Something there is that doesn’t love a wall,
That sends the frozen-ground-swell under it
And spills the upper boulders in the sun,
And makes gaps even two can pass abreast.
— from “Mending Wall” by Robert Frost
The first polls are closing on the East coast as I start this. We know that, come January 20, some statist will occupy the White House and believe he’s the lord of us all.
He’ll preside over the growth of the welfare state and the warfare state.
He’ll claim the right to kill us at will or lock us up without due process.
He’ll preside over the destruction of U.S. currency.
He’d flunk a test on the Bill of Rights. And even if he managed a C- in theory, he’d get an F in practice.
He’ll continue the War on Drugs and the centralization and bureaucratization of health care.
He’ll serve powerful interests, which — it goes without saying — don’t include us.
He’ll grow the surveillance state and feed the paranoid Homeland (achtung!) Security state.
The country and the world will continue down the established path, despite the efforts of people outside of government to turn the course.
It will be a terrible state of affairs. All hail tonight’s victor, whoever he may be!
And tomorrow … and on January 21, should we live so long … we’ll wake up and live in a world that goes on undermining the wall.
Our gardens will still grow.
Our friends will still love us (if we didn’t let the spites of politics get in the way).
Our families will still be as happy or as dysfunctional as they were before.
If we own guns, we’ll still own them. If we want more, we’ll still get them.
Whatever we want and can afford, we’ll still get, whether over the counter or under the table.
Despite the surveillance state, most of what we do will remain our own business.
Despite the growth of bureaucracy and enforcement, most of our activities will still slip between the cracks.
And no matter whether tyranny begins with an R or a D, a remnant of Americans — and others around the world — will continue holding, and teaching, and living, a different set of values.
And the more noisome the miasma that arises from the D.C. swamp, the more our little remnant will grow.
Thousands of those young people who discovered a rock star in old, wrinkled “wingnut,” Ron Paul, will be looking for a “what next,” and that “what” may, or may not, take political form. Thousands of those young civil libertarians who got buffaloed into thinking Barack Obama was their hero will be looking for liberty in a different direction.
Thousands of other people who don’t care anything about politics, but do care about things like alternative health care or wholesome foods, will look around and continue the process of withdrawal.
Withdrawal from the overly centralized, overly bureaucratized, over-lawed, de-humanized, grossly militarized, excessively criminalized, etcetera-fied everpresent Established System.
Withdrawal into alternative money and trade systems, health care systems, food-production systems, gun-manufacturing systems, lifestyles, and phyles of infinite description.
And beneath all that “passive” withdrawal lies the beating heart of the most powerful resistance. Pulsing and pushing as relentlessly as frost in the ground, slowly undermining the wall.