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Monday, June 25, 2007

14th in the Arcana of Government Baddies

A Foot in Two Worlds:
Dick Cheney's Dark Journey into Temperance

Throw away your Iraqi "Most Wanted" deck and break out the old tarot cards. Thumb through the Major Arcana, and just past the 13th card - Death - and the 15th card -The Devil - stands a winged alchemist mixing potions along a river bank. One leg toes the firm ground while the other tests the water, as if about to enter. The tarot calls this card "Temperance." In the arcana of political baddies, though, he goes by another name: Dick Cheney.

The Veep has been caught squeezing the two branches of the federal government he straddles between his chubby legs, moving his butt around the saddle to whichever side suits as a support to his nefarious undertakings. If we looked hard enough, we would also see him wrapping his leg tightly around the Judiciary, if he had an extra leg. (Don't even go there. His balls may be enormous, but despite his name, his microscopic, er, manhood will never reach - I mean attain - leg status.)

The fact is, Cheney's mercurial claims of where he belongs in the arcana of our government's hydra are only a fog, meaningless arguments that only distract us from the examination of his dangerous, possibly criminal, actions. While he is talking out of the side of his crooked mouth, he is manipulating everything inside, outside above and below our constitutional, legal and social order.

Dick Cheney is a virus. To be sure, his virus-like behavior thrives in government because it is fed by corporations like Haliburton, but he is also fed by voters who - by the millions - took Cheney's unchecked, fear inducing words and actions as the strict parenting that passed for love when they were children. Tough love, indeed.

In the tarot, the Temperance card calls on us to be patient, and also to pay attention so we know when the time is right to step forward. In that I am reminded of what civil right leader and Congressman John Lewis told me in early 2005 when I complained to him about the slow pace of political change in Georgia. "Be patient," he said. "Be patient."

Temperance also indicates a new chance, an opportunity for change. This is the point in our journey when we can look forward. What journey, you ask? Well, the Major Arcana of the tarot is often described as the journey of the Self, represented by the Fool card, through life's travails, "from innocence to enlightenment."*

So if things are moving forward, that's great, right? Well, except that the next card in the arcana is The Devil, but that may not be as bad as it sounds.

Here is the good news. If we go back a few cards earlier ("Previously, on Major Arcana..."), we see the Justice card. Shining a light on Justice, as personified by the Attorney General's office, has been shadowy since John Ashcroft, though Alberto Gonzales' interpretation of justice has left a visible stain on that office.

Next on the Fool's journey comes the Hanged Man, which could be our attacking Iraq, culminating, albeit a bit literally, with Saddam's execution.

After that comes the Death card. Now that could be just about anything good that this administration touches, but what if it's the 2006 elections and the end of the Republican led Congress?

That brings us up to Temperance, this point of choice. We now, finally many would say, begin to examine Cheney. We must keep moving forward and clean this mess up.

And if, as Hugo Chavez believes, wafts of sulfur and brimstone spill from the White House, we should definitely be looking forward exposing the Devil card, for that is the confrontation even he has been waiting for all along.


*The Everything Tarot Book - 2nd Edition, by Skye Alexander, 2006, F&W Publications, Inc., Avon, MA

Friday, June 08, 2007

Freedom in Chains

Refute Apathy
Rebuke Bush
Repatriate Freedom

What remains of Freedom's robes are threadbare, and her scalp is scabbed and scarred between clumps of matted, thinning hair. Her humid, windowless cell is an oven, where crawling cockroaches pull peeling plaster off the blistered, wet walls. Sitting on the dirty floor, in a dark corner, with her knees to her chest and her head hanging low, Freedom distresses in her exile.

It has been months since she stood hopefully by the prison door, waiting for the click of the jailer's key card, the metallic clunk of the bolt sliding back. She was waiting for the AG to greet her outside, to hand her a paper signed by the People and tell her this had all been a horrific mistake. But the door never opened. The apology never came.

"They must be very afraid of me," she mumbled in her despair. She had given them so much, even up to the very moment that, disguised as patriots, they burst into her infinite light of grace, pulled her lamp away like it was a weapon of destruction, toppled her from her ancient pedestal, loaded her on a military transport and threw her in this Caribbean dungeon.

Yet, she is not angry with them, even though she has heard that they covered the old, clear lenses of her lamp with a milky filter and stuck it in the hand of an impostor, a poser in drag, whose other arm is holding a rifle.

She cannot hold malice because Freedom knows her gift is either accepted or rejected by choice, and by her own nature, she cannot challenge choice. She leaves it up to us to do it for her. That is not her demand, but she does want us to know that we have a choice. We can challenge. In this, she is more loving and patient than the most devoted mother.

But for Freedom to even have a chance, we first have to repatriate her brother, Habeus Corpus. Without being asked if he wanted it, he is carrying something we thought might have been locked away in a secret CIA prison sometime over the last six years: the integrity of our nation.

Over the last week, the People have chosen to instigate the processes necessary to rebuke the status quo. The "Habeus Corpus Restoration Act" just came out of committee, there is bipartisan support for adopting more of the Iraq Study Group's report than the dopes in Executive want to, and the AG is about to face a no-confidence vote.

As for the fate of Freedom's evil twin, we need not concern ourselves with that, for like the cockroaches on the wall of a Guantanamo cell, it will scurry away, back into its dark hole, when Freedom's light is finally restored. I do hope we make the right choice and step up soon.