’s cavalier attitude about nuclear warfare shows he dismisses the scientific understanding of the nature and scope of its consequences.


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