The American ship of state: Lost at sea, storms on the horizon
Seeking an analogy for how I see the state of the USA right now, I'd say we're like a ship, lost in a roiling sea, with a series of storms approaching and lots of icebergs off in the distance. We have a captain who hasn't noticed we've left port. His first mate is equally lost, having never been on a ship. She got the job because of affirmative action and suffers from seasickness. She hopes her maniacal giggling will keep the ship on course. If that doesn't work, redecorating that galley might save the day.
The fear that the few most seasoned seamen might mutiny is palpable among the other half of the crew, the ones loyal to the captain. They are mostly in their jobs because of patronage or seniority, rather than seafaring skills. There are a few among them who know there is danger ahead but say nothing, fearful that mentioning it could lose them their positions.
The loyalists feed the captain's delusions. They don't want to be found out for their ignorance, no matter the cost. They just keep rearranging the deck chairs, looking busy. The other half of the crew — the knowledgeable seamen — have been sent below decks, and the hatch has been padlocked shut. They won't be able to interfere or right the course unless they find a way out. They are desperate to do so, knowing that the ship is in peril.
Yesterday, I looked through all the videos of our president, vehemently and with great emotion, repeatedly describing the evils of the Georgia voting law. This started in his news conference when he said that "Jim Eagle" is worse by far than Jim Crow. His frenzied denunciations have continued since that, as he calls the bill out as an atrocity that denies voting rights or even human kindness to "the people." In each video I viewed, his face was concentrated, his voice intense, his vehemence undeniable. You could tell he wholeheartedly believed what he was saying.
I looked at some summaries of the bill and, as others have done, concluded that the legislation simply doesn't do anything he's claiming it does. Yet there's no sense that the president even knows he's lying. I wonder, has he even looked at the object of his objection? Or are his lies/lines being fed to him?
Joe Biden is not acting as our president. He is not engaged. His days, I suspect, are not spent reading the relevant charts and forecasts. He's not on the ship's radio, communicating with those who might help him steer through the danger. He's not monitoring the activities of his crew. His directions to his first mate are ignored.
On this ship of state, Kamala does make his calls for him, but she lacks the expertise and experience to engage with those she's calling in a way that benefits our country. She ignores tasks assigned to her (Biden did ask her to fix the mess he made at the border). All she's done is exercise her maniacal laugh and deflect questions.
Neither she nor Biden has been to the border, and neither is willing to address the crisis. Biden's executive orders opening the border have caused all of the problems, whether he knows it or not. He doesn't even seem to care that he's stacking thousands of kids in cages. Or that they are becoming sick with COVID. Or that they are being sent to communities around the country to wreak havoc upon them.
I wrote, back in mid-February, that if Biden opened the border, the border states ought to put every single one of the crossers on busses for D.C., and drop them off outside the White House then turn around and get another load, to force him to deal with the reality of what he's doing, and force Democrats in Congress to see the hordes of miserable people, girls raped and traumatized, children without their parents, the sick, the violent gang members, the now homeless, feckless masses that he thought were yearning to breathe free.
It's time, long past time, that Biden's mental acuity get assessed. When Trump's was questioned, he took a cognitive test, voluntarily. Biden should be held to the same standard as Trump. Give him the same mental acuity test. While that's happening, might as well give the V.P. the test, too. Perhaps we should require anyone running for high public office to be tested for mental acuity, including people running for election, re-election, and Congress. Perhaps setting some minimum standards would be a good thing. We, the people, deserve competent leadership.
In the meantime, we are adrift. If the storms don't get us, perhaps an iceberg will. Or maybe they'll figure out whom to call. Ghostbusters, perhaps? Might as well. They probably would deal with the problems head-on, even if their solutions were a bit whacky.
Images: Ships in a Stormy Sea by Circle of Ludolf Backhuysen. Public Domain.