by Douglas J. Hagmann
Imagine the United States as one big jumbo jet on a lengthy journey to what our travel brochures described as the land of ‚Äúmilk and honey.‚ÄĚ We are all passengers aboard this marvelous airbus of state-of-the art comfort along with a litany of well-trained pilots, crew members and support personnel, each taking their respective shifts on this multi-generational journey. The flight is complete with in-flight movies, food service, the all of the latest technology, along with a flight staff seemingly dedicated to our comfort.
As Americans, we boarded this aircraft long ago as we were promised a destination to the promised land of peace and prosperity by the flight planners and smiling and most accommodating crew. We were impressed by the amenities of the aircraft, complete with logos of the stars and stripes on the plane‚Äôs exterior and patriotic songs playing in a loop in the boarding area. Oh how proud we were!
As passengers excited and enthusiastic about our future, we paid little or no attention to the backgrounds, bona-fides or intentions of the pilots or crew. Seeing them clothed in their dress flight uniforms, standing aboard the aircraft to warmly greet us as the patriotic music faded quietly behind us, ¬†they instilled confidence in our flight experience.
We boarded, settled in and took off, leaving the airport in ‚Äúevery town,‚ÄĚ U.S.A. behind us as a memory of what once was. Upon reaching cruising altitude, drinks were served, the in-flight movie began, and passengers removed their various vices and devices from their carry-on bags to pass the time during this long flight.
As time passed, however, some passengers began looking out of the windows, seeing a different and unexpected landscape below. A landscape that was not advertised in the travel brochures. Questions among a few passengers began slowly at first, but then the curiosity of many passengers began to grow. Some began to ask, just what is this destination of milk and honey? By then, however, the hour grew late as the aircraft approached the point of no return.
Point of no return
The phrase ‚Äúpoint of no return,‚ÄĚ abbreviated ‚ÄúPNR,‚ÄĚ originated as a navigational phrase that basically means what it says. Pilots flying aircraft experience a point in their flight when their fuel situation is such that they cannot return to their point of departure and barring any other possibility, must continue to their destination. Metaphorically, I believe America has reached the point of no return on our long journey to tyranny and totalitarianism disguised on the travel brochures as the land of ‚Äúmilk and honey.‚ÄĚ
I also believe that we, as Americans, must contemplate our PNR as it means that we‚Äôve been on our metaphorical journey for quite some time. We‚Äôve switched pilots and flight crew during our journey, our pre-selected elected leaders, but never once changed our flight path. Please think carefully about this, as it serves as a serious indictment of our elected leaders and those who put them in office. As passengers, most of us watched our unchanging flight path, doing nothing more than complain to the flight crew while dutifully remaining in our seats. Others remained transfixed with the in-flight movie designed from the start to divert our attention from the events around us. That tactic alone served the ever-changing pilots and crew well.
Of conspiracy theories and racism
Throughout our flight, some passengers attempted to warn others of our flight path, leading to a change of pilots and crew. This window dressing calmed the fears of a number of passengers who failed to realize that merely changing pilots and crew would not change our destination. Some passengers attempted to warn all of us of the flight plan and that the pilots and crew were complicit. For the first part of our flight, those astute passengers were rebuffed by accusations of ‚ÄúMcCarthyism,‚ÄĚ followed by the label of conspiracy theorists, and now, with the current pilot, racists.
Interspersed among the passengers and quietly assisting the pilots and flight crew have been representatives of the media, who have done much to quell the complaints from the cabin. Working in exquisite synchronicity, the pilots, crew and media were well trained by the Marxist ideology through the likes of Antonio Gramsci, the Frankfurt School, the Fabian Socialists and even the Communist Party U.S.A. They were in on the flight plan from the start, and most of the pilots, crew, media and even some of the passengers graduated magna cum laude from these contemptible institutions of ideological Gomorrah.
Sadly, many passengers simply could not be bothered as they remained engrossed in the movie or their own devices, even becoming annoyed despite the ominous and obvious signs of trouble aboard the aircraft. The enlightened minority was rebuffed over and over. Complicity and complacency always work well in tandem.
We are still aboard this aircraft, and the commotion within the cabin has been increasing as we continue to travel at just below mach speed toward the critical point of no return. A number of previously complacent passengers changed from being complacent to inquisitive, and others from inquisitive to plotting the retaking of the aircraft. Yet, the spirit among many of the travelers en route to this unsavory destination continued to be split. In fact, a few of the spiritually renegade among us are still determined to join the mile high club, and have even been cheered on by both the complicit and complacent. After all, why not enjoy the flight while you still can, they reasoned.
Meanwhile, as the true flight plan of the aircraft began to become more well known among the passengers in the cabin, the accusations of conspiracy, lunacy, and the mother of all conversation stoppers, racism were shouted with greater tenor and more effective frequency. Some of the more vocal passengers, mentally and emotional bloodied by the accusations, chose silence. Others rebuffed the accusations but did little to inform or educate the other passengers of the greater picture, hoping that at the very least, their partial acquiescence would keep their frequent flier miles safe and intact. Sadly, no one will emerge with such benefits of this one-way flight.
The point of no return?
As I see it, the question today is whether we have reached the point of no return on our journey aboard the aircraft known as the United States of America. I believe we have, and as such, our options have become extremely limited, and are diminishing with every mile we travel.
We can chose to retake the aircraft, but in so doing, will have to fight a gauntlet of other passengers and flight crew. It will be ugly. We can choose to do nothing and simply hope for the best, in which case we deserve the welcome we receive upon landing at our ultimate destination.
Despite the obvious and adhering to their own normalcy bias, an overwhelmingly large number of passengers will continue to demand a change of pilots and crew, believing that will change the destination. Yet others will continue to be mesmerized by the in-flight movie, opting to listen to lies of the crew and other passengers in on the flight plan from the beginning.
In any case, we are about to learn the fate of the ‚ÄúMaiden of the World,‚ÄĚ Flight U.S.A.