Wednesday, June 25, 2008

Search term fun (HST edition)

I've noticed that I seem to be getting a lot (for me) of traffic from variants of the search term "Hunter Thompson" & "September 12, 2001" this evening. What they get is basically this memorial to HST that I've been reprising and revising over the years since he passed away. In it, I take excerpts from his ESPN Page 2 column, Hey Rube ("Fear And Loathing in America"), in which he writes:
The towers are gone now, reduced to bloody rubble, along with all hopes for Peace in Our Time, in the United States or any other country. Make no mistake about it: We are At War now -- with somebody -- and we will stay At War with that mysterious Enemy for the rest of our lives.

It will be a Religious War, a sort of Christian Jihad, fueled by religious hatred and led by merciless fanatics on both sides. It will be guerilla warfare on a global scale, with no front lines and no identifiable enemy. Osama bin Laden may be a primitive "figurehead" -- or even dead, for all we know -- but whoever put those All-American jet planes loaded with All-American fuel into the Twin Towers and the Pentagon did it with chilling precision and accuracy. The second one was a dead-on bullseye. Straight into the middle of the skyscraper.

Nothing -- even George Bush's $350 billion "Star Wars" missile defense system -- could have prevented Tuesday's attack, and it cost next to nothing to pull off. Fewer than 20 unarmed Suicide soldiers from some apparently primitive country somewhere on the other side of the world took out the World Trade Center and half the Pentagon with three quick and costless strikes on one day. The efficiency of it was terrifying.

We are going to punish somebody for this attack, but just who or what will be blown to smithereens for it is hard to say. Maybe Afghanistan, maybe Pakistan or Iraq, or possibly all three at once. Who knows? Not even the Generals in what remains of the Pentagon or the New York papers calling for WAR seem to know who did it or where to look for them.

This is going to be a very expensive war, and Victory is not guaranteed -- for anyone, and certainly not for anyone as baffled as George W. Bush. All he knows is that his father started the war a long time ago, and that he, the goofy child-President, has been chosen by Fate and the global Oil industry to finish it Now. He will declare a National Security Emergency and clamp down Hard on Everybody, no matter where they live or why. If the guilty won't hold up their hands and confess, he and the Generals will ferret them out by force.
The same words can be found in a book called Hey Rube, which, by the way, is well-worth looking into. It probably will appeal most to those already fans of HST's work (for newbies I suggest diving right over the edge and get Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas, and never turn back). He definitely tapped into a vibe with that particular column on that day, capturing the unease with which a few of us instinctively felt the moment it became apparent that the smoke coming out of the WTC towers was caused by some very fanatical individuals who had commandeered passenger jets. Before long, those who weren't waving the US flag prominently were viewed with suspicion, as were dissidents of all stripes, and of course anyone with brown skin. The Crawford Caligula would babble about a Crusade, a War on Terra, that continues unabated to this day. Said it before and will say it again:
In July 2003 (see the column "Welcome to the Big Darkness" reprinted in Hey Rube), he wrote, "Big Darkness, soon come. Take my word for it." Big Darkness is here my friends. In the years since his Sept. 12, 2001 column, what he said has come to pass. The US is in the midst of fighting Bu$hCo's Never-ending Holy War on two fronts (Afghanistan and Iraq), with a third front always one manufactured crisis away (Iran). The Constitution has become in Junior Caligula's words, "just another Goddamn piece of paper" to be shredded along with whatever other documents the White House chooses to keep secret. Bu$hCo spies on us, and barely a peep from Congress ensues. The draconian Patriot Act has become a permanent fixture, with minimal protest from our presumably elected Congress critters. Hell, those very Congress critters are outdoing themselves each year, with among other things, "Homegrown Terrorism" laws that will affect everyone but the real terrorists who occupy luxury office space along Wall Street, as well as those terrorizing the planet from inside the White House bunker. Habeas Corpus is now a mere historical artifact. Maybe having seen the worst of the Abu Ghraib pictures was enough to put the fear of God into those cats - that they too could meet the same fate if they rock the boat too much. Let's just say the accommodations aren't quite up to the Club Med standards that are more to their liking; and besides, any talk of impeachment would open up all manner of nasty skeletons in the old Congressional closet. Ho Ho! We can't have that, now can we!
From the looks of things, Big Darkness is here to stay, contrary to what my progressive friends and acquaintances keep trying to tell me. Call me cynical, I guess. Jadedness comes with the territory.

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