Wednesday, July 6, 2011

In an Era of Super-Villains we need Super-Heroes

Since the dawn of man there has always been the need for a healthy society to smack down villains.  Villains are the human version of opportunistic rats:  There is no compunction about doing us in if that's what it takes to keep their kind going.  If their population is allowed to grow and thrive, their numbers will take us over.

In this country we're finally waking up to the evidence before us: our home-grown rats have blind-sided an easily distracted population, speedily metastasizing into super-villains.   For over two centuries they've been working on doing us in, taking us over, and now they own us.

They've commandeered our congress, corrupted our governors, pirated our airwaves, and swayed our elections, recently spending untold millions to create a phony, astro-turfed movement with no real goal except to destroy whatever safeguards are left to keep us safe, civil and healthy.

They own us.

Who are they?  We all know who they are.  They know who they are.  They take pleasure in their mischief-making, periodically rubbing our noses in it, lest we forget.  Their goal, as stated, is to destroy Barack Obama and the Democrats so fully there will never, ever be another Democratic majority.  Not ever.  Their goal is to turn all public works over to private interests and to keep it that way for all eternity.  Their goal is to dehumanize the worker bees and make them dependent on the benevolence of their bosses.  Their goal is to lead us into temptation and make sinners of us all.

They are the U.S. Chamber of Commerce.  They are the Heritage Foundation.  They are the Religious Right.  They are Dick Armey and FreedomWorks.  They are the Koch Brothers.  They are Fox's Rupert Murdoch and Roger Ailes.  They are Grover Norquist and Newt Gingrich and Karl Rove.  They are John Boehner and Mitch McConnell.  They are the same people you knew they would be.   The same bunch we've outed hundreds of times before. The same bunch still moving forward unimpeded, more bloated, more dangerous, less likely to look back.

The last thing they want or need is the presence of a Super-Hero.  But not to worry.  They're breathing easy, sleeping well at night, knowing there are no Super-Heroes on the horizon.  They're safe from us.  While they've been forming legions of followers, we've been looking in vain for our 21st century redeemers.

Where are this century's Mother Joneses?  The Walter Reuthers? The Martin Luther Kings?  The larger-than-life figures deep in the trenches, laying down their lives for causes that seem beyond any reasonable hope for success?  Where are the men and women who accept that they'll be jailed or bloodied or both but do what they need to do because it's the right thing at the right time and somebody has to do it?

Martin Luther King - March on Washington for Jobs and Freedom, 1963
Where are the leaders who understand that a country can't survive without livelihoods, without dignity, without fairness and justice?  Leaders who understand that there are promises to keep, obligations to fulfill?  Who understand that what is happening in our country is all wrong and something must be done now?

(There are a few bona fide heroes, such as the good senators Bernie Sanders and Al Franken. [And Elizabeth Warren.  Added 3/13]  They're working hard but they can't do it alone.  They could use a few Super-Heroes.)

So that's it, then.  Let me know if you find one.  I'll keep looking, too.


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