Monday, January 21, 2008

Death and Death and Death

Death and death and death and death, death and death and death. It's everywhere. All the time. It must be the going thing. It's been the going thing since WW2. This government, our government has not stopped killing people all over the world since World War 2. They must really like it.

Yep. They've got a real appetite for it. It can't be denied.

Take Vietnam for example. Two to three million Vietnamese people died in our Vietnam war, though our government will tell you that they didn't count the Vietnamese dead, just like they say they don't count the Iraqi dead. They don't like counting much I guess. It's a drag. Counting takes time away from killing. Killing innocent civilians.

There is a nagging problem with that. People matter. When they die it matters. It matters a lot to the people dying. It matters to their children and families, their spouses, their communities, and don't forget their careers and other involvements. If human beings matter, and they do, then when they are killed we're supposed to be sad about it. We're supposed to care. At the very least we're supposed to count the dead. After all it's not like we're exterminating cockroaches. We don't count dead cockroaches, but we do count dead people.

I think it sends a very clear message around the world that our government cannot be bothered to count the dead on "the other side". A hell of a message too. It's shameful. But it does make it perfectly clear that our government does not respect human life. It does not care about innocent people dying. And of course, once it gets to that point, where it is clear that innocent people dying are no concern to the guys with the bombs and the tanks and the guns, that we have to ask ourselves what they're over there doing.

The claim is that we are delivering another order of Freedom and Democracy, as if it were pizza. Only instead of pizza there is death. Death and death and death and more death. Endless death. And at the end of all that death we're supposed to find a shining pot of golden Freedom and Democracy.

Well, who is it exactly they are so concerned about being free and having democracy? If they don't care that innocent people make up the bulk of all that death and death and death, then they don't care about taking care of those folks political needs. It really doesn't stand up to scrutiny.

What does death and death and death and death have to do with anything? All that does is get a lot of people dead. For all the billion human beings who have died at the hands of an aggressor throughout time, has there ever been a shining reward at the end for those who died? Isn't it true that all of the reward goes to whoever it is doing all that killing and killing and killing? Yes, I do believe that is the deal. All the booty, all the pillage, the raping and the torturing, those are all the bonus rewards of the ones left standing after the smoke clears.

The main reward of course is a great deal more. It usually means that place and everything in it, including what's left of the population is yours now. Your property. Yours to do with as you please. All of the natural resources are yours to take and cash in on. And if the resource happens to be hot on the market you stand to make yourself a tidy bundle. And if it's in very high global demand, such as oil for instance, then you can play all kinds of games towards making other nations dance to your tune in order to get some of that for themselves.

All in all this killing stuff looks to me like a grand con game for profiteers. It's exactly the same thing as a street mugging, only on a larger scale. Someone sticks a gun in your face and demands your wallet; they take it then shoot you anyway. What's the difference?

Even though the facts all point to that, it is never what we are told. When they need us to pay up and buy all the weapons and bombs and troop transports and uniforms and guns and food and boots and bullets and tanks, and then also get INTO those uniforms and go over there and do all that killing for them, they always say it's because the bad guys are coming to get us.

Now, we're usually totally clueless that there even were bad guys because they're not around us. They haven't been sighted. They aren't in the news and we don't bump into them. In fact they're flat nonexistent here in the home land. But they will tell us all about the bad guys and even explain how bad they are and the fact that there aren't any around here up to now won't matter because they'll also tell us they're under our beds and more are on the way.

But if this government is good at anything, it's good at lying its ass off. It has been able to vilify and demonize people all over the world and tell us we need to go get them before they come get us. What's odd is that it's never other countries with nuclear bombs or any record of being generally aggressive or blood thirsty. It's always peasant people, struggling poor people, people who can't defend themselves, who are non-aggressive and who frankly, couldn't find a way to even get here to cause us a traffic delay.

They demonize ordinary people usually at the exact moment they are doing something to make their little nation free and prosperous, which means they are blowing off the big fat rich corporations. That is their crime. That is the reason our troops head out and go kill and kill and kill and kill and kill. It is not allowed by the Western Imperialist Mafioso to say no to our corporations when they want your stuff. When you say no, we come over and prove how bad you need protection.

We're shitty people in the eyes of the world. At least that's how our government is seen. A lot of people who have borne the brunt of our criminal "foreign policy" understand that most Americans are completely clueless about it. They also understand that when bullies are in charge it doesn't matter what the people want. They understand what it's like having domineering, brutal, dishonest thugs and liars in power. That little bit of grace is what keeps those people in far away places able to welcome us when we travel abroad, instead of killing us the second we set foot on their soil. We are very lucky that people in other countries have a hell of a lot more common sense than we do.

