It may truly be time to throw in the towel on democracy and I’ll tell you why. George Orwell predicted that the masses could be controlled by mass communication. You remember the telescreen from “1984?” And now there’s one just like it on your wall? And it’s only a question of time, maybe, before it starts watching you back? But even if it doesn’t, even if the watching only goes one way, that’s more than enough to brainwash you.
We live in a world with a huge bandwidth of information, greater than at any time in history. Life is simply more complicated nowadays. Yes, we have a lot of terrific conveniences and comforts, unimagined decades ago. If you had told me as a 10 year old, for example, that one day I would have a gadget that was a combination typewriter and color TV and I could use it to talk to people all over the world, I would have been gobsmacked. Or that the phone of the future could show me movies and give me directions while driving the car, better than a friend reading a map, same reaction.
The good news about technology is how it’s brought us together and improved the quality of our lives. The bad news is that the internet and broadcast television have both become tools of disinformation and that has resulted in a cultural schism, where Americans listen to either one version of reality or the other. Disinformation flowers. Couple that sad truth with the fact that a failed educational system has produced an electorate not only lacking critical thinking skills but lacking even the basic awareness that such things exist, or are desirable to cultivate, and you have a recipe for disaster. If you think I’m hyperbolic or worry overmuch, you tell me how many people voted for Trump in 2020. And then tell me it’s not that big a problem.
Take a look at MAGA poster child of the day, in attendance at the Save America Summit at the Trump National Doral in Florida.
Attendees at an event here in Trump National Doral this weekend are attempting to re-write the history of January 6th.
One asks, "what is so terrible about conspiracy theories anyway?"
— Donie O'Sullivan (@donie) April 10, 2021
I don’t despise this woman, I pity her. And she scares me. She flat out doesn’t know anything and whether she’s teachable is questionable at best. And this is who the Republican party is counting upon. For the first time in history, at least that I’m aware, the ignorant are being cultivated as a voting bloc. In the past the Democrats have been criticized for being the party of identity politics, supposedly fitting everybody into little boxes, are you gay, are you female, immigrant, Jewish, disabled, some other group. The Republicans don’t care about any of that — they just want to know if you’re stupid. And if the response to that is blessedly yes, then Josh Hawley, Ted Cruz, Lindsey Graham, we could go on and on, have a little play acting that they’re going to do for you. And if you think their skit is real, and you vote Republican, then bye bye Democracy. And they’re fine with that. As David Frum said, “If conservatives become convinced that they cannot win democratically [and they’re freaking over election protection laws as we speak] they will not abandon conservatism. They’ll reject democracy.”
And bear in mind that Conservatism, as that term used to be understood, is no longer with us. She drowned in the bathtub she wanted to kill government in, so forget about her. Worry instead about the sharks that took her place and are running what’s left of the GOP. That’s who’s plotting the death of democracy as we know it right now. They never cared about Conservatism, per se. She was just the minnow to be eaten while going after the big catch, which is Power.
And the tragic thing is, the woman in this video and the others like her will never know what hit them. When this great country is gone and they were the instruments of its demise, manipulated by the worst, most venal and greedy people ever to seek political office, they won’t know. Because the people in power will just keep feeding them disinformation and lies and blaming it on somebody or something else. Because the GOP also bumped off Accountability one night. She was always a pain, they couldn’t do her in soon enough.
I weep for America. I weep for what is possibly to come. I tell myself this woman has to be in the minority and then I chant my mantra, “73 million?” and that brings me back down to reality. That’s a lot of dummies, yet that’s how many there were that voted against their own interests in 2020. How many more times can America dodge the bullet and survive? At the very least, to be even asking the question shows what shaky ground we are on at this time in history.