General Election

by dbdevilliers

Our posters are fashionable and minimalistic:
white lettering
against a sky-blue background.
They project an aura of calm, quiet optimism.
Certain details are a mute shade of crimson
to elicit a vague sense of patriotism.
The posters were painstakingly engineered
for a large sum
by experts with doctoral degrees.
Their work is excellent—
the other candidates have also enlisted their services
and the firm’s executives drive cars
with interior trim fashioned from extinct trees.

The posters speak typical language.
Broad words assure voters
that I am likable, selfless, reliable, competent,
that their concerns are my concerns
that change is coming, but not too quickly
or too profoundly.
It is implied that
I will bring about this change,
and that this change will be good change.
I use the word “folks” a lot
to demonstrate that I am personable
and to facilitate a sense of personal connection
in voters’ minds.

Implications are made.

Voters are convinced that their ideas are their own
formed independently and unaffected by advertising.
We spend their money in billions
keeping that illusion alive.
We avoid hard facts and numbers.
We fight an emotional war
with words as ammunition
fired at base, unconscious motivations.
Getting things done is difficult and time-consuming
whereas seeming to get things done is easy
so our days are more efficiently spent
crafting and maintaining a convenient fiction
than dealing in fickle verity.

The reality is that no one wants reality.
People claim to seek truth, until they find it—
then they die trying to forget it entirely.
The world is cold and ugly.
It’s difficult to look at directly.
We assure the people
that reality isn’t quite so bleak
that we can control it
and this arrangement is mutually beneficial.
Right or wrong, good or bad, just or otherwise,
how you feel bears no consequence.
It is
has been
must be
will always be.

Delusion is the oxygen of civilization
and therefore is necessary.