Wednesday, 2 March 2016

In Cynicism We Mistrust

So, he won.

He won against the Bush dynasty.

He won three primaries.

And he won Super Tuesday.

He’s not stopping no matter what fact is levied against him. Whatever he blurts will somehow not lead any damage to his image. Political analysts are baffled, comedians are at a bounty with the onslaught of jokes coming from his campaign and most are left seeing the events unfurl with their jaw wide open. So many people seemed to be certain that this was nothing more than a mere gag, but it must seem that some people are finding his words to abide to the old adage “it’s funny ‘cuz it’s true”. These people not only take his words to heart but are sickened by the ugly “truth” they seem to hold. As such, they cannot trust anyone but him to be take care of that problem. For the political system has made a cynic of him, a cynic of them and a cynic of all of us.

Politics in and of itself is a cynical game. No country on this earth can say that they’ve never had the majority of their public be jaded at the way the government runs their lives. Through empty promises, shady practices and scandals of all sizes, the cracks of the establishment grow and the faces of the politicians that represent us turn from humans to artificial beings. We no longer can attribute their errors to mere human fault as the way they conduct themselves seems to indicate that they were incapable of such.

Even if we were so generous, the levels they would stoop seemed even too much for us to deem it as merely a judgemental error. That, or whatever their error was, the stakes were too high it to be made. We may be lenient to an average person changing their opinion, but when a politician does it, it’s sacrilege. At times it seems as though one could pity the madness they go through, but so rarely can we do so when they swim in pools of money that either came from our pockets or those of special interests.

It would be inevitable that the supercharged energy of political cynicism would come to lead America down a terrible path. Many nations before them have had their revolutions, their coups and their conflicts which emerged from a want to dismantle the current “democratic” system in favor of a radical change. America itself has gushed over imagining what would happen if there came a day when society drastically changed from some unforeseen event. Not many probably thought that what would signal that change would be a loudmouthed businessman with no sense of tact and whose only intelligence stemmed from being able to adopt the image of a populist outsider, but hey, we can’t all be Nostradamus.

Yes, it is the shock of this man being successful that seems to be the most piercing element of his campaign. Though it’s becoming more evident that to be surprised is to be ignorant of America. There was already a radical shift that came along thanks to Obama becoming president, but ironically, it was more the reaction to Obama than the man himself that brought such shifts. So many people seemed to be frightened of what this man could bring. As such, the Tea Party movement began to grow steam and shook the Republican establishment with its insane ideas. Republicans themselves were far more acidic in going after the president, be it the congressmen that would block him at any moments notice to those registered as such who denied that he even was born in America.

We cannot remove the color out of the tension that came from Obama, as he has faced a great deal of scrutiny and disrespect, perhaps more than your average president. Though even if he was as mistreated as any other Democratic president would be under a Republican-controlled Congress, at least we cannot deny that his presidency brought with it a resurgence of the ever-looming racial tensions that people assumed were relics of the past. And while there are still months left in his presidency, there is no denying that the hope and change that seem to adorn his face on posters did not fully take root. Some could say it was because of the troubles he faced as president, others could say that it was yet another example of politicians exploiting the aspirations of its electorate for votes…perhaps it was both. Either way, the disappointment that came from having Obama in office seems to be common among even those divided by partisan lines.

Amid the anger of the right disgusted at the heavily caricatured image of Obama and the frustration of the left at what actually became of him, there also brewed a general contempt for the politicians in the middle, no matter which side of the spectrum they were on. For in their pettiness to not compromise, the government got shut down, terrible lawmaking decisions got made and they became more hated than pubic lice.

There seemed to be constant reminders of just how two-faced they were, especially considering the popularity of House of Cards, as well as the need to add the -gate suffix to any gaffe to remind us of just how awful Nixon was. Not to mention the constantly-growing information about lobbyists, societal issues, campaign spending and conspiracies that circled around us. For Christ’s sake, Snowden showed us that the US was spying on its own citizens and Obama didn’t even bother to give us a courtesy call on the program!

How can you expect America to go back to choosing the same old two-bit politician after all that came out? It seemed that we were so dead-set on this prospect as yet another Clinton v. Bush brawl was going to spill on the political scene. But then from the far wings of each party emerged a New York resident with crazy hair promising to drastically change the system. And only one seems truly poised to take over, according to polls. It’s not at all insane to see why he’s making headway. Sure, it would be easy to be condescending and factor it to the general stupidity of the American people who so desperately cling to guns, God and the good ol’ days that the mere thought of change sends them in a manic fit, but that really only does more damage than actually help.

Simply put, he is blunt. Being blunt doesn’t mean that he’s telling the truth. Merely, he’s just saying what’s on people’s minds. Many of those things may be vulgar garbage, but there are people out there who believe in it. That, and there are instances where what he says actually can make the critics mutter through clenched teeth that they agree. He breaks the conventional structure because with it, the true power of his message can seem larger than it really is. It’s in his arrogance and constant scapegoating of the system that one can be so quick to be swayed to believe that he is what will bring America back to its original state of grandeur. It’s not to say that the system is complete innocent; as it has been made clear, there has been too much vile and too little progress from it to have faith in those who are work in it anymore.

While this political cynicism seems to be aiding him, it only serves to hurt the other party, despite there being a counterpart to his rhetoric. As much as it would be lovely to believe that Sanders could truly bring about the changes that he loves to trumpet, it just seems like it doesn’t stand to deliver. Perhaps seeing what became of Obama upon reflection soured what could be under Sanders, or it could be that the ideas just don’t seem to have a stable foundation. It could also be because he has not been able to cultivate as much popularity as needed, leading to him being overshadowed by Hilary Clinton, who seems to be as inevitable as ever. Though, whatever the case may be, at least he seems more straightforward than her. Hilary only seems to aggravate the vitriol that comes from the establishment.

Really, at this point, it doesn’t matter who wins. The damage has been done and the knife that was jabbed deep by his hand will only go deeper into the heart of America. Win or lose, there will be a mass exodus from America and riots will emerge. However dramatic the situation may be, to assume that the nation can simply shake off this point in time and return to the status quo would be insane. In fact, it would be insulting if such a thing were to happen. It would be like we let loose tons of elephants and then decided to ignore all of them. Tragically, the only reason they were let loose was because those who ran the zoos were too corrupt to keep them secure and seemed to not mind if a few of us got trampled over them.

If one wanted to be so truly cynical, it could be said that America deserves this. After being the superpower for so long and placing its hands where it shouldn’t have, it seemed to believe itself impervious to the troubles of other countries. It would seem fitting that now it would have its smug grin wiped off by a political storm that could be destined to bring it down a few levels. While the record of America is not even remotely close to being remotely close to being slightly decent, the rest of the world shouldn’t be gloating so much. It’s not like they haven’t faced their own political troubles, are completely innocent themselves or are devoid of radicals and/or idiots. America really is only a hyper-exaggeration of the ups and downs of the rest of the world, as they are able to project themselves to everyone. It’s so easy to laugh at their follies, forgetting that some of them lie in the rest of the world and that they have more impact than we care to think.

Civility has left the realms of political discourse, making way for more aggressive attitudes. Emotion has vastly surmounted itself over logic. The division in the US has grown greatly, leaving them to be only be unified in mistrust for one another. Cynicism brought us here and it doesn’t seem like cynicism is leaving anytime soon. While there’s a lot here that is pessimistic, it may not be unlikely to think that the worst may not come. Still, it would be foolish to believe that there won’t be some dark moments looming ahead.

I guess there’s nothing more to do but laugh.