Wednesday, April 22, 2009

Ridicule As Statecraft

The right has gone so far into Crazy it's not even funny anymore.

Although mocking them IS funny, yes. What would comedians do without them?

Ridicule, by the way, is what I recommended way back in in the late 1970s as the best way to deal with so-called terrorist groups. See, terrorism is the last-ditch effort of a politically powerless group to gain serious attention, right? That is what they crave, to be taken seriously, to have their cause or concerns addressed by the big fellas in a sober, serious way. They can't rattle sabers the way big nations do, and they can't go to war or threaten nuclear annihilation, so they turn to crime, specifically murder in the form of explosions, hostage taking, and the occasional mass shooting.

Same as Al Capone in the 1930s trying to make an impression on Bugsy Seigel.

So my epiphany was: MOCK them. Make pitiless fun of them. Ridicule them and their pathetic tiny concerns until NO one takes them seriously. At which point you make them an offer: Play nice and we'll stop belittling you and drop the satire offensive. Grow up and act civilized, period, or stay in Time Out.

And you know what? That will work. It'll work a shitload better than any amount of torture, war, or idiocy will. By taking the fear and mystique away, they have nothing left. Make them look small and insignificant.

And there is even historical precedent, by the way. Oh yes. Look up how the Caliphs and Emperors used Satire and Satirists to write plays and poems and songs marginalizing their enemies and keeping them laughable so that no one ever flocked to their causes. It was a standard piece of statecraft 2000 years ago in Ancient Greece, Rome, Egypt, Byzantium, and so on.

We can and should bring it back in a fully conscious way.

Make Al Qaeda a laughingstock of bumbling idiots, not a cartoon villain only super-Bush can possibly vanquish.

And yes, that's what was really going on. Dicks like Cheney were puffing and bloating their own sad C-student Yale flunky loser reputations by pretending to fight a dragon of their own devising.

Talk about self satire.

Talk about counterproductive, too.

A small group of criminals blew up some buildings. We should have gone after them with law enforcement, and belittled them as desperate stupid nothings over-reaching their station. We should have brushed them off like gnats, instead of giving them attention and making them appear important enough to go to war over. Instead, we react as if they are a sovereign state and pretend to go to war with them, even though they are not a sovereign state and in fact have no real country, etc. And just like other wars against abstracts, such as the one on drugs, it's both indefinable and unwinnable. (Which suits the arms dealers and other endless looters just fine, of course.)

And so we handed them every terrorist's wet dream, to be taken not only seriously, but so seriously that it actually changed their target in drastic ways, and has in fact ended up nearly bankrupting us both financially and morally.

Thanks, Dick.

A real man, an adult, would have brushed it off as a mugging, severe, yes, but ultimately just a criminal act of no consequence to the strength and integrity of our state. We should have built again, ASAP, on the WTC site, rather than leave it as a gaping scar of shame all these years. We should have continued with business-as-usual, to show the world that no two-bit gang of thugs can bring us to our knees.

Instead, what do you do, Dick? You throw a fit, squander the world's goodwill, start a gang war to appease your threatened little ego, institute wiretapping, kidnaping, torture, and a gulag of secret prisons, plus assassination, and in the process jeopardize everything USA ever stood for. Infantile.

We need to go back to being an adult nation with grown-up concerns and mature, considered responses. It will work a lot better than being a fear-driven paranoid panic-stricken infant lashing out at shadows and thrashing in its crib tangled in its blanket of self-induced fears as it wails for its Big Oil bottle and fills its diaper with prejudice, bigotry, and racism.

You listening, GOP? Right wingerss? You are, right now, the most easily ridiculed bunch of buffoons and bozos anyone can think of, a joke without a punch line, a lame duck of a political heritage, a feeble spark of imagined glories that led irrevocably to failure after failure, a howling hollow shell of an echo chamber where lunatics cry and whine and moan and bellow gibberish all day every day. You cannot be taken seriously, and only were because of the harm you did.

You met the enemy and became the enemy in one moronic stumble.

So keep up the geek act, if it amuses you.

The rest of us have grown-up things to say and do.

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