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Wednesday, May 05, 2010

Negative Capability

"At once it struck me, what quality went to form a Man of Achievement especially in Literature which Shakespeare possessed so enormously -- I mean negative capability, that is when man is capable of being in uncertainties, Mysteries, doubts, without any irritable reaching after fact & reason." - John Keats

Negative capability is about the only thing that describes the Konservative Kalliope Korps. If any group of freaks, zombies and nutzoids ever aspired to, and achieved, the status of Keats' prized "negative capability", it's the right wing in the wake of the failed "car bomb" plot in Times Square and the explosion and sinking of the BP oil rig in the Gulf of Mexico.

Except the right wing is absolutely certain in their convictions, with no "uncertainties, mysteries, doubts" although they're certainly not guilty of any "irritable reaching after fact and reason." In fact, people like Rush Limbaugh and the always risible Michael "Margarita" Brown seem to be deliberately moving away from fact and reason as surely as magnetically polarized opposites repel each other.

In fact, the right wing seems about as interested in getting their facts straight as an old, worn-out junkyard dog on a short leash, living in its fecal matter and snapping at anyone who even smells like The Nation or patchouli oil.

While liberals with lingering questions about 9/11 and how the facts don't even begin to mesh with the Bush administration's official narrative are dismissed as "truthers", Rush Limbaugh and Michael Brown, two ultimate examples of the antithesis of "men of achievement", are free to advance conspiracy theories implicating liberals out of wholecloth and with complete impunity.

The Gulf coast has barely begun recuperating five years after Brown's and Bush's slothful response to Katrina yet President Obama is somehow at fault for a Halliburton-built rig owned by BP for his own allegedly slothful response, even though it happened mere weeks after the President did the right wing's bidding by drilling, baby, drilling.

The Pakistani stooge who tried to set his Nissan on fire is a registered Democrat with an invisible "Obama 2012" sticker. Big deal, even that's true. So's Fred Phelps. So was Reagan and McCarthy. Meanwhile, people have developed temporary amnesia that Tim McVeigh, the author of a real bombing that claimed 168 lives, was a registered Republican.

And all this is coloring, no pun intended, Cinco de Mayo, a holiday celebrating and honoring the invaluable contribution of Latin culture to a country that happily took away much of their land with the rapacious industry with which we'd stolen from Native Americans.

It's the poor, brown people who are the villains and economic terrorists, don't you know? It's virtually impossible to keep them straight unless you have a handy-dandy scorecard. Luckily, I love making scorecards, so let's tally the totals here:

Terrorists and Body Counts

19 Middle Eastern 9/11 hijackers- Nearly 3000

Major Nidal Hassan- 13
Latinos- 0

Humam Khalil Muhammed Abu Mulal al-Balawi- 8
Latinos- 0

Timothy McVeigh, executed Republican- 168
Latinos- 0

The guy who tried to blow up his BVDs on Christmas Day- Nigerian.
Not a Latino.

Yeah, I can see how Arizona would feel they'd have to do the Border Patrol's and Immigration's jobs by rounding up as many Mexicans as possible.

Since they're so fond of bellyaching, the right wing could plausibly make cases with all these issues and somehow make them stick to the President. For instance, how come Faisal Shahzad was permitted to get on a plane and come within 30 minutes of takeoff instead of the airline checking his status on a recently revised No Fly Watch list (he was on it)?

Why is the Democratic-controlled Congress having secret, closed door meetings with BP executives instead of openly telling us what the size, scope and scale of this disaster is? Why did the Obama administration swallow hook, line and sinker BP's oily assurances that their offshore Gulf drilling operations were safe? Why did the Obama-era Interior Ministry allow BP to essentially write its own policy and to not hold them to the same safety standards as other countries?

These are legitimate questions that not only have to be asked and answered, they also don't even come close to veering into the conspiratorial La La Land alleged to be the home turf of the "reality-based community."

Republican and Muslim extremists are responsible for some of the worst terrorist acts committed on American soil and against American citizens. We've yet to suffer either a manmade or a natural disaster with a significant body count under Obama. Yet liberals, Democrats and environmentalists are allowed to be smeared by the broad shit-stained brush of Rush Limbaugh without challenge and without anyone presenting the facts.

Timothy McVeigh was a Republican who murdered 168 in cold blood. The White House and Congress were controlled by Republicans who let 1800 perish in the wake of Hurricane Katrina then blamed those people who embarrassed the Bush administration with their dead and bloated bodies. It was a Republican who decided to launch an illegal war in Iraq that's killed almost 5000 US troops and hundreds of coalition forces and countless hundreds of thousands of innocent Iraqis.

Yes, Barack Obama and the liberals who insist on clinging to his coattails and pants legs are far from perfect but we have not seen the loss of life or the devastation on the scale of a Bush administration. The right wing got their offshore oil drilling and now the oil-soaked albatrosses are coming home to roost around their fat necks.

The right wing got their Afghanistan war extended and it's now deadlier than Iraq.

But what is a couple of idiots who slipped through the cracks without harming a soul compared to a right wing crackpot like Timothy McVeigh destroying a federal building and murdering 168 innocents, and what is even this oil spill compared to a Cat 5 hurricane that managed to wash away a major American city and killing 1800 because of Republican apathy toward dark, Democratic voters and underfunding to the levee system?

The Republican Party and its apologists on the polluted air waves have strained after and achieved negative capability and long after death has at last stilled the voices of the lunatics who have hijacked countless broadcast booths and sound stages, history will judge that perhaps we were the ones who knew what was going on, after all.
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Anonymous Anonymous said...
...Rush Limbaugh and the always risible Michael "Margarita" Brown seem to be deliberately moving away from fact and reason as surely as magnetically polarized opposites repel each other.

Magnetic opposites attract each other.