Mythical America, R.I.P.
Lorenzo Hagerty, January 2005
It seems to me that it's about time to put an end to the mythical version of America that so many people in this nation have been hanging onto. Growing up during the 1940's and 1950's, just after the end of World War II, gave me a terribly distorted view of this country. My father and most of his friends had served in uniform during that war, and their patriotism was even stronger than their religious views. Needless to say, it also rubbed off on me.
Until I woke up one morning and found myself on a destroyer (appropriately named!) off the coast of Viet Nam, I too was fond of saying, "My country, right or wrong." But something changed in me during my time in that war zone, and I began what has become a long struggle to learn how to think for myself and to question authority. Now, after much consideration, I am convinced that our mythical version of America is dead. Here is where I think we stand today.
During the recent political campaigns, one of the rich white men we were allowed to choose between spoke about there being two America's, one rich and one poor. Yet when you look at the way the alleged vote was divided, it didn't track that way. A lot of poor people voted for Bush and a lot of rich people voted for Kerry. The vote split down the middle (or so we've been told) on non-economic issues, like gay marriage and abortion. This divide we're experiencing isn't so much an economic divide as it is a cultural divide. But make no mistake about it, there are now two Americas, Fascist America and Free America, but Mythical America is no more, and in actuality it never existed anyway.
Of course, no one wants to admit that there is more than one version of America, because , well, that would be un-American. And being a good American means that you only subscribe to one version of the USA, Mythical America. That is the America, we have been told, that always puts the interests of the poor and downtrodden first. That is the America that would never strike first, and is a good world citizen, never polluting or using more than its share of the world's resources. As far as countries go, Mythical America is as good as it gets. Like they say in Texas, "It ain't perfect, but it's a hell of a lot better than what's in second place." Wrong, bucko! Your version of America is not only dead and gone, it never even existed.
When was the last time you took a good look at the documents upon which this country was founded? This "perfect" Constitution of ours was designed from the very beginning to prevent majority rule. Why do you think we are stuck with the electoral college? Do you think that was an accident? Go back and re-read your history, and you'll see that the plan was for only rich white men to rule this land. That's the way this country was organized from the very beginning, because that's what our precious Founding Fathers intended. They never in their wildest dreams would have agreed to let women vote, let alone run for public office, and their views about people of color were chilling.
Now some may say, "That's unfair. The world was quite different then. Things have changed and so has the Constitution." That's right. Things were very different back then, which is all the more reason to shred that old thinking and begin again with a clean sheet of paper. Only this time let's not just pay lip service to "We the People" but actually pass control of our government to the people who are consenting to being governed.
It is time for a new Constitutional Convention. The procedure for this is already in place, should we ever find the will to use it. Thomas Jefferson advised us to re-write the Constitution every generation or two. Instead, we've very grudgingly amended it a few times, but even that has become almost impossible now. We weren't even able to agree on an amendment that would codify the fact that women have equal rights with men. Until we put aside the mythical version of this country that our public schools have force-fed us, we aren't going to see any significant change from the original plan. Let's face it, if we don't start over, completely from scratch, we are doomed to live in a nation divided in half, part free, part fascist, and controlled by spreading fear through the corporate-owned media. Once you wake up to the fact that "America" is in the control of people with fascist intentions, you will find that for you, too, Mythical America is dead and gone.
I don't use the word "fascism"
loosely here. The dictionary defines fascism as, "A system of government
marked by centralization of authority under a dictator, stringent socioeconomic
controls, suppression of the opposition through terror and censorship,
and typically a policy of belligerent nationalism." Benito Mussolini,
dubbed "the father of fascism," defined the word in a far more
pertinent fashion. "Fascism," he said, "should more properly
be called corporatism, since it is the merger of state and corporate power."
Does that sound familiar? Now, you might disagree with the dictator part
of the definition of that word, but when the Supreme Court appoints the
president, and then four years later he holds onto power by rigging the
election, that seems pretty close to a dictatorship to me. Our republic
is done for, finished, kaput. Phase One of the Great American Experiment
is over, and the good guys lost.
