Boy In the Bubble

The boy in the bubble
And the baby with a baboon heart

I have decided to take a Facebook hiatus. And yes, this decision is a reaction to the results of the election. Facebook, like so many things in our present culture, has an overwhelming tendency to put me (and many people, I suspect) in a self-sustaining bubble. The viewpoints we agree with are enforced, those that we oppose are demonized. I need to walk away, at least from contributing. I’ll read through the posts, like I read the news, once or twice a day. I’ll Like things I like. But I need to find, as the signs in the Smoky Mountain Nat’l Park say, “A Quiet Walkaway”. So no posts, no comments.

For awhile, at least, I’ll make my contributions to the discourse, such as they are, here on my blog. It’s been strongly suggested that my FB posts are too long. True. So I’ll use the longer format of my blog to express my thoughts.

The bomb in the baby carriage
Was wired to the radio

The election revealed something much deeper at work than I realized, though my suspicions were certainly there. The endless contention, the lack of circumspection, the vitriol, the knee-jerk reactions are now part of the woof and weave of our national fabric. Engaging these forces has not been productive. Disengaging, while not having any active effect, will have the definite and positive effect of allowing my focus to move elsewhere. And my focus definitely needs to do that.

Because we are in Trumpland now. They (and I use the pronoun in a very specific way), have the keys, and They will drive the bus, basically unhindered, except of course by the requirement that almost all of Drumpf’s “agenda items” require Senate approval. Perhaps it is the Democrats’ turn to obstruct, using the new “60 votes is now a majority” convention. If the Democrats have the spine, always an open question. And that could, for instance, prevent a lunatic Supreme Court appointment. We’ll see. In any case, the environment is screwed (EPA is fundamentally executive privilege and action), and certainly any possibility of climate change amelioration is (figuratively speaking) toast.

Trumpland is now the landscape. That’s a done deal. It will be interesting to see the reaction when no manufacturing jobs suddenly return, or when no wall is built nor paid for by Mexico. Perhaps that guaranteed disappointment will be the impetus to turn things back the other way. Disillusionment on that scale, in a society now conditioned to instant gratification, may get ugly.

On the other hand, Drumpf’s electorate will not be affected at all by the outrageous embarrassment he will generate by his bombastic bullying and inability to behave as a decent human being, much less the President of the United States. They may even applaud it. “Damn right! Give those fancy bastards hell, Donald!” The rest of us will have to grit our teeth and endure it. But even that will pass.

These are the days of miracles and wonders
This is a long distance call

I think I will just watch for a while. From a distance. Watch and write, and build a house and make our garden grow. This is the time for gaining perspective and heeding the advice of the Serenity Prayer, especially the part about having the serenity to accept the things I cannot change. And then, when it is again possible, the courage to change what I can.

The way we look to a distant constellation
That is dying in a corner of the sky.
These are the days of miracles and wonders
So don’t cry, baby, don’t cry, don’t cry.

It’s far too easy to cry and gnash one’s teeth and moan about the stupidity of it all. Those negative modes have a secret attraction for most people, myself included. In a twisted way, wallowing in self-righteousness feels good. But it doesn’t change anything. In the end, a stoic acceptance for the short term disasters, with a long-distance perspective on what will one day be again possible, that is best strategy.

If the Orange Fool can manage to avoid waking up some night, his paranoid megalomania offended to the point where he launches a first strike against whoever pissed him off… if we can just avoid THAT, then we’ll get by it and through it. The advantage of living long enough is the understanding that, “this, too, shall pass.”

Fare you well, fare you well
I love you more than words can tell
Listen to the river sing sweet songs
To rock my soul.

© 2016 Chuck Puckett