Today’s jaw-dropping quandary: High awareness yet low clout to fix badly-broken systems

The more that reason serves as bedrock,/ The more we’re vexed by lethal gridlock. 


Imagine Greek gods back in charge,
Amused to torture mankind writ large;
The gods focus what dissects our heart:
Living with ruin we cannot thwart.

Like doomed Cassandras, ever denied,
Though truth informed this steadfast guide;
Entrapped in a hellish parallel,
We bear darkness we cannot repel.

While venoms contaminate the times—
Ukraine, wealth madness, blasted climes
Hold center stage, with hew and cry—
Hands-off witnesses can’t rectify. 

Will irreplaceable core resources
Regenerate by magical forces?
Will the global population boom
Not shred good choices to avoid doom?

Bunko clowns debunk climate change— 
“Never our fault” bellows the deranged.
Must we lose an obscene mass of folks
Before crushing lies: “it’s all a hoax”?  

Shall we not defend democracy
Against scurrilous hypocrisy?
Is majority rule obsolete,
Hijacked by a power-mad elite?

Is justice pommeled by unholy siege,
Debased by vile Trumpist blitzkrieg?
Should not the state comfort the poor—
Or enrich the rich forever more?

Innocent children ambushed in school
Doesn’t curb scheming gun-lobby rule.
Advanced vaccines resolve pandemics,
Yet blind death-cults babble polemics.

What better defines the modern hell— 
To witness wrongs we cannot dispel?
The more that reason serves as bedrock,
The more we’re vexed by lethal gridlock. 
Does our primitive reptilian brain
Constrict rising to a higher plane?
Is this how fate gives us the finger 
To end with both bang and whimper?


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For over a decade, Robert S. Becker's independent, rebel-rousing essays on politics and culture analyze overall trends, history, implications, messaging and frameworks. He has been published widely, aside from Nation of Change and RSN, with extensive credits from OpEdNews (as senior editor), Alternet, Salon, Truthdig, Smirking Chimp, Dandelion Salad, Beyond Chron, and the SF Chronicle. Educated at Rutgers College, N.J. (B.A. English) and U.C. Berkeley (Ph.D. English), Becker left university teaching (Northwestern, then U. Chicago) for business, founding SOTA Industries, a top American high end audio company he ran from '80 to '92. From '92-02, he was an anti-gravel mining activist while doing marketing, business and writing consulting. Since then, he seeks out insight, even wit in the shadows, without ideology or righteousness across the current mayhem of American politics.