Rest In Peace
I could go on, but the list is long, and time to act is getting short. Face the facts, Mythical America is not only dead, it never actually existed. What does exist, at least from the viewpoint of the rest of the world, is America the Empire. The truth is, there has never been a larger, richer, or more powerful empire than the American Empire. But building an empire is not what Mythical America was supposed to be about. Empires are for fascists. Free Americans have no taste for empire. Unfortunately, Free America is under the thumb of Fascist America. So what do we Free Americans do now?
Thanks to the Internet, Free Americans are now finding one another and making connections at a rate unforeseen by the fascist control-freaks. Every day, countless numbers of people are putting another piece of the puzzle in place and are beginning to figure out what is really going on. Every day, small groups of like-minded Free Americans are meeting in every community in this land to try and figure out what they can do to begin to take back the reins of government that were stolen from them by the looters in Washington.
Not since the days of England's Mad King George has the populace of this land been so tightly controlled. The permanent war footing the Bush junta has put us on guarantees a continual cutting back on the freedoms we thought were ours when we lived in Mythical America. Those of us who declare ourselves to be citizens of Free America realize that even though we reject Bush's fascist empire, we are stuck here in a gulag owned and operated by his corporate cronies. "We are prisoners here ", as the song goes, " prisoners of our own devise." The fascists are in control, for the moment at least.
But guess what? You poor souls who support Fascist America have been duped by those clever, greedy families at the top of your food chain. Soon the joke is going to be on you. Just as they have destroyed so many other economies before, they are now about to dismantle the American economy. You have to be a fool to think our national debt will ever be repaid. The Treasury has been looted. We're broke! Why do you still believe the myth of a strong dollar? Can't you see that the wheels are already in motion to move to a new money standard for the world? What did you expect when they set up a private banking system to issue our currency? Most people think that one of the most basic functions of a democracy is to issue their own money. We outsourced that function to private enterprise. Yet, even in the face of what is obviously happening, you continue to support the Bush gang because those lying fascists have convinced you that it's the American Way of Life they stand for. They threaten that if you don't go along with them the rest of the world is going to take away all of your cool stuff; you might even have to pay a fair price for your gasoline. The truth is, our "American way of life" comes at great expense to the rest of the world. You simply cannot expect them to let us live like this, at their expense, forever.
No matter what your political views, I hope you will spend some quiet time by yourself and think about some of these things. Ask yourself, "Would Mythical America be forcing 'democracy' on people through the barrel of a gun? Would Mythical America even pretend an 'election', with unknown lists of candidates and polling places whose locations are kept secret, is even remotely democratic." Iraq is just another colony in Fascist America's Empire. If you think we are helping to spread democracy to that part of the world in any way, shape, or form, you are seriously deluding yourself. You are still living in the myth, and not the reality of America.
The rest of the world has already discarded any and all ideas about Mythical America. It is now time for the people of this land to do the same. If we have anything of greatness left in us, then let us begin the push to write a new constitution. Face it, the old one has already been shredded by the Bush War Machine. We have nothing left to lose, and that now makes us invincible. I for one am tired of wasting my time in senseless political campaigns that offer only Evil and his younger brother, Lesser. Putting your energy into U.S. politics right now is like rearranging the deck chairs on the Titanic. It will keep you occupied, but you'll be too busy to notice the fact that you are about to hit an ice berg. Only a radical change of course can save us now. If the people of this land are to have any hope at all of living in the United States of America ever again, we must first accept the fact that fixing the System will no longer work. We need a completely new System, and soon.
These are dark days, indeed. But I would like to end on a positive note. In fact, I am very optimistic about the future. For one thing, I still have an unbroken faith in people's ability to like one another. Without governments or religions, I am sure we would all get along just fine. Of course, some form of organization is required, but all of the forms we've invented so far just aren't working. However, evolution never stands still. While it may appear that our nation has fallen into madness, perhaps something else is going on. What if we are, in fact, in the middle of a birthing process? Could it be that before long we will be giving birth to some entirely new form of human organization on this planet? Now keep in mind that births are often messy affairs, accompanied by a lot of pain, blood, and tears. But once the newborn has passed down the birth canal and taken its first breath . well . for the parents, when they hold it in their arms for the first time, life just doesn't get any better than that. The feeling of divine ecstasy experienced at that moment makes everything that had come before worthwhile.
opinions by Lorenzo Hagerty