Thursday, December 27, 2012

Conspiracy Central

I'm not much on conspiracy theorists.  To me, most of them are whack jobs and attention sucks.  And my dear friends who seem to hang on the every word of some "insider"?   Total sponges.  Sorry, guys.

To be cordial, though, I've occasionally taken the time to read through some of the latest "dirt" that some "insider" has dished, helpfully forward by earnest, erstwhile friends, hopefully to help me "see" what's "really going on" in our government that is going to cause widespread chaos and destruction in the next two weeks.  I read them, and for the most part, immediately dismiss them with a weary "Seriously?" and then toss them into the pile of OTHER conspiracy theories that were supposed to plunge the nation into chaos... last month.  And the month before.  And the month before.

Conspiracy theories are fun to contrive, think about, and broadcast.  For those who are in hum-drum little government jobs with little-to-no job recognition, this provides a desperately sought-after 15 seconds of fame.  Who cares if your adulating fan base is composed of complete nut-jobs?  At least it's SOME recognition, right?  This seems to sum up, at least to me, 99% of the conspiracy theorists out there.

I suppose the reason why these theories are so irritating to me is because I'm carefully cultivating my own, and the competition is annoying.

My theories are not based on "insiders" whispering about this "classified" chart or that "secret" map or that other ultra-high-level secret communique they overheard as a lower middle management pencil-pusher.  They are based on my own uninformed, unconnected observations.  Your mileage may vary, of course.  And feel free to call me a raging nutjob as well.

So here's my take.

Based on my own observations, we are in trouble as a nation, but not for the reasons you might expect.  We are in trouble, in my humble opinion, because we are pissing off God.  Big-time.

Our nation has been blessed from its inception because it was founded on Christian principles.  When I was born in the '50's, atheists and non-Christians were such a miniscule minority that they were seen as a curiosity at best, usually only found in and around the hallowed halls of extremely liberal academia.  They were easy to ignore because their numbers were almost non-existent. 

A solid work ethic was alive and well.  Blue-collar work was not looked down on, and it was expected that you get as good of an education as you could possibly afford, and then start on the ground floor if you wanted to get anywhere.  Nothing was a "given." There were no government grants other than the G.I. Bill.  Many students worked their way through school, or earned high enough grades to get a scholarship.

If you wanted to eat, you worked.  Being on government assistance carried a huge stigma, which was a huge motivator to get off of it as rapidly as you could by getting a job.  The only ones claiming "disability" were the truly disabled.  "Labor unions" existed to end the abuse of workhouses.  A factory job was deeply sought-after, for the security and benefits that it provided.  A white-collar job was where the truly gifted went to work.  And becoming a member of the clergy was a noble and dignified calling.

When I was born, you went to church.  And you made at least a passable effort to live Christian principles. Homosexuality was unanimously condemned as a sexual perversion. Child sexual abuse was dealt with swiftly and harshly.  Dirty magazines (which were quite tame by today's standards) were labeled as "smut" and were looked at with disgust and revulsion by the community.  Adult video arcades and "bookstores" simply didn't exist.

We had a sense of community.  We participated in charity fund-raisers and other "drives" that helped the lives of those less fortunate. We took care of each other, especially family.  If you grew up then, you knew your neighbors, by name, and most often were close, if not life-long friends.  Or at least knew who they were, and looked out for them anyway.  We seldom moved.  You sat on the porch, drank beer, and listened to the baseball game on a transistor radio, along with all of the other people on your block.  When the fire engine or ambulance came on your block, it was an instant meeting of the entire neighborhood to see what was going on, and how could they each help. Neighborhood Watch groups were unnecessary.  When someone came into the neighborhood that didn't belong there, you knew it.  You left your doors unlocked.  And when you acted up, your mom (or your granny) sent you out to cut a switch, with which you got your behind beat. We volunteered.  We served others.

