By TS DeHaviland
I am suffering from a great deal of crisis fatigue. I could get all uppity, as I'm wont to do, and remind everyone that crises are mostly the results of poor planning, but the ugly truth is that most crises are problems that we create for ourselves for the sake of proving to others that our concerns are real. We feel the need to continually prove this because the world is largely indifferent to our actual complaints.
And while a few of us still give lip-service to compassion—and some of us are even authentic about it—there's nothing cooler to your average American than simply not giving a fuck.
Th real reason Ted Cruz's stand against Obamacare didn't really hurt him or the Tea Party in the long run is that it established his image of cold indifference. It was petty and selfish and procedurally pointless, but to a lot of Americans, it made him look like a badass. His faux filibuster was a declaration of “I so thoroughly don't give a shit about anyone else's suffering that I will shut down the whole government to get what I want.”
And if that sounds like assholery, it precisely well is.
But the fact that it made Ted Cruz, for one horrible historical moment, the most powerful man on Earth is not lost on any American male, and a whole lot of American males admire him for it.
You see, the same American males are all too aware that their power is in decline. But instead of looking around and blaming the Ted Cruzes in their own lives—their bosses, mainly—for it, they look at those people and ask “If they've got all the power and all the cash, how can I be like them and get some of that power and money too?”
The litany of ways they try to do it is also a laundry list of liberal complaints against conservatives: bigger guns and more of them; control over women's bodies; indifference to the downtrodden and the poor (even though many of them are poor themselves); alignment with a vengeful, Old Testament God.
What fatigues people like me, people who have been raised to take care of things and not wantonly break them, people who spend time solving problems instead of blaming others, is that the more Ted Cruzes we have blasting their indifference all over the walls of our schools and the halls of our Congress, the more energy people like me have to waste cleaning up tragic and unnecessary messes.