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December 28, 2007

'Hang down your head, Tom Dooley Hang down your head and cry Hang down your head, Tom Dooley Poor boy, you're bound to die'

- The Kingston Trio

There is a lot to be sad about these days. Millions of American children are shuffled mindlessly through day prisons (public school) for mind control. Millions of Iraqi children are not so lucky. Millions of non-violent Americans (poor people, people of color, sick people) have been and will be killed or imprisoned in the government's War on Drugs and Alcohol.

The economic policies of the federal government are creating financial Armageddon. Income taxes are around 40%. There are thousands and thousands of other taxes and regulations to contend with on a daily basis. There is nothing we do which is too insignificant to go unsurveilled. Everywhere I go, I'm bombarded with churches, those dominions of tyranny in miniature compared to the state. I cannot so much as drive to the corner store without being faced with a veritable sea of 'Support Our (baby killers) Troops' bumper magnets. I wish those colors would just run. Sigh. Some days I just hang my head. There's nothing else to do.

April 15th is one of the saddest days of the year. It's not as if good citizens everywhere aren't taking it up the tailpipe the other 364 days a year, but this bad boy really shouldn't pass without somebody doing something. April 15th is the day your taxes are due, my fellow Americans, and taxes are the grease in the wheels of the state, keeping it in perpetual, forward motion, growing like a snowball, ensuring the death, incarceration and subjugation of millions more.

Sometimes on April 15th we hear about courageous libertarians who protest outside post offices. God bless them, they're not sitting at home glued to the tube. Sometimes when taxpayers are confronted by such courage, along with the horror of the reality that they are waiting in line, about to hand over their hard earned funds, they take a stand. Some of them will honk their car horns in collusion with the protestors. It reminds me of an old saying, 'Are you a man or a mouse? Squeak up!' I suppose they are risking a citation for 'disturbing the peace.'

A taxpayer, licensed driver, licensed food handler, licensed dog walker, yea, anyone who calls himself an American, must, at any time, in his own home or out of it, offer up an utterly impeccable response when faced with the demand of an armed bully of the state. This reminds me of a line from 'Mrs. Doubtfire' in which Robin Williams describes foreplay as, 'Brace yourself, Effie!' Someone in the taxpayer/tyrant relationship is always going to get what they want and there is no evidence to suggest it might be 'Effie.' Squeak.

At least a urologist will tell you right up front to bend over and spread your cheeks. You, at least, are there somewhat willingly for what you perceive to be a benefit to you. All you're really going to get from the state is the privilege of living another day, owing another dollar, the assurance of more of this type of 'Muskrat Love' in the future and a fat pack of lies about how they can and will do it to you more to your liking next time, and that's a promise.

Unabashed humility and deference on your part is required when confronted by a government thug. Disrespect, contempt, wanton disregard and hubris in the manner and actions of the armed tyrant who represents the state is what we have all come to expect in return. No one is even surprised by this, much less dares to mention this elephant in the living room. Squeak.

I heard an old story that pretty much sums up April 15th. I'd gladly give credit to its author if only I knew her. It goes like this.

Once upon a time, there was a bird in a barnyard. He liked his home. He didn't like the idea of flying south for the winter as all the other birds did and he decided to stay put. As the mercury began to drop, the bird became more and more convinced that he had made a good decision, until one day when he awoke to find his little wings frozen solid.

He struggled and struggled, but could not move them. His struggle eventually knocked him out of his nest, onto the ground. Just when he was sure death was approaching in the form an enormous cow, a large, brown load descended upon him. It was very warm and melted the frost from his wings. He felt so happy that he began to sing. His singing soon drew the attentions of the farm cat, which dug the little bird out of the cow pie, cleaned him off and promptly ate him.

The moral of the story: those who crap on you are not necessarily your enemy; those who get you out of the crap are not necessarily your friends. And lastly, if you are warm and happy in a pile of crap, keep your mouth shut. Squeak.

Hang down your head, Tom, hang it down and cry, but whatever you do, get that check in the mail by midnight . Squeak.

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Retta Fontana's picture
Columns on STR: 53

Retta Fontana is an atheist, anarchist, baker, potter and parenting teacher.  Children are her favorite people.