Saturday, November 21, 2015

A hypothesis for Mrs C

I'm mulling over a hypothesis in favor of Mrs C. 
Heretofore, I have thought it - no - prayed that 
it would be plausible, to wait a bit after the 
Republican convention, to see if the nominee were 
educable toward the Middle, and not an out-and-out 
drooling boor of bigotry, corruption, stupidity, 
and revolting machismo.

The known candidates for that nomination have now 
ruled this out.

And what Mrs C needs, is an alternative so desolate 
of reason and so animating of vulgar stupidity, as 
to motivate a vote despite herself.

My evolving hypothesis is, treachery trumps insanity. 
I could well see a reasonable observer, calculating 
the range of Mrs C's assured betrayals of her prom-
ises, as less repulsive and far less dangerous than 
what we can trust our confessing fascists to do. It's 
an analysis which concedes, her vaunted competence is 
a useless disguise of her habits, but that these may 
emerge almost as trifles.

It isn't that we haven't seen this before. In 1964,
an unsavory nominee, illuminated by scandals, suc-
ceeded in tempting the opposition Party to nominate
its worst, whom he could directly denounce as a rant-
ing, raving demagogue. That Lyndon Johnson went on to
pursue in the most lingering way, the very militarism
advocated apocalyptically by Barry Goldwater, was not
the fault of the electorate. It had not seen a fraud
ever rise so high, or run so deep. Even then, Johnson
had been insulated by seducing unthinkable opponents.

Against this precedent, however, works a longevity
of national focus on Mrs C, which Johnson eluded in
his essentially insider career. It is hard for many,
now, to regard a Panzer division as overcompensation
in response to la belle dame sans merci of arresting
assertions of prerogative. I doubt that her appeal in 
2016 will be as strong as Obama's was in 2008; I doubt 
that any exhilaration of awarding her luck in gender 
can be compared to humble pride in electing a rarity, 
a reasonable politician. Unexpectedly, her emergency 
may be emerging as her opportunity. She needs to be 
cast as the safe harbor, but possibly now she can be, 
not for her promises, but for theirs. They create the
emergency she needs, and it's a doozy.

     And this is why I sojourn here,
     Alone and palely loitering,
     Though the sedge is withered from the lake,
     And no birds sing.

John Keats

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