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Friday, November 16, 2012

Broiled Rump of Failed Democracy

Gaza is the Rump Democracy (like the Rump Parliament of yore) of the Middle East as created by the West, wherein the Palestinians were led to the polls of an open and fair election, they voted for Hamas, and everyone discovered the inherent limits of our litanies to democracy and free elections: that is, if we do not like the result, have we not shot ourselves in the foot with the gun of our fondest and deepest truths?

What then?

Unwrite the vote, of course.
Now we have the Gaza Ghetto.

There are numerous ghettoes. There are some historic ones; the Warsaw Ghetto has its monument:

The Palestinian Ghetto has its own:

I do not argue with Israel's right to defend itself, nor do I argue that is not the proper venue for videos of drones killing people as long as they are members of Hamas. The time for arguing has past.

I say this not because this atrocious situation has endured for more than 64 years... although, truly, in its longevity and deadliness it does, indeed, put into relief the malaise of Western philosophy and morality.
At the expense of seeming even more eccentric than I already seem to you, I will share a small experience I had yesterday.

I was not even thinking about the Pillar of Cloud  (as it is termed in Hebrew, with a nice sense of Adonai's having already signed on for the duration) offensive against mighty Gaza; I was walking into the kitchen; I believe I was thinking about having some cheese: I had not eaten yet, and it was 1:30 in the PM, and I was beginning to act like an animal in a zoo when feeding time is postponed.

I did not "see" anything, nor did I "hear" anything. I was immersed in a sea of despair, not the profound sinkhole type of despair, but the despair of enduring day to day propped by a thoroughly mind-numbing ethos. (As I think of it now, I think it would be an intensification of the intrusion, disregard, contempt, and objectification felt by someone working at Walmart this Thanksgiving eve.)

It was spread like a bitter tapenade. Even though I supported President Obama, the sense was that he was powerless and remote, unable to respond. Strange as it sounds, I could "taste" the spirit of Netanyahu, and this was intensified by the spirit of his very good friend, Romney, who seemed to crystallize all obscurantist beliefs about Israel into his odd mentality. (I suppose they were together since Netanyahu had projected himself into the past election.) The mood was that of living in Orwell's 1984, and endless drudgery of life supported by the scaffolding of lies and deception and power without morality.
The Christian groups that believe in Jewish hegemony over Jerusalem were present as well as a toxic effluvia seeping into every corner, and there were paeans to power and compulsion: a Gregorian chant unheard; a chant of deepest bass in which all words were indistinct and hidden, yet the abyssal bass pounded its urgent message of blind obedience.
The life drained from everything, and we endured in a death-in-life with no chance of salvation. And there was no end, truly. This terrible continuity of the Furies laid heavy upon my senses.

Then it was gone. I do not know if this was a metaphor of Gaza or Iran or some other place and time. This fear-inspiring scenario had nothing to do with fear of the looming "fiscal cliff", for I do not fear that. When I met my present banker back in 2011, I told him that 2013 was going to be a very bad year, and I had some inverse Fibonacci time series to explain it... of course, he thought me odd, but since then, everyone has gotten on board with the danger of 2013. When you're that far ahead, you have extra time to deal with your fear.

I personally am beyond caring about the details anymore. That's why I won't argue: argument deals with details.

Gaza is the failure of democracy.
It is the failure of everything I was ever taught about our way of life.
Shall it remain a reminder of our emptiness and failure?
Or shall we let it burn...   (no question mark anymore, the time has gone for questions; after this we shall retire all punctuation, for punctuation implies an end at some point.)

We are in the garden of Forking Paths, and we are bidden to chose... soon


Tom Schott said...

I see Syria at the same time as this obscenity in Gaza as of a piece. We're getting reflected back to us in the blood and destruction a commentary on the bootless wretchedness of our only our Middle Eastern policy, but also of our moral complicity in its fruits.

Montag said...

Some of the Christian Right think wars and threats of wars will lead to the re-establishment of Jerusalem.

I agree, but I see the New Jerusalem as a sign of the bitter end, not some second coming.

I have no faith in the outcomes of violence.