Hannah Arendt, a philosopher of human nature and history’s dark side has seen a posthumous resurgence of admiration and attention simply because of Trumps’ cult of lies. The lobster pot gradually boiling is not a sufficient metaphor to explain our chosen departure from the obvious facts in this world to an entitled fantasy land of tribalism and worthless opinions spouted by those plugged in to Fox News and similar media.
Arendt laid out all the dynamics we see today in America in her studies of 20th century inhumanity. It’s so funny how we always look back on the past with all its cruelty, stupid superstitions, racism and misogyny with disdain but we always feel the times we are in now are more or less sensible and a “middle of the road” approach that includes civility toward outrageously immoral world views is normative. A quick comparison of what the Bible says of how to treat immigrants and the chosen hate the evangelicals have overwhelmingly endorsed is an obvious example.
Our head-in-the-sand attitude to climate change, mass racist incarceration and the insane, intentional Republican-led transfer of wealth from the poorest to the richest are just a few example of childish immorality and outright denial of decency and honesty. Our health care system is severely broken and we are suffering unprecedented levels of mental depression. In what so many call the greatest nation in the history of man, we feel righteousness and nationalism like a drug addict loves her dope.
We’re soft, self-pitying, blaming and we take civilization and nature for granted. The resultant stupidity leaves us at the mercy of those with the means to manipulate every branch of our oligarchy into whatever they want for decades to come.