Tuesday, August 16, 2005

Cindy's Divorce in Prime Time

Aug 16 , 8:48 PM
Cindy's Divorce in Prime Time
by Stirling Newberry
BOP News

Inside edition ran with a segment on Cindy Sheehan's pending divorce, and the turmoil it is causing her family - which is begging her back home. Ms. Sheehan has become symbolic, in that she is Dorothy trying to see the Wizard of Oz, and finding he is a humbug. Her story is metastizing into the way that Americans are facing a war without a king - no President at war in American history has taken less note of the war, except in so far as he awards himself medals for being a war President. He is not the leader of the faith of the nation, he does not allow the coffins to be show, nor does he show himself at the funerals of the fallen.

The two strands of Bushism - economic and social - are crumbling. America put up with terrible economic policies, because we got tax breaks, cheap gas and rising home values - we put up with terrible foreign policy, because too many of us were afraid. And upon these temporary trends, Bush funnelled massive corruption to the Republican Party.

America must come to terms with this, and to do that it must first go into denial - it must first pretend that someone else is responsible, not us.

It must transform itself from the butt kicking, bomb cheering America of the last few years - to the victim America that can say that the big people at the top lied and they just died. It is the pattern of every society that is in the process of rejecting political blunders - pretending not to have been there. The steroid war on drugs is now being transformed into that terrible disaster far away.


And so, even though Camp Casey is small - everyone wants to touch it. I've gotten dozens of fund raising emails talking about Cindy and her crusade. And all say the same thing "meet with her". She has become the ambassador of ordinary America, and a faerie tale where we sort out our own lives. For me this is an experience of waiting: I knew this day would come when the economy turned against Bush, and it has, and that national catharsis would be necessary.

My own day of catharsis is some years ago, the first step in the days after 9-11, where a mission suddenly turned pointless, and my small efforts were suddenly proven to be fruitless. The next step was in the summer of 2002 - two symphonies and the decision to act on a rumor that a former NATO commander was going to run for President. The rest of America is now going through that same process of both denying responsibility, and accepting.

The accepting part is harder to see amidst the soap opera - but it is the whole purpose. By backing the need for Bush to see the results of his policy, that he might face the human face of war - America is demanding that he do his job as the only official in America chosen by the whole of the people. That he refuses to do it, that he refuses to encompass it, is the seed of a deeper rejection of Bush and Bushism than has taken place here to fore. Bush is no longer the President of all the people - as he had been annointed after 9/11 - but the President of the gas guzzling, darwin denying war hawks - others are not his people.

This change is the wedge to shatter the stake he has driven into the heart of America, and sweep aside the long thirty year march to a meaner, madder America that began on a close election day in 1968, when a 40% President-elect took America down the rabbit hole. Because if there is one sin in American politics - it is to be out of touch. And Bush has shown that not only is he out of touch - but that he wants it that way.

Thus, the divorce that counts, is America's divorce from the self that was. The cost of the past isn't due yet, and Americans aren't ready to face that. But they will, and that day will come.
by Stirling Newberry