Nothing I write today will be original. I find myself amongst a vast army of people who feel exactly the same way. Relief doesn’t begin to describe it. Joy is not quite the right word, though there is an element of joy in it. There remains an element of sadness, however, which can never go away. It is the tempered feeling of joy a parent would experience upon discovering that their child was not in fact killed, but merely abducted and kept captive for eight years in an unsavory pedophile’s basement . And now that child has been found, and the healing can begin. Bright days of empty blue skies will start to do their work.
I am speaking, of course, about the departure of our dear Commander in Chief, President George W. Bush. It’s hard not to pile on. It seems that everybody is finally coming out of the woodwork and venting, letting their true thoughts be known. There’s this, for example from ThinkProgress, a representative rant from a list of comments in response to Bush’s pathetic farewell address:
“Honestly, there are only two things that would have to happen for me to feel good about the George Bush presidency.
First, Bush and all his colleagues/cronies should be prosecuted and convicted for the war crimes they committed, and their crimes of omission with regard to Katrina etc. The only sufficient punishment would be life in prison. I would feel very happy about this outcome.
Second, once Bush and all his colleagues/cronies have passed away and gone to hell, I would love to see a daily blog managed by Satan to let us all know how things are going down there for Bush and the rest of the gang.”
You know, I feel like I might have written that myself. I didn’t, but I could have. I think it’s called therapeutic anger, anger which arises out of suffering, because, let’s face it, we have collectively suffered and we have endured what is surely the worst presidency in the history of this nation. The last eight years have been hard to endure because of all the lies, the bluster, the corruption, the abuse of power, the cronyism, the phony fear …. but most of all because of the stupidity. I’m talking about the stupidity of the American public here – not just that of Dubya. This is an electorate which voted for Chimpboy not just once, but TWICE! Something wrong there, surely! Fool me once …. how did that go again? Maybe the stupid card won’t be so easy to play anymore. Maybe, as Liz Langley writes, over at AlterNet, America’s Love Affair with Stupidity is Finally Over. Let’s hope so.
Here is my greatest hope for the future. I hope that my children and grandchildren can grow up in a country where Forrest Gump and Sling Blade are not the models for our ideal leader. Stupidity is not virtuous. Virtue is virtuous. I hope that the word “elitist” is not carelessly invoked by cynical political operatives (and echoed mindlessly by a compliant media), in an attempt to make stupidity seem honest, and education dishonest. Education is a moral good. I hope that it will be possible to state the bloody obvious, without fear of contradiction, that a guy who makes so many verbal gaffes is not “crazy like a fox,” or “clever in other, non-verbal ways,” but is just plain, garden variety stupid. I’ve been calling that spade a spade for years now, but have been made to feel like a cynical “elitist” from time to time, just for pointing out what’s true. The guy is a warmongering fratboy moron. And we voted for him. Twice. What’s wrong with this picture?
My hope is that we have maybe turned the corner, and, just like that parent who finally has his child back, after eight years of incarceration, we can start to set things right, day by day, little by little, in baby steps. It won’t happen overnight, but with the help of an honest, intelligent leader (who can only do so much) we will leave the path of darkness and start to travel toward the light. I hope the American public turns its back at long last on stupidity and begins to value the intelligence which is needed to get us out of the horrendous mess made by all those stupid, selfish assholes who managed to fool us for eight long years. Please, I’m begging you, don’t get fooled again. Be smart, because it’s dumb to be dumb.