Wednesday, August 24, 2005

Language as Mugging

How did the Bush cancer get started? To answer this question we have to look at the most deep rooted and symptomatic characteristic of the Bush regime: it’s eristic use of language.

The Phenomenon.

For those unfamiliar with the word, “eristic” derives from the Greek for “strife”. The dictionary assigns the meaning of “disputatious” but the root meaning is the truer sense. Eristic goes beyond sophistry, it is simply language in the employ of war --- language as war.

A person who engages in eristic has no desire to win a debate, even if by deceit and trickery. He has no such desire because he is not debating any more than a mugger is “boxing”. The eristic punk is only interested in bludgeoning. If he does so in the non-physical safety of a debate context, he does so only because he lacks even the punk’s courage of putting his teeth where his mouth his. If he could punch without risk of getting punched back, the eristic punk would be brass knuckling it. And this is the reason why listening to them is like listening to the thud and crunch of brass and boots.

According to the zioCon, William Kristol, a “conservative is simply a liberal who has been mugged.” Perhaps; but in so saying, Kristol concedes that his craft consists in mugging back.... no more.

These word-thugs begin by lying and confuting. They then proceed to smear and insult and ultimately to defame and destroy. Witness their conduct toward Cindy Sheehan. There are arguments that could be made against Sheehan’s political position and conduct. But the word thugs don’t make them. They simply fling abuse and verbal offal at her.

These punks have been at it vehemently for over a decade now. One would think that they would eventually exhaust themselves, but they don’t. A normal person would get exhausted by this expenditure of negative energy. But these creatures aren’t normal. They feed on the expenditure of negative energy... paradoxical -- para-real as that might be. Far from ever reaching some sort of plateau, in the past several days they have warped into hyper shrieks...not only accusing Sheehan of “betraying” her dead son but howling from Hell that Christ wants Chavez assassinated. These monstrosities are only human in form.

A Punk Culture

What gave rise to this eristic phenomenon? Although the phenomenon in the fullness of its realization is the swell of many streams, the common source is Calliclean Cynicism -- the Real Politik school of governance, the Hobbsian school of life. The salesman and business manager is taught that “only the bottom line” matters and the bottom line is PROFIT. The law student likewise is taught that law is nothing but a collection of pre-cut bullshit, all that matters is the outcome: WINNING. In the case of the press, the Calliclean cynicism is actually born of laziness. It is one of the chief functions of the press (in “watchdog mode”) to ferret out the crimes, vices and follies of mankind. Of course, this takes leg work and the press corps would rather be munching canap├ęs at some press-release buffet. So instead of doing the hard research and leg work, they cultivate a jaded, jejune “hardness” which they then fob off as being “in the know” and “no one’s fool”. In fact, they are the biggest fools of all.

Uh’Murka has long made a cult of this sort of thing: “Nice guys finish last” and Nothing Succeeds Like Success. Up to a point the cultivation of this attitude is no more than an adolescent society trying to appear sophisticated and worldly. But as the adolescent grows up, the feint becomes a habit and the habit becomes a disease.

For all time and everywhere, the politics of brutishness was distilled by Plato and put into the mouth of one of Socrates’ interlocutors, the Athenian entrepreneur, Callicles. It is the enduring genius of Plato that his stylus could perfectly turn and polish such a thuggish collection of lusts and scorns as those uttered by Callicles. Plato so guilds the mud that Callicles almost seems to espouse something that might be called a political philosophy. There is at any rate no better or more paradigmatic text of why might makes right and why governance consists in the art of duping and exploiting the many.

Needless to say, Socrates butts heads with Callicles, and academics titillate themselves with the fact that “in the end” Callicles is made to blush....all of which supposedly proved that Socrates was right and that decency held the field at the end of the day. Actually not. Plato was not able to come up with any argument that would defeat Callicles, for if he had he would have stated it. No, philosophy was in fact powerless against brutality, and in the end, Plato could only achieve a fools victory by going to the end of the stage and offering narrator’s aside to the effect that, “in his heart of hearts, Callicles knew he was wrong.”

The draw... like other Platonic draws is one of those stalemates that approach the tragic. At very bottom, Callicles was not a truly bad man and, in the end, the Philosophy of decency and humanity is not able to prevail. What could be more tragic than that?

But the whole grotesque legion of zioCon cynics from smirking Kristol to leering Rumsfeld to sneering Cheney, to whining Wolfowitz and gurgling Perle - to say nothing of the think tanks where they fester -- is not tragic. Unlike Callicles, these thugs don’t blush.

©WCG, 2005

Tuesday, August 23, 2005

Political Cancer

I have said many times before that Bush and gang are a monstrous excrescence. They are beyond being simply politicians pursuing misbegotten or bad policies. Johnson was a bad politician but even he held to some genuine good. There is nothing redeeming about the Bush Gang. They are distilled evil. They are repugnant thugs whose sole purpose -- whose lust -- is simply to pillage and destroy... everything: the earth, the economy, the rule of law, civil rights and even language itself. Not even animals howl like these animate things whose every utterance is shriek from the bowls of hell. They are Satan’s shit.

But even this doesn’t reach to the core of the matter. My epithets and hatred fall short. Two days ago it occurred to me: Bush is a political cancer that corrupts and consumes everything.

The correlative to the disgusted loathing I have felt for that Sack of Diseased Shit was the vexing question why the country should be so powerless against him. Why is Congress so supine, feeble and corrupt? So pimped and fucked that they can’t even formulate the question much less stand up principle? Sixty percent of the country is against the war, and all you all one can hear from the Demorats is that they will prosecute it better. The rest, if they think about it all, are like timid mice wondering if they “can dare” “be seen” to come out against a war that the majority has resolved against.

Yes -- congressoids are whores and the press is a bunch of pimps but to say as much is to focus on personalities not systemics. The more systemic question remains: why is the country so powerless against the onslaught of the Bush effluence and sewage? The answer: Because Bush is a cancer and, by definition, the body has no immunity against it. It corrupts and consumes, devours and destroys, and Murka wastes and dies. That is what’s going on.

©WCG, 2005