Saturday, November 10, 2007

Do we get what we deserve?

H. L. Mencken:

As democracy is perfected, the office represents, more and more closely, the inner soul of the people. We move toward a lofty ideal. On some great and glorious day the plain folks of the land will reach their hearts desire at last, and the White House will be adorned by a downright moron.
The Baltimore Evening Sun, July 26, 1920

He also observed:

Democracy is the theory that the common people know what they want, and deserve to get it good and hard.

Thing is I've been casting around some, trying to understand how we, as country, got this way. I've offered post after post, trying to get someone to help me shake this melancholy. Or to simply explain why I'm wrong. The 'boy who cried wolf' and maybe 'chicken little' hover around the periphery of my thoughts, but I can't ignore what is.

History demonstrates that countries fall. Our own country has been through trials and tribulations aplenty yet somehow survived. This seems different. Could be my age or temperament writ large.

It would seem that a vast majority of the electorate has abdicated their responsibility in favor of comfort and who am I to fault them.

This Presidential election keeps scanning as a comic opera... no... make that farce!

The fundamental flaw in my thinking is obvious, and Mencken was talking about it years ago when HIS crisis of confidence was in bloom.

I'm old enough that I should learn to sit back and laugh. That's what otherwise sane people do when observing a running gag.

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