Below is an excerpt from among the papers found in a briefcase without identification, without any evidence by which we could ascribe authorship–the thus writer remains unknown, except those who insist they can tell gender by diction, by syntax, by rhetorical strategies gleaned from reading . . . but then this gleaning would be something akin to superficially skimming pages, which Melville warns us, all great writing is meant to deceive, as he had ascribed to Hawthorne’s texts. That is, Hawthrone’s writing is meant to deceive the superficial skimmer of pages. Yes!
Perhaps we will find out who he or she is if we publish this, one of the more interesting pieces found among the papers in the briefcase, leather, brown, a bit worn, old, perhaps not treated or taken care of as others might their leather shoes or jackets or even other cases of other men or women; but then cases like these often get the lesser of attention when a person is inclined to attend to anything they own that is made of leather. The briefcase was found by a colleague of mine on a park bench in the park near our office where we publish our literary review, THE OCTEMBER REVUE.
I am the Publishing and Contributing Editor of this review, an on-line literary review that we have published monthly while maintaining a daily blog that also publishes short fiction, flash fiction, short essays, fictional essays, whatever have we in the matter and manner of crossing boundaries, perhaps the way that some might cross dressing, one’s dress a matter genre, no?
Faith has its uses, I’ve been told. I have had occasion to be in agreement, others to be in disagreement, flip-flopping, as we say, from one to the other, another game of hop-scotch played with what? Is it the Truth that I am playing hop-scorchers with . . . something else? What else is there to say about this faith in our politics because I am losing that fast? I use to think that the genius of America was for politics, but maybe I should have said government. They are not one and the same thing, are they? Of course they are not. What is it about these things we think that we frame as matters of course–are they as self-evident as we imagine them to be? Do not take heed from this and run away with your increasing doubt . . . imagination is quite necessary for the rational mind, for any pursuit of Truth, any scientific investigation which is a reference the method and not what we have restricted sense we assign to the word ‘science.’
I have no faith in our politics–I am not certain what kind of faith I have in God. I do have faith in The Constitution, and I am fairly religious about that, and that religiosity is bifurcated: I am religious in the traditional sense which rules our contemporary notions about how religion is and what expectations we are to have about how it has existed and what role it has played in our civilization and other civilizations; that is, what being religious means and how it functions in behavior, even its use in the connotations we apply to attitudes and behavior apart form what might strictly be called religious; and religious in the sense captured by its etymology, which is from the Latin re-legere, or to relink, that is, to reconnect, and with what? You do ask, I know. Reconnect with the One, the True, the Origin . . . and that is our Constitution.
American is an idea not an ethnicity, which is part of our success, I have a prejudice in believing. But faith of this kind for our politics, or should I say, our politicking, no!. I have no faith for human intelligence, either, at least in general, and more specifically, for our contemporaneity. Today is not the best of times, nor the worst of times; yesterday was not the best of times, nor was it the worst of times; tomorrow will not be the best or the worst. There are an infinite number of shades of gray between black and white. I do not wish to live on a checker board any more than I want to think on one, like one, with its rule being my regulation. All of these are true, but that does not mean today is not really, really bad, nor does it preclude that we have been backsliding for a long time, politically, governmentally, in the maters of our freedom and the access to them thereof an ensuing problem.
I remember many of my Italian student-visa friends from university—and there were enough of them, not too many and certainly not only a couple. They asked me many questions, but the the most frequently asked question was not Why are Americans so under-educated, so under-read, so stupid? No. This was not what they asked, even if it is what too many conservative-minded Americans today might think they asked. No, this was not it. The most frequently asked pejorative was, Why are American liberals so stupid? And that I saw and continue to see–which is not, as it so often amounts to in American idiocy, a flip of the coin on the side of conservative. No. Conservatives are always going to be as conservatives are, have been, yes, will be. This is the given of their politics. It always verges on Reactionary, unfortunately as oftentimes does Liberal in its extreme, too often being the flip side of intolerant, confusingly and collaterally becoming too tolerant of intolerance. But it is the horror of how insipid America Liberalism was and has remained that is one of the first causes in how totalitarian our bourgeois capitalism has become. And it has. Stop confusing Capitalism for Democracy, stop thinking they are mutual and contingent.
But then we’re baboons—no, really, we are, when we are not at best being chimps, yes, chimps at best most of the time. This is that 98% sameness in our DNA we share with them. In the shadow of the simians, we are. Where would our opinions be without Jane Goodall and her tireless observations?
Human is choice, as I have said before this, how many times? Too many to count.
Just look at human history, though, if you doubt what I have said; just look at our current events. Can you imagine that we are not only a little better than chimps? All, most, still too, too many if not all or most whenever we are required be something more than the solipsists we are most persistently.