Rated PG-H for hand holding.
Mortal Engines has some stunning visuals as cities on giant tank treads roam the countryside looking for other cities to gobble into badly needed fuel. They need fuel to roam the countryside looking for fuel. At least that’s all the circular reasoning we get from the script to explain why mankind lifted London with a giant forklift onto an impressive chassis and retrofitted it with massive engines to roam the countryside looking for… but I repeat myself.
As does the movie…
Eighteen years ago, on September 11, 2001, I was at home in my office in Seattle when I heard the news that planes had crashed into the twin towers in New York. At first I was stunned, like most everybody I suppose. After the initial shock wore off and I had a chance to get some of the emerging details, I realized that this event would change everything, that this event marked the end of the United States as I had known it.
Within months, in the form of the PATRIOT act and the establishment of the Homeland Security Department, new broad and sweeping legislation passed that gave the government powers a nation not in panic would likely have rejected. Many lawmakers, in their hurry to act, didn’t even read what was presented to them. And so the United States, and to a great extent the world, went forth into a new era where fear became the norm, and anything to alleviate it, or even to pretend to alleviate it, became acceptable.
Thought experiment. If you got up early one morning, killed somebody, and then went back to bed until the next day when you then started running to get out of the country, could you honestly say that you made a good effort to escape justice? Wouldn’t sitting around in bed for 24 hours be the opposite of making a good effort? That’s my position, but evidently Johnny Cash didn’t think so. From Cocaine Blues:
Early one morning while making the rounds, I took a shot of cocaine and I shot my woman down. I went right home and I went to bed. I tucked that loving .44 beneath my head.
Got up next morning and I grabbed that gun, took a shot of cocaine and away I run. Made a good run, but I run too slow…
Slow indeed. 24 hours lying around…
The idea that nobody is above the law is trotted out fairly regularly by various lawmakers, pundits, late night comics, and social observers. I hardly need to explain what the idea entails but for sake of completeness I’ll simply say that it means that everybody, no matter their social status or position, is subject to the law. No exceptions.
You don’t have to have been on planet USA too long to realize that this idea – which sounds principled and proper – isn’t at all true. You could say it’s an ideal that should be aspired to. You could say it’s theoretically true. You could call it a reassurance that’s doled out to the masses that they may be convinced of the law’s impartiality. There’s many approaches, but underneath it all, the proclamation that nobody is above the law is simply false…
We all hear quite a bit from the so-called president Trump how he’s down on the haters. As if anyone not in agreement with his world view can be easily dismissed as baseless and unreasonable. Haters are irrational; they don’t think about what they’re hating; it’s an unconscious reaction to anything Trump.
According to Trump.
However, back in the real world…
Sometimes I wonder if the world will come to its senses.
In my lifetime.
Would be nice, but it’s starting to seem unlikely.
Eventually, yes. Humanity grows.
But real progress is not measured in years. Nor in centuries I’m afraid.
But look back…