Sunday, June 10, 2012

Transiting Wisconsin

Last Tuesday night, as the planet Venus slowly crawled across the sun for its one and only transit in our collective lifetime, Scott Walker sped to victory in Wisconsin, riding upon the Koch Brothers' millions. And, as the right-wing calliope sounded loudly yet again, the Supreme Court's Citizens' United decision of two years ago--to allow unlimited spending by anonymous donors and corporations to influence elections--finally came into full feather. Democrats were suddenly outspent 7 to 1. While the rest of us picked up our dinosaurs and tried to get out of the room, conservatives bounced their latest hero on Tea Party shoulders, and gloated. Walker would not only keep his job as governor; his personal stock had just gone through the roof. Come 2020 (after Rom Mittney's two terms), Walker could be looking positively presidential.

In all the commentary that followed, nobody even noticed the inspectors who had been duly standing by in expectation of an all-night recount operation. Nobody blinked when the result was hastily announced--a mere one hour after the polls had closed. Personally, I found the silence afterwards eerie and was creeped out by it. But only when I read Tom Degan's blog was the possibility of rigging even raised by anyone. "I'm damned-near speechless--but hardly surprised," he wrote on The Rant. "Could the election have been tampered with? We'll never know," he added. "Democracy today is at the mercy of easily hackable, computerized voting machines, not to mention unlimited money for paid propaganda and misinformation. A strange new world. It took 1984 twenty-eight years to finally get here."

Tom's friend Jacqueline, who had been very active in the recall movement, told him that there was reason to believe the election was rigged. She makes a good case, he said: "The numbers do NOT make sense. There were NO exit polls that were made available. They are usually adjusted to match the "official" totals, but last night, for the first time ever, unprecedented really: THE UNADJUSTED EXIT POLLS WERE NOT MADE AVAILABLE TO THE PUBLIC...The electoral process is corrupted," she wrote. The machines are riggable and the criminals go undetected. Stolen elections are eating democracy."

Move over Cairo. Hi there Afghanistan, Iran, and Uzbeki-beki-beki-stan: America wants to join you in electoral dysfunction. There'll be no more bottled summer bliss over here in Dandelion Wine Country, now that organized labor has been given a death blow by the Koch Brothers in their million-dollar red capes--in what David Koch deemed a "critically important" fight to bring down the unions. As Rachel Maddow asked on MSNBC, "what happens if you kill off the unions?" (Warning: you may not like her answer.) "If Republicans can use policy at the state level to kill unions, there will no longer be two sides competing when it comes to big money in elections. It will be all Republican money, no matter who the candidates are, no matter what the election year is, no matter what the specific office is. Republicans will be running essentially unopposed. Forever. All across the country."

In other words, prepare for wall-to-wall Republicanism as far as the eye can see. Prepare, thus, for disinformation, disenfranchisement, deregulation, and dystopia until death do us part. Until then (and it won't be long now), expect no jobs or grand bargains--because until they have reached their goal, rogue Republicans like John Boehner, Eric Cantor, and Mitch McConnell will do nothing but contemptuously laugh at the monthly job numbers. It's all part of the right-wing coup.

Virgil and I have been tracking the right-wing coup obsessively for several years now, trying to bring it into focus ever since the Citizens United verdict was passed back in 2009. But now we have found a new friend--a kindred spirit and well-known compatriot--Robert Reich, who wrote this on his blog after the recall:

"I'm not a conspiracy theorist...but I fear that at least since 2010 we've been witnessing a quiet, slow-motion coup d'etat whose purpose is to repeal every bit of progressive legislation since the New Deal and entrench the privileged positions of the wealthy and powerful..,.Its technique is to inundate America with a few big lies, told over and over (the debt is Obama's fault and it's out of control; corporations and the very rich are the 'job creators' that need tax cuts; government is the enemy, and its regulations are strangling the private sector; unions are bad; and so on), and tell them so often they're taken as fact. Then having convinced enough Americans that these lies are true, take over the White House, Congress, and remaining states that haven't yet succumbed to the regressive right (witness Tuesday's recall election in Wisconsin)."

