The Damned

17 Apr

 

This morning I read this tweet from Fairfax journo Ross Gittins:

My first thought was, a new kind of human being has emerged. One without empathy. This is why we don’t care anymore. Our species is devolving.

For someone who only yesterday re-watched Luchino Visconti’s The Damned, my first thought rather remarkably disregarded  history. Visconti’s film charts the moral and physical decline of a wealthy German steel manufacturing family between 1933 and 1934, contiguous with the Nazi party’s rise to power. It is an unrelievedly dark work that plumbs the deeps of most depravities, and it left me needing an afternoon ocean swim for the cleansing properties of sea water and sunlight.

Visconti’s film is hailed as an outstanding examination of moral decadence, sexual neurosis, narcissistic self-centredness and political opportunism, a string of descriptors that can be well applied to the US President and his Republican Party, and to not a few of our own politicians.

(If you don’t think the desire to control women’s reproductive health is symptomatic of sexual neurosis, think again.)

The movie put me in mind of the Trumps, and the current White House battles for power and position, the best analysis of which (so far) is to be found here at Vanity Fair. The immediate difference is at the moment we can still sneer in mocking disbelief at the Trump tribe’s incompetence and stupidity, whereas nobody in their right mind would sneer at the Von Essenbecks and the Nazi party. It is, however, perfectly imaginable that at the time, such people were regarded as idiots by those who would later suffer immeasurably at their hands.

Trump is still largely seen as a buffoon rather than something far more sinister, however, he is a buffoon with the ability to unleash nuclear weapons, and he appears to have willingly conceded unfettered power to his military hawks. They don’t have to ask him before they blow stuff up.

Thinking of the differences and similarities between the Von Essenbeck family and the Trumps leads me to speculate that as well as having lost much of our ability to appreciate the beauty of compassion and concern (that human talent being derogated by the neo-fascists as “elitist”) we have also become diminished in our capacity to identify and acknowledge the corroding powers on the human spirit of darkness and terminal decay.  It’s likely impossible to become desensitised to horror without incurring an equal desensitisation to the sublime.

I think my reaction to Mr Gittens’ tweet was wrong. A new kind of human being has not emerged. The human being without empathy has always existed. The narcissistic, self- centred, sexually neurotic, morally decadent political opportunist has been in existence for as long as human civilisation. To think otherwise is to disregard history, and to disregard history is to ensure its repetition.

It is true that we used to care if people were starving, and now perhaps we do not care as much. It’s also true that before we cared there were periods when we didn’t care, and this periodic lack of care for others is nothing new. That doesn’t excuse it. There is no excusing it. However, it’s worth remembering this cyclical nature of compassion because we have, more than once, got ourselves out of not caring and back into caring again, and we probably need to remember how we did that, so we can have some hope of doing it again before it’s too late.

The most alarming difference between the Nazi Party and present day Republicans is nuclear weapons, from which there is, for most victims including the planet, no coming back. Once they are unleashed, we are most of us damned.

By the way, I note that the Trump family portrait bears an uncanny resemblance to the Von Essenbecks’ excesses of style.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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49 Responses to “The Damned”

  1. doug quixote April 17, 2017 at 1:58 pm #

    The more things change, the more they stay the same.

    The psychopathic are well suited to fight their way to the top in most competitive arenas, and they current crop of leaders local and international are no exception. As for the variousfamilies of such leaders, they go along for the ride – if we are silly enough to elect and re-elect billionaires, why should they not.

    And so it goes.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Jennifer Wilson April 17, 2017 at 2:00 pm #

      Yes, I agree DQ, however I fear the availability of nuclear weapons makes this far more of an end game than it has ever been before

      Like

      • doug quixote April 17, 2017 at 4:30 pm #

        End game? End-of-the-world game.

        It just takes a psychopathic nutter to decide he’ll take us all with him. Is Kim Jong Un that mad? I hope we don’t find out.

        Liked by 1 person

        • Jennifer Wilson April 17, 2017 at 5:09 pm #

          I think both of them are that mad. Hopefully, there are people in both governments who will intervene.

          Like

  2. Moz of Yarramulla April 17, 2017 at 2:24 pm #

    My first reaction was “citation required”… when was this period during which Australians cared that people were starving? But then I realised that there’s no connection between caring and actually doing anything to solve the problem. In fact caring is quite compatible with knowingly acting to make the problem worse. See global warming for a recent example, war for another (“oh no, there’s a war, war is terrible, we must send soldiers to contribute to the war (effort)”… think about that for just one second).

