Friday, March 17, 2017

TRUTH UNDER SEIGE?



Has truth met its waterloo in TrumpWorld?  Given the fusillade of alternative "facts," the facade of relativistic rhetoric, the obscurantist sophistics of the likes of Sean Spicer?  Given the mouthpieces of Trumpworld such as Sean Spicer, Kelly Anne Conway, Steven Miller and, God forbid, Sarah Huckabee Sanders? 

Possibly never before have such scurrilous speakers of the language used political discourse to prevent language from pursuing truth, what the Greeks of Socrates' time called the "Logos."  What we see happening in TrumpWorld and manifested daily by his mouthpieces is Orwellian doublespeak literallyHere today in American politics, fiction becomes truth, life verifies art.  

Possibly only comedy can deal with and expose the untruth of TrumpWorld.  We see much of this on late night TV.  Much of what we see obscured politically regarding real issues is complicated by the triviality of issues such as Trumps claims regarding 4-5 million illegal voters, assertion of record breaking crowds at his inaugural, accusation of Obama's illegal wiretapping at Trump tower, accusing British Intellegence of spying on the Whitehouse, quibbling over deceptive distinctions such as "literal" vs "serious" statements by the so-called President, etc., etc.  Such trivial if not eccentric claims are red meat for comedy but an anaesthesia for democratic discourse.

Of course, this superstructural obscurantism does point to some non-trivial issues such as what is implied by Trump's accusation of Obama committing a felony.  But sadly such as this is tantamount to a child not recognizing the serious implications of his words. So truth is not in sorting out the sophistries of the "reality TV light show" of Trump's lackeys and sycophants. The truth is in the infrastructural issues.  The truth of infrastructural actions is what must be attended to such as the infamous "Muslim Ban." 

The infrastructural issues point to the real issues and the truths we should be concerned with.  The real issues are these:  Firstly, the dismantling of the state department while dramatically increasing an already wasteful pentagon.  Within an ideology of Economic Nationalism, as General Mattis has warned, ‘if we disengage the state department and suspend diplomacy you will have to buy him more bullets.  So is Bannonist ideology intending military diplomacy and abandoning negotiation even though Trump claims to be the great negotiator?  Does Economic nationalism mean opportunistic military interventionism?

Secondly, will Trump pay for the medical, educational and social needs of the people, the very people who voted for him, prior to the ushering in of his promised golden age of the return of good jobs and prosperity to the homeland?  The real needs of people will not be satisfied by Economic Nationalist pipedreams.

Thirdly, will Bannonism enable the alt-right white Christian cultural vision to perpetuate the regressive culture war?  Or will the Bannon-believers wake up to the inevitable and only true populist vision for America, namely a multi-cultural reconstitution of community and local culture?  Possibly Trump could awaken to his own liberal-cultural tendencies and instincts and fire Bannon thus eliminating his insidious, obfuscating alt-right influence in the administration.

Fourthly, will the contradiction between egregiously wasteful spending on “the Wall,” and the military be reconciled with the promise to cut the deficit.  

Fifthly, can democracy be salvaged while Wall Street invades Washington in the form of Goldman Sachs populating the Trump administration and Billionaires bankrolling the expropriation of democratic politics from its local roots and lifeblood?  Can democracy be salvaged as business is conflated and confused with government and diplomacy?  Mass manipulation of an essentially under-educated populace does not a democracy make?  Trump’s base is not “deplorable” as Hillary Clinton exclaimed.  Their choices are regrettable or even lamentable.  They will themselves eventually regret and lament their choice of Trump.  They will discover that stoking the fires of white identity politics does not address their real needs and interests, nor promote their real political power which lay in uniting with “left-wing populism."

Lastly will the virulent behemoth of two-party politics finally be declared the 800 lb. gorilla in the political room.  Trump is neither conservative nor Republican.  Bernie Sanders was not really Demcratic nor liberal nor really even “socialist.”  Present party politics obscures the interests of the people and enervates their own possible political initiative.  The “revolution” required in American politics can’t be carried out while thinking in the obsolete bi-polar categories of left-right, liberal-conservative, Republican-Democrat, red state-blue state, white vs black, Christian vs Muslim, rich vs poor, people vs politicians, welfare vs workers, etc.  Obviously the supposed conflicts used to divide us are more determinative than the commonalites that unite and can harmonize us.  But Legislators are meant to harmonize the interests that unite the many rather than politicize unnecessary pseudo-conflict polarities that ultimately enrich and empower the few.  We thereby need a revolution in thought and political education in order to pursue and unconceal the real issues of truth.

Has truth met its Waterloo?  Not at all.  We must simply know where to look for it, how to articulate it and give it the light of day. The democracy needs "citizen legislators" who will reappropriate the republic and democratize the intelligence of the people. 

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