I have kept my silence too long about politics and our great nation in general. I start by stating that we are all imperfect human beings in an imperfect world. In addition, we are a society that in order to live together must obey certain laws of nature and man. That being said, please read the following from a BLOG. Having been asked to respond, I believe I must. Moreover, I will consider any e-mail regarding this HTML page for inclusion as an addendum to this page if I feel it is in keeping with the philosophy that I have spent 66 years observing. Thank you all in advance for your generous time and observations. |
Welcome to Fascist America!
My fellow Americans, it’s official now: We live
in a fascist nation.
Now, the term "fascist" has
been thrown around over the last fifty years in a loose
way that has drained it of much of its meaning. If
someone wanted to cut 5% off of a leftist professor's
favourite welfare programme, the professor would call
his opponent a "fascist." I’m not using the word like
that. I mean honest-to-goodness, old-fashioned, 1930s
style fascism, featuring such old favorites as:
* Secret prisons – they’re back!
* Torture –
we’re doing it.
* Spying on all citizens.
Arrests and indefinite imprisonment without trial.
* Secret detention.
* Denial and restriction of
* Prolonged incommunicado detention.
* Unfair trial procedures.
(This list was
compiled partially based on the work of Amnesty
International, available here.)
mind-numbing response to complaints that our traditional
legal system is being torn apart is the question, "So,
you want to protect the rights of terrorists?"
Um, no, I want to protect the rights of
non-terrorists who might be falsely accused of
terrorism! That was sort of, you know, the whole idea of
our legal system. I’m sure there was some neo-con around
in the 1700s saying to Jefferson or Madison, "So, you
want to protect the rights of murderers and robbers?"
but luckily they ignored him.
We’ve now gotten
to the point where Nazi Germany was, say, in 1934.
Remember, at that time, if you had told a typical German
what his government would do over the next ten years, he
would have looked at you as a madman. After all, his
land had been civilized for over a thousand years. His
was the nation of Albertus Magnus, Gutenberg, Goethe,
Schiller, Beethoven, Bach, Kant, Hegel, Schelling,
Fichte, Heisenberg, Reimann, Mann, Lessing, Herder,
Handel, Dürer, Leibniz, Gauss, Helmholtz – he could have
gone on, but you get the point. His nation could not
possibly descend into barbarism! If you tried to tell
him he was living in a police state, he would have
pointed out that his government had used its vast new
powers very judiciously, and only against a few
trouble-makers. So far.
It is interesting, in
gauging the direction we are heading, to look at the
proclamations of "respectable" opinion writers who
support this administration. For instance, we have
people at a "libertarian" think tank proclaiming that
Moslems are not entitled to full civil rights in the US.
(Perhaps we need to make them wear something special on
their clothing like, say, a yellow star, so we know just
who they are, hey?) But "conservatives" provide even
more stunning examples of purely fascist reasoning. For
example, conservative demagogue Ann Coulter has called
for the editor of The NY Times to face the firing squad
for his part in publicizing this administration's abuses
of power. Let’s look at a recent column by Douglas
MacKinnon at TownHall.com.
all of those involved in revealing the sordid collection
of secret programmes that have been launched by the Bush
administration as "traitors" who have publicized these
schemes "purely because they don’t like the policies of
the new president." Well, he’s right in that "they don’t
like the policies" that they consider unconstitutional
violations of our rights. Far from "aiding the enemy,"
these revelations aided us, the American people, by
letting us know what our government has in store for us.
Consider what the point of classifying these
programmes was in the first place, and who they were
being kept secret from. The jihadists no doubt already
knew about the secret prisons – their friends are in
them! They surely knew that the war in Iraq has been
helping their recruiting – it’s their recruiting!
("Praise be to Allah, Abdul, I read in The NY Times that
it is the Iraq War that is sending us these thousands of
new recruits – who knew?") They no doubt suspect they
may be wiretapped – what they didn’t know was that all
the rest of us are, as well. No, not one of these leaks
helps terrorists, nor was one of them classified to stop
terrorists from finding them out. We were the ones who
weren’t supposed to find out about them.
MacKinnon continues: "And if even one American
lost his or her life because of a leak, then I would
want that person to be executed for treason."
anyone who reveals our fascist government policies is a
traitor who can be executed! This is obviously an
attempt to intimidate the opposition so that our police
state can be expanded without the annoying work
stoppages caused by public outcry when the latest bit of
construction is revealed. And just how does MacKinnon
propose to show that some American lost his life because
a journalist revealed that the US government tortures
people across the globe, rather than, say, because the
policies he supports have inspired a million new
jihadists? Secret trial, perhaps? Or why even bother
with trials for filthy traitors?
