Paul Ryan’s Gambit for the Nation

Reading about Paul Ryan’s recent $1.1 trillion omnibus funding bill will leave many republicans furious. The fact that it nearly quadruples H2B visas and funds the entire liberal policy panoply will surely vex those establishment figures who see it as an insidious plot to elect their bete noir. Obviously there’s only so far you can walk cattle into the abattoir before they start noticing bloodstains. And Ryan seems determined to grind snouts in the spatter. The resulting electoral revulsion of establishmentarians isn’t difficult to project. Plainly he is a creature in service to Trump.

But Ryan is accomplishing more than cementing the nomination of his liege. He’s also shining stadium lights on the now complete decoupling between a party and its constituents. This being just one element of the vast and increasing gulf between nation and state that is occurring in countries simultaneously across the West.

These were the thoughts as a friend called today to ask my opinion of some local political trifle. Upon expressing ignorance of the issue, he quipped “You know more about what’s going on across the world than you do across town.” And that’s true. Because whether meter maids are working on Wednesday afternoons will ultimately exert less gravity on my life than the large objects forming far away. It’s a poignant realization that politicians closest (and thus most conceivably responsive) to their citizens are those least empowered to serve their interests. While that is unfortunate for man’s happiness and dignity, it’s not at all atypical to his station through history.

Because power craves altitude. It seeks the greatest possible elevation from those rooted to the ground. Only constant vigilance and viable threat of head/neck separation have ever leashed power to the same plane as the people. Those too stupefied, venal, or craven to hold the ropes can be assured of it quickly levitating far from their input. And that is much of what passes for current political discussions in both America and Europe: a frantic “come back!” gesturing toward the fading helium balloon called government of the people, by the people, and for the people. I guess we’re just not the people.

Though once men are disconnected from any conceivable means to affect their environment, events often culminate in fairly emphatic disciplinary action. The ennui and lassitude that result from being ruled by cumulus-cloud politburos can quickly turn to bitterness and then fury. It seems like so much risk and hassle that I would almost accede to popular will if only to save myself the headache…and the head. But you can’t be a philosopher-king without a crown, so here we are.

And here is a state of representation theater for all but the sub-nine figure subject. The rest may appeal to a local government that can’t do, or a federal government that won’t care. And those industrious enough to pursue state referenda soon find their efforts discarded by judicial whim. As Californians learned with Prop 187, defending your habitat and resources from alien incursion is definitely a notion that would have been offensive to drafters of the constitution. Of course the hoi polloi may still elect representation to pass national legislation. If you want to curtail Guatemalan border sorties, you just get a law passed. Like the Secure Fence Act of 2006, for instance. That law required a southern barricade, which means one must exist presently whatever our senses may imply to the contrary. Citizens demand and their government responds.

Sometimes government is so responsive it does so in enthusiastic opposition to popular appeals. That has been the process of Mr. Obama’s executive orders, which have simply dispensed with both enacted law and public opinion in favor of his own demographic preferences. I’m dreaming of a brown Christmas.

It’s really quite a task men to which men are put. Toothless state and local governments; federal politicians whose fidelity is to donor fellatio; a judicial junta that jettisons votes cast poorly; and an executive who enforces or discards laws with less modesty than Emperor Bokassa. The cumulative result being that even when acting in concert with millions, the common man faces a shorter journey walking to Andromeda than coaxing agreement from his government. And this is what we frivolously call The Rule of Law.

Disappointingly for the ghost-shirters, power resides always with men and not paper. And in thinking of who may rule next, I pause to admire Paul Ryan’s determined and transparent political advocacy. Because sometimes when enough is had, men on the ground actually change The Law of Rule.

And that’s when frantic gestures start coming from the other hand.

9 thoughts on “Paul Ryan’s Gambit for the Nation

  1. I’m wondering like most here, when exactly will enough be had. It seems to me except for a small minority, the rest are willing to accept just about any indignity thrown directly in their face from TPTB aka the government (s). No sports, no shopping, no TV, no food… Not sure how far it will need to go to wake up the sheeple.

    • That most indolent of demographics, the much-maligned, ‘sheeple’. A group perhaps much like any other, keen on going about their business, unmolested. With the kind of in your face rackets sanctioned today, the desire to be left peaceably alone is a constant.

  2. It maddens, and will not be taken anymore!

    I believe that trump and Putin and other nationalists are the last hope for peace. It’s very pleasant to imagine what nationalists could accomplish, and how quickly, in the wake of a putintrump coalition. Hell, we could even stop the freedom-bombing. Win win.

    Elites know it will turn ugly, so what is the plan to extinguish it? I’m guessing drone army with sonic weapons, but I’m having beer for breakfast, again.

  3. Meanwhile I’m traveling across the united states of yoga pants and freedom today. I’ve seen many things that offend my delicate senses. Laws, sausages, and an air travel hub during Kwanzaa, or whatever. I promise you that I saw this: a woman so engrossed with her pad pod that she was oblivious to her dog as it humped her leg. I very nearly filmed it and may yet. It will be bigger than Miley Cyrus.

    Speaking of useless, yapping, shitting animals, my problem with airports, to paraphrase agent smith, is the goddamned noise. Speakers throughout the concourse broadcast some radio version of cnn, whose newsettes yapyapyapyap until I am near tears. They could just turn them off, right? But then someone would get a few fractions of a freedom cent less. Actual freedom is the freedom to say “no thank you”. No exit. Now it’s some kind of quiz show on the speakers…just loud enough that my headphones can’t drown it out. Earlier a career military man was explaining the many components of his pay, including an extra $150 per month bonus for being away from his family. Wife and daughter and twins on the way.

    Soon I’ll board another tin can, and with luck ascend through clouds that aren’t, not that anyone notices, and will wonder whether and how to explain the purpose of the 2nd amendment to others.

    Your hate is cool, clean sanity, porter. Bless you.

  4. Pingback: This Week in Reaction (2015/12/20) | The Reactivity Place

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