On being deceived, perceived and politic in the public forum
Vulgus vult decipi — The Mob wants to be deceived
Esse est percipi — To be is to be perceived
I have been trying to write a memoir, which always strikes me as a ME-Moir, and concentrate on my time in Drama School. But whenever I sit down to write, I go way back in my MEmory and don’t seem to get to Drama.
I go back to my study of Latin and two phrases, one which translates as, “The mob wants to be deceived.” If you doubt that truth, there’s always January 6 to dispel your disbelief.
Today Senator Ron Johnson, one of the more stultifying troglodytes in Congress, said he was not frightened when the Capitol was stormed because he knew that the thousands were lovers of this country and would never break the law, broken windows, smashed doors notwithstanding.
He added that if the roles had been reversed and Trump had won (is he admitting Trump lost?) and the demonstrators were Black Lives Matter people and Antifa, then he would have been “concerned.” As long as they’re white, alright; but Black, watch out for the pack.
Former Senator Claire McCaskill of Missouri, who was defeated in her re-election bid by Josh “Raised Fist” Hawley, was told by a commentator that these guys, Cancun Cruz among them, know better. They know The Big Lie. Good Dad Cancun, who famously said, with his Harvard Law pedigree, that he wouldn’t work with anyone from the “lesser Ivies.” (Take that, Cornell and Penn!)
She shot back: “Not Johnson. I served alongside him in the Senate and I don’t think he does know better.”
She was being politic, but I won’t be. He is as dumb as a box of rocks. Well, 2022, in the great state of Wisconsin. Let’s see if the northern Cheesehead voters know curds and whey from rocks.
The second Latin phrase, which translates as, “To be is to be perceived.” Perceived. Deceived. Hmmm.
Or perhaps the mob wants to be perceived; to be is to be deceived. Surely, the bozo who posed with his feet on Speaker Pelosi’s desk wanted to be perceived. The jamoke carrying the Confederate flag through the Capitol wanted to be perceived.
And the pathetic woman who took Pelosi’s laptop, who now says she doesn’t know where it is, well, maybe, just, maybe, she didn’t really want to be perceived. My guess is that she’s a bit brighter than bozo and jamoke. The women usually are.
But do bozos/jamokes/pathetics know they want to be deceived? Are they marginally less dumb than Johnson? And should we give them $174,500 a year and free parking at National airport? Or is it called Ronald Reagan Airport? The Shining City on The Hill.
The Hill is also Congress. It’s where not one Republican voted for the Biden/Harris National Recovery Act. Yet one Republican, Sen. Roger Wicker of Mississippi, was praising parts of the bill in his home state, essentially saying that he was for the bill before he voted against it. (I hate to remind us that sounds like John Kerry who was for the Iraq War before he was against it. But I am an Equal Opportunity critic.)
Be assured there will be more Trumplicans who praise the bill before they attack it. Or attack it before they praise it. Trump now calls HR 1 “A MONSTER that must be defeated”, as if he has even READ it. Talk about To Be is to Be Perceived.
And kudos for Beth Moore. As “The Week” puts it: “Beth Moore has left the Southern Baptist Convention.
“ ‘I am still a Baptist,’ the prolific Bible study author said in an interview with Religion News Service published Tuesday, March 9, ‘but I can no longer identify with Southern Baptists’. The import of this departure, as many have observed, is difficult to explain if you don’t already know who Moore is. She’s something like the book club leader version of Reese Witherspoon for conservative evangelical Christians.”
Because Beth Moore cannot abide Trump. She wants to be perceived, but not deceived.
Vulgus vult decipi; ergo decipiatur.
The Mob wants to be deceived? Let it be deceived. Back to my Latin. And soon, perhaps, my ME-Moir.
Lonnie Carter is a writer who lives in Falls Village. Email him at email@example.com.