So Long, Turdblossom
by Dr. David Shaver, Psychoanalyst & Philosopher
The whole world has been waiting to exhale, and after election night it was able to sigh in relief.
Freud once referred to Hitler as, "a narcissist with half a set of testicles, a colossal inferiority complex and a compensating grandiosity, that's out little Adolf." He could (and would) have written the same thing about little Georgie Porgie, a President who treats the world in the same way as does the stereotypic red neck Republican who drives around in his pick-up truck looking for someone that he doesn't like so he can beat the crap out of them.
But with Bush, came something just as horrible as his necrophilic touch, and this was his arrogant ignorance. It's not enough that one is ignorant, because we are all ignorant of so many things. It was his deification of his ignorance that the world found so repugnant. Somehow being unbelievably stupid was better than having intelligence. Being arrogantly stupid made one part of "real America" while having intelligence made one "elitist and out of touch."
And Bush was able, in such a beautiful way, to combine his arrogant ignorance with his loving touch of death. And everything that he touched, was destroyed. Everything! From his opportunities at Yale and Harvard, to going AWOL in a time of war, to bankrupting company after company that he owned, leaving pitiful victims of the Katrina hurricane so that he could go off and party, to engineering financial policies that bankrupted the USA. He really does have the opposite of the Midas touch. Everything he touches turns to crap, not to gold. There is nothing that he touches that he doesn't destroy. Psychoanalytically, his overwhelming arrogant ignorance is compensated (balanced) by his death drive. The more grandiose his self-delusion, the more malignant are his actions.
But it was Rove, and his rectum nastiness, that got Bush into office. The stench of Rove's rectum nastiness ascended to high heaven, as he tricked and ran over anyone who got in his way. Rove’s tactics were horribly effective as he was able to bifurcate the world into a “them” vs “us” mentality that ties in so very well with the evangelical perspective that Christianity (and Christmas) are under attack. While Rove’s tactics were highly effective in winning elections, they didn’t work at all in running an effective government. As now almost all of us have discovered. Some learning this much much sooner than others, I might add.
With Obama as President, hopefully we will see other ways of dealing with the international community than just bombing the hell out of someone you don't like or agree.
With Obama as President, hopefully we will see the closure of our Republican torture chambers as well as the Republican death camps created on Navy ships way out at sea.
With Obama as President, hopefully we will see a return of financial stability to the US - - although this will take a long time to dig us out of the hole that Republican greed (and its emphasis upon total deregulation) got us into.
Hopefully we will see new jobs created, rather than giving corporations endless tax breaks to take American jobs overseas.
Hopefully, we will see a return to funding medical research and to funding sciences again. Hopefully we will once again, as a nation, discover the value of education and research rather than “beliefs” and anti-intellectualism.
Where both Bush and McCain got into their respective prestigious schools because of a legacy created by their daddies (and both graduated near rock bottom of their classes), Obama graduated from Columbia and was an Honor Graduate from Harvard Law School. His wife is an honor graduate from Princeton and also graduated from Harvard Law School. Both seem to be people with sufficient intelligence and problem solving skills to deal with the world in an educated manner, rather than in arrogant and ignorant ways.
But I'm relieved in other ways, too. In spite of all their Bible banging, the Republicans don't seem to find much of anything sacred about life. No animal species is safe from being hunted to extinction and slaughtered for its "fair market value." No tree, no plant, no majestic mountain, no “amber wave of grain,” and no "sea to shining sea" is sacred from defilement, if it gets in the way of corporate profits. Indeed, their venomous vituperative railings against “tree huggers” reveals their contemptible emotional reaction to people who do hold some sacredness toward life. Perhaps now there won’t be such an unmitigated drive to hunt down every animal or chop down every tree.
The Republicans are correct about one thing, however. Socialism/communism doesn't seem to be effective. But allowing corporations to run rough shot over everything and everyone while pursuing "the bottom line" doesn't work either. The recent financial crash proved that. It's a false dichotomy, on the part of the Republicans, to say that our only choice is choosing between socialism or allowing corporations absolute deregulation (complete freedom to run the kind of scams that brought down the financial industry) in their pursuit of corporate profits. It’s a false dichotomy on the part of the Republicans to say that we have to live either under socialism or with medical insurance corporations that give huge financial incentives to their caseworkers to disapprove needed medical treatment for their policyholders. It's a false dichotomy to say that we either live under socialism or allow corporations to endlessly dump heavy metals and other pollutants into our air/water; pollutants that make us ill and make us die.
Bush/Cheney further proved that it’s a false dichotomy in having to choose between seemingly endless war, or arrogant ignorance combined with bellicose animosity on the part of American leaders. OK, Sara Palin also proved that point just as well as Bush/Cheney ever could, and she didn’t even have to hold national office to do so. My God, what a relief it is that someone who believes that people once walked with the dinosaurs, and who believes that being pretty and winking at the public is an acceptable substitute for substance in a political debate, is not in presidential succession to have her finger on the nuclear trigger.
We are at an important point in history. 20 years ago we learned that communism doesn't work, as the Soviet Union collapsed because of it's own dysfunction. And we have just learned that unregulated capitalism doesn't work, either, as it, too, collapsed because of its own dysfunctional greed.
I hope that President Obama will have the wisdom to find and implement for the nation, some psychological middle road whereby people can be rewarded financially for their efforts, but are not just left at the total mercy of corporations who ONLY care about their own bottom line.
God bless President Obama and God bless the United
States of America.
Dr. David Shaver is a psychoanalyst living and
practicing in Connecticut.