In 1919 William Butler Yeats published one of the most beautifully disturbing and one of the most anthologized poems in my ken.  The opening lines of “The Second Coming” seem prophetic in their aptness for today.:

    Turning and turning in the widening gyre
    The falcon cannot hear the falconer;
    Things fall apart; the centre cannot hold;
    Mere anarchy is loosed upon the world,
    The blood-dimmed tide is loosed, and everywhere
    The ceremony of innocence is drowned;
    The best lack all conviction, while the worst
    Are full of passionate intensity.”

The best lack all conviction, while the worst are full of passionate intensity.

 “Surely some revelation is at hand;
    Surely the Second Coming is at hand.
    The Second Coming! Hardly are those words out
    When a vast image out of Spiritus Mundi
    Troubles my sight: a waste of desert sand;
    A shape with lion body and the head of a man,
    A gaze blank and pitiless as the sun,
    Is moving its slow thighs, while all about it
    Wind shadows of the indignant desert birds.

    The darkness drops again but now I know
    That twenty centuries of stony sleep
    Were vexed to nightmare by a rocking cradle,
    And what rough beast, its hour come round at last,
    Slouches towards Bethlehem to be born?”

…A gaze blank and pitiless as the sun…

…And what rough beast, its hour come round at last, slouches toward Bethlehem to be born?

The Beast 45 appears to have been imagined a century before it appeared.

Apparently written about WWI, the lines, unfortunately, seem timeless.

Views: 456

Comment by Rodney Roe on October 5, 2017 at 1:54am

FM, I just wrote a long erudite and extremely thoughtful comment, and because I was still on page one it would not "take". My muse became disgusted and went back in the corner where she resides so the world will not be privy to her gift. So, I hear ya. I'm trying this again, on my tablet, on page two.

Comment by Rodney Roe on October 5, 2017 at 4:28am

@kosh- I agree with your comment on page one.  Why do liberals look down on poor redneck whites, but not on poor blacks or Hispanics?  I think it is because they don't believe people of color ever had opportunity, while they believe their redneck relatives and neighbors did.  That may be a false assumption.  Being white does make you equal, much less superior to those around you.  

Rednecks may be bigoted because they have to believe that - as bad as things are for them - they are still better than others who they have to believe are intrinsically inferior. So, they fight in every way possible to maintain that belief.  Voter suppression, maintaining a judicial system that preferentially makes POC convicted felons without the right to vote, electing a populist president who is a narcissistic moron, but knows how to say all of the right things, gerrymandering voting districts are all moves to maintain their perceived inherent right to privelege.

A demographic shift that would put these bigots in a situation of just being another minority is terrifying because it not only threatens their privelege, it also threatens their belief system.

The problem is not the 30% who are Trump's bigoted redneck base; it is the 20% who said, "wait and see" and either stayed home or voted for Trump because they believed that all of the candidates were corrupt, not realizing that there are levels of bad, or actually voted for Trump to "shake things up."  They are the ones who in their desperation ensured a supreme court that will be conservative for the foreseeable future, a Republican led congress that is totally unprepared for anything but flank attacks on Democrats - unable to lead - and a president who will rank as the worst in U.S. history, worse than Millard Fillmore, worse than James Buchanan, much worse than "W".

Also, the media are culpable.  Their pandering to Trump because his outrageous behavior sold advertising is unconscionable.  They have earned his disrespect for the media.

Comment by Ron Powell on October 5, 2017 at 5:05am

@RR; "...The problem is not the 30% who are Trump's bigoted redneck base; it is the 20% who said, "wait and see" and either stayed home or voted for Trump because they believed that all of the candidates were corrupt, not realizing that there are levels of bad, or actually voted for Trump to "shake things up."...

And there it is in a nutshell!!!

There are those who are beginning to regret such thinking and voting behavior and attitude and don't want to admit or acknowledge their egregious error...

It must be a big time case of buyers remorse when you finally come to the realization that you supported and voted for the wrong candidate... 

Comment by Jonathan Wolfman on October 5, 2017 at 5:44am

"whilst"?

Comment by Jonathan Wolfman on October 5, 2017 at 5:45am

really?

Comment by koshersalaami on October 5, 2017 at 6:32am

Ron,

Or didn't vote at all

Rodney,

Culpability of the media may be the most dangerous aspect of American politics. More election manipulation happens because of that than any other factor - I'm asserting this, but I just can't see how this wouldn't be the case. What is reported, what is repeated, and more importantly what is not reported and what is not repeated. Trump's rallies were covered in detail. Bernie's were not, which probably influenced the Democratic primary. Before the election, look at the blatant lack of coverage of the Occupy Wall Street rallies around the country. Trump's outrageous actions vanished from coverage as soon as the next one came up and they weren't treated cumulatively, which they would have been with Clinton. During the election, the appropriate reaction to the cumulative monstrosity that was the Trump campaign was "You've got to be fucking kidding me!" That's the reaction we saw out of the New York Daily News and I think the New York Post. But that reaction isn't dignified. Valuing dignified over truth is horribly irresponsible journalism, which is what we saw from the NYTimes and the Washington Post. Circumstances were more extreme than they were accustomed to dealing with and so they and most of broadcast media failed. 

Johnny Robish just wrote that the overwhelming majority of Republicans find the media to be more dangerous than White supremacists. I told him they're right. 

Comment by Rodney Roe on October 5, 2017 at 6:42am

The solution?  None with our political system.  Other countries, like Britain have a short, defined, campaign period.  Parties run not people.  The party selects the Prime Minister.  In some campaign air time is equal and supported by the government.  How Rupert Murdoch would scream about those restrictions.

Comment by Rodney Roe on October 5, 2017 at 6:45am

Jonathan, what are you asking?

"Whilst" Rome burns.

"Really" I don't believe in a second coming for the same reason that I don't believe in a first.

Were those your questions?

Comment by Steel Breeze on October 5, 2017 at 6:56am

political campaigning should be banned from the boob tube.....debates are completely different when listened to without visual distractions....

Comment by Ron Powell on October 5, 2017 at 6:58am

Directed at my use of the archaic...

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