Look again at the Vietnam war. Let's go over this briefly, without the propaganda. It's much quicker to cover that way, and much easier to see it clearly.

The largest, most heavily equipped, most modern, most expensive military on Earth (that would be us) had to protect itself from Vietnamese peasant people.

Vietnamese civilian peasant people who didn't have a pot to piss in. Who didn't own appliances. Who ate what they could pick, grow, or fish out of the local stream. Who owned oxen. Who weren't even armed. Who were minding their own business, in their own country, saying nothing to us, doing nothing to us. They had no plans to come here and get us. They don't even have any boats. How are they supposed to get here? Dog paddle?

Millions of dog paddling Vietnamese peasant farmers that you could see on satellite, swimming across the pacific ocean towards America in swarms; each one of them holding a knife in their teeth to use on us when they get here. Our generals would be pointing at the satellite photos spread out on a big table in an underground war room somewhere saying, "Dammit Jim I'm a general not a doctor! They're coming to kick our asses! Look! They all have knives in their teeth too! They're serious about doing us in. We must prepare to fight!"

And the Navy is picking it up on radar too, these huge slow-moving blips coming towards America at 1,000 yards a day and they're saying, "Holy Cow, what the hell are those things? Some kind of new dolphins?" "No son, them are COMMIES. And they're coming for our freedom and democracy. We're toast if we don't do something about it pronto. GOD I hate commies!"

That didn't happen. Nothing happened. Vietnam couldn't have hurt us if they wanted to.

So how did this government's propaganda machine manage to turn these simple peasant farmers into a threat so scary that the mightiest nation on Earth had to stop everything and go over there and stomp the crap out of those people? What could we possibly claim to have been so afraid of? We were lied over there, just like we were lied into the Middle East. Why don't we know better than to fall for such blatant garbage?

How is it that 300 million educated Americans swallowed whole lies that obvious?

This government used all of the identical slimy lies and emotionalist patriotic hypocritical political mouth spew back then on the American people as they are using now. It's identical. The same exact crap. The same lies. Only they had to go kill peasant strangers over seas not to protect this enormous country from terrorists, but to protect us from communism.

Now don't miss the fact that this was another war against an idea, not a thing. Not a monster, not a Godzilla, not a physical three dimensional thing. It's an idea. A huge bloody war to go kill an idea.

What business of ours is it what people 10,000 miles away are thinking about? How would we know what they're thinking about anyway? And why should we care? It has nothing to do with us.

Why do we feel so much fear and loathing over other people's thoughts that the only possible response is to go kill them all? Isn't that a tad unreasonable?

What about, oh, I don't know, having a chat? Maybe you could change their minds instead of blowing their minds into a million pieces. Nicer. Cheaper. Easier. Quicker. Smarter. Saner. It's all thumbs up from my perspective. But no. This government can't stand anyone anywhere having thoughts it does not like. To them that is worse than an armed rebellion at home. If that happens they can just shoot us in the streets, no problem. But if they don't know what we're thinking they get all hinky and paranoid and start tapping all the telephones and capturing all the emails and faxes and cell phone calls and medical records and library records and bank records and school records and work records and grocery store records and shopping records and then they use this massive secret software technology to recreate a virtual-mini-America where every last one of us is represented and reconstructed by this program using all that data they stole about us. Then they extrapolate who we are. Why? Because they want to know what we're thinking.

We're paying for all that too you know. They just don't like to talk about it much. I wonder why. It is such a joyous thing after all, who wouldn't be delighted to know our privacy has been demolished and we're all standing naked in front of Uncle Sam being scrutinized for any sign of potential unapproved thoughts or behaviors?

If that's how they feel about us here at home having mysterious unknown thoughts, just imagine how they feel when people 10,000 miles away are having mysterious unapproved thoughts. They have to stop it immediately.

If they didn't go kill a few million innocent people in Vietnam and poison their pristine natural environment so profoundly that children being born today are still being born with horrendous birth defects, if they didn't go make that sacrifice for us, then surely communism would have marched right over here and eaten us up like a big hungry wolf. Ahoooooh! Ruff!

Is there anything more retarded than that? I can't think of anything.

Was this a variation on the Little Red Riding Hood story? Is America a little innocent girl in the woods going to Grandmas house when the big bad Vietnamese peasant civilians jump out from behind a bush and gobble her up? Is that what we believe?

