Sunday, October 07, 2007

Sunday Poetry For Our Time of Hysterical Fascism

Hysteria by T.S.Elliot:

As she laughed I was aware of becoming involved in her
laughter and being part of it, until her teeth were
only accidental stars with a talent for squad-drill. I
was drawn in by short gasps, inhaled at each momentary
recovery, lost finally in the dark caverns of her
throat, bruised by the ripple of unseen muscles. An
elderly waiter with trembling hands was hurriedly
spreading a pink and white checked cloth over the rusty
green iron table, saying: "If the lady and gentleman
wish to take their tea in the garden, if the lady and
gentleman wish to take their tea in the garden ..." I
decided that if the shaking of her breasts could be
stopped, some of the fragments of the afternoon might
be collected, and I concentrated my attention with
careful subtlety to this end."

Published in November 1815 in Catholic Anthology.

The word "hysteria" is frequently used in reference to an antiquated notion of nervous disease and it almost always concerns women; at least as it was employed by Freud, who seems to have popularized the term, although nowadays the word aptly describes just about any mainstream media pundit.

I won't bother listing names. They shriek and moan. They twist and bend. They dart back and forth. Flip and flop. First there were weapons, then there weren't, then there were... They dissemble and tell lie after lie.

In this article from Common Dreams, entitled The Ghost of Vice President Wallace Warns: "It Can Happen Here," Thom Hartmann discusses a famous 1944 letter to the editor that appeared in the then-respectable New York Times:

"But even at this, Wallace noted, American fascists would have to lie to the people in order to gain power. And, because they were in bed with the nation's largest corporations - who could gain control of newspapers and broadcast media - they could promote their lies with ease.

"The American fascists are most easily recognized by their deliberate perversion of truth and fact," Wallace wrote. "Their newspapers and propaganda carefully cultivate every fissure of disunity, every crack in the common front against fascism. They use every opportunity to impugn democracy."

My, how [the] Times haved changed.

Hillary Clinton, unlike the woman in Elliot's poem, does not laugh anymore, according to the corporate whores that dominate news and opinion. She "cackles." That meme is out. And, to the horror of many, she sometimes even has breasts. Would they prefer that she cover herself in perhaps a more modest outfit?

This is ridiculous. Gnats who say they review things. Fascist pigs.


Paul said...

Sounds right to me - that fascism would be characterized by lies. Also by attitudes of "unflinchingness," "firm resolve," "unwaveringness,"
"staying the course" etc. - because fascists have their own private agendas and aren't interested in hearing any information that might call those agendas into question.

Not that Bush is a fascist, exactly, "merely" that he's doing all he can to give the presidency powers that tend ever more in that direction.

I don't know which of our poems posted this weekend is more cheery. We could start a cheery poems contest.

Anonymous said...

Speaking the truth is bad for the wingers, so they like to call the media 'librul' - making a quandary when media has been letting the wingers promote their wars and helping them spread the misinformation. This is hard work.

from Ruth