Tuesday, January 06, 2009

A Man For All Treasons

I've been thinking about the soon-to-be gone loyal Bushies and, in particular, the heart of darkness

that beats at the center of the treasonous lawbreaking that has distinguished this felonious administration.

And I realized that as I thought of him, and it, that I was thinking also of this:As always, Robert Bolt's delectible words cut right to the heartwood. The laws around us are not there for the protection of "terrorists", or felons, or evildoers, or devils. These beings have arms and ruthlessness and hate and their own selfishness to protect them.

The laws are there for us, you and me, the clueless, nameless little nobodies caught up in a Kakfa story or a Beckett play, helpless before power and force and a conviction of righteousness.

And isn't Paul Scofield wonderful?

9 comments:

sheerahkahn said...

Morning Chief!

The problem that Cheney will incur in the rest of his, thank G-d!, short life is that he'll be perpeptually confused as to why everyone thinks he's a dangerous old fool who siezed his chance at playing G-d with other mens lives when he, as he sees it, saved Western civilization as we now know it.
In short, he chooses not to see how badly he has damaged this country finacially, spiritually, and morally. As far as he is concerned...he is this nations savior...just like our nations forefathers.
My only hope is that he'll meet up with those forefathers who will detail to him why he is the worst thing, next to Bush, that has ascended to the White House since the nations founding.

FDChief said...

That's why I thought of the scene from the Bolt play. More's son-in-law Roper is written as the Deadeye Dick of his day: "Would you give the Devil benefit of law!?!" As you point out, it's not that he sees himself doing wrong to do right - he doesn't see any wrong in what he does.

And there's a context to this: we see earlier in the play that a huge part of this is his need to be Right when others are wrong - he needs to fell like he's saying "Go fuck yourself" to the world. When the King is a staunch Catholic Roper is a nonconformist and a rebel. When Henry rebels against Rome Roper is suddenly more Catholic than the Pope. For him - and for Cheney - it's not about principle, for they have no principles - it's about power, and the need to be smarter, craftier, more "in the know" than anyone else around them.

More, wily old lawyer that he is, understands the dangers that Roper/Cheney represents. In More's case he has to indulge the young idiot because his daughter, whom he adores, loves him. We have no such reason to indulge the dangerous old fool Bush has installed on us.

srv said...

I live in a world where the degrees of reality between The Onion and Reality are reaching nil:

http://www.politico.com/blogs/bensmith/0109/Joe_to_Israel.html?showall

Joe the Plumber, War Correspondent.

Lisa said...

srv,

Truth! Laing, Szass and others saw that insanity can be a perfectly sane reaction to a mad world. Someone said there is no greater good in trying to appear sane in an insane environment.

FDChief said...

I understand that the Israelis have included "chemical warfare" in their armory - they've cut the water and sewer lines to Gaza.

Sounds like Joe will be able to use his professional skills while he's reporting on the titanic struggle...

mike said...

Unfortunately, old Dead-Eye Dick still carries a lot of clout with the Limbaugh/O'Reilly bunch. I never understood why. I do know a few elk hunters in Wyoming though, who argue that he is such a bad shot because he spends too much time up in Jackson Hole with his liberal Hollywood neighbors like Redford and others.

As for St Thomas More, the man was a torturer like Cheney. I was fascinated by him when I was young, ahat was long before the movie came out. He had been given a monument in Moscow by Lenin in 1918 and was canonized by the Pope in Rome not too many years later. My thinking at the time was that the man had to be a charmer to gain such a wide base of respect. But after rereading his opus "Utopia recently, it seems to me that he was not a friend of the common man. His ideas reek with inhumanity. Among the few that I recall: He endorsed the torture of heretics. He advocated kidnapping of children so that years later they could go back and proselytize their family and friends. He approved the death penalty for adultery. He recommended slavery for thought crimes and also for unauthorized travel outside your residence of record. And he championed the use of the 16th century equivalent of Blackwater mercs for fighting wars.

Not bad for a so-called man of God. I would go to the library and read it again to list all of his garbage ideas but my heart and stomach could not stand it.

mike said...

ahem --- ahat = that

FDChief said...

mike: Add to that he was a sectarian religious fanatic, supporter of judicial murder for theological "crimes", a gossip-monger, tale-bearer, and not nearly the scholar he supposed to have been.

The voice of More in the Bolt play is the voice of Bolt's conscience, not the man himself. As you point out, the real man was nothing like the gentle wry humanist Paul Schofield pays him as. So when I say I thought of this scene when I thought of the Cheney interview, I thought of the movie More - thought of Scofield playing More - rather than of the historical Sir Thomas.

And one of the problems I have with Dead-eye is his appalling incompetence and sloth as a hunter. In fact, I would hesitate to call him a "hunter". He just shoots stuff, like adrunken redneck blasting away at road signs.

mike said...

And Cheney uses a 28-gauge - called a ladies gun in most circles.

As for More, as a boy I was entranced by his glib wordsmithing. He coined names like "Lietalk" for Parliament and "Flatulentines" for diplomats. So I thought he was almost as hot shit as me and my teenaged buddies partners in crime. But looking deeper, he turned out to be just another silver-tongued bag of garbage.