There I was, October 21, eating cake and ice cream and thinking how great I had it, *flash*, everything changes. My flying skateboard turned into some crappy balance-board with wheels and immediately caught fire. My car no longer flies, I have to remember how to tie my shoes, and worse I must settle for imperfect Pepsi! All this because of some kid and his grampa in a DeLorean. The worse part is nobody believes me that this happened. Insane, right? Goodbye 2015.
My town has been driven into the ground by a bunch of corrupt lunatics. The state is so partisan and corrupt it still can’t pass a damn budget and public officials are resigning, getting impeached, or fired left and right. Unfortunately, it isn’t the people who really needed to be thrown out either. On the national stage, the real loonies are on parade all vying for control of President in the next year.
As bad as that sounds it still gets worse. The one person who had spent the last 16 years making light of the clowns in power and pointing his finger in righteous indignation of the Media’s failure to do it’s job of informing and educating the public (of which is the most important part of the democratic process) has called it quits. Jon Stewart, who took a third-rate pop-culture satire show on a second-rate cable network and turned it into one of the most respected political commentary soapboxes on American Television, left the Daily Show presumably because our political machine has become a mockery of itself and there was just nothing more to be done but ineffectually shout at the clouds.
However, even after all that it could be much, much worse. For the last 14 years, politicians have been eroding civil liberties, cracking down on everything from drugs to copyright infringement and making mountains of cash by throwing the majority of the national budget to fund the military industrial complex and by otherwise placating the true oligarchy that run this country by being the errand boys of the billionaire 1%. They did this by constantly invoking the terrorist boogieman to keep the ignorant populace in a state of fear. I say it could be worse because as much as we seem to live in fear of terrorism, (and not yet in fear of mass shootings that seem to happen on a weekly basis at this point) France has had a bad year for terrorist attacks with last months bombings in Paris and the January attacks on Charlie Hebdo which showed that extremists just can’t take a joke.
In High school I turned on. In college and my early-mid twenties I was tuned in. In the last year, I’ve dropped out. Our political process has become a joke. We as a culture have become so polarized that compromise has become a thing of the past. The rich rule the country and the politicians are their unabashed lapdogs. To make it worse, cities have traded actual police training for military-grade weapons so instead of working with the communities whom they supposed to serve and protect everything seems to escalate into lethal confrontations with the law. Racist, sexist, homophobic conservatives are pissed that culture is changing to become more inclusive and have become even more vocal which has spawned a counter-movement of ultra-PC police that is alienating even those progressives that are on ostensibly their side.
I believe that we as a culture are headed for something big. There is simply too large of a schism from the people who are in power and the citizenry for whom they supposedly represent. At some point this is all going to come to a head and I don’t really want to know how that is going to play out. I wonder if in 20-30 years from now if our kids will look back at this decade the way we looked back at the 60’s, as an era of violent upheaval and massive cultural shift. At least the 60’s had the benefit of good drugs and great music.
When I started writing this, I didn’t plan to make it a long political diatribe so it shall be split into two parts. Hopefully part two will be a little more positive.