I am in denial about many things, most immediately over the onset of another early summer in Florida. Denial means refusing to close the windows and submitting to air conditioning, even as my armpits go damp with sweat. I wear rubber gloves and a bandito’s bandana across my airholes at the supermarket, more to keep from getting scolded than to concede any fears of inhaling lethal pathogens. I am in denial over the prospects that, due to economic and digital pandemics beyond my control, my newspaper career is nearing an end.
I am also in denial about the reality behind the Coca-Cola fairy tale, about how, if extended a smile and a catchy jingle, clashing cultures would join hands and learn to sing in perfect harmony. I’m not a total idiot, OK, I never bought the whole Earth Day marketing pitch. But. As the sun set over the 20th century, Iran and Iraq did quit shooting at each other. And Soviet troops did pull out of Afghanistan. And the Germans did tear down the wall. And Nelson Mandela did go from prison to the presidency of South Africa. And Sinn Fein did make peace with the Unionist Party. On Easter. And Leningrad did change its name to St. Petersburg. And the PLO did shake hands with Israel’s Prime Minister, who probably knew in the back of his mind it would cost him his life. And within that succession of glittering moments, it was tempting to think this was, indeed, what the end of history could look like.
Even now, amid the ruins, the better angels can still put on a show: Exhausted scrubs emerging from ventilator hell into fevered applause. Fingers of the afflicted and the grieving pressing into the glass that separates them. Italians singing arias through the tears, from their balconies; a quarter million Brits responding to their National Health Service’s appeal for volunteers; Chinese docs and nurses packing up for Italy and Iran to engage the coronavirus head-on, again. On and on and on.
And yet, when it comes to organizing a coherent, united, international front against a common threat, we see the tribal wagons circling around their own again, same as it ever was.
Waiting for an American posse that will never arrive, the United Nations struggles to issue a guiding vision for a way forward. A scheduled video conference between G20 leaders on Friday was called off at the last minute due to U.S. and Chinese squabbling over the scapegoating of the World Health Organization. Members of the already fragile European Union didn’t wait for a coordinated containment strategy; instead, they decided individually about when and for how long to seal national borders. The EU served up a “heartfelt apology” over its prolonged silence to Italy’s pleas for medical equipment on the front end of the crisis. And today, the Union remains paralyzed over debt-sharing solutions to dig the lot of them out of this mess.
Even as COVID-19 began radiating out of Wuhan, China continued hoarding information about what it knew, and when it knew. In March, with the virus descending onto the subcontinent, India and Pakistan traded artillery fire. India reported the highest number of ceasefire violations in two years. Pakistan touted its shoot down of an Indian drone.
The relatively low numbers in South America will rise as it slides into autumn. Argentina had moved swiftly to close its borders, where under 4,000 people have been infected and fatalities are below 200. But next door in fascist Brazil, more than 60,000 cases are on file, and the death toll has climbed past 4,200, even as President Jair Bolsonaro exhorts crowds of admirers to defy the lock down movement.
And through it all, as international economies and institutions puke money and careers, a “perfect storm” of lies and paranoia about COVID-19 has swamped social media, perpetrated by free-agent anarchists and state players alike. And that’s the world stage. Main Street USA? Spiders in a jar, fear v. science, middle-finger salutes to authority. A solid one-third of us are ready to dance, right over the cliff, with a chief executive who fantasizes about eradicating the disease with injections of disinfectant.
You know where this is headed, right?
“In a way, this is our alien invasion,” futurist author Amy Webb told NPR earlier this month. “This virus is essentially malware, attacking the source code of humanity. This should be something that brings us all together. It’s strange to me that it’s not. This is the time, this is the cause, this is the reason, to get Silicon Valley and Wall Street and Washington, D.C., in lockstep together.”
“This” may not be an exact replica of the sequel to “The Day the Earth Stood Still,” but it sure smells like the dress rehearsal. For a growing fatalistic niche, “this” has been a long time coming. Psychology Today updated the end-times scenario in 2018 by adding rogue artificial intelligence to the list of possibilities. Only, the article, “Unification by ‘Alien’ Invasion,” opened with a televised exchange, four years earlier, between Bill Clinton and Jimmy Kimmel.
The ex-president, wrote the authors, “finished the interview with a curious sentiment. ‘It may be the only way to unite this increasingly divided world of ours,’ he said. And by ‘it,’ (Clinton) meant an alien invasion from outer space.”
That was a still-mildly novel assertion from a politician in 2014, but it could be excused as a rhetorical flourish, the same way it was when Ronald Reagan addressed the United Nations in 1987. Psych Today reminded newbies that No. 40 employed the same metaphor at the ass-end of the Cold War. “I occasionally think how quickly our differences worldwide would vanish if we were facing an alien threat from outside this world,” he told Earthlings, before seguing into an argument for the abolition of nuclear weapons.
Coronavirus has ripped open a lot of scabs, created bleak new story lines, and stripped us of our longstanding fable about global unity when threatened by a non-human Other. Events over the past 2.5 years, and the mainstream media’s coverage of them, have yet to make a strong case for UFOs as a clear and present danger, at least not overtly. But like termites, emboldened researchers keep gnawing away in the shadows of the enervating COVID-19 drama monopolizing global news cycles.
Slowly, surely, the story behind the Pentagon’s secret UFO program continues to surface in piecemeal fragments. And, like so much else in Washington now, the Department of Defense is in a pickle, unable to respond to the UFO dilemma, except with confusion, contradiction, and obfuscation. The Great Taboo is beginning to swim in the mainstream: How many of us perked up at the mention of the USS Roosevelt during its quarantine fiasco, not so much for the flattop’s activities in operations Enduring Freedom and Desert Storm, but for its role in documenting UFOs off the Florida-Georgia coast in 2015?
Ready it or not, we’re getting a preview of the probable chaos ahead when and if governments across the world come to their senses, lose their minds, and speak with one voice in admitting that, yeah, our state-of-the-art weapons platforms are, at the very least, being dreadfully outclassed by advanced technologies no power on Earth has the ability to counter.
We’ve already seen what a mere terrestrial virus can do to markets confronted with the specter of vulnerability and powerlessness. Last week, the invisible scourge even turned petrodollars into Blockbuster Video. What’s next? How about a national conversation right now on “free” energy …
The UFO story is on hold, but it’ll wait. It always waits. We can cross our fingers and hope it goes away, like a miracle. But unless the Three Wise Men come bearing pallets of incense, gold, and myrrh, our present course is unsustainable, and the price of denial keeps getting higher and higher. Tick-tick-tick-tick-tick …
Please remember we all have different opinions, Think Before You Speak or Write Something that is cruel to Others. After all, We are only Humans.
Wishing you clear skies and wide eyes.
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We are the change the world has been waiting for! Have you witnessed an unidentified flying object? You are not alone. Whether you think UFOs are black projects, extraterrestrial craft, something else altogether, or just don’t know, again: you are not alone!
Unconditional love. The road we all get to walk. Unconditional love is like the sun.
WE ARE THE DISCLOSURE !!! ~~~ WE HAVE NEVER BEEN ALONE!!!
LOL=Love and Regards, Happy Quarantine !
Nancy Thames : )
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