Tuesday
Mar092010

« Stuck In The Middle »

Idiocy on the RightI was driving today in the Ocean Beach community of San Diego. OB, as it is called, is usually the bastion of the countercultural scene here where you can find the best specimens of surfers, hippies and Deadheads, homeless, musicians, treehuggers and potheads and others that this town can offer. I've always found it to be pretty left leaning in general. I'm sure it is more than that, but here is one illustration that idiocy can be found at both extremes. These stickers were about a half mile apart on the same street.

It looks like these drivers shop at the same place—viva the marketplace, eh? (Both stickers or something damn close are available.)

Righty Idiocy for Sale!

Lefty Idiocy for Sale!

Idiocy on the LeftIf you don't get it at first sight, this sticker is taking a swipe at Christianity. The date sort of represents the generally accepted date of Jesus' death (usually it is given as 33 CE), or by some understandings, the start of his public ministry work. (Some interpretation of the synoptic gospels says it was just one year or so; John hints at a three year period which is more commonly accepted, IME.) I'm not sure the point is well made because I would venture a guess there was some intolerance before that date, no? I do get the point of this sticker, but it paints with too broad a brush.

A person with a sticker such as the one above probably didn't study the way Jesus routinely avoided extremes, always walking down the middle somehow, itself a statement against the polarities of opinion and practices of his day. I've been finding this path more preferable in the last couple years. As much as I was glad of the presidential election results in 2008, I said a year or two before that this would be dangerous, not because of who Barack Obama is, but because of the power of the office. Or even the lack of power. The dizzying results of a widespread Democratic win that year meant only one thing: it's dangerous up here and now the Democrats are the targets more than ever. We don't need the pendulum to keep swinging so wildly.

I think both parties are full of it and have nothing to offer us anymore because neither of them have a worldview that is in touch with reality. Both have sold us out to big money and haven't heeded the ecological signs of the times, which will wreak havoc with our economy and society. In the Old Testament, the story of Solomon hearing the case of the two women arguing over a baby at least ends in the real mother yielding to the pretender so that the baby can be spared from being cut in two to appease both women. The real mother loves her baby too much to let that happen, even if it has to concede to the other woman. Is anything like that happening in our political parties now? Does the real lover and protector of the American people really want to admit what is right and drop the argument? Right now, the ecological crisis before us (coupled with peak oil, etc.) is Solomon offering to tear us—the baby—asunder, and neither party can forsake the ego to let go and do the right thing.

Both parties are locked in their limited consciousness and can't claw out of it. I think Obama is a man of a lot of character but the seat of power he occupies demands so much compromise. The Democrats saw him—paradoxically since the party typically has a rocky history with the religious communities—almost as a messiah, the victorious leader who would send all opponents packing. I never believed it but I though him a better figure than Bush by a long shot. All this validates the biblical worldview that no human ruler will ever be "all that," and that one should place trust in God alone, with Jesus as the model for walking in between the opposing forces, the polar opposites. That is where I am being drawn, or maybe driven toward, as I watch things disintegrate in the republic here. Or like the Stealer's Wheel song goes,

Clowns to the left of me,
Jokers to the right!
Here I am—
Stuck in the middle with you!

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