Saturday, April 07, 2007

How much longer?

Have we ever had a presidential administration so lacking a moral compass? One whose flirtations with absolute power and autocratic authority defile the constitution of our nation? Which is worse, that we must endure another eighteen months of this motley crew, or that somewhere close to a third of the American populace STILL believes that they can do no wrong?

Why are we so passive in the face of the affront that the Bush administration presents to the world, to the damage that this most corporate of administrations has done and continues to do to the image of the American republic, to the environment, to our military, to the Middle East, to the future of our children and grandchildren? Are we so easily lulled into somnambulance by the marketplace? By the media? I would estimate that over half the citizenry are as outraged by the morass of arrogance, deception and murder that these hatless shadow figures have perpetrated upon the world. But why are are we not raising our voices in loud unison, asking for their removal from office? Why is ANYTHING off the table when it comes to effigies of humanity like these people?

When Condaleeza Rice has the audacity to say "Iraq will be worth the sacrifice," you have to ask yourself, "what in God's name did this woman sacrifice," whose idea of leadership is shoe-shopping on 5th Avenue while New Orleans is destroyed by a killer storm and her boss' indifference? Have we ever had a secretary-of-state with lower standing in the eyes of global leaders? The sad irony is that not only is she a woman, she is an African-American woman. Administration architect Karl Rove must have blessed himself thricely to have found such a prize, a black female who not only drank the kool-aid of corporatist fascism, but would lie before its alter.

Latin American can be a place of extremes. Oddly, it can produce two kinds of monsters, seemingly from the same clay: leftist revolutionary ideologues who can justify cold-blooded murder in the name of some perversion of social justice, men like Abimael Guzman in Peru, as well as dictators like Pinochet or the generals of Argentina's "Troubles," who have no issue with making thousand of people disappear overnight. The former depends on the young people of large, disenfranchised indigenous populations who dwell in such a state of anomie that they become empty vessels for the message of false power that men like Guzman are able to provide. The Generals, on the other hand, depend on a certain quiet type to draft the policies of oppression; little, colorless men who were the choir boys at church, crossed the street when they saw the big boys lurking up ahead in the shadows, and happily accepted the polemic of fascism as destiny. Alberto Gonzales strikes me as one of these.

No, history will not be kind to such men and women. But neither will history look favorably upon an American people who allowed the charlatans their way, who accepted a parody of democracy not once, but twice, and thus gave the hideous ideology of imperial conquest for profit and perversion leave to sully our flag and our spirit. Overfed, under-informed, but mostly cowed by an irrational fear of an invisible enemy. We have been played. And far too easily.

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