If you loved someone, you dated them.  Without sex.  The most risky behavior we engaged in was kissing.  When you really loved them, you married them.  BEFORE you had children together.  Those who dared to do otherwise were labeled as "sluts" and "hussies" and ostracized and learned very quickly by the society in which they lived that they were not conforming to the core values that we had a nation. "Loose morals" was an epithet that carried considerable weight.  Morals were something we had, as a nation.  And Ethics.  And we were proud of it.  You were honest and upright.  Your word was your bond.  A "handshake deal" was written in stone.  Lawsuits were for egregious abuses of trust.

If you were unfortunate enough to be a single mother, even if you lost your spouse in the war, you raised your children on your own, at great sacrifice.  It was not uncommon for a single mother to hold 2-3 jobs to raise their children, but they did it.  Expecting to bear numerous children out of wedlock to different fathers and expecting the government to take care of them was unthinkable.  And totally unacceptable in our society.

In school, we said the Pledge of Allegiance.  And were taught Christian values.  In public schools.  Without protests or demonstrations.  We celebrated Christmas, and had Christmas parties, Christmas concerts, and Nativity plays.  We respected God in our schools, and His place there.  The front doors were never locked, and we never had a police officer present.  Visitors were never checked in.  There were no metal detectors, even though guns abounded in the community.  And even though we had a nation overflowing with veterans of foreign wars who had seen horrible atrocities and were no doubt suffering from PTSD, we never had a school shooting.  Ever.  Such was unthinkable.  Teachers were respected, and discipline in the classroom was not an issue.  Our principals had a wooden paddle on their wall.. with holes drilled into it... for those who acted out.  Profanity was unheard of.  Saying "damn" or "hell" was cause to be severely punished.

We had mental hospitals, asylums, and sanitariums for the long-term treatment of the chronically mentally-ill.  One of the biggest social problems we had was the corner bar.  Drugs were largely unknown.  Crime rates were low.  Policemen walked beats, knew everyone on their block, and were trustworthy.

Holidays were for families, and were sacred.  No one questioned the appropriateness of the Nativity in the town square.  And no one complained about it, either.  We all knew each other.  We were a community, united together in a common cause, with common values, and God stood at the core of it all.

We rode bikes.  We played on Little League teams.  We got dirty.  We stayed out until the street lights came on. We rarely told our parents exactly where we were, or what we were doing.  We had the freedom to explore our world.  And the neighbors looked out for us.  If we wanted to play, we went outside.  We only stayed in the house if we were sick or grounded.  Our world was "outside."  It was a world of wonder and discovery.  We had chores.  We had responsibilities.  And we had to earn what money we had.  There were no handouts.  We were expected to earn good grades, because our parents were smart enough to realize that we needed to learn self-discipline at an early age.

Our politicians were, for the most, part, honest and honorable men.  We never doubted that they had the good of the country at heart, and held the protection of our freedoms as their utmost priority, especially the Constitution that we all revered.  They had values.  Most of them took the incredible weight of their offices very seriously.  And when the wheels occasionally came off, like the Cuban Missile Crisis, they rallied around their president.  Both parties.  The whole nation.  Unitedly.  There was no sniping and no point/counterpoint after every press conference.

Our media was truly unbiased, and objective... or at least it tried to be.  It was a matter of honor and journalistic pride.  They were proud of the role they played in society.  Walter Cronkite was our hero, and exemplified all that was good and noble about journalism.  His tag line, "And that's the way it is," could be taken to the bank.  We didn't have to wonder if we were being given the "whole story."  Ever.  For a journalist to become a lapdog of some politician or political ideology was scandal, and if revealed, the journalist would never work again, or be respected.

Not today.

There's a reason we refer to Yesteryear as the "Good 'Ole Days." 

Today, we have turned from God as a nation.   Our morals and ethics as a nation lie in shambles and have all but ceased to exist.  We have allowed insurance companies to create a death-grip on our health care, and they have successfully managed to eliminate long-term mental health care altogether.  Almost all of the asylums, mental hospitals and sanitariums have been closed.  Consequently, instead of the deeply psychotic of our society taking their medications under strict supervision, safely weaving baskets and happily shuffling off to eat their green jello, they're plotting mass murders in their parent's basements.

