Right now a lot of people are scratching their heads over the fact that Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump are the presidential front runners, and asking themselves how we got here. I suggest it has something to do with how our society has spent the last 15 years:
We have filmed ten million hours of ourselves having sex. We have had ten million mortgages foreclosured on at home and created ten million refugees in the Middle East. So is it any wonder that a ruthless power seeker and an egomaniacal big-business blowhard would end up in the championship game to determine who represents us?
It simply wasn’t enough to get laid, or even to record ourselves having sex as a kinky spark for future romance at home–no, we needed to post it online for strangers around the world to see. Nor was it enough for responsible people to own their homes–this somehow became virtually a right for all Americans and a ravenous investment industry then sprang up to metastasize this bad idea.
And the greatest and most destructive delusion of all was that under the guise of loving freedom and eradicating terrorism, since 9/11 our military has destabilized a handful of Middle Eastern countries. That shock wave is now spilling over into Europe with a dramatic second act to follow.
The nasty place we are in 2016 is neither accident nor bad luck. It is a mile marker and referendum of how we as a country have made use of all the wonderful first-world advantages at our fingertips. Duck-lipped cell phone self-portraits by day, X-Tube titillation by night. Liar-loan-enabled property scooping one year, shameless GoFundMe begging campaigns the next. At sporting events highlighting the “service” of returned military veterans in attendance, the audience stands and claps but in true disconnected obliviousness never ruminates on the consequences of our wars.
Right now Whole Foods still stocks all our favorite flavors of kombucha and low gas prices have made driving affordable again, but I can’t help suspecting that eventually something in the real world has to give. Because in our hearts we have been rotten, blind, selfish, immature, and unworthy for quite some time, and as we saw during housing market collapse, eventually all bills come due.