I wanted to write about spring training. About the Green Monster and the Yankee pitching staff. About trips with my friend Bill to Arizona the past couple of years to watch teams I never get to see. About the pleasure of reading on the porch, listening to a game on the radio during warm summer nights.
I wanted to let my mind slide past the snowdrifts piled high on my street. To think about the upcoming softball season, my first as player/manager of the team I’ve been on for twenty years. But it ain’t gonna happen.
Because it’s a cold, cold, winter in Amerika and I’m really, really pissed.
Arizona has a Judge murdered and a Congresswoman shot through the head then does nothing to make it even slightly more difficult to buy and carry guns. More and more states allow concealed weapons without adequate background, license or user safety checks. Hell, you gotta pass two tests to get a damn driver’s license. Instead of riding our horses back to the Cowboys and Indians days—‘cause those were such wonderful times—let’s watch Deadwood reruns and revel in the loss of that era.
Deficits and Budgets. Yeah, I know the Repubs won the house and a ton of state legislatures. So what do we get? A so-called “progressive” president bending over the nearest chair telling the reactionaries to have at it.
And they are. We’re in such bad fiscal shape that we can not, must not, raise money by taxing those poor folks who earn more than a half a million a year. But it’s fine to slice and dice the other poor folks—the real ones who can’t afford usurious mortgages, food on their table, and any of life’s small pleasures. Like frigging Christmas.
It’s okay to repeal an extremely moderate (if that) health care law while people can’t afford medicines or doctor visits. Only this time it won’t just be the poor who get fucked, but working people and the slowly dwindling middle class. Let’s go back to leeches. That will really balance the budget in one fell swoop.
The list seems endless. Fuck women’s right to choose. Fuck unions. Fuck education. Fuck community service. Fuck financial oversight. Fuck transportation. Fuck infrastructure. Who needs bridges? Who needs tunnels? Definitely fuck poor people. They just take up resources that could go to the wealthy. Fuck the environment. Who really gives a shit about arsenic in peoples’ drinking wells? Or oily shrimp beds when there’s drilling to be done?
Was all this the “mandate” of the 2010 election? Bring down the price of flat-screens and let folks live vicariously while corporations are defined as people under the twisted decision of a Supreme Court. This isn’t “taking back America,” it’s giving America back to the robber barons.
In truth, I don’t blame the Repubs for forcing me to forgo writing about baseball. Or even their wholesale trashing of any sort of social fairness. They’ve been crystal clear since Reagan about their mission. Figure out every possible way to pillage and place the nation’s wealth into the coffers of the Already Wealthy. Reagan meant it when he called ketchup a vegetable. It was just his homey way of saying, “Let them eat cake.”
And his revolution still rolls on. Along with a couple of expensive useless wars and fresh body counts.
Something is really wrong when the 1950s look good.