Friday, January 18, 2008
The Sane Are “Kooks” and The Nuts Run The Asylum
Let’s look back at the last seven years for a moment. We have gone through a period of incredible changes in America that has seen the abandonment of important values and traditions that have been held for centuries. Very few politicians or media pundits seem to notice, and those that have spoken out against the violent change of course have been marginalized as odd, “kooks” and other derogatory terms labeling them as unprepared to comment on policy. We have jettisoned our traditional understanding of justifiable war, our absolute rejection of torture, our dedication to personal freedoms as guaranteed in the Bill of Rights has been repeatedly attacked and eroded, the government has spent trillions that it does not have leaving us under an unserviceable debt, and in which we have been taught that protecting America’s economy and jobs is counter productive and naïve.
Maybe it would be better to look at these items as a list and see what the net result of our change of course has been.
1. Just War – America has traditionally understood the moral principle of just war to be applicable only in cases of defense from actual aggression, either to our country and citizens, or to our allies and their citizens. We have now waged preventive war and the danger that we were to prevent has been proven to be nonexistent.
2. Torture – America was one of the authors of the Geneva Convention that unequivocally outlawed torture as an acceptable practice. We are now internationally famous as a State that practices torture.
3. Personal liberties – America is the original defender of personal liberties in the modern world that. Those liberties were held to be so vital to our national essence that they were understood to be natural rights: rights given to us by our Creator and the Bill of Rights is our guarantee that the government may not take those rights away. In the pursuit of The War on Terror™ our government has violated our Constitutionally guaranteed rights with impunity.
4. Deficit Spending – The American tradition has been for the government to spend only that revenue that it has except in the case of war when special mechanisms have been used to take on debt and then to rapidly pay the debt off after the war. The funding for the Mess in Mesopotamia is dragging us underwater financially and much of that cost has been hidden using unlawful accounting. We don't really know how deep the hole is. Under this administration we have been shouldered with a burden of governmental debt that cannot be paid off without making truly drastic changes in policy. Those changes do not seem to be forthcoming.
5. Our economy and national protection – American trade practices and the purpose of our government have always been to protect our national sovereignty and to guarantee that American workers and products are given at least a level playing field on which to compete. But we have been sold the notion the free trade is good for everyone. The idea has been hammered into our heads so many times by large corporate media, that almost no-one seems to doubt it anymore. We have eliminated tariffs across the board; we have allowed corporations wholly owned by foreign governments to purchase critical American industries. We have given up on the American worker.
The net results of these violent changes in policy have sent the nation spinning down a vortex that ends in disaster. What are the disasters that we face point by point from the list above?
1. Just War – By unilaterally engaging in preventive war we have lost the respect of other free nations. Our leadership is now rejected. We cannot appeal to justice; we cannot offer wise counsel and use our example to stop unjust wars around the globe. No-one is listening to us anymore because we are seen to be hypocrites and dangerous liars.
2. Torture – The result of our use of torture is similar to the first case of unjust war. We have lost the moral high ground. We can no longer use diplomacy to show our example of respect for human rights. Our country is not an attractive model any longer. Our neighbor and closest ally has classified us a State that actively practices torture. We are now in the same boat as Syria, Iran, Israel and Myanmar.
3. Personal Liberties – Americans are rapidly becoming afraid of our own government. Studies show that behavior has changed drastically in areas where there is overt security. People believe that they are being tracked, that their email can be read. It turns out that these worries are true and that the telecoms have been working illegally with the NSA since before 911. The quantity of planned violations of our rights is terrifying and more are on the way. The House Bill HR1955 would make speech by any group that the government decides may be a danger to be illegal. This will be twisted into an Orwellian knot that will bully any dissidence into submission. American citizens have been held for years without having charges filed against them. These are terrible precedents.
4. Deficit Spending – The government through the General Accounting Office recognizes a National debt of 9.5 Trillion dollars. At 5%, the interest on that debt is 475 Billion per year, or roughly equivalent to the Defense Budget. That number is more than double what was inhereted to George Dubya Bush. Of course the real number is much higher, since the government uses fraudulent accounting systems that would put private citizens in jail. The real debt is closer to 15 Trillion and rising. The money is being borrowed from the Social Security Fund (which is now broke) and overseas from countries that are NOT our friends. But Deficit Spending isn’t the only way that we pay for government that we can’t afford. The other way we put money in the hands of the big spenders in Washington is just to print more. Every time the Fed lowers interest rates they are increasing liquidity in the market, translated to English they are printing money – expanding the money supply. We are broke, worse than broke: our credit is maxed out and we keep spending. All this increase in the money supply has brought back inflation and it will be big. It has just started to rise, the cycle will take at least 18 months to slow down and turn around. Inflation will get to double digits.
5. Our economy and national protection – By signing Free Trade agreements with everybody and their brother and by unilaterally eliminating tariffs across the board we have choked off a critical source of government revenue at the same time that we have sent jobs overseas. We are not protecting our border and our sovereignty from immigrants that enter the country illegally and negatively effect the job market for Americans. This problem and its brother above have caused the dollar to plunge in value relative to the Euro by almost 50% and much more relative to gold or oil. That is fine for big American International businesses. They are free to navigate the world, investing here, producing there, and receiving their profits somewhere else. Their P&L statements look pretty good, but the average American is in trouble, burdened with debt that is forced down his throat by a constant barrage of psychologically designed advertising, his wages are stagnant and he is in trouble.
The biggest problem that 4 and 5 are giving us now is recession and inflation. They are here and they are going to be bad. America is in trouble. Our morality has been cashiered, our national defense is in jeopardy and we are broke.
There are some politicians that have spoken honestly about these terribly important problems. They have predicted how these problems would develop into the meltdown that we face today. Incredibly the men and women who have predicted the result of our Iraq policy, our monetary policy and our spending policies have been and continue to be marginalized as Kooks, fringe, eccentrics, and unrealistic.
In particular one man has spoken out about each one of these existential problems from the beginning and has been on target every time. He is, according to Mona Charen and Linda Chavez and Amy Schatz and the Wall Street Journal and the White House and the RNC and Fox News and the New York Times etc etc. a nutcase.
That man is Doctor Ron Paul and he has been right on every issue, predicting exactly the dilemma that would be produced: dilemmas that we now must solve or perish.
Can we stop calling him a kook and listen to this man?
Can we see through the hidden agenda of the Zionists and International corporations?
Are we ready to listen to a man who has a perfect track record or are we going to keep running for the cliff like lemmings?