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John Cory: The Savage Carnival

The Savage Carnival

By John Cory
t r u t h o u t | Perspective

Monday 28 March 2005

America has become a savage carnival of freak show religiosity and circus clown politics.

Let's call them what they are: Ghoulish Obscene Panderers. How else to describe Tom Delay and Bill Frist, et al., as they crawl into bed with a brain-dead woman to pose for a political Polaroid?

If Bill Frist is the paragon of compassionate-conservative medicine in this country, it is no wonder the GOP wants to do away with trial lawyers and medical malpractice awards. I mean, if Dr. Frist can diagnose via video, surely we can all be diagnosed and healed by touching the magic screens of our televisions, powered by the celebrated and all knowing all-powerful Dr. Oz and his media-evangelists, cured through Our Lady of the Sacred Cable Cathedral and the Holy Order of St. Arbitron, all included in our monthly satellite and cable subscription fees. Better than national healthcare. God is good.

And while the circus of life unfolds before us, notice how no one acknowledges the rampage of giant pink elephants. The media, like a good Ring Master, barks and waves, diverting our attention to the death-defying trapeze artists, the bearded lady, the two-headed boy, and the miniature fire engine loaded with seltzer-spraying pundits fresh from clown college. Modern journalism under the Big Top.

No one wants you to see what just happened. They hide the fact that Congress passed legislation that 80 percent of America thinks is wrong and invasive, that Congress passed this act with only a minimum of congressional and senate membership present, which should scare the living bejeebers out of all of us. What about separation of powers? GOP is the power. What about the rule of law? Only the GOP makes the law. Constitution? Just another dead document. What about activist courts and judges? The GOP will tell you when activism is good and when the evil liberals do bad activism, and never mind the difference!

Wake up America! The Republic is dead. Welcome to the United States of Jesus, sponsored by the GOP Gospel Hour Medicine Show.

It's all a cheap savage carnival on the midway of mendacity. If you want to know these people's moral values, look no further than their pocketbook. And remember, George Bush says their money is our money. Our values are their values.

For every $1 we spend on education in this country, we spend $6 on the defense industry. Are we really six times more dedicated to killing than educating?

While Congressional Christian Conservatives fight to keep a brain-dead woman alive, they cut millions and millions of dollars of VA Healthcare for the treatment of brain-injured soldiers returning from the Iraq war, as well as dozens of programs intended to help the wounded veterans and their families. Why are they so eager to bury the living while digging up the dead for political fundraising?

Helping the poor and homeless is called "entitlements," while tax cuts for the wealthy and tax-subsidies for corporations are considered the "America way." Sort of like saying that kicking people while they are down is the best way to get a good shoe shine.

They fight to keep a brain-dead woman alive while allowing our youngsters easier access to guns than to mental healthcare. But hey, it's only ten little Indians in Red Lake, and besides, Terri Schiavo is a true American.

And like that old adage, "follow the money," if you watch the deposits and withdrawals of our moral leadership, you'll see exactly where their values are, and in turn, why they couldn't care less about your values. Because it is not about values, it is about power and winning and ruling. Values are like congressional ethics, flexible moral standards based on convenience and financial contribution. How else to explain Democratic support of the vile and onerous bankruptcy legislation? I guess it's true that a conservative Democrat is just a Republican in cheap clothing.

These folks hold the Constitution as irrelevant and Catechisms as the only key to America's greatness. They want the Ten Commandments in all public buildings and the 12 Apostles in Congress. They want the Virgin Mary to teach sex education, and they believe in the Holy Trinity of Bush the Father, and the Son, and the Holy Rove.

Money is free speech for those who can afford it, while "silence is golden" applies to the middle class and working poor.

So here we are, in a nation that claims to value the sanctity of life above all else - even as Justice Scalia bemoans no longer being able to put teenagers to death - but content with enforcing capital punishment on mentally retarded prisoners.

It's a freak show, folks. For one thin dime, one tenth of a dollar, you can dance with Christian cannibals while being baptized in the healing waters of the Potomac and witness the second coming of GOP's chosen children - them that's got.

It is a savage carnival that fights to keep a brain-dead woman alive, while pulling the plug on democracy and the Constitution.


John Cory is a Vietnam veteran. He received the Purple Heart and Bronze Star with V device, 1969 - 1970.

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