Wednesday, November 28, 2007

Another Star Trek episode


Ever since Dennis Kucinich told us about the UFO he saw at Shirley MacLaine's house, I've figured he didn't just see it, he arrived in it. Any presidential candidate who advocates universal government-funded health care, wants immediate withdrawal of U.S. forces from Iraq, promises college tuition for everybody, argues for ending the Patriot Act and the death penalty and the war on drugs—where's this guy from? Andromeda? The Delta Sector? Is he Neelix's little brother?

Kucinich is really the survivor of a superior civilization of mostly short people. Everyone else from his planet has been assimilated by the Borg. He's come to warn us that the Borg have arrived on Earth, disguised as free-market capitalists.

Right now the Borg are tractor-beaming whole nations into the WTO and NAFTA and CAFTA, and melting down local economies into a global system of manufacture and consumption. They're inserting microchips into people's gluteal musculature and making them work in factories for devalued dollars. They're inserting other microchips into other people and making them use devalued dollars to buy what was made in the factories. Resistance is not an option.

So the Borg Queen sneezes and Dick Cheney catches cold and goes to the hospital for the latest Borg implant. Hillary Clinton's mechanical mannerisms? Mitt Romney's robotic smile? John Kerry's tireless jogging? George Bush giving Angela Merkel a backrub? All the work of the Borg Queen, smirking and moving her delicate hands over her control console.

I can't list all the politicians, CEOs and celebrities who are packing Borg hardware—there isn't room—but I can say that Howard Dean's scream after the Iowa caucuses resulted from a malfunctioning Borg implant, and when Britney Spears showed her very bare bottom to a crowd of paparazzi nothing like free will was involved. When Larry Craig started tap-dancing in that Minnesota men's room stall, the Borg Queen was idly drumming her fingertips on the button marked Senator. John Kerry is lucky he just ended up jogging.

How far has the Borg conquest of Earth progressed? Far enough that nothing Dennis Kucinich wants to happen will happen. Even his wife, who looks suspiciously like Seven-of-Nine (Fred Thompson's wife looks like Six-of-Nine), won't be enough to make him president. Nothing resembling a superior civilization is going to result from the inauguration on Jan. 20, 2009. Hillary or Mitt, Rudi or one of the Johns, Mike or Christopher, Fred or Obama, we're all going to end up in that great hive-like Cube that even now is drifting in from the Oort Cloud.


Well. OK. That was fun, but not so much fun that I'm heading for L.A. to start writing for the next Star Trek series.

It also got a little scary there at the end because the Borg and the free market really are alike. Both turn complex human beings into soulless, faceless, insectivoid twitch-cases.

Both use war to force people into their system. Both melt down the hopes and dreams and loves of individuals into a homogenous mass that has no purpose other than its own incessant expansion. Follow either to its logical end, and you get everybody assimilated into a thing that has no center, no purpose, and no meaning.

In the place of intelligence, the free market has reflex. In the place of humanity, it has the laws of thermodynamics.

The trouble is, the Borg are fictional, and the free market seems to be real.

In this context, Dennis Kucinich is going to show us what it means to be a loser. With courage and foolishness, he has set himself against the Iraq War, which is a continuation of the free market by other means. He has set himself against our system of medical care, which can destroy the life savings of those without insurance within a few months, and force those with insurance into a death spiral of increasing premiums and decreasing benefits. Kucinich says a civilized country should not turn people into things—hence his arguments for education and for individual rights and against the death penalty.

He's going to lose to candidates who understand entropy—and its faithful mechanism, the free market—better than he does.

But it's an exercise in humanity to imagine the planet where he could be elected president.

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