Thursday, July 04, 2013

A muted July 4th: independence thrown under the bus by box cutters ... by gimleteye

We are surrounded by staggering contradictions that overshadow our nation's birthday.

In 2001, Saudi box cutter wielding terrorists -- aggrieved by inequities flowing from petroleum wells -- triggered asymmetrical warfare involving US government intelligence agencies with the capacity to shred individual liberties in the United States.

In the same era we succeeded in growing a human liver from stem cells, we triggered a climate gone haywire. Americans boast that our inventions have no limits, and yet American ingenuity seems mainly to prioritize profits for corporations. We could solve all the problems of aging yet create an uninhabitable planet where no commerce will be possible.

We want to be safe, but we don't want to be controlled by technologies that can be turned against our liberties. We worry that giving up a little freedom means giving up all our freedom, but we won't change our ways of energy consumption. And a significant number of Americans don't believe government is the answer to our problems but don't have a solution beyond next week's paycheck.

In the meantime, on this 4th of July I'm making a donation to ProPublica, the online investigative journal in the public interest. Poll after poll show that Americans feel our nation has lost its way. ProPublica shows how it is happening.


Prem Lee Barbosa said...

People who don't see the government as a solution probably have many suggestions for things the government can stop doing which while being done contribute to the destabilization of our economy and society.
Did you know that some large agrogiants buy their water at a government subsidized rate? In a time when usable water is ever more rare, and private corporations are supposed to earn their profits based on their actual businesses, as opposed to favors they can call from the government, ending this and some of the other forms of corporate welfare could go a long way to alleviating issues at all levels.
Consider how the government has subsidized the price of corn (that is, they've helped keep the price higher than it would be in a more free market). So on one hand they're discounting the water, which lowers costs, but then they're paying them to throw corn away so the price goes up! The corporation wins, the shopper loses, and the tax-payer loses twice through subsidizing the water and then helping raise the price of the corn.
This and so many other examples of waiting for next week's check are easy to pull out of a hat.

On another note related to your rant, who had to money to send those economically grieved Saudi's here on a complex mission of destruction?
I get the feeling that had much less to do with oil inequality and more to do with politics. If oil inequality lead to such terrorism why don't we have a nigerian or ecuadoran terorrism problem? Maybe we should ask the monarch's of Saudi Arabian.

100panthers said...

Those who claim to want less government lead the surrender of civil liberties in the name of national defense. These same less government hypocrites led the surrender of civil liberties in the 'War on Drugs'. Like the anti-communist days of Joe McCarthy, people are afraid of appearing 'soft' so they go along with the surrender, because the political fall out is too oppressive.

In these Karl Rove days of legislation, the title is a contra indicator. 'Patriot' means anti-civil liberties. 'Defense of Marriage' means no marriage for many....and on it goes.

In a Democracy I think the people get the government they deserve. If citizens cannot bother to elect thoughtful, reasonable representatives and instead fall for hyperbole/falsehoods/incomplete information/Madison Ave. sales pitches that reveal nonsense after a scratch of the surface...they deserve to have their government hijacked by Crony Capitalism.

It is the minority that see the folly that get driven to distraction, such as the host of this great blog, which is the last outpost of local investigative journalism now that the local news industry has left town and been replaced by advertising agencies.

Anonymous said...

President inserting himself into municipal police affairs. Then having a beer summit. What will he do for George when he is acquitted? Maybe invite him over for some purple drank or some lean?
The clown in chief has spoken too often about things which he knows nothing about.

zakłady bukmacherskie said...

Good article. Great blog.

Anonymous said...

The NSA is coming, the NSA is coming....

Madeline said...

It wasn't about box cutters. It was about the Muslim extremists who used them. Box cutters are inanimate objects. Put the blame where it belongs: on the Muslim zealots who seek to destroy us.