There is an old joke in the form of a question-answer duo that comes to mind every once in a while:
What does a SADIST do to a MASOCHIST?
The not so funny joke illustrates one of our deepest fears, the inability to have control over our own situation. This lack of control is also known as frustration.
And this is not a new concept but one that dates back to the ancient Greeks and the story of Tantalus.
Lack of personal control is also at the heart of our penal system's form of punishment. Aside from being incarcerated for a crime against society a convicted criminal loses any and all say in his (or her) day to day routine. They are under the control of others and must do as told. Failure to do so will result in even further loss of rights.
Another great fear that has become more prevalent in the world today is that of terrorism.
We may not think of it every second but it lurks in the backs of our minds nevertheless. We encounter the signs at airports and all places where crowds gather.
But this week a different form of terrorist came into prominence. And this one may prove to be more insidious than all others before him for he has the power to control our lives for years to come. And he can do so with his swift severe sword-like pen!
I am speaking of Chief Justice John Roberts of the United States Supreme Court.
Say what you will about Bush the bumbling buffoon and sometime puppet of Dick Cheney but he left the country lamenting a lasting legacy of legislative larceny when he appointed young Roberts to his lifetime post in 2005.
This week Mr. Roberts (I apologize but I cannot use the words Justice and Roberts together anymore) struck down a law and in essence opened the floodgates for corporate control of America.
By allowing 'big business' to spend as much money as they wish on campaign advertising etc. they have set the nation on a terrible course. These entities will be able to mold public opinion by bombarding the airways with professionally produced propaganda.
For example, let's assume one of the richest corporations in the world decides to promote themselves as the anti-establishment savior of the masses. How long before the CEO of Exxon is crowned President?
Perhaps, but who would have ever thought W would be elected TWICE?
(When we were young we were told that anyone could grow up to be President. Unfortunately that became true. But I digress.)
The current make-up of the 'above the law' court is guaranteed to take away more of our individual identities and liberties than any Homeland Security edict put in place by the Gestapo-like Cheney Death Panel from 2000 to 2008.
By allowing Bush a second term (Some still believe he never actually won the first time) we sealed our fate for decades to come. What terrorist could match what we have done to ourselves over the last decade?
I say the clearest way for the sadistic Osama Bin Laden and his ilk to harm the masochists of America would be to do nothing!