Tag Archives: empire

The Gods of the Americans

I’ve written on this subject before, but it’s worth contemplating what our American holidays say about us as a people. Many of our most sacred days (all of which are suffused with ultimate deference to the dark demon Money) are ritualized warfare. New Year, Independence Day, and the Super Bowl are all, in their own way, orgies of ritualized violence, infused with nationalist fervor that seems unsettling and unnecessarily murderous to the outside observer. It is with the Super Bowl (arguably our high holy day in many circles) that we replace ritual artillery of fireworks with the more primal catharsis of tribal bloodshed. As Mark Edmondson said in this LA Times  op ed from 2014 “Football is America’s War Game”, the transition from baseball to football paralleled our transition from isolationist republic to global empire with constant conflict:
“…then cadoodle-1016-money-bagsme Korea, Vietnam, three wars in the Middle East and no end of flare-ups around the world. One may think that our military engagements have been justified. One may think they have been necessary. But it is no longer really possible to think that America is a deeply peaceful, or even a peace-loving nation…
…Granted, almost all games are sublimations of war. But no game is as close to war without slipping over to war as football is.”
Those of you who are students of ancient future history may wish to ponder how, in 500 years or more, Americans will be remembered, and what gods they will say we worshipped. In my travels I visited a decrepit library in the distant future, and found a history of the world before the Cataclysm. I was able to save one page before the building collapsed, and barely escaped with my life. At the risk of causing a rupture to the timeline, I present to you an excerpt from that tome:
“The Americans were a warlike people, who founded a republic modeled after the ancient Romans, and whose ascent and decline resembled their forbears in many ways. They were a sturdy, industrious people, and, it seemed, beloved by the gods. Originally a loose confederation of rebellious colonies, they united as their neighbors were stricken with great plagues, and as they conquered and expanded, they quickly grew to be the equal of any other nation. After several wars which weakened the older European empires in the 20th century, the Americans emerged as the inheritors of a great global empire.
For a time, they were the envy of the world, and were said to worship the twin virgin goddesses Justice and Liberty; one blind, to weigh the worth of each soul, and the other bearing a torch to light the path of righteousness and to welcome the stranger. The gods granted them the power to destroy the world or save it, and they declared themselves the protectors of all mankind.
But the fruits of empire curdled in their mouths, and they became arrogant andcovetous. As with empires before them, they began to feast and revel while their subjects starved and burned, and the Americans became both cruel and weak. They began to neglect the fires at the temples of Liberty, preferring the worship of the top-hatted god Dollar, and of Uncle-Sám, the half-man, half-eagle god of War. Liberty was chained to a mountain, they say, and the Eagle feasted on her liver every four years. Dollar stood behind the virtuous Justice, weighing down her scales with gold at every judgement.
Sometime in the 21st Century, the world shook off the American yoke, around the same time as the Cataclysm purged the earth with fire and poison. Sources
do not say if one caused the other. But the priests of War had warned that their god had grown in strength, and that His hunger could no longer be sated with ritual battles, but needed to walk the earth and harvest his offerings with flaming sword. The other nations invoked the old gods of Justice and Liberty, but, it seems, the Eagle had already sent his messengers across every ocean, to feast upon every nation…”