Wednesday, November 03, 2004

There Is Nothing Left To Lose.

Greed and sin are the king and prime minister; falsehood is the treasurer.
Sexual desire, the chief advisor, is summoned and consulted.
They all sit together and contemplate their plans.
Blind and without wisdom, their subjects try to please the will of the dead.
-Guru Nanak in the Siri Guru Granth Sahib

Last night I sat in front of my broke-ass TV (thanks Consider Arms) and watched the election returns and slowly descended into a depressed panic. Channels #2-48 stopped working as they tend to do every five minutes on my broke-ass TV, and when I was left without cable news I would watch snippets of a History Channel documentary on the rise of Nazi Germany. At 2am I gave up and went to bed. After frightening chest pains, a headache and a stomacheache I fell into three hours of restless, nightmare-filled sleep.

I woke up this morning to the worst kind of disappointment, the loss of something I was only morbidly excited about, an America that would have only been slightly less horrible. Like other optomists burned by Clinton, I was well aware that getting Bush out of office would only stop the most awful of problems. After four years of Kerry, poor people still wouldn't have health insurance, massive student loan debts would be as ritualized as cotillions, and troops would still get killed in Iraq.

I guess what is most heartbreaking for me about the election results was the definative realization that my political beliefs are marginal in today's America, and in reality I don't think that they are fringe beliefs at all. Despite being a Sikh geek, my political views never really wander far away from the Gospels of the New Testament. Despite the self-righteous posturing of "Christian America" nobody cares about the poor, the sick, the persecuted and the imprisoned. Pro-Life Evangelicals rally around the fetus while cheering on state-sponsored executions and the deaths of 100,000 women and children in Iraq. Millions of people are dying horrible deaths in Africa from AIDS and violent conflict and their lives are lucky to scratch A19 of the New York Times. 2% of the country is in prison, over 10% is in poverty and they didn't get a single whisper in the past five months. America has dug its trenches behind worthless cultural straw men handed down from the eighties and the sixties: stem cell research and gay marriage. There is no sense or humanity, only inexplicable brand loyalties and twisted emotions. And I guess that's what scares me more than the "re"-election of Bush; fact and reality have left the building. Dante knew that hell was the absence of reason, and when reason itself is gone war becomes security, ignorance becomes strength, deceit becomes morality and a legion of injustices are given an open door to slip in through. Our country has existed in a nightmare and now America has overwhelmingly come out to become smug cheerleaders for the apocalypse. It's like the Left was spit on after getting grudge-fucked.

I found myself having to make a tough decision. After a long time obsessing about issues much bigger than myself and well beyond my control, I've realized that my interest in politics and current events is doing me no good, in fact it's turning me into a miserable and dispassionate person. I've decided to stop posting on the Monster Limo Weblog for an indefinate amount of time. Knowing the minutia of every scandal and injustice, the vastness of corrupt power and the willful ignorance of most Americans isn't helping me, and it's helping to turn me into a depressed and despairing person who won't help anyone else.

One of the benefits of knowing history and realizing that life has been worse in the past: leaders have been more currput than ours, empire have been more sadistic and life has seemed more hopeless. That sense of history saves us from carrying the burden of feeling that we exist in the absolute worst of times, that it's never been as bleak as it is now and that we alone are at the end of time. History also gives the gift of knowing that no terrible moment in history lasts forever. Rome fell, and maybe someday this nightmare will be another footnote in history, hopefully immediately preceeding a saner and healthier time for everyone.

It's been fun. See you bhenchods in the work camps.
-The Sikh Geek