    So yes, I think Australians still do care that people are starving, they just don’t see any point in trying to solve that problem. They’d rather have a tax cut, even if that means more people in Australia starve. In some cases, *especially* if that, for example those suffering from the just world fallacy likely believe that anyone who starves clearly deserves to (the fallacy is tautological in that way).

    On a happier note, Trump seems to have succeeded in making the police state he inherited worse, and the recent media attention to his military adventures is mostly positive so “he appears to have willingly conceded unfettered power to his military hawks” looks like an understatement, or maybe it’s just wrong. OTOH, maybe he fought and lost, with Bannon’s apparent exit stage left being one visible symptom of that defeat. In some ways the missile attack on the airfield was better than most recent US attacks, in that the target was actually military for once *and* a warning was given so civilians could be evacuated (at least in theory). Neither of those is common practice for the US and there have been arguments published that doing so in that case was a mistake.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Jennifer Wilson April 17, 2017 at 2:48 pm #

      I suspect, Moz, that even Trump does not wish to shoulder too much responsibility for bombing people, & it seems in keeping with his modus operandi that he leaves himself a way out of situations. In handing over responsibility to his military he can always blame them for catastrophic errors.

      I don’t know how to obtain a breakdown of stats on how much Australians used to give & now give to the the starving. We have our foreign aid figures: they seem to be decreasing as we speak.

      Like

      • doug quixote April 17, 2017 at 4:27 pm #

        Foreign Aid cuts are low hanging fruit for the conservatives.

        The last Labor government signed on to the United Nations plea for Aid to rise to be 0.5% of GDP; it got from 0.25% under Howard to about 0.35% under Rudd and Gillard. The Looters & Nutters Party saw this latter amount as an easy way to prop up their budget bottom line and it is now about 0.22%, and headed south. (BTW, Gough’s was the highest ever at 0.65%).

        see:

        http://theconversation.com/factcheck-what-are-the-facts-on-australias-foreign-aid-spending-71146

        Liked by 1 person

        • doug quixote April 17, 2017 at 4:33 pm #

          Correction: the UN target is 0.7%

          “A ratio of 0.5% would be well below the United Nations target of 0.7%, which was met or exceeded by six OECD donor countries in 2015 (the United Kingdom, Netherlands, Denmark, Luxembourg, Norway and Sweden)”

          Liked by 1 person

      • Moz of Yarramulla April 17, 2017 at 5:50 pm #

        I agree that Trump accepting responsibility is rare and unusual, and I expect that when the next horrible thing happens in Syria or elsewhere he’ll be standing well clear saying “I always opposed …”.

        I’m more interested in the people who starve here. I know they’re mostly aboriginal and/or homeless, but to me if we can’t fix our own country we’ve no business trying to interfere in others.

        Foreign aid is problematic in many ways, quantity and dollars being the least of them. IIRC there’s still a requirement that most aid be in the form of goods and services provided by Australian companies, and some of that is in the form of concentration camps and other unhelpful things. As any economist will tell you, crime increases GDP at least in the short term. Similarly, paying money into a country does not necessarily increase wellbeing – you can’t eat it, for starters. And I’m not sure the Papuans regard the training that Kopassus receive from Australia as a good thing (although that might be military aid rather than foreign, if hair splitting appeals to anyone reading).

        The ALP was not better at this, IMO, they were just as likely as the Coalition to spend aid money on neutral or negative projects, both generally using it as a slush fund for political ends – why not reward a dictator with aid money if it helps some short-term political end and to hell with any moral or ethical objections from the peasantry (at either end).

        So 0.7% of our budget going to arm and train the Indonesians, feed the Native Fijians (but not the Indian ones) or help rebuild Afghanistan or Persia after we have “liberated” them… is that actually “aid” in any meaningful sense?

        Liked by 1 person

        • Jennifer Wilson April 17, 2017 at 8:59 pm #

          I agree, Moz, we have significant problems here that are going largely unaddressed by the LNP govt. As they are committed to a kind of genocide of the poor, disadvantaged & marginalised, I doubt anything will change in the near future.
          However, I’ve no doubt that same government will agree to whatever military demands the US makes on us, positioning front & centre of potential conflicts, and so, targets.

