Bruce Springsteen recently asked us during his SiriusXM Radio show to consider what’s gone missing in the last four years:
“There’s no art in this White House. There’s no literature, no poetry, no music. There are no pets in this White House. No loyal man’s best friend, no Socks the family cat. There are no images of the first family enjoying themselves together in a moment of relaxation: no Obamas on the beach in Hawaii moments, or the Bushes fishing in Kennebunkport, no Reagans on horseback, no Kennedys playing touch football on the Cape.
Where’d that country go? Where did all the fun, the joy and the expression of love and happiness go? We used to have a president who calmed and soothed a nation, instead of dividing it. We are now rudderless and joyless.
We have lost the cultural aspects of society that have always made America great. We have lost our mojo, our fun, our happiness, our cheering on of others— the shared experience of humanity that makes it all worth it. We need to reclaim that country once again.”
“Rudderless and joyless” so perfectly describes the last four years, doesn’t it?
To be fair, this bleak hellscape we find ourselves enduring isn’t really the doing of any one individual. This didn’t just happen suddenly, much as it may seem like it. It’s taken a lot of people, a lot of enablers and dirty-tricks artists, and frankly a lot of apathetic and just plain stupid voters, across a span of 40 years to push the United State of America to this point of near total breakdown. But all that negative karma, all that mean-spiritedness and hard-headedness and emptiness of soul that has washed over our land since 2016, although it’s been building for a long time, was finally instantiated in and catalyzed by one man. One man who, like an abscess, has provided a center for all that horrible inflammation to accrete around and, finally, to erupt through.
I have often theorized that there’s an alternate universe someplace where another Donald J. Trump, born without money but otherwise suffering the exact same pathologies, ekes out a shabby living by dealing a penny-ante game of three-card monte on a folding table down at the very end of the Atlantic City boardwalk, the end that only the most gullible and wide-eyed hayseed tourists ever reach. He’s a con artist through and through, right down at the molecular level, no matter which universe we encounter him in. Unfortunately, we live in the universe where this vulgar, ignorant, greedy, hateful man somehow got himself into a position where he could poison the whole country — the whole world, really, as everything is interconnected — with his sociopathic, insatiable narcissism.
But tomorrow we have a chance to lance the boil and hopefully drain some of that pus out of our system. We can toss out that immoral, sexist, racist bully with the ridiculous combover and the strange orange makeup and the too-long tie and the schlubby suit, that wanna-be mobster, the Con Man in Chief and his whole damn Trump Crime Family. We can be rid of coke-fiend Don Jr and moron Eric, both so desperate for daddy’s love, both so confused that no amount of cocaine or endangered-animal heads on the walls seems to fill the hole in their souls. We can be rid of Steven Miller, the reptilian neo-Nazi Wormtongue who’s been whispering in Trump’s ear, and Bill Barr, who will give you that jowly hang-dog expression and tell you that he is the one being persecuted even as he guts the justice system. And we can be rid of the princess Ivanka and her dead-eyed, greasy-haired consort. Boot them all to the curb, and take their power-hungry bootlicking enablers in Congress with them. If there is any justice at all in this universe, the whole damn Republican party is about to be massively repudiated and sent to the metaphorical desert to think on their sins for the next 40 years or so.
At least that’s my hope. I have a hunch that it just might happen. I don’t think the GOP understands how righteously pissed the left, as well as a whole lot of moderates and even members of their own party, really are about the travesty of the last four years, how tired we all are of the neverending psychodrama shitshow chaos that surrounds and emanates from this White House.
We’ll see, of course. We’ll see.