Pain Heals, and Chicks Dig Scars

picture-2I don’t want to get too hopeful about the angry talk and anti-government rhetoric out there. I don’t want to believe that maybe, just maybe, there’s some honest outrage against the overlords from both parties, and that it’s not just about a single issue here or single personality there. I don’t want to get too excited when I hear about politicians fearstricken when they’re reminded by respectable people who do productive things with their lives –”Hey assface, that’s not your job, and come to think of it, neither is a lot of this other stuff you people have been doing for five, 10, hell, 50 years.”

I don’t want to get all hopeful when I hear people talk about big ideas like liberty and republicanism instead of policy minutia, election pragmatism, and party affiliations.

I don’t want to get too hopeful because I don’t want to be disappointed again.

You get older, you take your lumps, and you get wiser. You settle in and settle down. Trade pollyanna optimism and idealism for knee-jerk cynicism. Surrender to…well, surrender.

Because look, I know what I believe and what I’d like to see is outside the acceptable for civilized and polite folks. Stuff like how I believe that freedom means freedom to, not freedom from. That government should fear the people. That you can’t govern an honest man.

So I know it’s not like things are swinging directly over to my lonely 18th Century corner of the map, to create a bad time-space metaphor.

And age, experience and a pretty thorough study of history tell me all this rowdiness lately probably isn’t even going to be a solid, lasting lean in my direction. Not even a bit.

But you know what? I can’t help it. I am a little hopeful. Why not?

How else do you live? All dead inside like an old Vegas hooker or third-term senator? No. Just…No.

A man either lives life as it happens to him, meets it head on, or he turns his back on it and starts to wither away.

Heard that as a kid and believed it growing up. And knowing the alternative — yeah, I’ll choose to stick with it.

This latest spark? Maybe it will fizzle out, sell out, or burn out. And maybe I’ll get burned again.

So what? I think I’m going to be a little hopeful. I’m not near as cynical as I was back when I was old.


  1. keith johnson says:

    I too am guardedly optimistic My personal litmus test for the future of this country is the Health Care and Cap & Trade debate. If either of these pass, in my personal opinion, the elections of 2010 and beyond won’t matter.

  2. Dallasite says:

    Cap & Trade can be repealed. Health care on the other hand… there’s no going back through the rabbit hole on that one. Once they pass it, we’re stuck with it.

  3. keith johnson says:

    I fear that even if repealed after Cap & Trade was voted in the damage to our economy would be irreparable.

    I’ve never in my life seen a media so complicit with the Government. Every news channel, even FOX, has some talking head musing that the irate crowds at the town hall meetings are being manipulated by agent provocateurs. The contempt this scum has towards the average Joe is oozing out of their pores. Joe Six Pack is too stupid to think for himself, he has to be led; meanwhile SEIU thugs beating folks down in St Louis barely rate mentioning.

    Even my favorite (now former favorite) weekend news anchor Julie Banderas of FOX fanned the hysteria yesterday, when practically breathless she reported that the PA shooter and the Virginia Tech shooter both bought their weapons from the same dealer off the Internet! What Julie failed to mention is that Internet gun sales happen every day in this country, that when one purchases a gun off the ‘net that the gun has to go to a federally licensed gun dealer, and the customer appears in person and fills out a 4473 and undergoes a NICS check just as if they had bought the gun at a brick and mortar gun shop. A lie by omission is still a lie.

  4. Ed Cognoski says:

    The current situation for the GOP reminds me of nothing as much as the decades of wandering in the wilderness that the far left endured. As for the Libertarians, well, they’ve never tasted power, so I don’t know what gets them out of bed in the morning. I do know that their tenuous grasp on reality might have let go altogether when they start charging Fox News with being complicit with the government.

  5. “well, they’ve never tasted power, so I don’t know what gets them out of bed in the morning.”

    Yeah, I figured it was something like that.

  6. I think Ed just slipped up.

    As for me, I’d get excited if I wasn’t sure that most of the ‘outraged’ had not drove to the town hall meetings in their new Cash 4 Clunkers trades.

  7. Tom says:

    I think we’ll see if any of the outrage makes a difference after the mid-term election. If turnout increases and a large number of incumbents are sent packing, it can be attributed.
    The abundance of information out on the Internets makes us a more informed public, but we still need the media to separate rumor from fact. I hope it can still do that job while continuing to slash payroll and budgets to keep shareholders happy.
    And those shareholders will continue to support the incumbents whose policy has led to the outrage….
    There goes the optimism for change.

