Commenting on the insti­tu­tional lunacy of the Bush admin­is­tra­tion got me think­ing. I still can’t imag­ine any rea­son they’d be press­ing so hard for use­less wars on so many fronts — unless they sin­cerely believed that their behav­ior was going to facil­i­tate their myth­i­cal Armageddon, fol­lowed by an equally-​​foolish “rapture”.

But if you look around the US, you’ll see other, more gen­eral signs of social ill­ness. Racism and big­otry — in the form of anti-​​immigrant move­ments — are at a high we’ve not seen in decades; ethnically-​​motivated vio­lence is on the rise; the Klan and neo-​​Nazi groups, for­merly on the wane, are see­ing swelling in their ranks.

One teen I know recently referred to Iraqis as rag­heads and was gen­uinely shocked when I called him out on it. And why shouldn’t he have been sur­prised? After all, he was basi­cally fol­low­ing the exam­ple set by Bush, Cheney and most local elected offi­cials for more than half a decade — about a third of his entire life. Xenophobia and big­otry interdigitate.

Troglodytes will always be among us; but in the last seven years they have ceased main­tain­ing their respect­ful silence while in the pres­ence of their bet­ters. They bleat about hav­ing a “man­date” and have so cowed the US that even our elected offi­cials — which actu­ally do have a man­date — refuse to do what is nec­es­sary to return this nation to a bet­ter, more eth­i­cal and right course.

It sad­dens me pro­foundly that this nation has so com­pletely slid back­ward. Bush might as well have handed Osama the keys to Washington.

Bush’s legacy is not sim­ply going to be thou­sands of dead US sol­diers and hun­dreds of thou­sands of dead Afghani and Iraqi civil­ians — and, if he has his infan­tile way, quite a few Iranians as well. If that were all, it would be suf­fi­ciently ter­ri­ble to brand him a trai­tor to the United States.

But to his treach­ery abroad we can add the destruc­tion of our national infra­struc­ture — edu­ca­tion, health­care and dis­as­ter relief are all but nonex­is­tent now — the destruc­tion of our plan­e­tary envi­ron­ment by refus­ing to cap CO2 emis­sions — and the destruc­tion of our national tra­di­tion of lib­er­al­ism and accep­tance of those who are wildly unlike our­selves. It took us fifty years of strife to forge a soci­ety that was broad-​​minded, largely com­pas­sion­ate and gen­er­ally peace­ful; it took a tenth that time, under Bush’s shitty lead­er­ship, to almost totally dis­man­tle our once-​​shining bea­con on a hill.

We should be ashamed.

Following is the first install­ment (of five total) of another Jack Chick-​​style tract, titled Reality Check?. This one is con­sid­er­ably darker in tone than Darwinism: the Devil’s Religion, because the mes­sage is seri­ous enough that I don’t think lev­ity is warranted.

Reality Check? page 1

Reality Check? page 2

Reality Check? page 3

Reality Check? page 4

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