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This morning a metaphor for our current battle to include a Robust Public Option in the President’s health insurance plan struck me. Have a look at these lines from Walt Whitman’s The Battle of the Bonhomme Richard and the Serapis.
Our frigate takes fire,
The other asks if we demand quarter?
If our colors are struck and the fighting done?
Now I laugh content for I hear the voice of my little captain,
We have not struck, he composedly cries, we have just begun our
part of the fighting.
President Obama, we are ready to fight for your health plan if it contains a Robust Public Option. Most of us Americans are sick and tired of having our lives lorded over by Corporations, much as the American colonists with whom John Paul Jones was fighting in 1779 were sick and tired of having their lives lorded over by the British.
This is really where we’re at, isn’t it? Either we are Sovereign Citizens or we are just little pansy Consumers, and all this noise about Democracy and being represented in Congress is just a Potemkin village, a soporific, a farce to keep us pacified while the Big Bosses have their way with us.
What’s it going to be, America?
Serene stands the little captain,
He is not hurried, his voice is neither high nor low,
His eyes give more light to us than our battle-lanterns.
Toward twelve there in the beams of the moon they surrender to us.
Stephen Colbert gets a haircut…
|The Colbert Report||Mon – Thurs 11:30pm / 10:30c|
|Obama Orders Stephen’s Haircut – Ray Odierno|
(image from the New York Times)
UPDATE – I get it now. Spock is now President of the United States!!! American mother, Kenyan father – Human mother, Vulcan father. That’s what’s so cool, and part of what feels so good about Obama’s Presidency – we are living in Star Trek, and we have elected Spock President, knowing full well that he is half Vulcan.
For one can be half Vulcan and totally human, just as one can be half Kenyan and totally American.
Yes, I know that Kenyans are not aliens, but from the point of view of many Americans throughout our history, they might as well be.
How very cool!!!
For Mother’s Day the girls and I took Karen to the movies to see the new Star Trek prequel:
The show was strangely moving, despite what I would consider its many flaws.
Kirk behaves in a way that would earn him a Court-martial in any real military organization, yet inexplicably winds up as Captain of the Enterprise anyhow. Probably by necessity, the physics essential to the story rushes by in a flurry of hand waving. There are unnecessary monsters, outrageous coincidences, gratuitous sword fights, danglings from heights, bam bam boom – etc.
And yet I liked the show and was at times moved by it.
From Daily Kos:
Wow, this guy is the real deal…
This is a very very good thing.
Per Naomi Klein’s The Shock Doctrine, here’s what I fear.
Much as the African National Congress and Nelson Mandela came to political power in South Africa in the early 1990s only to find their hands tied by crushing debt and status quo economic shenanigans, the Democratic Party and Barack Obama are coming to power in America at a time of similar economic fluctuations and stresses.
While we Americans rejoice and glory in the genuine political miracle that has taken place in our country, let us not take our eyes off the ball. The Corporatists are seeking to place Barack Obama and the United States of America into such a compromised economic position as to effectively render him – and us – powerless.
Corporations rule the world, and they are not likely to let any one election, no matter how historic and glorious, spoil the party.
What can we do? Hope? Pray?
Sure, but also boycott Corporations and Institutions that mess with us. There is great untapped power to be found in consumer unions. Hit ’em in the pocketbook. This they’ll understand.