We should establish that probably, because I think it's pertinent. We really need to stop and find out exactly how fucking stupid we are. All who believe that we are Little Red Riding Hood and the whole world wants to eat us up raise your hand.

Okay. Those are the people who literally to this day still look under their beds at night before going to sleep to make sure Osama Bin Laden isn't under there waiting to get them.

If you are one of those people, you are a stupid person. I'm sorry, but it's true. Only a true pal would have the nerve to tell you the truth. Only if you know the truth can you fix what's broken. I'm only trying to help.

These people were exactly no threat to the United States. Vietnam is 9,665 miles away from us and they had problems of their own. Like trying to free themselves from France who was acting like they owned Vietnam.

A lot of Western countries have this strange form of Alzheimer's Disease. They see little countries all over the world and accidentally think they own them outright. Just because they say so. It's a form of brain damage perhaps, or just imperialism gone wild. Regardless of the reasons for this amazing stupidity, they don't own any of these little countries. At least according to the people who live in them.

What was Vietnam's sin? They told us it was communism but there is communism everywhere, this place least of all should have worried us. No, their sin was refusing to lie down like good little peasants and be slaves for France. That's why America needed to hurry up over there and start the mass slaughter of innocents. It is not all right to refuse to be owned and controlled by imperialist nations who want your stuff. You must comply. If you refuse you will be punished. To death.

That's why we went there. And that's why over 55,000 American boys got killed. To put defenseless people in their places, which is on their knees, to us. That's who we are folks. It's high time we all caught on to it. We have done this over 65 times to dozens of countries since WW2 ended. We just cannot get enough.

Now I know what you're saying, you think it's not possible that our government is a bunch of thugs and thieves who are part of a global crime society. But I know why it's hard for you to believe. You've simply never heard it before. The government never told you anything about that. But dear one you have to realize, that when bad people do bad things and you ask them, "Are you doing bad things?", they always say NO. You do get that don't you?

Now let's take a look at Iraq. We have almost entirely destroyed that little country, and we have credible reports that over a million innocent civilians have been killed in the name of freedom and democracy. Some two million have been displaced and are roaming homeless, desperate and having a damned hard time of it. Their country has been blown to smithereens so that they could be free. They didn't want to be that free. Not so free that they're floating around with no safe place to be, and no home, and no food and no clothing. That's a little too free.

Imagine what it would be like if the tables were turned and it was us who needed to be rid of a horrible dictator. (That's not too much of a stretch is it?) Now imagine that UN troops came pouring into our country one day and they surrounded Washington DC and burned down the White house and the congress and the senate and disbanded our military and told them all to go home. They let go all the police too and told them they weren't needed anymore. Then they sent in their neo-con financial guys who immediately located our Constitution and flushed it down the nearest black hole. Then they take control of all the money in the country by having all of the banks give it up to them, so now they have all of our money and all of the guns and we have no military, no police, no national guard. Got the picture?

Now the news reports say that these guys are swell heroes, and they are here to set us free, but wait, they already set us free when they burned down the capital. So, why are they still here? And why are they going to California and bombing the snot out of it? And why are they also doing that in Texas, and Virginia and New York and Iowa and a whole long list of other places? And why have they killed 18 million of us? They are calling us terrorists now. And when their mercenaries come plowing down our streets in big tanks with bazookas and smoke bombs and hand grenades and they are running over our grandmothers and uncles and school children as if they didn't exist, and we start getting unhappy about it, they bomb the holy snot out of Chicago and say it's crawling with terrorists.

Then to top it all off they say they don't count how many innocent civilians they kill because it just doesn't matter to them.

How long would it take you to get seriously tired of that situation? Do you think five years would about do it? How about 5 days? I'd think so. But wait, it gets better. They also want to write our new constitution, and they want to split our country apart into 101 different little countries who would never be able to defend themselves or fight back against any forces for the rest of known time. And as they continued to slowly bomb us into the stone age and we starved and lost our homes and families would we be thrilled and delighted to know they are just here to get rid of the bad guys? Or might we just want them to go home now?

A war on terror is a non-thing. It can't exist. You cannot fight a concept. It would be like calling a war against gutter balls at bowling alleys. We have to be specific about such things, and they have to exist, in real time and be happening so that we can look at it and say, "There goes one now, let's go get it!". But to just go from bowling alley to bowling alley and size up people in rental shoes and torture them to tell us where the people throwing all the gutter balls are hiding out, that's just nuts. That's criminal in and of itself. We don't need that.