Our schools have all but become "gun-free" shooting gallery prisons that teach godless, liberal agendas and seek to exclude parents from the educational process.  God has been forcefully removed.  Metal detectors and armed guards have taken the place of the Student Safety Patrol.  Teachers, with alarming regularity, sexually abuse our students, and don't seem to find anything wrong with that.  And our children are still being slaughtered.

Our politicians have become almost universally corrupt, and are overtly and unabashedly leading our nation down the path of Socialism... and destruction.  We are in inextricable debt to foreign powers who want to overthrow us.  We are a nation of filth, pornography, and promiscuity the likes of which we have never seen on our shores before.  We have become a nation that actually glamorizes and glorifies evil... and holds it up as the standard to which our children should aspire.  Electronic entertainment endlessly glorifies violence and aggressive behavior.  Our doors are not only locked, but dead-bolted at night (and during the day), because of the ever-present danger of home invasions and robberies.

Our journalists and mass media are nothing more nor less than propaganda machines, carefully spinning the "news" to promote whatever agenda they are told.  Unbiased, objective reporting has all but ceased to exist, resulting in wholesale distrust of journalism as an industry.  It is no longer noble or dignified to be a journalist, and is practically impossible to be impartial or unbiased anymore. Network bosses write the news... not the journalists.

What would have earned the label of "obscenity" when I was born is tame enough for network programming today.  Movies that my parents forbid me to see because they were "too racy" or "filthy" now earn a PG rating.  Movies that would have been "X" rated in my youth are now rated "R" or "PG-13."  Profanity is so common now that the most profane of words in my youth, which would have prompted a mouthful of soap, is now interspersed almost every other word in public communications and on t-shirts and sweatshirts.

Being on government assistance has become a career choice.  Not only is there no stigma, those who choose to not work are extolled as being "savvy" and "street smart."   Entire generations have grown up with such an entitlement mentality that they are willing to fight for.  And kill over.  Many simply cannot even conceive of actually "going to school" or "getting a job."  They actually make more than most college graduates by simply doing nothing.  And the government is encouraging this behavior, knowing that those recipients will forever being in their pocket.

We don't go to Church.  Attendance numbers across the nation are plummeting.  Our priests are stained with the scandal of widespread child sexual abuse... and will probably never recover.  Those who do go to church don't seem to have much interest in living Christian principles.  The innocence and humility of American neighborhood congregations were corrupted, then replaced by, greedy, manipulative "Scandal-Every-Week" Televangelists and "Mega-Churches."  Atheist and anti-Christian groups have become so strong, and so organized, that any semblance of Christianity is rapidly being eradicated from our society by the constant threat of lawsuits and costly litigation.  The government has been waging its own war on religion and religious freedom.  And we've stopped caring.  At least, we've stopped fighting it.  We don't take care of each other anymore.  Chances are, we don't know our neighbors, nor do we care.

Our children no longer go outside to play, to exercise, to explore, and to learn about life.  Instead, they are glued to electronic devices and entertainment and rarely venture outdoors.  Sports used to be a central part of growing up.  Now it is Role-Playing Games, which involved killing.  LOTS of killing.  Of course, it's no wonder now that the rising generation never spends time with their children outside in the fresh air, throwing the ball, or taking walks, hiking, or riding bikes.  Or doing anything together, really.  Even having dinner together.

Our freedoms under the Constitution that so many brave men and women fought and died to protect are being stolen from us in broad daylight.  And we simply don't care.  At least not enough to put up a fight.

No, I don't need any "insider" conspiracy theories to be convinced that we're swirling the drain as a nation.  We are headed for chaos and destruction, but not because of secret plans or devious agendas.  We are headed for destruction because, as a nation, we have turned from God.  We don't stand for anything anymore... morally, ethically, or spiritually.  We have become a hedonistic, godless nation of excess and selfishness.  And we are ripe for destruction. 

And my fear is that we are about to get precisely what we deserve.