Tom’s tired

Bear with me. This started when my friend Keith sent me a right-wing screed called “I’m Tired”, an old fart doing an Andy Rooney number. You know, down with Obama, socialism, left-wingers, liberals, Muslims, George Soros and Michael Moore, and the main stream media; up with Fox and Tea Parties and so forth.

(One interesting thing is that Keith’s version attributed the nonsense to “Robert A. Hall, the actor who plays the coroner on CSI if you watch that show.” Actually, that would be actor Robert H. Hall who didn’t write the piece, altho it is his picture that is attached. Never trust the provenance of anything that comes in a chain letter. Snopes is your friend. The real author’s blog is linked in the first graf and he now includes a note exonerating the actor Hall.)

Anyway, I’m older than Robert A. Hall, and I’m tired too. I’m tired of a few old crotchety white guys embarrassing the rest of us with their silly, frightened, anarcho-libertarian rants.

I’m tired of reflexive fear of change in this amazing country which is actually built on and devoted to change. Muslims and universal health care are not a threat to the dreams of the Founders. Changing over from fossil fuel to green sources is not the same as a Stalinist Five Year Plan.

I’m tired of people closing their eyes tight and wishing that if they pretend hard enough it will again be 1954 when everything was alright and as God intended.

I’m tired of unexamined, unacknowledged racism and bigotry, unchallenged by ‘leaders’ and even fostered by some of them. I’m tired of our failure to acknowledge the fabulous energies, ideas, creativity, and wealth immigrants are bringing to our country. Except for the surviving Natives, we are a nation of migrants and I’m tired of reminding people of that.

I’m tired of Christianists believing that they are superior to anyone who belongs to a different cult than theirs, and of the rest of us who know better but let them get away with it.

I’m tired of how long it took for Liberals to recognize how nasty and unsporting the other side is, and I’m tired of my own retreat into nuance and complexity when bumper stickers and soundbites are what seem to be called for. I’ve got five or six hundred words here when three — “Palin’s a Ditz” — are probably enough to make the point.

I’m tired of overlooking the spectacular failures of my generation while criticizing the younger folks who are in power now. We had two Boomer presidents — Clinton and Bush II — and both were fuckups. Before that half us played at Best-And-Brightest and the other half smoked dope and dodged the draft. I did both serially. We had our turn.

I’m tired of the corporate take-over of everything…. of my old craft of journalism, of the names of public facilities, of government. I’m tired of bright-shiny and empty.

I’m tired of hearing that technology is going to save us. Technology is a driving force in getting us to the ditch we’re in. The iPhone isn’t going to save the world, altho a person holding one might. That’s different. Innovation isn’t a gadget, it’s an idea.

I’m tired of excuses for defunding education and I’m tired of the teachers and public service unions who have given up and are out for themselves.

I’m tired of American Exceptionalism and its corollaries. I’m tired of people who think we can continue to use a disproportionate share of what’s left on earth, who compare us favorably to Saudia Arabia (as if that were the standard we hope to reach), , who think English is the only language smart people speak, who think public servants are some special breed of drunks, crooks, communists and layabouts, who think history began in 1941 with the American Century and will never end.

I’m tired of The Stupid.

I’m tired of people like Mr. Hall who is ‘just sorry for my granddaughter.’ Have you heard a sadder comment, one more redolent of personal failure? My grandchildren are young and optimistic, as was I. They will have a lot to cope with and probably they will be alternately thrilled and frightened, which seems realistic. I trust that when they get old they won’t be tired and disgusted by change, by the lovely messiness of life, and by the new cohort that comes along to confront it.

2 thoughts on “Tom’s tired

  1. Thank you for responding to my piece, “I'm Tired,” despite your name calling and the fact that most of your responses addressed things not in my essay. I am not, as you noted, the actor Robert D. Hall, on CSI. Someone assumed there could only be one Robert Hall in the world and added his photo and bio information as this went around the net.

    People who wish to comment on it can find it on my blog: under February of 09. They may also wish to comment on the posts below, or my almost daily political digest.

    For those who questioned my background, I am a 64-year-old non-profit executive, former Massachusetts state senator and Marine Vietnam vet. I hold a BA in Government and an MEd in History. I’m in the Chicago area as my profession brought me here for a management position in 2008. Grew up in NJ, have lived in MA, FL, PA & WI, not counting time overseas. i'm still working full time, despite having IPF, a terminal illness, because my Obama-supporting, drug abusing step daughter cannot support her daughter, our granddaughter. ~Bob Hall

    I’m Tired

    This I believe

    The Coming Collapse of the American Republic

    My books

    Economic Facts of Life

    Why I’m a Republican

    Change that would fix America

    I’m dying

    Who’s eating your lunch?

    Global Warming Articles

    Historical figures look at the stimulus bill

    Agent Orange Fact Sheet

    E-mail courtesy and techniques

    A Religion of Peace?

    Angry Liberals

    When the guardians fail

    Reading list for the war on Terror

    The Next Terrorist attack on America
    Includes my 1998 column predicting 9/11

    Why the Future Looks Bleak

    Helping Obama


  2. Actually, Tom D., some of what you're tired of (corporate takeover, education, technology as savior) fit in OK with some of the things Mr. Hall is tired of, isn't that strange?
    Not every resistance to change is based on fear, obstinacy, backwardness, etc, sometimes there are changes that don't work out entirely as planned, Prohibition being a simple example.
    BTW, even the native Americans were immigrants, coming over thousands of years ago on the land bridge then existing between Russia & Alaska. Immigrants have brought great things to this country (my mother was born overseas) and have always added to its strengths. Yet some have not been good citizens (Sicilian Mafia, today's Mexican gangs, etc.) and a few actually hate our society (the recent Times Square bomber). One does not have to be an Islamophobe to be upset with the guys who flew planes into the WTC.
    Short form is that there's more than one way for people to look at things, and in this country we used to be able to agree to disagree, without rancor or contempt. It'd be nice if we could all get back to that, and have real exchanges on what needs to be changed, and how, and what really works OK anyhow.


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