Reich adds that he desperately hopes he's wrong about this, despite the growing evidence--but Virgil and I both know for sure that he is right. We're glad to have some serious company at last. And just in case you have noticed that my blogs over the past couple of months have been MIA and wondered why, it's because I am having bad eye troubles. Cataract surgery is scheduled for this week. And God said, "Let there be light."


Jane Lillian Vance said...

Suzi, there are mountains full of us who notice when you do and don't speak because every time we read you, we remember what loud and clear can mean. Thank you for this lament. I always feel hope after reading your blog because your writing is cogent and succinct despite being sweeping and deep with teeming implications. There will be light, for you and because of you.

Anonymous said...

Sure, a mountain full of
Could you get any further up the old hags ass?

Greg said...

Funny, "Anonymous," if that is your real name... Trying to figure out how Jane could get further, when you should be worried about how to extricate your own...

Victoria said...

Dear Suzi,

I apologise for this being very little to do with your post here, but I couldn't find another way of contacting you, so I hope you don't mind.

I hope your eye surgery went well and that you are recovering apace, and I am thrilled to doscover your blog.

I bought your book "Living the Magical Life" yesterday in our local esoteric book and crystal shop, in the sea-side town of Bournemouth in the UK. I was drawn to it as the only real title of interest in two book shelves, and when I saw the cover illustartion, it mademe smile - the whole Eve and serpent image keeps cropping up for me at present.

I have had a couple of wild years following the painful end of my marriage of 14 years, and feel as though I have been slightly bludgeoned by unseen forces into accepting as reality the synchronistic world of which you speak in such powerful personal terms. I have always wanted to believe, but had it conditioned out of me for a long time. Now I know that half the problems I had in my life were due to the fact that I did believe, but didn't want to elicit the dissappointment of those around me by acknowledging my "madness".

The way you write about your Oracular Adventure has done many things for me and I wanted to thank you. I feel at once comforted, reasured and yet aware of the need for respect of these forces which are without real name or form, but which I am now convinced do exist.

I have read one or two "self-help" books written from such a deinite viewpoint that it seems they actually contradict themselves on the questions of self surrender and ego, but your narrative felt like being told your story with all it's doubt and fear included in a comfortable place, with no sense of inadequacy in myself. You also make it clear that these journeys that life takes us on are ongoing and that pursuing an end or outcome is not the whole point, but more a focus for a process that is continually open to change.

I also feel deeply for the fate of the world and my fellow humanity, and flounder as to what i can do to make a difference. Maybe being aware is enough. Maybe the answers will come in their own graceful time.

Once again, I thank you deeply for your words, and wish you well.


Sam said...

Dear Suzi,

I need some bibliographical information about your papers: 1) “Beyond the Disciplines: Art without Borders”, ???; 2) “The Nature of Beauty in Contemporary Art”, New Renaissance magazine Vol. 8, No. 1, pp. ??? Thank you very much for your help and consideration.

Anonymous said...

I stand "corrected", thank you.
Yes -that has bothered me ever since I wrote that horric insult. The dark side is not a good thing. That I was feeling poorly for having done so is all I can offer.
It was actually on my list of what I really need to repose. make another post declaring the real depth of my feelings towards Ms. Gablik. She was once one of favorite people on Earth.
Honestly, I wish I had never thought much less said anything unkind.
Tha I was wrongis all I get and being Sorry is the worst thing anyone can ever feel. It's the best I can do for now. Maybe we all grow up someday some more slowly than others.
So the truth is I hope Suzi's surgery went well and she can see better.
That's all.

libbyd said...

Dear dear Suzi.

I would like to come and see you. I'm coming to the US this fall from Brighton/London, dropping in on Grant Kester (I hope) and many other folk, especially in my Buddhist community.

I want to ensure your legacy is strong.

Please can you email me on and let me know how I can be of assistance?

I have what it takes to see this through.

In deep deep gratitude for your writing, which has saved me from the worst moments of doubt and given me so much to think about and aspire to.

Much Metta

Libby Davy

Colleen said...

Dear Suzi,

I miss reading your blog and hope your abrupt disappearance is not due to ill health.