Here's what's really depressing: the success of the corporate right wing in effecting a shift in our perception of reality.
By that I mean, Fox News and all its gleefully prickish offshoots have managed to skew people's perceptions of The World Outside Their Living Rooms in much the way a dedicated gang of anti-plate tectonics activists might be able to alter the angle and fit of shifting continents just enough to then somehow refer to the bastardized result as The New Normal.
And while not really making a huge dent in the cosmic scheme of things (we're all gonna die anyway!!!), holy shit -- that any impact has been felt at all is pretty darn impressive!
Okay, that's a tad histrionic (courtesy of one rather histrionic tad) but the point is: how can there be any sane discussion of "the issues" when the very rules of sane discussion have been co-opted and rewritten to fit the insane tendencies of the altered discussion's self-appointed moderators?
How can there be any attention paid to the minutiae of policy and legislation and polls and trends and whatever other details all of which supposedly rationally explain the shift from sense to insensibility -- or worse, insensitivity -- when the laws governing our pre-approved reality (based on Judeo-Christian ethics and democratic values) have themselves been pretty much perverted for base, profitable means?
Well, the well has been poisoned and not by the usual suspects (Jews, Gypsies, illegals, transients, atheists or Kardashians).
The folks who measure life in dollars and cents rather than blood, sweat and tears have managed to take advantage of the genetic imperative of the normal human being -- i.e., to feel stuff -- and manipulate these literally liquid assets that can actually be touched, seen and felt (as opposed to those assets which exist only in the astral sense -- stocks, trades, etc.) and pushed all the appropriate buttons to cause significant numbers of Americans to behave in ways their own instincts would normally find repulsive.
Since it's clear that most humans in positions of great power find it difficult to regulate themselves, they will instead turn to the more malleable rabble and invoke old testament-level consequences at their failure to support said power-monger's rise.
For example, the emphasis on the upcoming presidential election, indeed on all recent electoral campaigns, is on money raised and money spent. That's it. As if money will absolutely push any idea through, regardless of how false, stupid, unhealthy, toxic, etc. it might be.
The ability of the mega-wealthy to override just about any rational thought process, let alone the democratic process, is a result of bombarding people with so much money -- inconceivable amounts of money. I mean, did you ever think you'd be living in a time when words like "trillion," "pirate" and "beheading" are tossed around like beads at Mardi Gras? -- that the rules of the game change just enough to ensure a fixed result. If you don't believe me (and that is likely to be the case if you have already bought into the "new and improved" rules of the game) then feast your eyes:
That's a lot of book learnin', right there.
Annnnd you still don't believe what you have just read because its very nature -- long-winded but rather detailed and fair analysis -- goes against the newly created and fully embraced rules that signify anything too long and too complicated must suck.
That includes things like mercy, patience, community service, peace. Shit like that.
So when we all see Mitt debate Obama (in what will no doubt be the most scrupulously micro-managed spectacle in years) and even when it couldn't be clearer that Mitt is perhaps -- no, sod that -- definitely THE MOST INANE EXAMPLE OF A RIGHT WING CORPORATIST EVER TO RUN FOR PRESIDENT -- and lower and middle income people STILL vote for him, then you know that the massive influx of green-ink into the body politic has more meaning and influence than the story of your great grandparents' journey across the oceans to find a simple, free way of life ever was.
Or your sister with lymphoma who is unable to pay the medical bills is.
Or the value of an education for your children awash in brain candy will ever be.
The world is a business, Mr. Beale; the presidency is a business. Barack Obama is a businessman. And so, obviously, is Mitt Romney. The fact is, presidential politics has become a game of inches. Say what you will about Obama's approach to certain issues which bespeak more of a fealty to corporate overlords than to the citizens who are indentured to them, his business style is, to say the least, preferable to Romney's, whose chosen method of governance owes more to the flow of dollars than to blood, sweat or tears.
It will be fascinating to see if the financial deluge let loose by Koch/Adelstein/Romney et. al. shifts the American people away from what their hearts know is right, indeed what they've always known is right. If that happens, then the poo-pooed and otherwise besieged-by-the-right idea that human beings impact nature will have been indisputably demonstrated.
And that's a whole lotta shift right there.