11/11/2011 11:27 am ET | Updated Jan 11, 2012

One Bad Apple or: WRONG, Donny Osmond!

As the great Donny Osmond once crooned, "One bad apple don't spoil the whole buncha girls!"

And while that may have been true as far as squealing, Mary Jane-wearing pre-teens were concerned when so informed by the leader of the popular Mormon quintet (later to become a popular Mormon sextet with the terminally toothy Jimmy and still later a saliva-spritzing septet with the addition of comely Marie and somehow I've wandered far, far away from whatever the hell I was saying. Wait. Ah. Oh yes.), the adage does not apply when crooning about Things Sociopolitical. I would in fact take issue with Donny. All it takes to spoil the whole buncha girls these days is one bad apple. Or a concerted effort by a cabal of bad apples who have decided that bad appling is easier and more efficient if the goal is to use an oft repeated misconception (" bad apple...") to indeed spoil the whole damn barrel. Or buncha girls. Jesus, I'm tired. Let me try this from another apple. Angle.

"People have lost faith in Obama".

That's a whole buncha confused girls talking. What people have really lost faith in is any normally rational approach to governance, not the president himself. They've lost faith in a process that's been hijacked by greedy opportunists who see democracy as an unfettered capitalism delivery system, gaming it until they themselves come up the winners and the rest of us who believe in the tenets of a democratic society end up losers.

Oh sure, Obama's not the Liberal Bodhisattva we all envisioned when we voted for him, our heads swimming in the honeyed delusion that one person would remake the grotesquely corrupted government he inherited from his pea-brained predecessor. But you try to govern when the very folks who are supposed to follow rules of a democracy do everything they can to prevent you from governing in any way any whatsoever! Go ahead! Why, I bet you'd say "Go away, little girl!" And nowhere near as soulfully as young Donny did. Does. Did. I'm chewing bubble gum and playing with Colorforms®!

"Congress sucks!"

Why yes it certainly does, if you accept that congress's inability to do much of anything is really NOT attributable to the actions of a coordinated effort on the part of a right-wing corporate money-sucking faction bent on crippling the institution, the presidency and the nation.

But there's where your ignorance would be in full bloom for all to see, its veins pulsing erratically, its skintags moist and glinting in the sun. Because you'd be wrong. Not all of congress gets its nutrition from licking the nutsacks of corporate overlords squatting overhead. To name a few "good apples": Democrats Henry "Hank Swank" Waxman, Diana DeGette, Rush Holt, Carolyn McCarthy, Ed Markey, Al Franken, Barney Frank. They do good work. Look 'em up yourself. I'm thumbing through Tiger Beat.

And then there's Republicans like Rep. Jeff Fortenberry of Nebraska, Rep. Steven LaTourette of Ohio and others who have refused to sign (or at least re-up) the eyeroll-inducing Norquist no-tax pledge and who seem to possess at least a semblance of respect for our democratic institutions, however ineluctably corrupted they may have become by corporate money and influence. And there are still more who reject their party's embrace of the foul fringes of paranoid ideologies but who, for reasons of job security, keep silent. Unlike the Osmond Brothers and their courageous and controversial stands against the Vietnam War and Japanese whaling. Wait. No. No, that's right.

"Liberals Run the Media"

Oy (which is "Yo!" backwards. Think on that!). First, I won't even go into the whole Liberal-run media crapola because it's been endlessly and more articulately debunked. But it's still fun to dredge up, like finding out your grandfather was a king kleagle in the klan---and he was a rabbi!

I contend (oh yes I do) that the country's political, cultural and even spiritual tastes are not what the ubiquitous media tells us they are, but rather what the media needs them to be---in order to, of course, profit. The few schmucks who make the most noise get the most coverage. Herman Cain? Kim Kardashian? Personhood? Puh-leeeze. While these types suck up the cultural oxygen like asthmatic Roombas on crystal meth, the rest of the serious participants in this funny little thing we call America are ignored. The media has thrown all its weight behind the maxim that conflict and drama make for an interesting product and have applied it across the board---that board being the unholy alliance of politics, information and entertainment. All three areas are positively rife with contrived conflict and melodrama. But that's how business (i.e., America) is conducted.

Things were done a little differently in the olden days, when politicians, power-mad though they might have been, still hewed to tradition. And it inspired real admiration and respect on the part of the American citizen. Heck, it even inspired love. Puppy love, as you-know-who might say.

The media (and by extension its corporate sponsors) rely on conflict and division to keep the consumers (née citizens) too "het up" to think, further confusing and distracting them by throwing in thick dollops of titillation to create a malleable, corralled audience of glassy-eyed, froth-mouthed shoppers. Like me on Black Friday.

In other words tits, cool electronic sparkly things and explosions fill cash registers and pockets. Enlightenment, gentility, humility, wisdom, thrift---too difficult. Too old fashioned. Fuck it. Blecch. Let the lion's share of attention go to talent shows, advertisements and the closely covered hijinks of low-brows who blow athletes, get rich, get married, get divorced and cash in. Something Donny Osmond has never and WILL never do. If he did, he'd be "...just a lonely boy."

Not sure where my Donny Osmond fixation is coming from or leading me, really. I was always a big fan of The Who or The Ramones or Johnny Cash (I just know he's giving me the finger in the famous Jim Marshall photo). Whatever the reason, it has led me to the point I have been laboring to make for the past several paragraphs or so and that is that one bad apple DOES spoil the whole buncha girls. I don't care what they say! I don't care what you've heard!

I'd like to seek help from a specialist. But I hear they're all quacks.