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writing for godot

Deputy Dawg Was Funnier

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Written by Carl Peterson   
Thursday, 11 April 2019 13:05

 

Baby boomers will tend to recognize that William Barr--described earlier this year by certain members of the mass media as a solid, well-respected "institutionalist"--looks like Deputy Dawg, a television cartoon dog deputy sheriff from the early 60s.

William Barr also looks like he got up outta his easy chair and wrote a 19 page audition letter to the president, offering to help subvert constitutional checks on executive power, the rule of law, and the Department of Justice (DOJ)--and this is the brilliant part--all from the helm of the DOJ itself!

But William Barr's face, while structured like Deputy Dawg's, expresses something the face of that loveable fool never did: consciousness of his own wrong-doing.  Barr knows that what he is doing now is a negation of everything he and his party have long publicly claimed to represent--that is until about two years ago.  So, he has some consciousness of guilt.  Professional Republicans of his generation are still sometimes capable of consciousness of guilt, but professional Republicans since before Barr have had a notable tendency to be activated politically by subliminal messages from the id--the so-called "irrational," "primitive," impulses.  Irrational, primitive, powerful.  (Fear and hatred, two of the big cards in the professional Republican hand.)

Barr's face in testimony before Congress was marked by this duality: consciousness of guilt/this same consciousness being overpowered by his id.  It is remarkable when you think about it, that a 68 year old man who had already completed a career reaching to the highest law enforcement post in the federal government, would get up outta his easy chair and volunteer to participate in a radical take down of what he had once been the leading official representative.  I cannot imagine exactly what it feels like to be William Barr at this moment, but I infer that this small man is personally experiencing historically significant contradictions within himself.

 

 

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