          Like

      • AnnODyne April 17, 2017 at 7:38 pm #

        charity stats: I once read a philanthropy report. authors referred to the ATO returns with claims of donations. It was apparent that the most highly paid industry was Mining, and that returns from those in the mining industry showed the least donations. It also said that:
        Old women living alone gave the most money to charity.

        The modern proliferation of Media allows us all to see the corrupt governments of every country where the dear little starving brown babies might be saved. WE know now that there is no point. Corrupt entities steal all the bags of food. The Portugese mafia steal every parcel sent to orphanages in Timor L’Este. what can I do?
        It is the women I worry for.

        Liked by 1 person

        • Jennifer Wilson April 17, 2017 at 9:02 pm #

          Yes, one of my sons worked for the UN in Tanzanian refugee camps. He was disillusioned by the corruption at every level. I have no idea what can be done.

          Like

    • silkworm April 17, 2017 at 10:26 pm #

      “In fact caring is quite compatible with knowingly acting to make the problem worse. See global warming for a recent example….”

      What the hell are you talking about?

      Like

      • Moz of Yarramulla April 18, 2017 at 9:05 am #

        The opinion polls suggest that an awful lot of Australians are concerned about global warming, but 90% of voters supported parties who promised to make warming worse. So at the very minimum they thought that making it worse was a reasonable price to pay for other benefits (the ballot paper doesn’t ask why they did that). Similar but often less dramatic results come from looking at other things voters supposedly care about. For the most part “care about” and “will change their vote because of” are unrelated.

        When you actually look at actions, the same thing applies. All too often their actions contradict their words. Research shos that “strongly agree that speeding endangers everyone” is not at all correlated with being caught speeding (there is neither positive or negative effect of belief on action). Just as one example.

        Liked by 1 person

        • Jennifer Wilson April 19, 2017 at 3:18 pm #

          Yes, youn have nicely explained the voting public’s cognitive dissonance, Moz.

          Like

  3. mongriella April 17, 2017 at 5:22 pm #

    This is a brilliant comparison I reckon.. specially “It is, however, perfectly imaginable that at the time, such people were regarded as idiots by those who would later suffer immeasurably at their hands.” Remembering the horrors of the 30s that I never knew (born in 1942) but was somehow marinated in as a child – I predicted that the Trump (the Last Trump as a friend named him) would win and the results would be as ghastly as the evil Erdogan’s ‘win’ in Turkey today.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Jennifer Wilson April 17, 2017 at 8:55 pm #

      Thanks, mongriella.
      My prediction is the US will bomb the living shit out of North Korea as North Korea bombs the living shit out of South Korea.
      I will be so happy to be proven wrong.

      Like

      • doug quixote April 18, 2017 at 12:28 am #

        Like the man who jumps off a tall building passing the 35th floor – “So far, so good.”

        Liked by 1 person

  4. doug quixote April 18, 2017 at 12:25 am #

    Of course, those who choose to cut foreign aid do so without really knowing just what it is all about. Carefully targeted aid can make sure the potential immigrants stay where they are; make sure foreign governments and organisations are well disposed towards our trade and towards our nationals who may be so misguided as to go there; it enables us to demand better behaviour from those governments; it enables us to have a say in the internal processes of those governments. If they want to say “Who the fuck are you to tell us what to do?” The reply is that “We are the ones who provide you with X millions per year – so far.”

    That our conservative government cannot get its head around this issue should surprise no-one, I suppose. They will amble along in their dozy way, wondering why they bother to educate their own children – after all they get precious little return on the investment. The issues are similar; think about it.

    Liked by 2 people

    • Moz of Yarramulla April 18, 2017 at 9:10 am #

      I think they do have their head around it, but they’re reluctant to talk about it because of some recent public debacles. The Cambodian refugee resettlement, for example. In the past there has been some very definite use of aid for this purpose, with PNG and Timor for example.

      I wonder whether “they” have forgotten have “efficiency dividend”ed away the public servants who do it, or are simply so incompetent that they can’t do it even if they want to. Or they are doing it, but very quietly so that when it goes horribly wrong they can drop some bureaucrat in the fire and deny everything.

