997 The Hillbillification of America.
We are turning into hayseeds. We worship at the Church of Wal-mart where we get our groceries and our costumes. We vote hayseeds into high office (Carter, Clinton, Bush II,) and we choose from mostly among hayseeds for the next round of guys who will lead our slalom down the mountain and into the sea: Newt, Santorum, Paul.
Oxycontin, hillbilly heroin, is the modern drug of choice along with meth, most of it made at former moonshine sites.
To be clear: there’s nothing wrong with living in the country if that’s what you choose. But both public and private power want to make sure that IS what we choose.
We confuse “American Values” with “Hick Values.” We replace thought and evaluation with “common sense,” which is neither common nor sense, often enough.
All of this is kind of ironically funny, because of the claimed values have nothing to do with the values practiced.
Love they neighbor as thyself? Let he who is without sin cast the first stone? Thou shalt not covet? Rich men passing through the eyes of needles? Tolerance? All the “blessed are(s)...” in the Sermon on the Mount?
What’s the difference between today’s Republican Party and Iraq’s Party of God? What’s the difference between the sleazy corrupt Soviet Communist Party and its sleazy corrupt American politicians who don’t see the ties between religion and communism but preach the excesses of the former as the antidote to the excesses of the latter?
The powers of state and the powers of industry want all of us to wear bib overalls, hate science as they claim to hate the Satan they created, and most of all want us to live in widely scattered little places so we don’t band together for the common good.
All this in the name of “freedom.” Freedom to do or be or from what?
Make us stupider than we already are and we’ll do what we’re told and at the same time think we are making choices.
Shrapnel (Bert Sugar edition):
--Bert Sugar died this week at age 75. Sugar was probably boxing’s greatest historian and always a great “get” for radio and TV interviews. He edited or wrote about 80 books which people read, edited at least three different magazines at various times, and left us more well ordered words about sports and sports memorabilia than the next ten guys down the list.
--Sugar was right about most things, but not entirely right when he ranked the 100 greatest boxers of all time. He correctly put Sugar (no relation) Ray Robinson as number one, but he put Muhammad Ali only at number seven. And ranking Tyson on the list even as #100 was just plain wrong.
--The guy was not limited to sports. He asked great questions. One of his best: “Why does Hawaii have interstate highways?”
I’m Wes Richards. My opinions are my own but you’re welcome to them. ®
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© WJR 2012