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Unpopular Ideas

Ramblings and Digressions from out of left field, and beyond....

Location: Piedmont of Virginia, United States

All human history, and just about everything else as well, consists of a never-ending struggle against ignorance.

Saturday, August 30, 2008

God and the Storms

Fox News -- who else? -- is running with quiet outrage an item speaking of how Michael Moore, the liberal film guy, voiced on TV his feeling that the prospect of a hard-hitting attack by Hurricane Gustav on the Gulf Coast and notably on New Orleans in just a few days might work against the Republicans and their convention up near the other end of the Mississippi, starting this coming Monday. He said that this shows that there must be a God after all. And indeed, Gustav is now within hours of hiking itself up to the max, a Cat 5, and so bulked up, is looking dead at New Orleans and the whole of low-lying Louisiana.

Therefore, as was only to be expected, a Republican Congressman for that area seized the opportunity to criticize Moore righteously and bitterly, and called for an apology, ostensibly on the part of his constituents, who are about to experience the worse. Yet I suspect that, the wellbeing of his voters aside for the moment, he especially relished this "heaven-sent" chance to get off an easy shot at one of the biggest scourges of the political Right.

Yet a few days previously, someone on that end of things named Stewart, apparently a sidekick of James Dobson, a prominent conservative in the bad sense of that word, was videotaped praying for God to send rain to wash out B. Obama's outdoor speech in Denver after he had received the nomination. But the weather stayed perfect. You can see that videotape here, and you can see Moore saying this and other interesting things here.

This kind of skirmishing really shows how Presidential campaigns bear out Shakespeare's comment so much to a "T," about life being "full of sound and fury, signifying nothing." In the heat of battle all sides finds it too easy to fall into the identical traps, and nothing shows better than this how these campaigns, for no good reason that anybody can give, are allowed to run on much too long.

I think you would still end up dead broke, if, while penniless, you had to depend on being given a dollar for every political enthusiast of every persuasion who isn't thinking the same kind of thing these days with eyes on the Caribbean, and the Atlantic, what with a whole line of storms now marching this way, one after the other, starting from Africa. And hurricanes lend themselves especially well to such thoughts, as they are commonly called "acts of God," without anyone, however, being able to furnish a shred of evidence that that is true.

How much more logical and comfortable it is, then, to think, that where anyone's political outpourings are concerned, whatever is controlling the direction and power of those storms couldn't care less. Somehow the concept of "forces of nature" is much easier on the powers of reason than is the notion of "acts of God."

...Still -- and not that deep in the recesses of his mind -- one can never stop hoping -- and even praying -- that the cosmos, which includes Earth's atmosphere and from our point of view can even be said to start with it, is indeed permeated with a sense of the fairness and justice that is so often and debonairly kept out of human affairs.

In earlier times this all used to be kept swept up together under the heading of "Providence."


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