Hey, all. Here we are, to another Friday. Hope there was joy and hope in this week, even as the madness of the American project continues to grow more and more undeniable. A quick look-through of the week that was.
I’m a Hoosier and my heart is broken. Another shooting. Another instance of the American epidemic of slaughter made possible by the Right’s embrace of paranoia and violence for political power and profit. Drinking my coffee this morning, I was feeling the gravity of my home in mourning but also becoming increasingly angry. At the copy-cut-paste coverage of these tragedies. The senseless amnesia of our culture. The general and rapid erosion of free and open society.
I would type “enough is enough” but it has been enough for a long damn time. We’ve reached surreal territory here. We all know the truth. We all know this is a grotesque disgrace. That so many want to continue pretending like it isn’t, that so many are unable to grasp the full enormity of it is an epidemic all of its own.
Every so often our intelligence agencies release reports defining the current moment and forceasting future trends and risks. In the past, these reports have set political, economic, and military goals and strategies, leading to massively important historical moments, including wars, intervention, and shifts in focus.
This new report is…sobering.
In short, it details a collapsing system that is increasingly unable to meet the challenges of the moment, whether it comes in the form of climate change (cited as an existential threat despite repeated efforts to portray it as a fiction or hysteria), economic collapse, political discord, or the rise of super corporations, which have come to eclipse nation states and feed off of them, and tells the story of a looming national and global crisis.
None of this new, really, but much of it has been conjecture or hypotheses of critics like myself, and though overwhelming evidence has represented the terrible nature of the moment, seeing it embraced by the intelligence community and becoming the focus of the state is still alarming.
Again, it is a reckoning with the fact that the American hegemony project in the post-World War II era has been a total and undeniable failure. The money we have spent, lives we have sacrificed, the basic human dignity that has been compromised, spending our treasure and energy on machines of war rather than healthcare, human projects, education, or infrastructure, has only given us a future that is increasingly bleak and dangerous. We have to start reckoning with this.
We must reckon with this.
I wrote this essay regarding the problem of law enforcement, its racist and classist roots, the pervasive issue of police seeing themselves as a “Thin Blue Line” between society and violent chaos and the implications of that dangerous belief.
That was before we even saw 13 year old Adam Toledo gunned down in cold blood. Murdered with his hands up.
Heartbreaking and enraging. All of it.
For subscribers (and thank you, as always, for subscribing, it keeps Dispatches From A Collapsing State free from advertising and editorial oversight), I’ll be publishing another Dispatches Mailbag in the coming days. If you have questions you’d like addressed (these range from topics like climate change, rising fascism, to how my research projects work or my taste in movies/music), please respond to this post. In the meantime, have yourselves a good weekend and keep hope alive.