  8. Daniel says:

    I think we’re marching down the road to fascism (albeit minus any ethnic cleansing; we’ll need plenty of war, however) and when we arrive at our destination, you can flip a coin as to whether Democrats or Republicans are in charge.

    I don’t think the tea-baggers or Town Hall Rowdies really get it, either; their concerns are relatively myopic vis-a-vis the big picture. Both parties represent Big Government joined at the hip with Big Business, and we’re merely peons. And the thing about healthcare is, either way we lose.

    Most of these silly “freedom fighters” are more motivated by their sense of partisan identity (they’re at least 90% Republicans) than anything else. This is just more of we little peons flinging sand at each other in our piteous little sandbox. Power to the people, Libertarianism, etc, is ultimately just another utopian fiction. Expect plenty more crisis to come, because that’s what fascism thrives on.

    Oh, yeah, did I tell you about the cute thing my kid did this weekend?

  9. Daphne says:

    I’m beginning to nurse a little hopefulness myself.

    It feels kind of good.

    By the way, I’ve been reading you for a while, quietly lurking, and I wanted to tell you how much I enjoy this place you’ve created.

  10. Rawlins Gilliland says:

    For what it’s worth, I’m here bypassing the real point of this thread and instead, on a personal level, choosing to address a side bar of yours made above:

    It’s neither true nor necessary to believe the aging (AKA ‘maturing’/ ‘growing up’) process is a black-white choice between Pollyanna Optimism and rigid entrenched dig-in-the-heels cynicism. AKA on my watch as hardening of the intellectual arteries that routinely becomes an Over-40 litmus test. All my life I’ve watched while…you can set the watch by it….~~~the minute someone becomes old enough to have a kid graduating from college….AKA Middle Age-AKA 40-Plus…..this is the pre-determined route inevitably presented throughout my life experience observation(s). .

    Report From The Rawlins Front: One can evolve from naïve 20-30 someone into 40-50s anyone en route to Senior citizenship and NOT become an ingrained angry sort who resents that the world changed. Nor must they become a victim of resisting said change(s). When they are not otherwise capitalizing upon the ways the world evolves—with or without them….they can opt be involved in not only recognizing how the world changed as we knew it, but also become/remain involved in fighting tooth and nail and/or cheering the ever-changing end game trajectory. In other words, remain young by not equating change and young persons’ ideas with anti-American and/or personal attacks. It’s a balancing act but one worth practicing in the course of one’s regenerating life and time.

    In other words, to be young and stupid/ naive is not what should be expected of us when we are young anymore than becoming mad and rigid becomes the cloned replacement validation proof we’ve matured. Anyone believing that’s the trade off is old before their time at best and at worst, being had. Big time.

  11. Dallasite says:


    That was a pretty fanciful comment up there. I love the part about 90% of the “silly” people voicing their concerns being Republicans. Care to back that up with some fact?

    Personally, I doubt that even half of them voted Republican in the last election.

    Oh, and the Fascism claims are weak, very weak.

  12. keith johnson says:

    “Oh, and the Fascism claims are weak, very weak.” Dallasite

    For a history lesson I suggest William Shires “Rise and Fall of the Third Reich.” Fascism progresses incrementally.

  13. Daniel says:

    I was specifically referring to the Town Hell Disrupters and Teabaggers being 90% Republican — not 90% of Silly People being Republican, Dallasite. Maybe it’s only 80%. They’re both astroturfed fools, but the town hell folks in particular are utter dolts.

    And the Shires volume is, indeed, reocmmended, though it’s hardly beach reading. The incremental assault on our civil rights combined with our government acting radically to protect powerful corporate interests has been going on for years, under presidents and congresses both Democrat and Republican. With a two-party system, felicitously enough, they always seem to have about half the people on their side, while the other half expends its energy throwing sticks and stones at their fellow citizens. It’s become a pathetic country and no, I don’t feel optimistic.

  14. Daniel says:

    Shirer not Shires

    There’s another great one, too — two volumes — but I can recall neither author nor title (even though I spent weeks reading the first volume and part of the second, and not five years ago) so that’s no help at all.

  15. Mmmmm… Shiner….

    I’ll take a Heffeweizen, in a cold mug.

    Make it snappy Daniel. Chop chop!