CSotD: Who Needs Reality?

Brewster Rockit (Tribune) is a funny sci-fi spoof. Except when it’s not.

Thursday, the January 6 Committee will present hearings in Prime Time, and there are many people who feel this will finally give Americans a look not only at what happened in the Capitol that day but at who may have planned, encouraged and enabled it.

But the days when television networks could grab the country by the ears and make them pay attention are long gone.

Not that they were ever that powerful. Contrary to popular memory, after an initial period, the networks took turns broadcasting the hearings, running their regular daytime programming on other days, so escapists could still watch “Days of Our Lives” or “Hollywood Squares” most days.

Still, that was before the explosion of cable made knowing what’s going on in the world entirely optional.

It’s not just a matter of whether Rupert Murdoch will let Fox News cover the hearings. It’s that you’ll have a hundred other ways to sink into video bliss while all that unpleasant reality goes on somewhere else.

In “Brave New World,” the Savage is schooled on why he shouldn’t bother trying to expose the masses to Othello, why they’d rather get high on soma and enjoy some interactive porn.

“(T)hey’re so conditioned that they practically can’t help behaving as they ought to behave. And if anything should go wrong, there’s soma. Which you go and chuck out of the window in the name of liberty, Mr. Savage. Liberty!” He laughed. “Expecting Deltas to know what liberty is! And now expecting them to understand Othello! My good boy!”
The Savage was silent for a little. “All the same,” he insisted obstinately, “Othello’s good, Othello’s better than those feelies.”
“Of course it is,” the Controller agreed. “But that’s the price we have to pay for stability.”

And yet unpleasant reality keeps attempting to intrude. Ann Telnaes offers this comment on Maggie Haberman’s revelation that Trump not only knew of “Hang Mike Pence” chants at the Capitol but approved the emotion and perhaps even the actual suggestion.

Haberman reports that Pence’s Secret Service detail even warned of danger the day before the insurrection.


Meanwhile, Rep. Jamie Raskin repeated reports that, as the riot went on around them, Pence refused to get into the car with which his bodyguards hoped to spirit him away.

Was he insisting on staying to finish his assigned duties?

Or had he seen a box of canolli in the front seat?

However you package things, in our world, the hero of the Godfather is the guy who settles all family business.

He may not have morals, but he’s tough and decisive, like Rambo. Like Dirty Harry. Like Buford Pusser.

Who needs a bureaucratic legal system when you’re got heroes?


Juxtaposition of the Day

(Nick Anderson – Counterpoint)

(The Duplex – AMS)

Lead time and past performance dictate that Glenn McCoy did not have the Durham investigation in mind when he penned this Duplex, but it does make a good companion piece to Anderson’s summation.

We’ve reached a point where any disappointing outcome — even a complete face-plant like John Durham’s — is declared a fraud or, like the optimistic batter in Anderson’s cartoon, a triumph despite all evidence to the contrary.

So even if America is glued to the Jan 6 hearings, they’ll see only what they want to see and they’ll hear only what they want to hear.

Regardless of what is said in the hearings, there’s little doubt but that Fox and Newsmax and OAN will explain why they’re lying, why none of it happened and why you should hope it happens again only more successfully the next time.

If it were shown, complete with eyewitnesses and video, that Donald Trump had shot someone in the middle of Fifth Avenue, it seems obvious that he wouldn’t lose a single vote. (Did you think he was joking?)

The answer to all this isn’t to give up, but it most certainly isn’t sitting back and assuming that the truth will set us free, either.


Juxtaposition of the Day #2

(Jeff Staher – AMS)


(Scott Stantis – Counterpoint)

Can’t get a whole lot more juxtaposed than this: Stahler accuses the Republicans of being scared to offer gun control, while Stantis accuses the Democrats of failing not simply to pass laws without holding a clear majority and in the face of monolithic, party-dictated GOP opposition, but of failing to repeal a Constitutional Amendment, which requires a great deal more than a 51-50 vote in the Senate.

The notion that Democrats are the ones standing in the way of gun control is so mind-boggling that it belongs in the basement of that pizzeria with JFK Jr and the flesh-eating pedophiles.


Meanwhile, not only have the lies gone halfway ’round the world while truth is lacing up its boots, but satire is becoming impossible.

Marty Two Bulls decries the AR-15 as the “Baby Killer,” but the gun industry is staying well ahead even of parody.

Behold the Q Honey Badger, which, to the outrage of ammosexuals, was ruled a sawed-off rifle by the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms, thus putting it under severe restrictions.

Not to worry! The overall line of guns remains readily available for Q-Anoners who like to have that capital Q permanently engraved on the magazine well of their weapon.


And why bother raising the gun-purchasing age to 21 when Mom and Dad can just go to Wee1 Tactical and get a pint-sized semiautomatic gun for their tiny tots?

Start’em off right, putting a gunsight in their eyes before you even take the pacifier out of their mouths.


As the company whose gun was employed at Uvalde advertised, it’s what God told you to do in Proverbs 22:6

You gonna go against the Will of God?


By the way, has anyone asked Uvalde?

The facts of the event are slowly starting to emerge, and while the outside world has had a feast of premature finger-pointing and name-calling and accusations, the folks in Uvalde will have to live with the reality — however it sorts itself out – for a very long time after the circus has struck its tents and left town.

Here, with a hat tip to Brian Stelter, is a sensible and thoughtful editorial from the Uvalde Leader-News.


Thank goodness reality comes with alternatives.

11 thoughts on “CSotD: Who Needs Reality?

  1. Neal: if your sole criteria for judging someone’s actions is whether or not they were legal, well…

  2. “To Serve and Protect.” Hmm.

    As someone who worked as a police officer for a year of my life, I always considered my role as a protector of the innocent.

    Naive and short-sighted? Maybe, but the officers I rode with had the same outlooks.

  3. What is that “Brave New World” you mention. Is that on some summer reading list if classics?

  4. Steve, just had a conversation about that. I know a lot of really good cops who want to serve and protect, but the old expression about “one bad apple” isn’t about percentages of good v bad, but rather about how mold and rot spread and ruin the barrel.

    Go watch Serpico again. There was a moment when we paid attention to such things.

  5. Even better than the “one bad apple” meme is:

    Add a glass of champagne to a barrel of sewage: result — sewage.

    Add a glass of sewage of a barrel of champagne: result — sewage.

  6. Mike, I hear you about the “bad apples,” and there was a touch of that in our small, but very urban police force. But the majority of the officers I worked with took their roles as protectors seriously.

    Full disclosure, however, this was many years ago (right after the Serpico timeline) and police work sure seemed to be approached differently.

  7. Yeah, no, Hank, I don’t know that most readers would have identified the umpire’s pose in that particular photo as meaning “you’re out!” He might just as easily have meant “Yeah, baby!”

    Or showing off his dance moves.

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