I have driving music. I assume everyone does. Don’t give me opera, or Broadway or gospel quartets. I’ll either doze off or my fillings will fall out. I need loudness. Lovely, familiar loudness.
Therefore, last week as we tootled down the interstate to vacation nirvana, the car speakers nearly melted with their periodic dose of Boston, Buffett, Lynyrd Skynyrd and The Eagles. Hotel California and Life in the Fast Lane.
They knew all the right people, they took all the right pills.
They threw outrageous parties, they paid heavenly bills.
There were lines on the mirror, lines on her face.
She pretended not to notice, she was caught up in the race.
As the south Georgia exits flew by, my thoughts drifted toward politics and Our Current Unpleasantness. How were we to know that Messrs. Walsh, Henley and Frey were clairvoyant?
Today I discover Gerard is thinking the same.
The French have an idiomatic phrase — “nostalgie pour la boue” –which means, roughly, “the yearning for the mud.” This compulsive “yearning” is something that seems to invariably come over people whose lives have veered into the fast lane of the secular life; a life without spirit, or, at best, a phony “spiritualism” such as yoga or transcendental meditation. In France they play with “nostalgie pour la boue” as a kind of minor amateur dabbling in the degrading. In America, where anything worth doing is worth overdoing, many who yearn to emulate the French have gone pro.
[…] Down in the mud of the All-American perverts’ daisy chain there’s a lot of cross-over between celebrity culture and media culture. Indeed, at a lot of levels, it is becoming hard to tell them apart. Both factions live, for the most part, in an insulated bubble of blather that is impervious to personal moral, psychological, spiritual, or political change; one that ruthlessly exacts the penalty of shunning and expulsion from the bubble in the event of any sudden shifts and heresies from any accepted inhabitant. Like junkies in all ages, once the ideological needle goes in, it never comes out.
[…] Nostalgie pour la defaite [“yearning for defeat”] is that state of the flattened soul when an American, who either came of age in the Vietnam era, or who was taught and mentored by many leftists or liberals of that vintage, yearns for the defeat of America, and acts accordingly in word and deed.
This compulsion is now not only required to keep their residency in their subcultures, but to keep their status in the same as well. The more virulent their articulations of hate of America, the more shrill their calls for the death of host that sustains their parasitic existences, the higher their regard by their peers. Neither children nor even infants are safe from their depravities.
Nostalgie pour la defaite is a perverted form of “confirmation bias.” In a way, joining this group is like joining a gang — once you’re in, getting out is not an option unless you seek social and political death. Once articulated, this ideological state is then seen as confirmation that his or her world view — and that of their social milieu — is the correct view and correct milieu. To operate otherwise would throw not only all the progressive views, assertions, and actions of the last thirty years of diseased progressive politics and sham social theory into question, but the entire structure of the afflicted personality as well. It is not just life in the fast lane but life inside the lie.
Ooooooo. Do read the rest. It gets better. It always does.
How does Gerard do it? Maybe he’s hidden a secret chip in my brain, or something.