Tuesday, July 26, 2016
Looking Into The Abyss: A Guest Post By Pamela MacNeil
Yesterday, my post consisted of three letters culled from a larger series by Star readers reflecting on the dire state of both the U.S. Republican Party and American society. Pamela MacNeil, always an insightful commentator, offered some very interesting observations about both. I am featuring them here as a guest post:
I listened to a JFK speech the other day Lorne. If you're interested, you can find it at #NoWar2016 and what Kennedy said, WorldBeyondWar.org. Some people consider it his greatest speech and some even think it's what contributed to his assassination.
The speech was about PEACE. Why do I bring this up? Strictly for contrasts. Compare this speech with Trump's nomination speech. Implicitly, both speeches are a reflection of American culture. Kennedy's speech reflects a culture that was serious about ideas, where an intelligent President could articulate how a viable option of peace over the cold war could be achieved. Trumps speech reflects a culture that is intellectually and morally bankrupt. It contains no serious ideas and in fact sounds more like something that would be said at a marketing or business meeting. More importantly it reveals a culture not only in decline, but a culture intellectually having reached rock bottom where all that dominates is faith and force. American culture has gone from the political sophistication and the pursuit of progressive ideals of a JFK to the anti-intellectual rhetoric and sleaze of a Donald Trump.
The GOP with its Evangelical and neoliberal beliefs reflects a culture of power and entitlement. They do not bring anything beneficial to the table for the average American. They are political zombies. Having no political ideas, they need a leader who reflects that lack. Anyone with political substance and intelligence, or even common sense, would completely avoid the GOP. They would feel embarrassed to be associated with this mindless group called the GOP. Donald Trump feels no such embarrassment.
Do Americans ever wonder why they once had an intellectually sophisticated president such as JFK and now have a presidential candidate whose character is that of a P.T. Barnum barker?
Who is responsible for the American cultural and political destruction? Why have Americans stood by and watched their governments, both Democrats and Republicans, turn their country into an ignorant war monger that wants to dominate the world?
Going from a political culture under JFK to a political culture under Trump is like going from super sonic jet travel back to the horse and buggy.
An empire in decline and with its nuclear weapons one that could take the rest of the world with it.
Americans don't seem to know it, but they are looking into a cultural abyss.