Thomas Paine:

“Reason obeys itself; and ignorance submits to whatever is dictated to it.”

Tuesday, June 17, 2008

Conventional Wisdom, Common Sense, Uncommon Patriotism

In gratitude for Dennis Kucinich and Robert Wexler’s defense of democracy

      The Florida Sun-Sentinel recently posted an editorial criticizing Representatives Dennis Kucinich and Robert Wexler for their calls to impeach G.W. Bush. The editorial began with an enumeration of our current national ills —wars, unemployment, Americans going without health insurance, gas prices— and then somehow failed to connect any dots whatsoever as to who is responsible for our sorry situation and how crimes were committed to get us here.
      The editorial would be laughable, if so many innocent lives and national treasure had not been criminally wasted by the very hand of the person the editorial board defends in its opinion.
      This is the Pelosi-inspired, denial-based, conventional wisdom now: calls for accountability for the most egregious, obvious and blatant crimes by officials of the government in American history are to be treated as if they are tantamount to the hysterical and whiney demands of toddlers. “You don’t like Mommy and Daddy’s rules? You want to make noise? You are grounded for wasting our time.” Or, more to the point, it is as if Daddy has been sneaking into bedrooms at night to molest his children, Mommy knows it, but stopping him is off the table—Sh-h-h-h-h!.
      We are supposed to think that it’s only common sense to dismiss impeachment as an option— “it’s too late; it’s a distraction from important issues; we don’t have enough votes, etc.” But it isn’t common sense; it is common campaign strategy. Underneath the excuses is this truth: the Democratic leadership thinks impeachment hearings will alienate the electorate —they are wrong!— and so they want to play a waiting game. And conservatives love it. Their guy is getting away with it.
       I am thinking of another kind of common sense, the kind of common sense that built this nation, the common sense of Thomas Paine and Thomas Jefferson, the common sense that created a great Constitution, where the exact remedy for the sort of crimes George W. Bush has committed was put there, so that America could breathe free of would-be tyrants and empire-builders like George W. Bush. I have to wonder what happened to this kind of patriotism. Is it tucked away inside the namby-pamby back pockets of editors and journalists, pundits and politicos across the nation, where it is sat upon and smothered to death beneath their lackadaisical butts?
      Reps. Wexler and Kucinich have accomplished an uncommon thing: they have managed to retain their patriotic common sense. It is the shame and tragedy of this nation that such patriotism is so rare, now that we need it so badly. We are in jeopardy of enabling a tyrannical epoch in American history, but we are surrounded by fools and cowards.
      Albert Einstein's familiar quote, "Great spirits have always encountered violent opposition from mediocre minds," comes to mind here. Wexler and Kucinich are great spirits, and they will be remembered in history as such; as for the editorial board of the Florida Sun-Sentinel—their opposition to such greatness is apparently all they can manage, given who they are.

      Personally, I think impeachment is not nearly enough; the thugs should be prosecuted for murder. Apparently, I am not the only one who thinks this.


No comments: