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The Tentacle


June 4, 2012

A State of Anger

Steven R. Berryman

That anger “management” is required as a solution to some highfalutin psychological condition is a severe misnomer; that would be simply treating the symptom.

 

Although human anger – as I measure it informally – has invaded the American psyche to an alarming degree. Never forget that anger is, in and of itself, but a consequential result of pent-up and unrequited frustration…

 

…frustration being defined as having repeatedly expended resources to relieve or accomplish certain things over and over again, always without a satisfying outcome.

 

Issues left to fester alone, as we hope they will solve themselves in some immaculate way, do turn on us as anger-unmanageable in ways spanning a continuum that extends from the bedroom all the way to the White House.

 

Have expectations driven by Madison Avenue ads for dysfunction drugs driven you mad yet? Now you will need an old bathtub to keep up with the Jones!

 

Our state of anger in America is indicative of expectations unfulfilled, be they rational or otherwise. We set ourselves up for our own anger-condition; one thing we have willfully become accustomed to is being “taken care of” in a nanny-like sense of the term.

 

In earliest education the seed is planted – in a Styrofoam cup – that our government is our guardian, at least subliminally relieving us of both responsibility and liability for our own actions.

 

The principal’s office will help you to control yourself; the guidance department will tell you what career fits your profile. Social worker? Ethnic studies specialist? Conflict mediation services?

 

The conditioning above will leave many in anger as a default career may become a trade, such as welder, pipe fitter, plumber, or carpenter.

 

Additionally, Americans have become complacent with the concept that professionals of all kinds are present as “hired guns” to absolve them of the dilemmas, guilt, fault, and ultimately, responsibility surrounding them, regardless of origin. This in much the same way as the Catholics of ancient days routinely paid off their church through a system of “indulgences,” or money paid to absolve wealthy patrons of weighty sins, this, as opposed to making them right through a concerted personal effort.

 

The wealthy have known from time immemorial that throwing money at a problem is the simplest solution. Others in our professional-class have taken us in by “helping us.”

 

Here are some sample quandaries:

 

I can’t get along with my wife; she makes me angry! Simply hire a professional mediation service or trained counselor and pay them to tell you what’s wrong with the husband. This route is much cheaper in the long run and is more efficacious than just re-establishing your communication skills and facing reality.

 

I’m angry that my neighbor’s dog is allowed to leave little surprises in my front yard! Simply go to your homeowners association and have your property management firm write a warning letter to them, reminding them of neighborhood covenants agreed to and of home valuation. Forget having an actual conversation!

 

I’m mad as hell (beyond angry) that our public schools are teaching my children the liberal-charged curriculum and subject matter from a political perspective, instead of teaching them the art of critical-thinking (defined as using cognitive ability to analyze and draw conclusions based upon conflicting information). What we get is the downloaded dogma of “what to think;” cognitive skills be damned! Direct your concern only to a PTA or school board, please, as going public in any other way may brand you an “activist!”

 

I’m angry at my healthcare provider because it allowed my teeth to rot due to sugary drinks over 16 ounces. Consult the American Dental Association, as they have cleverly remained a “pay-go” service as opposed to part of a comprehensive insurance plan. How did they escape the Obamacare that was supposed to level the playing field for all mouths? Check their lobby!

 

I’m wildly disconcerted that my swimming pool does not have ADA-mandated handicap lifts to get me easily in and out of the water. In elementary school they told me that life was fair! Have your family attorney examine Article I, Section 8 of the United States Constitution to determine the basis of a lawsuit against your homeowners’ association’s pool. (Just kidding; it’s not there.)

 

Consult professionals in the high school guidance office and find that a liberal arts education is a must to get ahead. Be sure to major in feminist literature or other cultural arts studies. When you can’t pay back your government-backed student loan, it is now possible to garnish your wages, according to changes in related law under President Barack Obama.

 

Currently, unemployment has skyrocketed for those who are just now graduating from college.

 

Now don’t be angry at your state and local governments. Yes, they were hired to solve your problems and to represent your interests. Yes, now they are embroiled in a fight to decide exactly which pocket will be picked by which level of government. Do we care whether the one hundred bucks we shell out for teacher pensions goes to the State of Maryland, or to Frederick County if the impact is the same to our personal budget? It comes off of your line for food purchases either way.

 

They waste budget-balancing time with useless infighting that nets us zero.

 

Anger at Congress is so prevalent as to be passé now. They have become the entitled elite of the power-dysfunctional. The kick the can club. Sen. John Kerry (D. MA) will now not serve us behind the doors of the Bilderbergers meeting. That will sit well.

 

There is anger at Executive Branch rule by decree, as entire Cabinet branches are broached by extra-constitutional “czars.” We are angry at a new president who promised hope, over and over again in his campaign speech, and then whiled away his first year not fixing the economy?

 

All this reminds me of the fabled blood feud between the Hatfields and the McCoys. They were really angry at each other, and in the end became consumed by it and forgot why. We get the same treatment by our two-party political system that hates each other more than they love finding solutions for the American dilemma…..

 

…..over, and over, and over, and over again.

 

srbmgr@gmail.com

 



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