Thursday, April 09, 2009
Nurturing a viper
When Kevin Costner was at the top of the Hollywood heap, before he made Waterworld he was Lt. Commander Tom Farrell caught in the midst of a murder investigation that would uncover his true identity as a Soviet spy (KGB mole) raised in America to bring the United States down from within. The movie, No Way Out was based on the idea that during the Cold War with Russia they would stop at nothing to infiltrate American society and bring about communism and the death of the American dream.
The premise of the movie -- that a Russian spy could live in the midst of America and be indistinguishable from any other American, one of America's homegrown sons or daughters -- was everything Senator Joseph McCarthy believed was happening in the 1950s when hearings were conducted by the House Committee on Un-American Activities. Many of us over 50 know it as the Red Scare and we still cringe at how McCarthy's paranoia destroyed the lives of many Americans whose only crimes were being creative and curious about communism and the equalities it seemed to offer. What's not to like about having enough food and shelter and working together for the common good? I guess those very intelligent and creative people hadn't read George Orwell's Animal Farm and didn't realize that there is no such thing as a Utopian paradise of equality as long as there are humans involved.
Most people want Utopia. They want to believe that somewhere in human nature is a spark of human decency that keeps us from destroying our fellow man and working for the common good. Unfortunately, as much as we want to believe in the basic humanity of people, it's not there. We are wired to survive at any cost, to battle against nature and each other to secure the immortality of our genes. It's a biological imperative. The fact that biology has nothing to do with ideology doesn't figure into the equation.
McCarthy looked at liberal Hollywood and the breakdown of American morals and mores in the face of Rock and Roll, divorce and the disappearing American dream and he decided that communism was at the root of the national rot. Yes, that is a simplification of what happened, but it's no less true. Communism was Satan and Satan openly attacking the American way of life.
Nature abhors a vacuum -- or that's what we are told to believe. It seems to me that physicists would dispute that claim, especially since space is a giant vacuum that Nature doesn't abhor. That's another post for another time. At least on this planet, Nature abhors a vacuum and seeks to fill it.
In the vacuum that followed the Red Scare of the 1950s, came tolerance and the Love generation of the 1960s, the Age of Aquarius when all men would live as brothers and sisters and be able to cooperate and get along for the good of all mankind. Anything that hinted at McCarthyism was shunned and feared. The pendulum was swinging the other way. We're still not at the high arc of the swing yet, but we're getting there and it's going to cost us when we realize that Sen. Joseph McCarthy may have been paranoid, but he may also have been right. There are spies in our midst and they are determined to destroy the American dream and our way of life.
They are the same spies that are being recognized in nearly every country in the world and their intent is to force the world to choose death or conversion.
Kim Stanley Robinson envisioned that world in The Years of Rice and Salt where the only remaining religions are Buddhism and Islam. But even Robinson didn't see the coming of Shari'a law. We have. We saw it in the news when a man murdered his wife and cut off her head in his television studio offices and claimed he found her that way. We see it throughout Europe where Muslim communities are growing at phenomenal rates, insulated and separate from the countries to which they emigrated, and where their host governments bow to their demands and requests for understanding. It's happening here in America and we don't recognize it for what it is because we're afraid McCarthyism is back with a new agenda since the Berlin Wall came down and Russia is no longer the Big Red Threat. The Cold War with communism is over. We have peace -- or do we?
Rod Dreher, a reporter for the Dallas Morning News sees it differently. He knows our government is nurturing a viper at its breast. The article is long, but it is worth reading.
You can be paranoid and still be right.