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Scruggs Nation, Day 48: looking ahead,...

Scruggs Nation, Day 48: looking ahead, and looking way ahead

By: Magnolia Tribune - January 14, 2008

Scruggs Nation, Day 48: looking ahead, and looking way ahead

A common sentiment among many of the people I have communicated with in Mississippi is hope, hope that despite the embarrassment of the ongoing investigations and revelations, a new and better future awaits. I think this accounts for much of the vehemence that we are seeing as more allegations come to light — a desire to storm the Bastille, and tear it down so that no stone is left standing on another. In this view, a good chunk of the state’s legal and political system has long since fallen into the hands of an oligarchy that operates as a law unto itself while perverting the authority and means of the state, simultaneously using this power for its own ends to steamroll opposition while maintaining a surface appearance of legitimacy to cover its tracks and allow itself to function with impunity.

Particularly galling to those who hold this view is that they not only feel abused, they feel intimidated into having to pretend that they do not know they are being lied to — or denied any recourse, which works out to the same thing — thereby facilitating their own disadvantage and perpetuating and strengthening the corruption they feel exists. After all, one who lies to deceive us is a dangerous person. But exponentially more dangerous than the liar who seeks to fool us is the liar who will lie to our face, knowing that we know he is lying. This person we tend to see not merely as an opportunist or one who deceives for gain, but as a principled opponent of the truth. This is because this second kind of person does not merely seek to outwit us with deceit, but robs us of dignity and self-worth by rubbing it in that we can do nothing to stop him and had, in fact, better support the pretense of truth or pay a heavy price.

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