The elderly English (actually Irish) lady next door is in her dark basement room sticking pins in one of her dolls that looks like me and chanting somesuch incantations directed eastward at my abode. I can't prove it, but every once in a while I get an "ouchy" in some part of my body that I can't explain.
She and I and her husband used to be friends over glasses of a high-dollar Bahamas liqueur; that's when she told me she did it (the voodoo-doll thing) to everyone who pissed her off in her life -- and now she's pissed off at me (long story involving my daughter evidently petting her cat too hard or something and me telling the old witch that she was, um, an old witch after she banned my daughter from her yard forever or until the British get their colonies back).
And on an unschooler list I'm on, a lady said yesterday that she believes in reincarnation and that her children *knew* they were being born before they were born but that the lady wasn't ready for a while and the children knew they would have to wait until she was ready. (I'm not making this up. Hell, I COULDN'T!)
And last week, as I blogged before, some old high-school friend wanted me to join a 600,000-strong Facebook group that beats their children and is proud of it because it evidently keeps kids from going rotten.
And Tiger Woods yesterday said he needed a relapse into Buddhism to "control" his desires.
And Pat Robertson ... NO, NO, NO, forget it. He makes the voodoo lady look like Aristotle.
And more and more sports nutties are pointing heavenward after they make a good play. Where the hell is The Vigilante God of Reason's serrated thunderbolt to lop off the faith-fingers when they are pointing skyward?!
And ObaMa and his coteries of media talking heads smugly smile as they talk of robbing me and millions of other innocents of our money. "Thank you. Can I have another!"
And the Vietnam Vet across the street from me regales me on the "nobility" of the working man, as compared to the business man, and demands that the business MAN be made a spectacle of and his cash stripped from his business to feed 50,000 people around the world starving. "I don't give a shit about those 50,000 people, and the 'noble' working man votes to have my money stolen from me," I tell the Vet. "What?!" he says with lunatic-fringe eyes and a lurch forward to within inches of my face. Soon, he's stomping home in exasperation.
And the Republicans pretend they are true Tea Partiers and try to steal the show and then put their vunder-chick Sarah on the podium and she melts the GOP believers with talk of God and the sanctity of life and all the usual faith-drivel we've come to loathe and fear as rational citizens seeking distance from the faith-based Zombies.
And then you turn around more often in America and see women cloaked in black from head to toe with beady eyes leering out, and rednecks standing defiantly next to their Ten Commandments at the courthouse, and the usually sensible Sean Hannity going on a God rant, and some pencil-necked half-brain dropping to his knees five times a day and aiming his head roughly at Mecca and his ass at the rest of us.
What the HELL is a rational man to do? How the HELL are we ever to have a free country, from basement to podium, from livingroom to shopping mall, when the lunatics are on the grass making daisy chains while America burns?
There's been an insanity loose in the world from the dawn of mankind -- a separation from reality, a tendency toward the subjective world of the wishful, an inclination to laud emotions devoid of sensibility, a powerful drive to control the outside world via an inner world of sanctimonious delusion, a devout pursuit of the shrouding void, a determination to avoid this world at all costs to pretend that something might be better or that there is allegedly more (Who would WANT more than this wondrous, complex, intoxicating world?!)
If we modern humans make it past this Time of Insanity (as we can only with the work of Ayn Rand), our rational ancestors will have no trouble lumping us in with the Dark Ages torture chambers, the voodoo dolls of 18th century Africa and the Caribbean (and my neighbor's basement), the pagan incense of the Roman era and the sun and animal worship of early man.
Most of our minds are little different, incapable of pellucid thought, incredulous at requests for rationality, befuddled by demands of decency and justice, meandering in a self-inflicted daze, worshipping idols and gods spontaneously and seeking death or exclusion for those standing proudly, firmly and happily on terra firma, looking adoringly at the star-flaked skies and the wonders we have created.
The chasm between the rational man and the irrational man is no different than that between the sane man and the insane man. In fact, they are one in the same.