Herr Goebbels –
oops, I mean MacKinnon – writes, "Until we severely
punish those who leak classified information, then the
traitors among us will not only continue to flourish,
but will grow more brazen with the secrets they reveal."
Yes, what we ought to be able to do, you know,
is simply seize anyone who even mentions our
government’s "secret" prisons, and, without a trial,
throw them in a secret prison! This is the logical
conclusion of this fascist’s article, after all, since
those who talk about the American Gulag are pretty much
Folks, this is coming
real soon, and, once it does, domestic opposition is
pretty much over. One journalist – that will be about
all it takes – will be seized as a "terrorist" and
thrown in the Gulag. The government may release him, but
then another will simply disappear in the night in Iraq
or Afghanistan, and rumors will circulate that he is
being kept in a cage somewhere and water boarded. No
journalist lacking heroic courage will any longer be
willing to seriously protest government policy.
America is full of decent people, who could
never believe their own government could become fascist.
So were Germany and Italy in the 1920s. But they became
fascist anyway. They passed laws suspending civil
liberties, but the government promised the frightened
populace that those laws would only be used against
targets like "Communist terrorists." And, a little bit
at a time, the target kept getting bigger and bigger,
slowly enough that the people who weren’t paying close
attention never detected it.
And, next thing you
know, there were millions of people dead! So, it turns
out, it would have been worth paying attention after
My response is dedicated to many friends and my wife. Lois once told me when we were first married over 39 years ago that she didn't care if I had 301 college credits, an M.D., a
PhD., an M.A. or a B.A., "You are worthless if you don't have any commonsense." I'm afraid that many Americans treat politics and life like a cartoon such as Cartman above from South Park. Unfortunately, the generation gap is even worse. I am reminded of Ernie Pyle and WWII soldiers that stopped the Italian civilians from tearing a German soldier from limb to limb. What a contrast to Viet-nam and Iraq! In Viet-nam, American soldiers brutalized each other. On the other hand, we supplied soap and toothpaste to leper colonies when I was there.
I can take you to the bottom line immediately as to what is wrong with today's society. We are observing the breakdown of the core of America, the family. Both Mother and Father are both out trying to earn a living. The children are left to fend for themselves. Enough said. We need to also improve our education system. Failing to provide the new generations with the tools to be better Americans is our greatest failure for which we should be thoroughly ashamed.
Now, a couple of comments regarding the above quote. I am reminded that the President was elected by the majority for better or worse. Regardless of the lampooning, harpooning, and general President bashing, it is our
responsibility as Americans to support our President. Most of us are not privy to the inner workings of our government. Moreover, I deeply
sympathize with the President's Father and Mother who are very hurt by media comments against their son. But we need to remember the acquisition of a B.A. and an M.B.A. at Harvard and Yale are no small feats for a young man. If you think for a moment that the President doesn't listen to his advisors, you are deluding yourself. May all Americans be with our President and support our country.
Some last comments regarding the pendulum as applied to morals, and to our government. My high school had some great teachers. My junior year gave me a history teacher who stated that morals in our society are governed by a pendulum. It swings from strict to permissive behavior on the part of our parents. Similarly, a friend reminded me that our pendulum applies to our government. The two party system helps the pendulum swing back and forth between the forces of liberalism and conservatism. But I am also reminded of the old saying, "Power corrupts and absolute power corrupts absolutely." That is why it is so important to teach good values to the new generation before they turn 13 when their characters are molded. As my Mother stated, "We make our greatest mistakes through ignorance." After all, as St. Augustine pointed out, "Evil is the misdirection of our free will." Remember, "We are not judged by how much we love others, but by how much others love us."
I have decided to append a personal story about corruption and a U.S.
Army supply clerk by the name of SP/4 Samek. One day, the supply
Captain told SP/4 Samek that an inspection of the supply room would take
place in two weeks and he wanted SP/4 Samek to get rid of the excess
material that was not accounted for. Of course, SP/4 Samek asked the
Captain how he wanted the excess material disposed of. The Captain
replied any way that SP/4 Samek wanted.
The next day, SP/4 Samek drove off base with a trunk load that he sold
downtown. He continued doing this every evening for a week. At
the end of the week, the M.P.s at the gate asked to inspect SP/4 Samek's
trunk. They found the contraband. They asked what SP/4 Samek
was doing with the material. SP/4 Samek told them what the Captain
had said. The M.P.s said that if the Captain would verify what he
had said, they would take it from there.
Of course, when SP/4 Samek asked the Captain to back him up, the
Captain denied telling SP/4 Samek any such thing. Fortunately, the
supply room Master Sergeant sitting across from them spoke up and said,
"I heard you tell SP/4 Samek to dispose of the excess anyway he
wanted, Captain, Sir." The next day, the Captain was gone and
the Master Sergeant told Sp/4 Samek to forget the incident.