For me, that's one drop in the infinite reservoir of amazing takeaways ... America is so incredibly important to so many people. But, why?
Why are we the Apple to the rest of the world's PC? How is this land of Bush, and Enron, and Cheney, and Spitzer, and Flavor Flav, and TMZ and Fashion Police etc. etc. ad nauseam, also the symbol for that inscrutably-human sense of independent spirit?
Look at these pictures, taken from around the globe. How can one man, one job, one country's chosen leader mean so much?
I don't understand; it's so difficult to wrap my aluminum-body macbook around the idea that when the world is spinning its wheels in the, uh, ditch of life or whathaveyou, we're the folks everyone looks to for a plan? What are we, Hancock? The Alcoholic Superpower?
If you were to ask me about America-as-Guiding-Light when I'm drunk and fantasizing about Sarah Palin, in my apartment, telling Katie Couric that she knows how to save Africa because she can see my balls from where she's sitting; I would be like, "How can you talk about some broad 'America the beautiful' stuff with a scene like this in front of you? THAT'S UNAMERICAN! But I do appreciate the conversation, so hold on a second, I'm just busy at the moment." Then in five minutes I would return and tell you that such a thought (America-as-example-for-the-world) is bananas. B-A-N-A-N-A-S.
But yet, it's true. The throngs of people, the wide-eyed faces, the streaming tears... none of them lie. This country, my country, your country is the worlds guiding light. The world's Encyclopedia Brown. The forger of
black steel in the hour of chaos. The nationalized avatar of Nietzsche's will to power? Or maybe you prefer, Manifest Destiny. Just Do It. Yes We Can.
This mandate, this refusal to suck, where does it come from? In the last couple years we have bottomed out and taken it for granted, putting up the most pathetic effort we could in the form of George Bush. Seemingly testing our own karma, only so we could feel the rush of the Tao coming back harder and stronger with Barack, the Anti-Bush.
We started this country with no money, only ideals. Then we sacrificed our ideals to build capital. And now, when capital is no longer worth much, we go back to ideals. Willing ourselves to power, by any means necessary.
But where does it come from? Nietzsche wasn't even our dude. Germany should be the world superpower, but obviously they fell in love with the dark side of the force.
And here we are.
And, it's not like we haven't had our fair share of "bad" people.
But here we are. In our bleakest hour, the force provides us our Luke Skywalker to save the day and seemingly inspire the universe. (and he's even better because he doesn't have the sketchy side storyline with the incestuous sister-loving.)
Disclaim: (I just received these pics from family over email, they are presumably of the people, by the people, for the people. if you are/know the source please contact me and I'll properly attribute, or take down... but if you make me take them down, I'm telling Obama on you.)