Give me Libby or Give me Death!
OK, I haven’t really followed the Plame/Libby story because I’m not terribly interested in the raw political machinations of empire. These sorts of stories simmer along in most administrations, I mean face it, politics is about the art of lying. Everyone does it, some are just better than others. Granted the Bush administration has relied more on pathetic bald faced lies to justify its wars than some, but still, every war the US had gotten involved in has been based on partial or total deceits. It’s a shame the American public believes them, but the American public pretty much believes anything they see on Fox. Hell, Americans believe that the President of Iran threatened to wipe Israel off the map and Hamas made cartoons teaching children to be suicide bombers, simply because they saw it on the “news.” Both stories are fabrications, they were made up by Israeli counter-intelligence.
Sometimes I think it’s like living in the old Soviet Union, except it’s worse than that, the Russians at least knew their media was nothing but government lies. Most Americans seem blissfully unaware that the stuff they see on Fox or CNN is little more than advertising for the government. I suppose there’s some good signs, the media is starting to back track some on the President of Iran’s “threats,” still, the damage has been done. Israel has spent the last six decades carefully nurturing the idea that all Arabs and Muslims are homicidal maniacs who will destroy Israel if they get a chance, it’s going to take a lot of back tracking to fix that. There’s an interesting article here that gives a number of examples of how the media simply parrots what the government tells it, though you may have to click past an ad to read it.
On the plus side, at least Americans still have access to the Internet so they can find out what is really going on if they want to. Or at least a more balanced view, it’s not really possible to ever know for sure what’s really going on. I’m still not with the folks who think we are about to turn into a police state, simply because you only need a police state if you want to seize power or are in danger of losing power. The rich corporate elites who rule America have no shortage of power and are in no danger of losing their grip. The person in the White House is merely a front for the real machinations of rulership, it doesn’t matter whether the President is Democrat or Republican, they are just flip sides of the same coin.
However, I digress. The President has pardoned his good buddy Libby. That pretty much says it all. Bush has no problem locking strangers away for years in Cuba or secret CIA prisons on the merest suspicions, but one of his buddies gets lawfully convicted of a crime and it’s presidential pardon time. We have an Administration whose motto is “We the President’s buddies” instead of “We the people…” I’m not terribly surprised or outraged though, it’s so true to form that there’s no point getting excited.
The mass death and chaos that Bush’s misguided foreign policy has unleashed in Iraq and Afghanistan that is now spreading throughout the Middle East and the world, now that’s worth getting excited about. The sad thing is that I’m not even sure it’s misguided, in that endless chaos and terrorism may be the intended result. Years or decades of war is what Bush has promised us, I certainly miss the old days when our leaders at least promised us peace. At the very least the Bush administration didn’t know what any student of history knows, it’s easy to destroy a state, it’s much harder to create one. And in some cases, it’s impossible. No invader in history has been able to subdue Afghanistan, and Arabs for their part are getting awfully good at throwing out foreign occupiers. Persia hasn’t been too kind to those who would impose their will on it either.
Old habits die hard though, the west in general and America in particular still think they are somehow the “natural” rulers of the planet and that their style of government is the only style that is acceptable. Pretty much the medieval Christian ideal put into politics and practise, “kill them all, God will know his own.” Are Americans even dimly aware that for every innocent westerner or Israeli killed by terrorism, dozens if not hundreds of innocent Arabs and Muslims have died at the hand of Israeli and American weapons? See, this is why it’s a called a “cycle of violence.” As long as young men commit atrocities because old men tell them too, it will never end.
My heart is in anguish within me;
the terrors of death assail me.
Fear and trembling have beset me;
horror has overwhelmed me.
I said, “Oh, that I had the wings of a dove!
I would fly away and be at rest-
I would flee far away
and stay in the desert; Selah
I would hurry to my place of shelter,
far from the tempest and storm.”
(The above image is claimed as Fair Use under US copyright law. It is not being used for profit and it is sort of central to illustrating the post. It also appears to be public domain from what I can tell. Credit: Blind Orange Julius.)