      Liked by 1 person

      • doug quixote April 18, 2017 at 12:21 pm #

        Who do you mean by “they”? As far as I am aware, Labor policy is to increase foreign aid – perhaps not to the level of the UN wishlist, but certainly double that of the incumbent would-be fascists.

        BTW, I doubt even Julie is impressed by the cuts inflicted by the likes of Morrison and his fellow philistines. This is a very divided government.

        Liked by 1 person

        • Moz of Yarramulla April 18, 2017 at 3:34 pm #

          “they” in this case being whoever is setting the aid budget, which as you point out is probably not the minister.

          I agree that the ALP are usually less awful on aid, but they talk a lot mroe than they do. ABC suggest they did increase foreign aid, but the coalition didn’t cut it (2014 figures) unless you want to get into promises and projections territory.
          http://www.abc.net.au/news/2015-11-12/fact-check-comparing-foreign-aid-labor-coalition/6895234 Have the Libs actually got their latest cuts through parliament yet?

          Liked by 1 person

        • Jennifer Wilson April 19, 2017 at 3:20 pm #

          And our dear Tony is doing his absolute best to divide it further and in this endeavour I wish him the very, very best.

          Like

  5. townsvilleblog April 18, 2017 at 7:45 am #

    Since the end of WW2 Australia has had a massive influence from the USA in movies, violent computer games and we have begun to adopt ‘their’ personality with the loss of empathy and compassion for our fellow Australian. Hence our current murder rate and violent acts of rape and murder. It seems that every second young Australian wants to be a yank, they proudly wear T-shirts reading ‘New York’ and other USA place names.

    Australia once upon a time had its own proud identity which in 2017 is barely displayed, due to the brain wash from birth from the other side of the world, Australia was unique, these days it is merely another State of the United States of America, sad and pathetic!

    Humbly yours Shaun.

    Liked by 1 person

    • doug quixote April 18, 2017 at 12:14 pm #

      No, crime rates are at the lowest levels since the 1970s.

      We take on board some of the Yankee crap, cultural imperialism and all that, but we have our own culture and values.

      Humbly indeed!

      Liked by 1 person

      • Jennifer Wilson April 19, 2017 at 3:19 pm #

        Fucked if I know what that culture and those values are, DQ.

        Liked by 1 person

        • townsvilleblog April 19, 2017 at 4:24 pm #

          We have been robbed of our identity we are just another State of the USA these days who does what we are told to do we have even adopted ‘their’ language ‘guys!’

          Like

      • townsvilleblog April 19, 2017 at 4:25 pm #

        dq what rock did you just crawl out from?

        Like

          • townsvilleblog April 20, 2017 at 9:15 am #

            Conservative propaganda and you call it facts lol, Some people will fall for anything, e.g the ABS figure for unemployment of 5.9% nobody believes that Roy Morgan Research puts the figure at 9.4% which is far more believable.

            Like

          • townsvilleblog April 20, 2017 at 9:17 am #

            The ABC (Murdoch controlled) reports what the tory government figures say, so what?

            Like

            • doug quixote April 20, 2017 at 9:56 am #

              I would have thought the governments would want to stress increased criminality to justify further progress towards a police state, Shaun. The fascist crackdowns and the absurd war against drugs have filled our gaols and founded many a conservative LawnOrder campaign. Our lawns are well ordered enough, perhaps.

              I think you are a little too pessimistic. But your’re right about the unemployment stats, and underemployment is even worse.

              On a tangent, jobs for human beings are increasingly going to robots, which aren’t taxed and need no wages, rest or holidays. A sensible tax regime would be to tax the (users of) machines and use the money to employ displaced workers elsewhere, in sinecures if necessary.

              Food for thought.

              Like

    • Jennifer Wilson April 19, 2017 at 3:16 pm #

      I dunno, Shaun. We’ve always been looking elsewhere for an identity. First to the Brits. Then the US. I think it comes from being the only western in the region, or as some might put it, the white trash of Asia.

      Like

  6. allthumbs April 18, 2017 at 1:08 pm #

    I can still remember being a child at the family dinner table and on those rare occasions where I couldn’t or wouldn’t finish what was on my plate being reminded of the starving in India or Biafra and the momentary guilt forcing my fork from plate to mouth until the plate was empty.

    We could do with a bit more guilt, a bit more shame.

