A few days ago I had a conversation with an old friend. He hails from New Jersey and New York City and presently teaches at a small Midwestern liberal arts school. My friend was pretty angry about the current economic and political situation in the United States. His complaints seemed unrelieved, and their tone reminded me of the tone of my own complaints when I was teaching in Ohio.
I think I understood some of what my friend was feeling. I don’t think there are any easy solutions. It’s much easier to observe the fact of social dysfunction than it is to heal it. Mark Morford’s sprawling recitation of the bitterness of disappointment and the acridity of complaint exactly characterizes the U.S.’s ascendant maiaise. Morford finishes
Our disappointment begins to curdle, to turn back on itself, poison the heart, turn us nasty and low. It shifts from merely being a national mood or general temperament, into a way of being. A wiring, deep and harmful and permanent. It's all very disappointing, really.
The obvious question is where do such people go next.