Tuesday, October 12, 2010

Where's Hari Seldon When You Need Him?

(By American Zen's Mike Flannigan, on loan from Ari.)

"HA! And just like that, the critic is expelled from the realm. Fuck you fags. Can't take the truth. Enjoy your nigger." - "Magnus the Destroyer" at d r i f t g l a s s

It's hard to tell to whom Drifty's antagonist was referring: Our current president or the late Steve Gilliard, who was once again dusted off by our man in Chi Town and wheeled out for the edification of we bloggers who still struggle to make sense of what had happened five minutes ago let alone predicting what will still be relevant 6 1/2 years from now. I suppose it doesn't matter. Racism is racism regardless of the neck its noose cinches around.

It's also hard to divine what "truth" is so intolerable to us pecker-sniffing, Gaulois-smoking Commie liberal faggots since "Magnus" never told us what it was that supposedly ran counter to d r i f t g l a s s's epic, cornholing-without-lubrication takedown of the Tea Baggers who can't wrap their pointy minds around the fact that democracy actually elected a black guy to run a country they still think of as "theirs."

OK, whatever.

We had a Hari Seldon and his name was Steve Gilliard, whom the Powers That Be took from us on June 2, 2007. For those of you who don't know who Hari Seldon is or have read the Foundation series by the late Issac Asimov, here's a quick rundown:

Hari Seldon is the guy who saved our galaxy from itself by compressing an inevitable galactic Dark Ages from 1000 years into 100 30,000 to 1,000. You see, Hari was the closest thing the galaxy had to a prophet and he used a new science called "psychohistory."

Psychohistory was a way of predicting human trends and even influencing them by a massive and complex series of mathematical calculations. By tweaking human progress across the galaxy at certain places and certain times, Seldon was able to save humanity from 900 years of darkness, barbarity and ignorance. In the real world, we have precious few people who can do that and when we dullards do encounter one, we throw up our hands and pronounce them "prophets."

I'm not a big believer in prophecy but I am a huge believer in informed, courageous intuition and the late Mr. Gilliard had that in spades. If you were to go to Steve's old site and peruse the archives that go all the way back to August 2003, sometimes you'll almost think you're reading something current and up to date. Only the occasional snarky reference to "President" Bush will bring us back to the real 2010.

But virtually all of Steve's old posts about Iraq were prescient and spot-on while Iraq still had that invigorating new war smell. Steve wasn't afraid of telling people "I f*cking tolja so, losers!" as in this post about Iraqi history written not long after he left DKos and hung out his own shingle.

This was our Hari Seldon and while he might have been lionized in the NY Times after his untimely death at 42, we didn't appreciate him enough and many of us still don't. Because apparently, some of us just don't get it. Some of us, as He of the Great Movie Line Jarheaded Jack Nicholson said, still can't handle the truth.

Steve not only could handle the truth but he ate, drank, breathed and slept with the truth. It tugged at his elbow whether he liked it or not and there was a secret to Steve's uncanny prescience and I'll tell you what it is if you'll just scootch over and I can whisper it in your ear.
You ready? You listening? Here's the secret:


That's all. Just some good ole fashioned, brass-plated cajones that clanged with every step. Courage to speak inconvenient truths. Courage to stick by his convictions and observations. Someone who, in spite of his impressive vocabulary, didn't know the definition of the word "compromise."

Oh, yeah, he also kept his fucking eyes open and used all 10% of his brain power that was stingily allotted to him by nature.

Which is more than you can say about all but perhaps three or four people loping up and down Capitol Hill, including our savior who was going to close Gitmo, end the war in Iraq and was trusted not to widen up the Afghanistan war like a billionaire adding new wings onto his Bel-Air mansion.

And maybe, just maybe, he even saw the Teabaggers on the way cresting the berm because Steve, ever the historical scholar, would quiver his nostrils at the slightest sign of fascism as in this post just before Election Day 2004. Yeah, we're not supposed to sign or verbally swear loyalty oaths to one man at political rallies. They did that to Stalin and Hitler and even wrote and sang paeans to those tyrants.

But don't tell that to the Teabaggers. They twitch and drool and start acting even ookier than usual when you compare them to Nazis. Don't ask me why. It's not as if they blindly love private industry, hate any white or non-white people dissimilar to them or have the Nazi Party's message discipline or anything.

And what do we see this election cycle? We're hearing about Vichy Democrats and Tea Baggers and moderates and Independents who are going to kick the Democrat liberals outta Congress. Or so says the Very Serious Pundits who also gave us this marvelous tidbit of prescience about a month and a half before Super Tuesday 2008:

And right around the same time, there was this prognostication from EMVSP (Even More Very Serious Pundits):

But, as d r i f t g l a s s reminds us, these Teabaggers seem to forget that history did not begin on January 20, 2009 any more than the earth was first opened for business a mere 6000 years ago. They also forget that the unemployment rate began to skyrocket just before Bush slithered out of the White House like the unwelcome slug that he was, that the first round of bailouts began under Bush when the abovementioned EMVSP told us this was the only way to stop a Great Depression, the only way to get credit and liquidity flowing again, the only way to create jobs and the only way to stop foreclosures.

But there's an eight year gap in the minds of these brain transplant candidates we now call Teabaggers (In a less charitable age, we nasty lib'ruls used to call them Birchers and Klansmen). To them, they prefer to think that the country has been held hostage Lo these past 17 years by two ultra lib'rul presidents named Clinton and Obama with an unnoticeable interregnum of eight years where, inexplicably, everything happened.

That would be September 11th, the invasion of Afghanistan, the invasion of Iraq, the housing bubble bursting, the job market tanking, Hurricane Katrina, etc.

But this is all the Black Guy's fault, even though he handed Big Pharma and Big HMO's 300,000,000 new customers by legal mandate even as he was taking them over in some massive, but open, Commie conspiracy. Even as he made war profiteers even richer than Bush and Cheney ever did by keeping us in a Sadrist-led Iraq and escalating Afghanistan, even as he let Wall Street have sloppy seconds at the Taxpayer Trough and even as he basically let BP fuck up the southern shoreline of our ecosystem with near-complete impunity.

Socialist? Communist? Uh, yeeeeaaaah, right.

So lest we succumb to the temptation of kicking out the few weak-kneed, wet-legged noodle dicks that stand between us and another goosestepping Republican Reich, let's keep one thing in mind: Barack Obama is not up for re-election. But you could fuck up the second half of his first term if you let the GOP have even one House of Congress. They gave Bush everything he ever wanted and then some. They are bound and determined to deny Obama everything and then some no matter how often he plays Stepin Fetchit for the racist right wing, Wall Street and the US Star Chamber of Commerce. You don't have to be prescient or a Hari Seldon or even Steve Gilliard to see what's coming. Maybe none of us can save us from 900 years of darkness and ignorance but we can damn sure see what's coming in two years and to do something about it.

Oh and, lest we forget, the Yankees can still go fuck themselves with George Steinbrenner's decaying dick.

1 comment:

  1. Great post.
    Gilly is still missed, I even had an email exchange with him once, very personable guy and he was the one who licked Drifty out of the nest and told him to get busy writing.

    One quibble with the site JP, the red hyperlinks on a red back ground kill my eyes, I have to strain to see them.


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