Dysfunction, Division and Dystopia

Four months ago this week, I was busy putting the finishing touches on "Holistic People," a deep-dive into the evolution of perceptions around the value of four-year humanities and social science degrees in America. The article, which doubled as a whimsical reflection on a campus speaking tour I led many years ago, was meant to be published as May's monthly letter. Alas, it was pushed back. More urgent matters demanded I pen an ad hoc monthly mourning the latest evidence of institutional decay

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7 thoughts on “Dysfunction, Division and Dystopia

  1. Thank you, sir, for once again treating us to your superior skills for integrating and summarizing data, events, and trends. To my mind, the current GOP was founded on the back of Nixon and his never-ending quest for personal recognition and power. He didn’t care much about the US, only about his personal glory. To me the only thing that saved Nixon at all was that he found and employed Henry Kissinger. The GOP reveres Ronald Reagan, whose wunderkind was Arthur Laffer, who no one understood, whose theory has never actually worked, but who is still getting republicans elected today. Reagan is the guy whose warped vision of the Monroe doctrine involved a plan to import drugs to sell to our children to raise money to finance a tinpot war Congress wouldn’t support and also the guy who probably slept through much of his second term, while suffering from the beginnings of dementia. At this point, both parties have their crackpots, are supported by totally different constituencies than they were during the Korean War. But the switches of party constituencies in the US is like the regular switching of the earth’s magnetic poles, back and forth in cycles. Lincoln was a republican, Ike was a republican, Trump was a democrat first then switched to the folks more willing to Kowtow. Down the line the principles we revere in the myth that is the US, were just a way to control a disagreeable population and we’ve always been about who gets to be in charge. It’s not really business, folks, it’s always been personal.

  2. The possibility of Civil War is truly frightening to me. Simultaneous infrastructure attacks from both sides of the spectrum would quickly create starvation on a level not seen in this county, nor should ever be witnessed. Anarchy begetting base brutality.

    1. Nothing until it finally dawns on voters that 75% of the electorate has economic precarity in common. At the end of the day, all that matters is whether the checkbook balances, and for the vast majority of Americans it doesn’t. There are politicians in Washington who want to actually address that. But, tragically, the establishment on both sides of the aisle has convinced 300 million people that a policy platform built on economic dignity for everybody is a “radical” idea. And, from what I’ve heard, America’s would-be revolutionary has now settled into a comfortable life and is already resigned to the notion that the Democratic machine is never going to let her run for president. If that’s even a semblance of accurate, then she should indeed stay on the sidelines. Revolutionaries and agents for real change don’t “ask” for permission to run for elected office.

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