I was raised to understand that politeness was a way of getting what you wanted. A cheery “good morning” had the effect of eliciting a similar response. Almost every morning I write a page in my journal in which the first part of the entry describes all of the things that I feel grateful for having happened to me the day before. I find that it is a lightening rod for draining out the disgust and tension that builds up in a world so dedicated to conflict. The standard of influence has shifted from “Good Morning” to tribal threats muttered around a campfire of the inanities.
I have stopped watching the ugly form of entertainment presented to us as the “News” by the barking dogs of Fox News. “Truth, truth, truth,” they bark like mongrels with head colds snarling at shadows. Simplify, simplify, simplify, until there is no visible thread of reality to anything they say. I am sometimes reminded of poorly made horror movies in which the characters all make terrible decisions so that the audience can all chorus “no, no, no, don’t do that.” Do we welcome the wrongness of all of this? Are we inviting in the executioner to put a stop to our self-made miseries?
Do we prefer to listen to people who repeat the same failures over and over again? Do they repeat the often-quoted phrase “those who are ignorant of history are doomed to repeat it?” Of course these false soothsayers do. They are part of the dark forces of the irrational. The fear they monger is their own. The noble victim, able to overcome the forces of decency with a single lie.
Press the Off-button on the remote. Go talk with your neighbor about the next election. Wouldn’t it be nice if we could clean up those trash piles where rats breed?