Insanity!

Too much of our lives are spent worrying and precious little doing. We are concerned about the future and things over which we have absolutely no control, but that doesn’t stop our need to kibitz and become involved in other people’s or countries’ problems. We’ll invest trillions of words, hours, and dollars fretting about stuff.  

There are, however, things that require our total concentration and concerted efforts. Things here in America demand our immediate attention. If we ever hope to influence the world, we must do it through our leadership – by example – not dictates or demands.

You know how I feel about the media if you’ve followed my posts. Their parasitic, self-perpetuating relationship with misinformation, disinformation, and deception makes them the entourage and champions of corruption. As long as there are problems and crises, they can feed their corporate coffers.  

Like some of us, they could encourage changes, but their focus is financial. Many of us do this part-time and without pay because of our passion for America. We see it as an investment in our America. 

My posts of this past year are about the people who significantly impact our lives as Americans. The present administration is an absolute shit-show. I would call it a cluster-fuck, but that isn’t appropriate for most venues.

In retrospect, I can’t think of a more disastrous period in my lifetime, except maybe my two divorces. I want to believe that I’ve learned a few things from that experience and other experiences during my seventy-plus years on this rock. 

I’m not insane, but you’d have to check with my wives and my shrink at the VA for validation.

The definition of insanity is the most overused cliche of all time. While it appears valid, why haven’t we learned anything?  

So, for your edification: 

Insanity is doing the same thing repeatedly and expecting a different result.

I know you’ve heard this ad nauseam. Maybe that is the problem with overusing a word or phrase until it’s cliche. It loses its force, its impact, its meaning.

We’re used to seeing it, hearing it, and ignoring it!

America must be insane! We’ve suffered a corrupt government for over 245 years, and nothing has changed.

According to an article in Harvard Law, corruption began before we decided to break from England and continues to this day. It’s endemic in humans. It’s what we do and who we are. Our problems started well before the first American colonists boarded the boat for a new life on this appropriated property we call America.

Even in the Bible, mentions of corruption start with Genesis 6:12 “God observed all this corruption in the world, for everyone on earth, was corrupt.”  You can read these verses for yourself at Corruption. You can believe what and whom you want, then follow your heart.  

Now that’s America!

We can’t leave anything alone or refrain from taking advantage of or changing things to our view of perfection. So by definition, humans are insane. We corrupt everything, knowing better yet, continue to do it. I’ll admit, many advances result from changes. Some are great for humanity; most others are suspect.

If you look around our country, I’m sure you’ll find a few things that need some attention, but what are we doing about it? We complain. We bitch. The media publishes millions of articles characterizing the problem, blaming someone, and doing NOTHING to resolve it, because you see, the resolution is not in their purview.  

Those solutions are up to us to plan and execute.  

You forgot that, didn’t you.

We look to the same corrupt systems that cheat us every moment of every day to solve our problems. We never see any relief, or resolution, or respite. 

Why? We are insane.

We are the system.  

The Government is us!  

I know, logic hurts your minds. You’re not used to thinking or deciding. We’re conditioned as followers to take orders.  

See if you can follow this.

The preamble of our Constitution: 

“We the People of the United States, in Order to form a more perfect Union, establish Justice, insure domestic Tranquility, provide for the common defense, promote the general Welfare, and secure the Blessings of Liberty to ourselves and our Posterity, do ordain and establish this Constitution for the United States of America.”  

This document defines our government as You and I.

This commentary is not a civics, history, or lesson on the Constitution. It is about our expectations that our government – you and I – not just the people we elect to misrepresent us currently, are responsible for fixing our problems. Since the government is corrupt, we are equally corrupt because we are the government.

How are we doing so far?

I initially titled this post, Fix Americ First!  But, as I worked through the text, I realized our tie to insanity as one reason for predisposition toward meddling in foreign affairs before righting ours. It’s far easier to remove the splinter from your neighbor’s eye than to admit you have one in yours as well. Mathew 7:5

We’re so distracted by all of the glitz and hype from the media that we’re not sure if we should scratch or ass or change the channel. We’ve lost track of what is truly important.

This is the Christmas Season. The day of celebration grows ever closer. What’s it mean? What’s it about? I’ve started calling it the “American Festival of Consumerism” and the “Feast of the patron saint of Consumerism.”  But now I call it Christmas. I’m returning to my roots.

Yes, I’m cynical – I’ve earned it. Everything I see around me reinforces my cynicism. I know that I am; we are responsible for the demise of our country, our imperfect but prodigious country. It’s because of our reticence, ambivalence, and passivity we are where we are. 

We look to the very system we’ve corrupted to solve our problems and to provide the leadership we so dreadfully need. We expect someone else to step up and do what must be done. We are insane because, after 245 years of waiting for someone else to step up and do the work, we return to our distracted and disturbed lives to wait a little longer. We disregard our culpability and ignore our responsibility. Wash – Rinse – Repeat! 

The real solution is not waiting for God or anyone else to resolve our problems. A Chaplain friend from my time in the USAF explained the process to me in this way.

Your life is like a ship moored to the pier. The sails are set, and the wind is up. You’re straining to go to sea, to start your journey, but you’re waiting for God to direct you. His direction is worthless, just like the rudder while you’re tied to the dock. For God and the rudder to be helpful, you need to be going somewhere. You need to be moving; you need to take action for either of them to direct you.

Only we can change this country. Only we can rescue it from impending oblivion. It’s a team effort, just like winning two world wars or sending men to the moon and countless other feats that we, as Americans, have accomplished together. We must do it together because it is our responsibility. But we have to start doing it, not awaiting the right moment. Tomorrow never comes!

My ancestor wrote a story initially titled “Being a Ghost Story of Christmas.”  This story is near as cliche as the definition of insanity. Yet, the premise and moral are as appropriate today as when it was written.  

Many adaptations and interpretations followed this same concept and often used the written dialog. The problem is that, like insanity, the story’s implications are lost from overuse and reinterpretation. It’s all too cliche…

I’ve made more mistakes in my life than I care to remember, but this one bit of counsel about taking action is burned into my mind. Its impact then and now keep me moving, doing, and trusting that God, my rudder, will continue to guide me on my journey.

If you take away just one thing from this post, let it be that we have complete and control over our lives. We have free will and the opportunity within this country to exercise it. The direction we take and the decisions we make are ours. We own them. We hold our success and our failures – they are ours. It is all up to us.

Merry Christmas

And

Happy New Year

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