151 Band

Monday, October 25, 2010

Political Circle of Life

Every two years, we get ourselves all lathered up about how this candidate or that candidate will save us from ourselves, save our country from this or that perilous course and how our involvement in the process itself can make or break our future.  We wear our campaign t-shirts with pride, we decorate our front lawns with signs showing our allegiance to our particular candidate(s) and we tell the world how important our political affections are to us.

We lather, rinse and repeat.  Tragically, we expect different results every single time.

Sometimes, there are new faces in the crowd but even those "new" candidates are owned and operated by the same cast of characters who brought us the perennial candidates from years gone by.  Their tepid messages are the same, their lack of coherent policies are the same, their negative and often misleading attacks are no different than that which we swore we would refuse to accept in years past.

As Solomon wrote, "There is nothing new under the sun," but we fool ourselves into thinking so.  Candidates promise us the sky but deliver nothing more than hot air, and we love every minute of it because they inflate the balloons that are out carnivorous egos.

Politics is not life itself, but it is an unfortunate part of life.  We live in a country where we have been led to believe that "one person can make a difference," but the evidence points to something completely different in the macro, doesn't it?  Tea Party rallies, pastoral convocations, reclaiming this or that for this or that - all part of the cyclical processes by which we entertain ourselves and pretend that the man behind the green curtain doesn't exist...unfortunately, he does.  As a matter of fact, there are lots of green curtains, lots of men (and women) hiding behind those green curtains and you and I know it to be true...we just refuse to accept the truth and do something about it.

We are born, we live, we give birth, we die.  The circle of life is what it is and there isn't a damned thing we can do to change it.  As I have said before:   "Life is a series of mistakes.  Sometimes, we get it right - but that is a mistake too."

Once in a while, we can do something to make a minor change, to implement something for a short period of time that actually has meaning, that can create a blip on the radar and perhaps the effort therein is worth it for that brief moment in time.  We find reasons, excuses to justify our excitement about the temporal, ignoring the eternal or worse yet, intermingling the two - making that which is sacred somehow secular and making that which is truly secular, sacred.

The cycle continues and even though this litter of candidates has within its brood a couple potential superstars who can and will deliver that which they have promised, we will probably overlook them because we enjoy feeding at the trough of hyperbole and flashy television commercials.  And in two years, then again in four, the political circle of life will continue and we'll be bitching and complaining about the incumbents like we are right now.

Cue the Lion King...