There’s a bear that frequently circulates our neighborhood. Several actually. As the berries in the higher elevations disappear and the cold winter months loom, the bears roam in search of picnic baskets and garbage cans. I don’t like keeping my garbage can in the garage for odorous reasons. So, the bears and I play a game. I catch the bears on the security camera dragging my can down the driveway and I resolve to keep the can in the garage. After a while I don’t see any sign of the bear and I start leaving the can outside again. Mr. bear reappears, and the cycle repeats.
It’s usually a harmless game, with no casualties other than the bear-proof garbage can, which is decidedly not bear-proof. But every once in a while, one of the bears gets habitually aggressive and Fish and Game ends up euthanizing it. It’s sad because it wasn’t the bears fault. It’s my fault. And my neighbors. It would be easy to be mad at the bear and blame him for scattering garbage down my driveway. To be scared for kids and pets with an apex predator roaming the property in the dark. To demand that the authorities do something for the safety of the neighborhood. But we pushed the bear to be… well, a bear. We created a scenario where the bear had no choice – foraging in the woods or a grocery store of easy access scraps. He’ll go for easy every time.
It’s a parable for where we are today. The United States, virtually single-handedly, drove Russia into action. We’ve done everything possible to provoke the current conflict. And now, we’re at war. Oh, they didn’t tell you? We are in a full-scale proxy war with Russia. One that escalates every day. Biden’s energy secretary said the quiet part out loud this week: “releasing 15 million more barrels from the strategic oil reserves is required for the current “wartime footing.” Hmm. The national security council spokesman declared unlimited support for Ukraine for as long as it takes.
Funny, I don’t remember voting for war with Russia. The defense industry certainly voted for it – and clearly their vote counts more. All well and good, except this thing is rapidly spiraling out of control. NATO expansion is one of the big drivers of Putin’s actions. So, what do we do? Vote to expand NATO further. We directly, or via proxy, blow up Russia’s gas pipeline. Every month we further ramp up the billions of dollars of weapons we supply Ukraine. We have direct military assets on the ground advising Ukraine (you’re naive if you don’t think so). Daily the administration blames Russia for everything from high gas prices to climate change. We flat out refuse to negotiate with Russia. Not only have we left the garbage can out, but we’ve also left the lid open and scattered food scraps all around it.
And now with fiscal disaster and a new (to be determined) prime minister, the UK may start getting squeamish about sending more aid to Ukraine. And the US is looking at a red wave in November that might not be so excited to keep the Ukrainian money faucet fully open. This administration is so eager to continue stoking the war fires… do you really think some sort of false flag operation is out of the question? Some event that will justify the continued war and the need to pump additional billions into the defense industry coffers? We’ve certainly done it before. I think the next month will be an extraordinarily dangerous time period.
I know, I know. Tinfoil hat conspiracy theory. But if it’s even remotely true… we’re provoking a dangerous bear. We’re creating a scenario where he’ll have to respond. And this bear has nuclear weapons. Lots and lots of ’em. And don’t forget, there’s a Chinese bear looming out there as well. Waiting. Watching. And we happily keep poking that bear as well.
The caviler nature of this administration, and the bulk of the national press, is frightening. I honestly think we are at the very precipice of the next world war. I don’t think it would take much to spark it off right now. And yet domestically, we spend our time arguing if drag queen stripper shows are appropriate for six year olds and if highway bridges are racist.
It’s long overdue we had some serious people in charge. It was all fun and games mocking the bad orange man for mean tweets, but now we need something more than an old dementia patient eating ice cream, and pretending to be in charge (and no, it’s not the orange man again). Weekend At Bernie’s at least had lighthearted hijinks as a plot. I’m not sure the current crop of puppeteers behind the scenes realizes (or care) what a cornered bear is capable of.
Hard times create strong men
Strong men create good times
Good times create weak men
Weak men create hard times