Coastal Post Online


April 2002

Thank You For Not Thinking

By Frank Scott

Rumor has it that in Poland, people explain ignorance by telling "American" jokes. Maybe that's because more than six months after 911, this is what we've gained : We have bombed Afghanistan into more misery, failed to find the terrorist monster Bin Laden, re-introduced Saddam Hussein as replacement monster, and suffered the first American casualties while fighting the forces we were told had been destroyed by all the bombings of the previous months.

These American deaths , after thousands of Afghan non-combatants were killed, are only part of the price for this bloodletting. We have more troops in foreign countries than at any time since the second world war, arousing more hatred for us as we seem to wage the "first war against the world." Add to this the savaging of our civil liberties, the sacrifice of our budget to the munitions marketeers, and the continued denial of public and environmental needs necessary to maintain a nation .

We've also had a plan-as though it was new?-to use nuclear weapons against terrorist nations, like Russia and China. This followed the suggestion of a special government department to lie about the news. That was too much for corporate media , which believes that parroting government propaganda represents freedom, but that parroting lies would end its objectivity. So our regime decided to continue distorting reality the old way, without a separate Department of Dishonesty. The media said; okay. Can you hear the Polish people laughing?

Among the biggest of government lies is that Israel is a helpless little nation, under assault by evil Palestinians. Even alleging moral balance between a brutal occupying military power and an indigenous people reduced to refugee status in their own land is almost unbelievable. But such lies are maintained, with the support of corporate government's liberal and conservative wings. There have been some critical whimperings , treated as harsh rebukes of Israel, but only by wishful thinkers who would rather pray for peace than create it by ending our criminal support for war.

Next is the incredible lie that claims a threat from Iraq, or as its suffering millions are identified; Saddam Hussein. The rationalization for previous slaughter in Iraq was that it had "weapons of mass destruction." So we bombed without mercy , invaded, and it responded with a pitiful military most adept at surrendering, and outmoded Scud missiles fired at Israel's empty parking lots. Where were all the fearsome weapons, and why weren't they used?

Now, after having destroyed Iraq's infrastructure and reduced it to an under-developed country, after years of a crippling embargo that has killed tens of thousands, and after years of more bombings, we are asked to believe that it has somehow again become what it never was in the first place: a military threat, with new "weapons of mass destruction." Can you hear the hysterical laughter from Eastern Europe, if not the anguished cries of the Iraqis?

Only the Israelis can gain from further abuse of these already savaged people. They would gladly watch the total destruction of the Islamic world, especially if America does it for them. The jackals in our government who take money from the Israeli lobby and prolong these lies are beyond any moral or political redemption. Their dreadful policies persist only because we are denied the information that might cause us to think.

The absence of truth and presence of ignorance is supposed to mean that we are winning this eternal war against terror. We are told, endlessly, that we are good and great, that they-whoever they are-are bad and evil, and that the war of us against them must go on, and on. Can this idiocy be stopped, without a public asking questions rather than accepting propaganda?

The madness of unregulated neoliberal marketeering may help supply the means to end the present dementia, but it is democratic power that's more necessary to impeach a regime made brutally powerful by the staggering weakness of its official opposition.

In modern capitalism's schizophrenic reality, the market is a deified "thing," controlled by supernatural forces of supply-demand materialism, but more reliant on the immaterialism of money supply and profit demand. This split is what created the success of Enron, based on con artists, greed , wishful thinking and as massive an act of stupidity as that which caused the 911 disaster .

The deaf, dumb and blind institutions of intelligence which combined to utter a collective "duh" until after 911, were akin to the deaf, dumb and greedy institutions of the market, which wet themselves in anticipation of ever more dividends from the Enron con game. This, even though the structure of profit was clearly a castle in air. The faith-based free market, joined with the faith-based war against terror, combines to destroy environments, kill foreigners, and threaten America with more acts of terror like 911.

Oh well, at least Spring is here. But that can't stop the bloody war against earth, reason and humanity. Those may ultimately vanish if people can't create the democratic force necessary to end that war. A growing minority is working for peace, and it can become the majority only if the issue is put on the national agenda. But corporate media and corporate politics cannot be relied upon for anything but continued obedience to corporate capital.

We have to move beyond the morally bankrupt institutions that guarantee us an Age of Misinformation, and make us the most feared, and often most hated people in the world. We need to clearly see what is being done in our name, and why those who are terrified of our power, are also laughing at our ignorance. The American jokes may end, and the great American nation may actually begin, but not before we all start thinking, and taking action on those thoughts.


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