Sunday, October 02, 2005

Strange Days, Or How I Learned to Stop Worrying and Love Fear

In these fear-ridden times we are often driven by apparent, subdued or unconscious fears. Many even argue convincingly that fear is promoted by the government as a tool to control us in a number of subtle ways. Lately it seems even more palpable given the natural disasters along the gulf coast and the bad news from Iraq. Global warming, bombings in Bali and London, widespread nepotism or corruption in at the highest levels of government and unconfirmed tabloid rumors that Bush is “going off the deep end” or the that he, a self described “alcoholic”, could be drinking again. The President and his “cronies” tell us that the terrorist’s real mission is to create terror in our hearts. If we are afraid, then the terrorist is winning. They then tell us to go “shopping” or go ahead and “take that trip” or go about our business vigilantly as if nothing has changed. Showing the terrorists that we are not afraid. Sort of play-acting for the terrorist. In fact acting like we are not afraid even if we are really afraid. Apparently the best our government can come up with is that we are to act like little boys who whistle in the dark.
No Osama No where!

The government’s new answer in their war on fear is a program deemed “Ready.Gov” and their slogan is simple “don’t be afraid be ready”. I ask how is that possible? Maybe it should be “be afraid and be ready”. If I had my way I would also add. “Be afraid and be ready because we don’t know what the fuck we’re doing”! But by their own demeanor, insecurity, and political bumbling they have only creates additional fears and insecurity. Hurricane Katrina, now somewhat in perspective, has shown us that our government, in spite of all the warnings and supposed preparedness failed miserably when faced with the first major disaster post 9/11. It made many Americans ask themselves whether they could rely on the government at all to protect them or help them should a disaster happen in their hometown. I certainly won't.

Listening to government officials I have come to the conclusion that they are the people who are in the most fear. Well they should be based the way they run around the world bombing people and wasting young American lives in a stupid ideological based war. America is now considered the bully to most even our allies. Their fear can be seen oozing from every part of their beings and is manifested in their words and actions warning us to be afraid but not act like we are afraid. Because we are “Americans”, they surmise, it is our job to stand up those who mean us harm and set an example of our fearlessness. They tell us not to be afraid. Then run off to their bunker. They create more terrorists in Iraq by involving us in a war there and then tell us not to be afraid. Tommy Rich the former head of the Homeland Security Department even devised the levels of fear color warning system that is still with us today but in a revised form. With this “color coded” system the government tells us that there are different levels of fear that we should be experiencing based on their assessment within the fear driven the fear soaked White House.

It reminds me of the old sixties poster, “what to do in case of a thermonuclear attack”. It listed fifteen or twenty obvious actions one would take in such a catastrophe happened. The last one being “stick you head between your knees and kiss your ass goodbye”! The popular Movie Dr. Strangelove, from the same period, had he subtitle: “Or how I learned to stop worrying and love the bomb”. We could modernize it to fit today as: “How I stopped worrying and learned to love fear”. Fear of lots of things all the time or unfounded fears by individuals are called “phobias”. Phobia in the dictionary is defined: “an extreme or irrational fear of or aversion to something” I assert that we are experiencing a form of “mass phobia” at the highest levels of government these days. Which has been transferred to the populous through the mass media.

I attempt here, as a public service, to narrow down the phobias that I think are prevalent to the Bush Administration and Home Land Security Department by listing them below. Hopefully this will give you a deeper insight into fear by using it in the context of it’s Phobia name and what the administration interprets that to mean.

Phobia and what it means in White House:

Accidents Dystychiphobia Falling off sofa
Airborne noxious substances Aerophobia VP farting on air force one
Alcohol Methyphobia or Potophobia Relaping
Alone being Autophobia or Monophobia No coalition in Iraq
Amnesia Amnesiphobia WMD’s
Animals skins of or fur Doraphobia PETA
Anything new Neophobia Ideas
Bald people Peladophobia Larry King’s hairpiece
Bolsheviks Bolshephobia Trade Unions
Books Bibliophobia Reading Anything
Bowel movements painful Defecaloesiophobia Giving Speeches
Bums or beggars- Hobophobia FEMA’s Michael Brown
Changes making Tropophobia Firing Rumsfelt
Chickens Alektorophobia Asian Bird Flu
Chinese or Chinese culture Sinophobia Fortune Cookies
Choking Anginophobia Pretzels
Clowns Coulrophobia John Bolton
Color purple Porphyrophobia Oprah
Computers Cyberphobia Lefty Blogs
Constipation Coprastasophobia Having new ideas
Crowds or mobs Demophopia Antiwar Protest
Decaying matter Seplophobia Tom Delay
Decisions: making decisions Decidophobia Iraq Policy
Demons Demonophobia Hugo Chavez
Dependence Soteriophobia Hurricane aid from Mexico
Dining conversations Deipnophobia All Coversations
Dirty, being dirty Automysophobia Meeting with Tom Delay
Drugs Neopharmaphobia Drug company lobby
Duty neglecting Paralipophobia Vietnam war
Eating or being eaten Phagophobia Presidential debates
Englishness Anglophobia Tony Blair
Everything Panophobia Administration Policy
Floods Antlophobia Levies Breaking
Forests Hylophobia Not being able to strip log
France or French culture Francophobia Freedom Fries
Freedom Eleutherophobia Patriot Act Repeal
Germans or German culture Germanophobia Eating bratwurst
God or gods Zeusophobia Billy Graham
Gods or religion Theophobia Pat Roberson and Christian right
Hell Hadephobia Going to Hell
Homosexuality Homophobia Identifying Cheney’s Daughter
Hurricanes Lilapsophobia FEMA fucking-up
Ideas Ideophobia Having any
Insanity Lyssophobia Insanity
Japanese Japanophobia Sushi
Jews Judeophobia Jewish Lobby
Justice Dikephobia Closing down Guantánamo
Kissing Philemaphobia Carl Rove's Ass
Lawsuits Liticaphobia Doctor insurance and hospital lobby
Learning Sophophobia Funding No Child left behind
Mad becoming Lyssophobia Mad Cow Disease
Many things Polyphobia Democrats
Old people Gerontophobia AARP Social Security
Open spaces Agoraphobia Environmentalists
Paper Papyrophobia New York Times
Parasites Parasitophobia Drudge Report
Phobias Phobophobia Homeland Security Department
Poetry Metrophobia What’s that?
Pope Papaphobia. Losing Catholic Vote
Progress Prosophobia Raising Gas Prices to $5 gallon
Puppets- Pupaphobia New Government in Iraq
Russians- Russophobia Vodka
Satan- Satanophobia Howard Dean
Sea Thalassophobia Global Warming
Sex Genophobia Having Sex
Sin Hamartophobia Getting Caught
Situations Topophobia National Disaster
Slime Blennophobia Tom DelaySmells Olfactophobia Bill First
Snow Chionophobia President using “nose candy”
Spaces, empty Cenophobia Fear of what president is thinking
Stealing Cleptophobia Halliburton
Strangers or foreigners Xenophobia Non Americans
Teenagers Ephebiphobia Bono
Ventriloquist's dummy Automatonophobia Talking to Cheney
Vomiting Emetophobia Going to China

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