Tuesday, October 15, 2013

15 October 2013 Can you use them old U.S. Blues?

Back to back/chicken shack
Son of a gun/better change your act
We're all confused/what's to lose?
You can call this song/the United States Blues
Wave that flag
Wave it wide and high
Done come and gone
My oh my”
"U.S. Blues"
Words by Robert Hunter; music by Jerry Garcia
Copyright Ice Nine Publishing

Cassi Creek: “ American Exceptionalism” keeps surfacing in the political arena.
This is another instance in which the GOP and minions grab symbols that were once universally “American” in perception, and then distort their use so that they become recognized as right wing, pseudo-patriotism. 
          American Exceptionalism as a doctrine dates back as far as 1831.  The concept of America as somehow unique was adopted and nurtured by politicians seeking votes from immigrants who viewed the New World as a political and social haven.  The doctrine fit nicely with the concept of manifest destiny.  As Americans swept westward, they took these concepts with them. 
          The political and social changes which occurred in the years between Teddy Roosevelt and the LBJ administration found the U.S. meeting the need for a progressive government, weathering the Great Depression, taking its place as a world power with a modern navy, and displaying its ability to fight a war taking place in two theaters because of assembly line manufacturing capabilities and vast resources to feed and fuel those factories. 
          As the Cold War became the dominant military driving force, the doctrine became less attractive to the political left but more so to the political right.  The Reagan era and the Bush II era found neo-cons appropriating doctrines and symbols to garner votes from people who no longer cared about the social foundations that made liberty and equality planks in the platform of Exceptionalism. 
          Now, the theft of symbols has degraded the concept to the level of drunken sports fans, ready to engage in a brawl at the slightest provocation but not knowing why the brawl began or how to end it. 
          This is not the country I grew up in.  This is not the country that welcomed immigrants, not the nation that went to the moon, and not the nation that once was truly exceptional.  Where that nation has gone and whether it will ever exist again, I cannot say.

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