The Talking Dog

February 19, 2011, Roadmap? Check. Handbasket? Check.

You'all know my view on where we're headed... the only question (if it's even that relevant anymore) is how fast we'll get there, collectively. As individuals, some of us may reach it sooner than others... but...

For those not reading Dmitry Orlov... he's pretty much the one guy out there who's putting the various world and domestic events and trends in context, such as his latest post, "Ron Paul Joins the Collapse Party." We are really rapidly coming to the point where Margaret Atwood's The Handmaid's Tale may be a tad too optimistic.

Item: key American ally (and home of our once-mighty U.S. Navy's Fifth Fleet) Bahrain has become engulfed in protests, including the powers that be recently deciding it was a good idea to commence firing on sleeping protestors and then beating up medics trying to help the wounded.

Item: After deliberately precipitating a budget shortfall in Wisconisn, recently elected Republican (and Tea Party darling) Governor Scott Walker has gone straight for the heart of the Democratic Party, to wit, public sector unions, by proposing to slash benefits and eliminate collective bargaining rights. Normally placid (!) Madison, Wisconsin has been rocked by protests, counter-protests, and state legislative walkouts and the usual mirth and merriment that accompanies end times.

And speaking of end times, let's hear it for the Republican House, which wants to party like its 1899, first by using various spending powers to make paying for abortion all but a felony, including cutting off funds for another Democratic stronghold, Planned Parenthood, while Boehner and the Country Club Boys (maybe they'll be the opening act for Sarah and the Barracudas, or Newt and the Blowhards?) gear up to shut down funding for the Corporation for Public Broadcasting. And hell.... they just don't like spending money on anything that might ameliorate the nation's decline,

Honestly, folks, while more or less a harbinger of the end of civilization (and our Republican friends and our Democratic friends, at least in the elected realm, both want to cause it, in the interest of maintaining their own cushy privileges, at least a while longer... the only difference being the Republicans' seeming desire to cause it faster), what we're seeing play out is actually democracy in action (such as the farcical facsimile of same we have here in the so-called United States). Mr. Walker and House Republicans and indeed conservatives, "tea-partiers" and reactionaries everywhere were democratically elected; despite huge majorities in both houses of Congress and the biggest mandate for any Democrat since the 1960's, Barack Obama, Harry Reid and company decided that "baby steps" were the best we were going to see... and the nation decided "Nyet!" Well, the "Party of No" is in... and... well, you see where this is going. And yet-- I'm not making the usual partisan point of "if only we'd have elected Democrats, they would save us".. because that would be a lie.

So as not to completely depress you (!), "Doctor tells the old guy, I have some bad news and good news, which do you want first? Patient says give me the bad news. Doc says I'm sorry, every test I've run shows you have terminal cancer, it's spread over most of your body, it's inoperative, treatment will just cause you needless suffering-- make your final arrangementsimmediately-- you'll be dead in 2, 3 months at the outside. Patient says, my God! That's horrible! What could POSSIBLY be good news after that? Doctor says, You see that drop dead gorgeous nurse over there? I'm f&^%ing her!", there ARE things you can do for you and your family amidst the coming end times (and really, we're not looking at cataclysmic apocalypse so much as, say, fall of Soviet Union kind of thing... which will be really bad, but not quite up there with nuclear war). I, for one, have pretty much taught myself to cook a number of vegetarian dishes... you can get excellent recipes from the vegetarian cooking guide, as well as any number of comparable sites. And think about where you get your food from... farmer's markets and Community Supported Agriculture ("CSAs") and of course, your own gardening [I manage to grow things on my roof right here in Brooklyn] are all excellent ideas, which were once (and will soon be again) the mainstays of our diets... start now, while you still have a choice, and you'll be in much better position than the poor bastards who think things will go on the way they're used to. And make friends, damn it!

And get your head into a better mindset: for one, think quite consciously about your relationship with money and the power economy... check out, for example, Your Money or Your Life, or The Ultimate Cheapskate's Road Map to True Riches, or sites like Zen Habits.

This is not Egypt: our government will not topple if thousands, or even millions or tens of millions of us were to take to the streets. And it would not be a good move to bet your life on our police, military and/or mercenaries electing not to fire on their fellow citizens if the order comes... because this is not Egypt or Tunisia... in that score, this is Iran (a country of educated sophisticated people forever dueling with religious reactionaries, with a functioning ersatz democracy featuring corrupt elections, that loves its death penalty to death)... you won't last a day or two out there, even if you got your whole town to turn out. Sorry about that.

But what you, and I, and us, can do is take ourselves out. Minimize our exposure (as much as we can) to money, which is the main vehicle of control that the Rockefeller family the people in charge (hint: that's not the complaint department otherwise known as "the government") use to maintain their control. OK then... we're going to "go veg" to the extent we can, stay as physically active and healthy as we can (enslaving us to pharmaceuticals is the ultimate win win for the power-- they take our money and our souls in one swoop), and not try to call too much attention to ourselves.

And just maybe we'll get through this.