After enduring the painful presidential debate last night between the two most unpopular candidates to run for America's highest office since polling began... and thinking: Is this what passes for democracy in the Excited States? Is this the result of the bold experiment promised by John Kennedy, the goal of democracy for all the world's peoples? Donald Trump? Really?
I was reminded of a quote found in John Steinbeck's Cannery Row:
"It has always seemed strange to me...The things we admire in men, kindness and generosity, openness, honesty, understanding and feeling, are the concomitants of failure in our system. And those traits we detest, sharpness, greed, acquisitiveness, meanness, egotism and self-interest, are the traits of success. And while men admire the quality of the first they love the produce of the second."
When money becomes everything in politics, when celebrity becomes something to emulate in our society, and when both are rewarded generously, should we be surprised by what is happening in America today?
Steinbeck was the author of 27 books, including 16 novels, six non-fiction books, and five collections of short stories. His books include Cannery Row (1945), East of Eden (1952), Of Mice and Men (1937) and the Pulitzer Prize-winning The Grapes of Wrath (1939).
Copyright 2016 by Jim Murray.