Power Failure

It’s officially the fall season. Welcome to September 22nd. Here in the Midwest, that means watching the leaves slowly deferring to Mother Nature requiring them  to have their chlorophyll break down. With additional ensuing chemical reactions, green leaves change colors, resulting in them changing from green to shades of red, yellow, purple, brown, and orange. Mother Nature. The only true “superpower” okay? And her power is a force to be reckoned with, a power beyond any means of mortal humankind’s control.

Humankind. Well, as any person with the “power” of critical thinking should know by now, humankind has messed with Ma Nature. And like that saying, hell hath no fury like a woman scorned, she has reacted to being messed with by unleashing ever-increasing wrath upon the occupants of Mother Earth with massive wildfires, melting glaciers, sea levels rising, floods, droughts, famine and deadly heat waves. It’s called climate change. 99 & 44/100ths of ethical climate scientists agree this potential destruction of our one and only planet is not only occurring, it has been occurring for many, many decades. In some scientific circles, the conclusion is that humans will be a miserable lot as the environment completely, inexorably collapses. Inexorable? Yes. Some studies strongly suggest we may have passed the point of no return. And so, it’s just a matter of time. When will that be? Hard to say. But today’s newborns are likely being brought into a world where they will have to steadily brace themselves as the downward sloping of the environment cannot correct itself. There will be no leveling off. And into the abyss they, or almost for certain, their children will go.

You might think this blog entry is exclusively about our environment. Wrong. And right. Let’s just try not to think about what climate science has proven about climate collapse. After all, in spite of Earth Day approaching its 50th anniversary (every April 22nd) and the clarion calls for official policy addressing the cause/effects of now clearly visibly disturbing climate events, the powers-that-be have, for decades, chosen profit over science. Kick that rusty, decomposing can down the road. That’s apparently the primary solution so far. So, if one hasn’t been consumed in a wildfire, a mudslide, a flood or starved to death, there’s nothing to see here. Keep moving along. Into the future. What’s left of it.

As I sit and write this, it’s very sunny and about 65 degrees outside. Hey, what climate collapse?

So, as far as I’m concerned, while I consider myself a person who believes in the certitude of science, certain other persons, in positions of power, have chosen to ignore reality. Currently, the political party that controls all three branches of government is willfully ignoring climate science. How can they do that? Simple. By having the “power” to do it. Why are these people running our country if they willfully chose wrong over right? Well, because they have been given the power to be wrong by being elected to positions of power. How can people who willfully choose wrong over obvious right be elected? Because somehow, people voted for these power brokers. Why? Well, they’re pretty damn stupid for one. But are there really so many nitwits that in a country of 320 million humans, all equipped with presumably functioning brains, that those who can vote can’t vote for basic right over wrong at the polls? Apparently, the answer is yes. At least as far as those who can vote, and who DO vote. But really? Wrong prevails over right solely within the ballot booth? 

No, it’s not that simple. There’s voter suppression (documented; see Greg Palast). And foreign meddling in our elections (documented; see Mueller investigation into Russian hacking). There’s the systematic denial of voting rights for those convicted of a felon (not in every state, but mostly in so-called “red states” where the same party that controls our national government controls the state legislatures). These various means of suppressing voting rights are clearly aimed at minorities (who constitute the vast majority of those convicted felons, and never mind even if they have paid their “debt” to society). These anti-democratic laws affect the elderly, the poor, even the college-aged, by means of draconian voter I.D. laws, passed by those in power.

I’ve gone through all this before. Both on the climate and our corrupted electoral process. So, why talk about it now–again?

Because…while the climate is very likely damaged beyond repair, it is something that can easily be dismissed as too far-flung in its predicted outcome as to appear imminent. Like I said, I glance to my left, look out the window, and there’s that beautiful first day of fall. Hey, seeing is believing. Believing is seeing.

