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Sunday, December 29, 2013

No Country For Old Men

Tommy Lee Jones's Sheriff in the film No Country For Old Men is an observer, not a solver of crimes, not a hero to right wrongs. His sole purpose is to watch silently as the "country" passes from a state that was intelligible to him and made "common sense" into a vast wasteland of destruction.

The inverse rites of passage from the Quick to the Dead are reflected in his weary face, and in his decision to retire. They are reflected in the seemingly endless passage of money from hands to hands, from hiding place to hiding place, and the movement in its wake as it draws all the lives of those it has touched into a whirlpool of death.

I think of the forests that once covered our country from coast to coast. They are all gone.
I look at and dream of the prairie flowers and grasses which carpeted the Great Plains. They are islands and museums now.
The Native Americans passed away from east of the Mississippi to the West, where their fate was no more benign.

Now they say that if America draws down its troops in Afghanistan, the Taliban is back in power by 2017.
I could have told you that back in 2003, when Afghanistan went on the back-burner.

The only thing we did was to pay a trillion simoleons so that the Taliban could vacation in the mountains for five or six years, then come back refreshed.

We shall perish in the wake of a trillion simoleons there, four trillion dollars in Iraq, and a terminal inability to focus on real issues.
Ain't no country for old men no more.


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