We're, what now? 6 to 8 generations away from the American Revolution. We're spoiled with always having had the Bill of Rights. These Republics, they've got nothing into it, so it's easy for them to exchange actual freedom for just the mere trappings of freedom.
Take this flag-burning beeyess that Congress had to put through instead of taking care of actual business. The Republics were all for it; they never once stopped to think that when a symbol of freedom is raised above freedom itself, then freedom itself becomes an unattainable dream.
In the republic-world, down is up, black is white, science is fantasy and fairy-tales are not to be questioned as a matter of "faith". Similarly, endless restrictions and punishments equate to "freedom". Yeah, you'd have to be as crazy as a shithouse rat to believe half the things they do; but that's another post. I've come to regard republicanism as a mental disorder the prevents people from considering the consequences of their actions, no matter how self-destructive those actions may be.
F'rinstance, if you throw away your first and fourth amendment rights and can no longer dissent with an obviously corrupt government, then add to that the notion that the government can spy on anyone at any time, how TF can any sane person regard that as being "freer".
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Yesterday we talked about the Blackwater scandal, setting it in the larger context of what Naomi calls the new economy of the Disaster Capitalism Complex. We also talked about cowboys, frontiers and the perennial power of John Wayne. Here's the rest of that discussion:
Cusack: So apart from getting obscenely rich, what are these private security and other contractor companies doing with this tsunami of public money that is being thrown at them?
Klein: Well, unlike the government, which has allowed the public infrastructure to erode so that we now have collapsing bridges and levees, these guys are making serious and sturdy capital investments. They're planning for the future, building infrastructure -- in Blackwater's case, paramilitary infrastructure. Founded in 1996, the company has used the steady stream of contracts during the Bush years to build up a private army of twenty thousand on-call mercenary soldiers and a massive military base in North Carolina worth between $40 and $50 million. They have armored vehicles, helicopter gunships, manmade lakes, a Boeing 767, a Zeppelin.
Cusack: Like the Hindenburg -- Eric Prince has a lot of toys. The Zeppelin -- that one had to be the fulfillment of a boyhood dream.
Klein: You hear people complain about how Hezbollah is a "state-within-a-state" in Lebanon -- what about Blackwater in the USA? And that's just one company of hundreds, and a relatively small player compared to Lockheed and GE and Booz Allen. But once again, we can't keep being surprised by this shadow world -- it is an inevitable consequence of Rumsfeld's vision of an outsourced and contracted-out state. A right-wing journal in the U.S. called Blackwater "al Qaeda for the good guys" and it's a striking analogy.
Yesterday, my partner and I traveled to Chapel Hill, NC, to join members of the Orange County Democratic Party, Health Care for all NC, and the BlueNC bloggers in viewing Michael Moore's powerful documentary, "Sicko". While I'll tell you all the "Sicko" is a must-see, that is the less important news I have to bring to the national community.
North Carolina is actually considering something extremely progressive and beneficial to its citizens -- but this is going to require help from every Tarheel Democrat and every supporter we can muster. You see, instead of the Republican-type constitutional amendments that codify hatred, bigotry and racism into state constitutions, NC Democrats are doing exactly what they were elected to do: to propose an amendment to the state constitution that will bring equal access to affordable health care for all NC citizens.
That's what Democrats do -- we serve the people instead of serving bigoted, profiteering special interests. But we must link arms with one another, stand firm and do some really hard work and very quickly, if we expect to see this referendum on the ballot in 2008.
Once again, when asked whether he thought he needed or deserved Secret Service protection, Senator Edwards responds with a very thoughtful and honest response. There is old saying about "Actions Speaking Louder than Words". Hmmmm....wonder what were the other presidential candidates doing Friday afternoon....
Honesty, Compassion and Strong Moral Character....these are the attributes of our next President, John Edwards.