If a nation expects to be ignorant and free in a state of civilization, it expects what never was and never will be. Thomas Jefferson
Okay, okay. For the past four or five years now--on my quasi-flippant side--whenever the right-wing extremists do something outrageous (and believe me their propensity for the offensive or grossly obscene lacks no shortage), I ultimately conclude any rant with, "Oh well, It's what the people want."
I'm pretty sure that's a lie, or I sure as hell hope it is, because it's the tongue -in-cheek bromide I feed myself whenever the bullshit being passed off as truth by Bush is too blatantly flawed for all but the mindlessly gullible.
And what's the harm in a small lie if it helps one endure an outrageous reality? As reminded by Adolf Hitler in Mein Kampf, "people often tell small lies in little matters".
But as Hitler goes on to say, most of us "would be ashamed to resort to large-scale falsehoods." And that's where he and others so emboldened get away with murder. Because as Hitler confided, for the vast majority of people, "It would never come into their heads to fabricate colossal untruths, and they would not believe that others could have the impudence to distort the truth so infamously.”
Knowing this, Hitler concluded "the broad masses of a nation...in the primitive simplicity of their minds more readily fall victims to the big lie than the small lie."
While I know our president doesn't read, I have to suspect there is someone behind him that is a student of history because it's difficult to imagine Bush being so incredibly original in stating, "See, in my line of work you got to keep repeating things over and over and over again for the truth to sink in, to kind of catapult the propaganda" which sounds like something brazenly plagarized from Hitler's Nazi Propaganda Minister, J. Goebbels, seventy years earlier who said, "If you tell a lie big enough and keep repeating it, people will eventually come to believe it."
Most Americans have heard this, but Bush continues to repeat the lies, enabling him to proceed with little impedance from opposition above a whimper. "Oh well, "it's what the people want," I repeat over and over to myself. But I still don't believe it.
I just read an excellent article entitled "Polls Show Many Americans are Simply Dumber Than Bush" by Paul Craig Roberts, a former Assistant Secretary of the Treasury in the Reagan administration and coauthor of The Tyranny of Good Intentions. It was inspired by the results a Los Angeles Times/Bloomberg poll and a New York Times/CBS News poll.
The results of questions put to Americans in both polls seem to "indicate why Bush is getting away with impeachable offenses". Roberts' premise? "Half of the US population is incapable of acquiring, processing and understanding information."
That struck a chord with me because it helps explain the little lie, "It's what Americans want!" I continue to tell myself, but can't really swallow. People are just either too distracted, too impotent to challenge Bush's blatant atocities against truth, or just too damn dumb!
So where lies the solution? I honestly don't know because I've never lived in such radical times. I read/heard some of the anger manifested by the desertion of 19 democrats earlier this week when they joined their republican brothers in voting for cloture on the Alito nomination debate in the senate. Bloggers felt betrayed. Some on Air America ranted and threatened angry reactions come next November's elections.
But please! Historically, are we aware of how rarely a corrupted incumbent firmly attached to the stomach lining of America's gut is dislodged by a challenger? And then we have those questionable and stolen elections by the republican shill's computers with software codes more guarded than internal white house memos and pics. Paperless elections in the U.S. are more corrupted than in many Third World nations.
Is it enough to hope for the change most Americans crave by relying on a broken system? To send a few bucks to the candidate/party of your choice while special interests stuff tens of thousands in their back pockets? To sing to our choirs daily on blogs across the nation? To stand on a corner peacefully voicing one's dissatisfactions? I'm not sure. We've been doing it since Bush assumed his throne. Have things gotten better?
These are not normal times. Pretending changes of depraved leadership will come via corrupted voting machines and the perverted officials who oversee them may not be enough to bring about the change needed. More extraordinary measures may be required in these most extraordinary times.
One thing I know, I'm very sick and tired of being sickened and tired every day by the news coming from my government, of the latest outrage being committed in my and every American's names. Of being terrorized by the threats of bin Laden and Al Qaeda. Hell, the terrorism from without is no match for the terrorism from within under Bush, his republicans and our democrats oppressing Americans by a checkless and unbalanced government.
But most of all, I'm extremely upset at the challenge of my patriotism for questioning policies of this government that lies to Americans, condones illegal war, illegal torture, illegally spies on us and makes secret chummy illegal deals in back rooms or on exclusive golf courses around the world.
I didn't come to this point of my life to have my questioning of this government labeled traitorous by some extremist right-wing hacks dismantling liberties and rights granted under our Constitution. No, if there's to be dissent, it will come from patriots who question the real pigs of glutton slopping at the trough of this nation's wealth and power. It's with those pigs lies the real treason!
As Paul Craig Roberts concludes in his article, "The total lack of rationality and competence in the White House and the inability of half of the US population to acquire and understand information are far larger threats to Americans than terrorism."
"America has become a rogue nation, flying blind, guided only by ignorance and hubris. A terrible catastrophe awaits."
And it is my fear, if we can't restore order in our house from within, it is only a matter of time before someone attempts to "restore it" from without. Ah, but, maybe, just maybe, "That's what Americans want." I would certainly hope not. But to this point all I'm hearing are the rants--much like this--while the fascism continues to creep ever forward.
In the meantime, I would suggest each of us seek new, extraordinary and perhaps drastic ways these drastic times demand if we're to derail this dangerous regime and get our country back on track.