Supreme Rulings

To the Editor:
Regarding the excitement of a continuing Conservative, Heritage Foundation-branded Supreme Court into the foreseeable future, it should be noted that the two most radical decisions in recent history, Bush v. Gore, which ruled, in essence, that an accurate count of the votes was not necessary, thus anointing George Bush as President, and Citizens United, which equated money with Free Speech, were made by a Conservative majority.  The first resulted in the invasion and occupation of Iraq and Afghanistan, our full, “Shock and Awe” swan dive into the Tar Baby affairs of the Middle East, while the second has enabled the rise of a Libertarian oligarchy in which the power of wealth reaps and wields the lion’s share of benefit and influence.  It will be hard to top these, but best fasten your seat belts now.

RP

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Interconnectability

To the Editor:
    As if there weren’t enough growing anxiety over the prospect of a Romney presidency and Conservative economics on steroids, the “Arm the People” crowd wants our public (and private) places filled with loaded guns “to prevent gun violence”.  So much for finding escape and sanctuary in bars and darkened theaters.  Best to stay home and watch retro, campy, BAM!  POW!  SOCK EM IN THE JAW! Adam West as Batman reruns.
    Sorry for the sarcasm in response to tragedy but it drives me crazy that, in the same way that some continue to deny our role in global warming, as a society we continue to ignore the desensitization implicit in a consumer economy that regards human lives as but another commodity to be used and exploited.  How much difference is there in the celebration of those cheering the bomb blasts of “Shock and Awe” at the beginning of the Iraq war and the elation a deranged mind feels in opening fire in a crowded theater?  Is there more tragedy in Aurora than in the “collateral damage” of a wedding party being mistaken for a terrorist meeting in Afghanistan?  Who among us has a psyche not in some way damaged and scarred?
    A hard truth is that we have lost sense of the fragility and interconnectedness and responsibility of being alive and part of a world that is in itself a living organism.  The hard question is:  will we recover these in time to save us from ourselves?
RP

Loving Ayn Rand

To the Editor:
    It is no surprise that Conservatives, who see themselves as part of a plutocratic elite destined to power, would find affinity with the Superman myths of Ayn Rand’s writing.  However, while heroic individualism is one part of human survival, a successful culture is one with a social contract that balances the needs of society with those of the individual.  Ben Franklin can be called a hero for establishing the U.S. Postal Service as an institution that benefited all of America.  Under Ms. Rand’s generally sociopathic philosophy, he was a fool for not doing it for his own profit.  Then again, maybe if the Post Office issued a “Forever Stamp” honoring Ayn Rand, Republicans might start supporting our postal workers.
RP