What, however, is very near, and very likely to amp up, once again, wrong triumphing over right, is one Brett Kavanaugh. This guy is the living, breathing incarnation of wrongness. And he’s about to become confirmed to our Supreme Court. A lifetime appointment, mind you. The current powers-that-be, all-powerful in all three branches of our government are blatantly boosting his nomination because he will almost with certainty help in abolishing a woman’s right to a safe and legal abortion, and their general reproductive rights, all as a token of gratitude to the right-wing, pious, hypocrite evangelical dirtbags. He will almost certainly rule that the current occupant of the White House, an illegitimate (see above, Russian hacking, voter suppression, etc; all documented) office holder, will be “above the law”. Oh, and lots of creepy other stuff that the party holding so much POWER wants so they can have even more POWER. He will uphold the current exploitative official policies affecting education, healthcare, the economy, labor unions immigration policy and maybe even outlaw Santa Claus as a fucking anti-capitalist, pinko commie by giving stuff away. Hey,  the profit motive, fat man!

Oh, and Brett boy has been accused of molesting an underage girl while he, too, was underage while both attended separate private prep schools. Never mind that, because, in spite of the #metoo movement, this guy has those all powerful “leaders” covering his back. #metoo may be good for taking down a Harvey Weinstein, or Cosby, or Charlie Rose, and absurdly, Senator Al Franken. But…

Al Franken? Wait, Senator? Was he one of the guys who clearly was choosing wrong over right? Uh, no. He was was a member of the so-called “opposition party” the party in the minority at the moment. No he was trying to serve “we duh people”. But he resigned. Why? I’ll be damned if I know, when the current Nitwit-in-Chief can been seen and heard on video admitting to having sexually assaulted women during his glorious run as a reality TV persona, and he’s still in office. Oh, wait. Power. There’s no POWER to get rid of him. There’s no POWER to stop all the wrongness that pervades our current political landscape. The power to correct wrong and start headed toward right. But our system evidently allows for corrupted, even illegitimate power brokers to have the last say. Yeah, it’s like that saying: we get the government we deserve. Even if you did vote for a better future, be it seniors on Social Security and Medicare, union workers, teachers, environmentalists, those in need of affordable health care. Sorry, one and all of you but the people who might, just possibly might try to actually serve we the people somehow, someway, cannot attract enough right-minded folk to the polls to nullify the nefarious machinations of the party that exploits we dum peoples into voting against their best interests. They keep stealing elections, but that’s only possible if the election is close enough to steal. And when an Al Franken, one of the few truly good members of a truly messed up congress resigns under pressure from the party of the wrong, no less, abetted by the one-size-does-not (apparently) fit all #metoo vigilantes, I’d say politically we are about as screwed as environmentally.

Power to the people! What power? What people? The people who want a better future, politically or environmentally, are not in power. There’s a massive and inexcusable power FAILURE on the part of that so-called “opposition party”. That party, the one NOT IN POWER, is thus POWER-less to stop any of the bad shit that has been and is about to further hit that legendary fan. Corruption may seem hot-wired into a lot of we humans, world-wide (documented; see any history book). But in this country, never has it been this egregious, this much in your face, vicious. Let them eat cake (and some of the crap splatter from that fan that we currently cannot power-down).

November 6th is not far off. I keep hearing about a “blue wave”. Ah, is that a wave that will smother the wildfires of greedy, self-serving power? We’ll see. Environmentally, sea levels are rising. Likely no way of stopping that. Not any more, depending on where one gets one’s “facts”. But maybe that blue wave can rise up. Water is an incredible force. Even metaphorical H2O. So, bring on the blue wave. Then again, I thought that happened in 2008 and 2012. It did. But then how come it didn’t make much of a difference? Please don’t tell me it did, okay? It was better than this, but do we have single payer healthcare? Did the wars end? Were banksters held to account for the market collapse? Were college loans made more affordable? During those years, we got Citizens United. Power FAILURE.

It’s exhausting to be able to see reality these days. It’s enervating. Now it seems incurable. No escape. Evil power. Ultimately doomed to failure. Or is it? History books…

Best just to comfort the patient while waiting for salvation. Maybe salvation is knowing that no matter how messed up our politics has become, what difference if there is no livable environment left? Mother Nature will solve what we can’t. Count on that.

Hey, I’m trying to think positive here, okay? Perspective…








































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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