We exist on the same planet, but we live in different worlds. Even though Bush, Cheney, Rove, et. al, grew up in the same country as I did, watched the same TV shows, learned basically the same things in school, our world views turned out to be as different as night and day. How did that happen?
Like an anthropologist struggling to fathom the culture of a “lost tribe,” my mind is continuously trying to find points of connection between the world I know and the behavior of those individuals who make up the Bush administration.
What is it like to live in a culture where lying to yourself and others is as normal as breathing? How does one’s head not explode when facts constantly refute your belief system? How much willpower must it take to deny the reality that stands directly in front of you?
Like a tribe cut off from the rest of society for centuries, Bushites missed some evolutionary steps along the path to humanness. They definitely played hooky the day empathy was discussed. Governor Bush mocked a woman soon to be executed. Rove surrogates attacked a paraplegic war veteran during an election. The whole gang supports economic policies that reward the wealthy at the expense of the poor.
And Bush and his boys must have been lurking in some alley pulling the wings off of flies or mugging kids for lunch money during the lessons of the Enlightenment, the New Deal, the Civil Rights movement, the 1960’s, and every other progressive event in modern history, because they missed them all. The “good old days” for these guys is the Inquisition.
Their God is punitive and angry, their rules are for everyone except themselves, and their convictions are for sale to the highest bidder. Some will say they represent the values of the wealthy elite, which is true to an extent, but there are too many rabid believers who came from humble backgrounds to blame it all on the caste system.
All I can say is that I feel like this country has been taken over by ugly, inbred distant relatives who come for a visit, trash your house, and complain about what a lousy host you are.