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January, 2006


Capital's Punishment
By Frank Scott

We begin the year with war, its death and financial tolls soaring, and whispers of Democratic disagreement rising to a crescendo of murmurs. When one called for immediate troop withdrawal, party leaders explained why we must continue the bloodbath, but in a more liberal way. And that's the good news.
A massive power surge couldn't help brighten the dim bulbs in our administration. The only thing protecting a disgraced president from impeachment is an equally disgraced opposition. The increasing paranoia of leadership and its weakening grip on reality are causing serious problems for collective sanity. During the holiday shopping orgy, some complained that the real meaning of Christmas was forgotten, whatever it is. Parishioners of faith celebrate the birth of a divine savior for humanity, while ministers of mammon celebrate the birth of massive profits for capital. These two groups usually agree, since they evolve from similar messianic myths of the market; they stash their cash in the same cathedrals of the faith: banks. But with secular and religious cults adrift on capital's precarious sea of debt, social conflicts are increasing. If our loony leader claims he's saving the Titanic, shouldn't we be cheering as it sinks? Can we expect less than idiocy, given an opposition that sees neither a ship nor an iceberg?

The belated call for an exit strategy from Iraq - weasel words for get the hell out - has revived Viet Nam era language; if we cut and run, as draft dodging politicians say, our troops will have died for nothing. So we must stay and have more troops die for, um, something. Many Americans and most Iraqis want us out, but that means little to the petro-zionist cabal enjoying this biblical blood bath. They advocate another Viet Nam era strategy; changing the color of the bodies with an air war, so our troops can return while we continue murdering from the skies.

That's what Christmas really meant, and what the new year will mean, under the control of forces that punish reason as the practice of terrorist traitors and holocaust "deniers", so labeled by zealots who have made that bloody event holier than Christmas, and less subject to criticism.

Opposition to the Iraq slaughter grows among the previously comatose in our media, but a global majority has long known this was even worse than ordinary wars. While picking on helpless nations is nothing new, this particular savagery is America's most horrifically stupid, in an area where we were already intensely disliked. Now, we have increased the size of an international volunteer army, united in hatred for the USA. Brilliant.

Our regime denies that it torture its victims; it only kills them. It claims bringing democracy to Iraq, as its blundering stupidity creates a theocracy. And it tries an alleged war criminal in a court that would make a lynch mob blush, and will more likely raise Saddam to heroic stature. Can we believe anything these people tell us? No.

The American political scene is approaching the conditions of a mental health crisis center, its subjects babbling in tongues and communicating with imaginary beings. Disregarding reality can seem a sensible defensive response on the part of the citizenry, but there's no escaping a situation edging closer to mass lunacy. The criminally treacherous war policies relied on the word of hustlers and psychotics, whose tales of terror moved a cowardly congress to support this crusade for God, Petroleum and Israel, not necessarily in that order. Anyone offering nightmarish nonsense about Saddam's schemes was believed, and why not? These people accept biblical prophesies that should terrify us if we think about them, which is probably why we don't. But we'd better.

The intense contempt and disrespect shown among believers in equally irrational explanations for reality is part of the growing paranoia of established power in its newly threatened position. Spying on domestic activists is accompanied by an international assault on speech or thought which contradicts established belief systems about the natural, or more often, super natural world. It's no wonder that so many people behave erratically, given an environment that defies reason. To counter the rule of these fanatic thought police, people who respect others whatever their spiritual faith might be, and who believe in freedom for all viewpoints, urgently need to assert themselves. Belief in a market, controlled by an invisible hand which frees individuals to compete equally despite their material inequality, is no more based on science than is faith in a universe, created and controlled by an invisible man who benefits only some at the expense of all others.

There is a serious problem when verifiable facts about the origins of our social problems and their affect on humanity are disregarded, while unverifiable fiction about the origins of the universe and its allegedly most important people are regarded as divine truth. We should respect belief systems that preach human equality, but reject fanatic faiths that teach divisive doctrines of superiority that turn us against one another.

The sincerely deviate who maintain control by employing the cynically devout are only part of the problem. It is the system which breeds them that is inflicting capital's punishment on the earth and all its people. Whether in Iraq, Palestine or New Orleans, we suffer under individual fanatics because we allow their irrational system to govern our societies. Under the global domain of capital, we share the same material fate, no matter what immaterial faith we may embrace. And it will be disastrous, unless we create a material expression of our beliefs that is respectful to all humanity. That is impossible under the present system, no matter which fundamentalist or fanatic occupies its highest offices .

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