The fake faux alternative post-truth universe
Park Record columnist
“Their minds are filled with big ideas, images and distorted facts.” — Bob Dylan
Obviously, having gone through the LBJ, Nixon, Reagan, Clinton, and both Bush administrations, the landscape of “post-truth” is somewhat familiar territory.
Certainly nowhere near the extremes that Idiot Wind and his bunch have fashioned, but, collectively, the former crop provided a decent boot camp so we wouldn’t have to enter this particular fray without an introduction to the mental calisthenics in play.
By parading out his serial fact-abusers to show us the errors inherent to most all our fault-ridden deductive theories, Trump seems full-bent on demonstrating that the number of clowns you can stuff into a VW Bug has been greatly underestimated.
And how ‘bout that “Women’s March on Main?” I missed it! Not that I was all dressed up with nowhere to go, but with impediments appearing at most every turn, I wasn’t able to reach Old Town until my March mates were all settled into a watering hole for post-parade libations. Worked for me!
Seriously, though, I really did want to see and hear and maybe even meet longtime activist Dolores Huerta and, if the accident willed (Vonnegut expression), possibly run into Maria Bello and Teri Orr and Ginger Tolman-Wolfe and maybe even Nan Chalat-Noaker and her Dawn Patrol.
Each successive bus ride I took spilled over with the street-cred vibe of activism. Smiles of empowerment were everywhere. And the bus drivers were over-the-top awesome! Spirits soared! If I wasn’t meant to be at the Wasatch Brew Pub parking lot on time for the start of the March, so be it. I got a “contact high.”
What an impressive turnout! Although I’m pretty sure the professional number-adjuster they currently have running the White House Press Room could have whittled it down to a few dozen in no time.
The fun and games part of protest, of course, is rather tenuous. Most especially in these times with a new national sheriff in town packing an announced agenda to make such shenanigans, if they happen to get in the way of corporate profit, against the law, possibly even terrorism.
In the end, all of this — from human rights to class, race and gender struggles — pale when compared to the cost fighting for Climate Justice will bring. That’s where the rubber meets the road, so to speak. Keystone and Dakota Access pipelines are back on the table and the only sacred lands with power will be corporate boardrooms. Manure happens! So do body bags!
Time is truly warped under the Clockwork Orange regime. Each day seems to bring changes to the radical. And with a revolt in congress not exactly apparent, the good ol’ USA is making the slippery slope to fascism look like a luge track.
And then there’s our boy Chaffetz with his mindset of removing western public land law enforcement responsibilities from the BLM and U.S. Forest Service and handing them over to the Sagebrush Sheriffs of the counties within which the lands are located.
This is the same bunch that, on their days off, pack up their personal arsenals and head off to show support for the closest Bundy land grab operation. Facing down the Feds is just about the only way this small minded (and handed) posse is able to acquire short-term “wood” anymore.
This, and the “long overdue disposal of excess federal lands” is all to help “struggling rural communities,” of course. The fact that corporate interests who have bought and paid for western congressional delegations might somehow benefit from the proposed legislation has never been a consideration.
The Sundance Film Festival was certainly a brief respite from the “Trumpeteers,” but even as I sat watching a four-hour documentary on the “Long Strange Trip” of the Grateful Dead, I couldn’t help but think that film, and all culture for that matter, were in the crosshairs of these bozos.
Once again, NPR and PBS find themselves under threat to lose federal funding. The fascists remain confused. There’s something happening here and you still don’t know what it is, do you Mister Jones?
Jay Meehan is a culture junkie and has been an observer, participant, and chronicler of the Park City and Wasatch County social and political scenes for more than 40 years.
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“I fully expect to see a caravan of Range Rovers leaving town, with mattresses and Peloton cycles tied to the roofs as the new arrivals decide that life in this dust bowl is intolerable,” writes Tom Clyde.