    I am sure there are still people starving in India and Pakistan, but despite the deaths of innocents the Nuclear programs and defence spending of those nations over the decades may have been better spent on producing or acquiring food, a little more guilt and a bit more shame.

    Hunger can be a great producer of revolutionary zeal, anger and a driver of concentrated effort to overthrow some fuckhead who prefers to wage incessant war or threaten Nuclear annihilation.

    Some of those ageing Generals surrounding the fat boy with the bad haircut seem to have little left to lose, including body fat by the look of their ill-fitting uniforms and sunken cheeks, and given the stories of a starving population in North Korea a hefty caloric deficit might be just the thing to spur one to put a bullet in Kim’s head.

    Instead of bombing North Korea, the Chinese and Americans and all of her allies should airlift an enormous amount of food, thousands of tons of the stuff, the rich, sweet processed goods, donuts and biscuits, cakes and cookies, hamburgers and fried chicken, and carpet bomb the Koreans with food glorious food.

    With an accompanying note, “get rid of the fat boy and drop the missile program, and we’ll supply you with all the food you need for ever unit each and everyone of you has a BMI or morbidly obese!”.

    Kim would be dead in 5 minutes.

    Like

    • doug quixote April 18, 2017 at 2:16 pm #

      Worth a try. 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

    • Jennifer Wilson April 19, 2017 at 3:22 pm #

      For a moment early in your post I thought your were referring to the US and Trump, all thumbs.
      I’m kind of drawn to your interesting proposal. I think it has much merit.

      Like

  7. franklongshank April 18, 2017 at 4:41 pm #

    You’ve been reading the “Fake News” again Jennifer. I, fortunately am better read than most bloggers here and have a number of articles that proclaim the the kindness, decency and generosity of POTUS Donald J Trump. His random acts of kindness fills me with a tearful humility. Here are some examples that I wish I was capable of doing myself, but sadly wouldn’t – because lets face it – I don’t give a shit about most people. (That doesn’t mean I don’t admire it in others when I see it, especially Mr Donald J Trump)

    1. Donald Trump pays off the mortgage of an old couple who stopped and helped him when his limo broke down. Awesome act of kindness.
    http://www.hannity.com/articles/election-493995/a-couple-stopped-to-help-donald-14289119/

    2. Donald Trump stops mugger from committing a crime. Donald the crime-fighter. http://truthfeed.com/flashback-that-time-trump-heroically-stopped-a-mugger/5909/

    3. Donald Trump routinely goes into his hotels with a rolled up stash of dollars and gives his Mexican kitchen staff a few extra bucks – for no good reason. Go fathom that act?! He even poses with them so they can take a few snaps and selfies on their Nokia (they can’t afford a decent iphone) so they can take the image back home, get it developed at their local K-Mart into a large poster and frame the picture up in their modest rented lounge room to show their other Mexican friends who they actually hob-nob with. How good is that? A conversation starter. I always tell my wife that you have to give the poor a role model to emulate. Socialists don’t understand that small detail, as they always expect a hand-out and blame the rich for their self-inflicted misery and lack of entrepreneurial skill.

    4. What about the time Donald Trump gave a loser Puerto Rican boxer a chance as his driver? Trump even gave him 5 NEW SUITS! He also gave him a FREE steak sandwich plus some SELF RESPECT. You can’t put a value on that. I like how he treats his servants as family.

    I have about 200 more of these little stories. Just ask.

    Liked by 3 people

    • doug quixote April 18, 2017 at 5:04 pm #

      I’ll ask you to fuck off, Frank. 🙂

      Like

    • Arthur Baker April 19, 2017 at 2:08 pm #

      Yeah, really heart-warming, Frank. The Orange Freak throws a handful of dollars at a few carefully-chosen members of the world’s downtrodden, for a selfie-opportunity, while systematically dudding about 20 million Americans out of their health insurance. His bounteous magnanimity knows no sodding bounds.

      Keep the 200 other stories to yourself, thanks bro. Instead, tell us the several million stories of the people whose lives will be changed for the worse by his policies. Tell us the stories of the businesses which have gone under because the Orange Freak welched on his bill-paying. Tell us the stories of the systematic lying in which he indulged to get elected.

      Tell us … No, actually, don’t bother.

