The old dog defends the home
This was beautifully written and poignant. I think that those of us on the left would do well to ground our passions in the body, in the context of those we love and fight for, as the starting gate for the bigger, broader visions we have for society.
I think our positions, while of benefit to the vast majority, often slide down the wall like those old sticky toys. I know I’ve been very guilty of this myself: I tend to speak in lofty abstraction, but who gravitates to “lofty abstract” ideas over a loyal dog? For me (and I observe this elsewhere), there’s a lot of academic training that must be unlearned (but keeping the deeper lessons of the humanities.)
I know it wasn’t really your point, but I think if we can connect more to that “dog energy,” our sincerity will be better heard and felt by those still on this side of sanity.
I just saw the film “Vice” and I think it was actually very fair to Dick. That “Loyal guard dog” nature is what had endured him so well to the people of Wyoming for so long, an “Old West Sheriff” or “Hanging Judge” Zero Nonsense kind of attitude. What took them 40 years to realize had gone wrong with him, from the majority Wyomingite perspective, is that he was overall trained in the WRONG way by Donald Rumsfeld. They do want a fiercely loyal guard dog, but one that doesn’t always try to kill ALL remotely POSSIBLE assailants, as in jumping the fence and running down every pedestrian who happens to be walking, minding his own business, nearby. It took awhile, but various landscaping projects revealed the bones of these victims and it’s just too much. He is the correct kind of dog, from the Wyomingite perspective, ABSOLUTELY the wrong trainer, a damned lunatic, as far as they now realized with too long delayed horror.
“Vice” summed up what’s wrong with the Neoconservative movement from the more nuanced traditional conservative perspective with this scene: “Young Dick asks Rumsfeld, with deep philosophical sincerity, “WHAT is it that we believe?”, to which that insufferable poisoner responded “Hahahahah!”, as if such an important question was the silliest joke he’d ever asked.
That’s when the dog trainer threw the guard dog puppy the entrails of a child he had murdered, getting him used to eating innocent blood, because he’s a total, homicidal psycho.
I hope, if a proper dramatization of the Monsanto story is ever made, that Steve Correll can play Donald Rumsfeld again.
Nicely put. I'm thinking of what was it, Systems of Survival with the Guardians and Traders? He seems like a pretty prototypical Guardian to me. Down to the whole bit about defending his gay daughter. I've actually seen that with a lot of people--they overlook their 'principles' (good or bad) to defend their family or friends.
I actually thought of the whole bit where George W. Bush complains about Putin "launching an invasion of Iraq...er, Ukraine." And then at the end he goes, looking sheepish, "Iraq, too." He tried to make it into a joke, but you could see he was remorseful.
Of course, that won't bring back any of the people who died in the invasion.
Good god what a writer
Thank you so much for using body language to read, and to tell this story. When we become deaf to what our eyes tell us about character, and numb to what we sense in other ways, we go gallivanting off in some strange directions as a society. Great piece!
Fortunately, 'The Prince of Darkness' has no REAL power now - only his daughter wields a sword, smiting dissenters, flailing at shadows - soon to be gone. His video is terrifying, though - like he's the leader of some rugged cult of Marlboro-men maniacs in Jackson Hole. Funny stuff. I wouldn't go quail hunting with the guy, I'll tell you that.
Thinking of who seemed demonic 20 years ago and now is a haven of rationality, loyalty & patriotism- I looked at the film Manhattan recently- where Woody Allen's character is having a sexual affair with a 17 year old. This did not register on our chagrin-o-meter back in 1979.
How goofy are we now- how relative is our moral compass? What are we missing while we believe we enjoy great clarity ?
The delusional mayhem throbbing in the MAGA thug militias- ready for a civil war because Mar-a-Lago was searched- seems beyond our wildest imagination. What could be next....?
I will forever think Dick Cheney as a dog under the porch, gnawing a bone, waiting to die. I stopped and looked closely at your pronoun for Trump: It, with a capital "I". In research I was doing a year ago for a novel, I learned that African Americans, formerly held as slaves called the south "It" as in "It surrendered." Trump and the Jim Crow south: nameless evils. Maybe we shouldn't even give them the capital "i".
I would never want a Cheney nipping at my heels.
One of the stranger twists these days how one side has felt compelled to lionize the daughter of the former poster child for everything they despise about the other side. Yet if they get too close, they’ll spot the father peering out of those determined daughter eyes. It all feels so delicate and fragile, so not Cheney.
I think Rep. Cheney needed the big dog to show what family dynasty (yet another) she’s from, a staunch Republican conservative family. Your analogy regarding former former VP Cheney to the big dog (in translation) was so well worth the read.
I do appreciate her work with the January 6th Committee.
yeah, so insightful, thanks
“My interest in truth is more literary than political” is a great and honest summation. The observation of our current political time feels out of body, looking down on a tragedy from above. More bemused than horrified.
Well, I consider myself an Independent, although registered Republican so I can vote in the primaries. There's are many Republicans and Democrats who will never get my vote. I love Lillian Fishman's book, love her style. I even told her agent at ICM Partners, he's sitting on a volcano - I would be very surprised if movie options don't follow. Cheney is the devil. lol
I much enjoyed your literary explanation of not only the Cheneys’ , but world events. The dogs of war are once again barking.
It’s sad because of the amount of skeletons both Dick Cheney and former president Trump have in their closets.
Defending the home , we all do, it’s normal. Inventing a threat to initiate a murder is criminal.
I was expecting that view to be your conclusion as it would be consistent with the thrust of your excellent piece.
I’m unsure of your opinion. CH