BY JIM BUSH
Just when did the Republicans become socialists?! That was their main line of attack against Bernie Sanders, the prime feature of their fear-mongering hysteria: Oh my goodness, a socialist! We can’t have that! Fire-breathing dragons will arise from slumber, locusts will swarm and the sky will fall!
And now all of a sudden, they’re not only proposing the usual giveaway of money to their wealthy corporate buddies, they’re even talking of sliding $1,000 to us lowly peasants.
Shades of Andrew Yang! It would be amusing if it weren’t so pathetic.
Wonder what brought about this dramatic shift? Could it be falling election numbers? Or maybe the sound of the poor peasants finally sharpening the pitch forks? Whatever, it is quite entertaining to watch them squirm and take their hypocrisy to never-before-reached heights. They’ll soon need oxygen masks to go any higher.
There’s an old Chinese curse that goes: “May you live in interesting times.” It’s not lost on me that the coronavirus apparently originated in China. Interesting times, indeed. We could use a good dose of dullness about now.
But … looked at in the most positive light possible, the curse could, eventually, turn into a blessing. That’s only if, at long last, we finally come to realize at the deepest level that we really and truly are all in this together.
As Charles Dickens wrote in A Tale of Two Cities, “It was the best of times, it was the worst of times, it was the age of wisdom, it was the age of foolishness, it was the epoch of belief, it was the epoch of incredulity, it was the season of light, it was the season of darkness, it was the spring of hope, it was the winter of despair.” While we are understandably focused mostly on the darkness and despair at the moment, we are also catching glimpses of the best in people.
While some folks are greedily hoarding toilet paper and Purell, others are looking for ways to be of service. Neighbors are helping neighbors and we’re, hopefully, coming to understand that we need to be defined first and foremost by our common humanity rather than political labels.
That being said, back to politics for a moment… The viral fascist nationalism spewing from the Donald Trump Party is not your grandfather’s Republicanism. I can appreciate true conservatism. Believe it or not, I’m a bit of a fiscal conservative myself when it comes to avoiding government waste.
Most importantly, there is no greater defender of the American Constitution than a traditional conservative. But that is most certainly not what we’re seeing from Trumpism. Trumpism is the polar opposite of true conservatism. It is, rather, radical revisionism.
True representative democracy? Now you see it, now you don’t. He hugs the flag like one of his porn stars while out his backside he defecates on our most important document, said constitution.
The majority in this country seems to worship capitalism, not seeing it for the false god it is. Capitalism has one goal and one goal only, and that is the maximization of profits no matter the costs!
And what are the costs? First and foremost, the rapidly declining health of our one and only livable planet, Mother Earth. Capitalism takes and takes and takes … It dwells in the absurd notion that we can continue to extract endless resources from Earth with no consequence.
COVID-19 just might be a wakeup call to reconsider this absurdity. Capitalism has no regard for life and, unless controlled, will destroy life as we know it.
Capitalism also has no regard whatever for the needy and less fortunate among us. That’s just not its thing. It has no heart. It’s all about money!
Democratic Socialism, on the other hand, says that lives do matter, that there are more important things than the massive accumulation of wealth – which always seems to conveniently end up in just a few privileged hands.
So, I want to compliment my Republican comrades for finally seeing that there just might be some social benefits to sharing the wealth. Even if it’s only to avoid the pitchforks.
Jim Bush is a Waxahachie, TX-based singer, songwriter, poet, philosopher and environmentalist. This essay first appeared on Facebook and is reprinted with permission.