      Liked by 1 person

      • Jennifer Wilson April 19, 2017 at 3:31 pm #

        It’s sort of like people saying, but Hitler loved his dogs so he wasn’t all bad.
        Sorry, I’ve gone straight to Godwins

        Liked by 1 person

        • Arthur Baker April 20, 2017 at 4:21 am #

          Trump reminds me of Kerry Packer. Handed out big tips to a bunch of people who served him in hotels and restaurants and elsewhere, largely to big-note himself, but when it came to paying taxes according to the law to benefit society as a whole, apparently that was optional.

          Like

          • doug quixote April 20, 2017 at 10:02 am #

            Yes, rather like the trickle down theory. Throw ’em a tiny bone yearly from the immense carcases the 1% consume daily.

            Like

    • Jennifer Wilson April 19, 2017 at 3:24 pm #

      Nah, I don’t think I will, Frank.

      Like

  8. Anonymous April 20, 2017 at 4:33 pm #

    You lot never wake up to Frank.

    Don’t feed him.

    Liked by 1 person

    • franklongshank April 20, 2017 at 9:58 pm #

      There is a lot to like in Donald Trump. He’s raised a very good family of remarkable kids with a good work ethic who are always immaculately dressed and two boys who love shooting animals. If only I could look so well in a dark well pressed suit. Ivanka is a pretty hot looking chick with those blonde curls and dark eyes, although I’m not partial to her left-leaning politics or her Jewish husband, Jared who I suspect is a Wall Street stooge. I like Steve Bannon though, a real patriot, but I recognise Trump may need to let him go, having outlived his usefulness.

      Hitler is not so bad. I once owned a German Shepherd dog, so I feel his sympathy and love for this particular breed of noble animal. Its far easier to love a dog than a person if you are very particular about wanting unconditional love – having never been given it as a child. Have some sympathy for Hitler and especially Donald Trump whose father sent him to a military school at a tender age.

      There is good and bad in everyone. Hitler built some pretty good roads 26 inches thick and able to withstand WWII carpet bombings that are still serviceable these days. He was a socialist too. You guys should admire him. Hitler along with Stalin and Pol Pot are one of your many Leftist patron saints. Enjoy them. Just be honest about it. You’ll get no criticism from me.

      Liked by 1 person

      • Anonymous April 21, 2017 at 12:03 am #

        He killed his wife and his dog, but he had his bad points too.

        Like

      • havanaliedown April 21, 2017 at 8:41 am #

        I always enjoy your missives, Frank. I take some pleasure that the socialist nitwits have no understanding of that which they stridently advocate for.

        If their calls for a glorious socialist revolution succeed, I would take some pleasure in the certainty that after only a few short years a typical grocery shopping excursion would be similar to that depicted here:

        I can imagine Helvi (who once publicly confided that she was “so tired of prosperity” when Mr Sanchez was expertly replacing her downstairs tiles), amongst the babushkas (at the 1:34 mark) sniffing the unidentifiable offal packages. It is the smell of victory, comrades!

        Like

  9. doug quixote April 22, 2017 at 10:41 pm #

    And so it came to pass, in the 2nd year of the reign of the Divine Malcolm
    That the Trump sounded, emerging like a behemoth from the deep;
    First appeared its mighty mane of reddish fur, then its curled lip;
    But when its tiny hands flicked its tiny digits upward into a point
    Not unlike that of Usama of ill repute, ‘cept in miniature,
    The people gasped and gave forth a great ululation –
    Let us make ‘Merica great again! Put ‘Merica first!

    At this time the Omnipotent Tsar of all the Russias, Vladimir the Great
    Did seem to laugh and swagger just a little more than was his wont;
    ‘Twas rumoured that he had orchestrated the Trump’s ascendancy,
    Sabotaging the evil witch of the White Waters, called by some Hillary.
    “By his Tweets shall we know him” saith the Omnipotent Vlad
    As he giggled and swaggered across the Ukraine, and thought
    To hoard his secret and arcane knowledge ’til it were best employed.

    The Divine Malcolm was rumoured to have had a vigorous exchange of views
    With the Trump, who committed to honouring the deal done with the Birthed
    One, the Hawaiian islander of dusky hue some called Obama and others
    Weren’t so kind; Pence the mini-me manifested at the Divine Malcolm’s side
    And declared “we will honour it but don’t expect us to admire it”
    So damning it with faint praise and appearing curmudgeonly all at once.
    And so it goes, and so it went, and so it always went.

    Like

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