People from far away places or from right here at home who are so angry and so distraught and so at the end of their rope that they feel the need to kill innocent people in an act of violence are people who have more than likely been screwed over. If we were responsible for doing that screwing over, isn't it the decent thing to do to sit down and talk with them about it and see what the problem is? Doesn't that make a lot more sense than just getting our whole army, navy, air force and marines shipped out with half a trillion dollars worth of things that explode, and just go kill anything that moves?

I just think dialogue goes a whole lot further toward understanding other people and closing in on the real potential of making amends, making friends and then living in peace.

But I don't make the rules in this country, and frankly neither do you. So who are these guys in charge of our nation and why are they such bloodthirsty vampires that want to make war on something that doesn't even exist? The simplest answer usually covers it: they like it.

Monday, January 14, 2008

Broken Angel

It was perfect weather for a parade, and on a warm and sunny Saturday afternoon, Main Street was packed with people. The sidewalks on each side of the roped off street were still crowded even though the main parade had just ended. The people were now waiting to see a man.

The man was a famous celebrity, not an actor or a singer, but a businessman. A very wealthy businessman who didn't actually earn his wealth, he stole it, as is the tradition. Reputed to be heartless in business dealings he was personally responsible for thousands of people losing their jobs and homes, at a time when jobs are no longer being replaced with new ones. He ransacked pension funds, spending the money on slickly contrived illegal investment schemes that brought back a thousand times his investment and laundered it to offshore banks. He then filed bankruptcy and thousands lost their entire life savings. He was quite proud of himself.

He gave no thought to destroying lives or families, to the suicides of over wrought hopeless people, to mortgages foreclosing by the tens of thousands, or any of the pain he caused.

This man was unconcerned with any effects his business dealings had on people, he cared only about his profits and success. One of the chief architects and key players in the devastating ricochet of mergers and buy outs of the 80's, he continued to increase his wealth with the advent of outsourcing. Down sizing, streamlining, anywhere there's a corporate buzzword he'll be there.

He's been in too many investment scandals and frauds to count, and has gotten away with all but one of them. There was a token indictment, a trial to appease the outraged masses, and a guilty verdict ordering him to pay $250,000 and spend 15 years behind bars. He did six months in a country club penitentiary where he had every amenity including an office to enable him to continue his wheeling and dealing behind bars. It was hardly a punishment. And while $250,000 sounds like a lot of money, to him it was nothing. He got to keep the rest of the 26 million he'd gained committing the crime.

Through years of privileged access to money and the corporate aristocracy he'd accumulated a personal fortune of nearly ten billion dollars. He has never known a day of his life that was not extremely comfortable. He grew up in great wealth. He is well familiar with it's comforts and denizens, he knows the ropes and the connections. This is his norm and he could never tolerate anything less than the absolute best of everything.

Newspapers lauded his capitalist skills, doting on his contributions to the economy which he so busily and efficiently pillaged. He's a familiar face on the largest corporate news shows, mainstream financial talk shows and even public television. He's a darling of both the establishment and the government who never miss an opportunity to grovel and adore him, as though he were a hero. He is also known to have connections with organized crime.

This man has never done a single thing for the people of this country, in fact he is arrogant and open when expressing his depraved indifference to those he deems beneath him. He feels no inclination whatsoever to "give back to society". He couldn't care less about society. In fact, he believes society owes him everything, and that it is his right to pillage and destroy whoever cannot defend themselves against him.

But he does enjoy the groveling and attention of lesser beings, and that's why he came.

In spite of his well known destruction of the working class, his felony records and cut throat capitalism, crowds gather to see him where ever he goes. He charges exorbitant fees to be a guest speaker, and he stays quite busy doing it. Afterwards people always cue up to excitedly shake his hand and ask for his autograph, grinning at him as if he were a hero.

He is one of the top 100 people directly responsible for the total devastation of this country, but the people worship him. They want to see the rich man, the wealthy man who lies, cheats, defrauds and has stolen his way to over 800 million dollars of personal wealth.

His chauffeur driven black limousine is only minutes away from arriving on Main Street.

At this time the waiting crowd is subdued yet attentive. Many are hoping to be the first to glimpse his limousine when it turns onto the street. Eyes and heads occasionally glance to one end of the street and then the other, then return to their conversations.

It is 3:59 pm as a pleasant, barely noticeable breeze gently brushes over the crowd, then dissipates.

It is just at this moment that another man is beginning to round the south corner of this street. In a matter of seconds he will stumble on to the street, and stop at dead center, where he will be seen by everyone. This man has no idea where he is, nor is he even aware that there is a parade. He is in far too much agony to notice. He needs help.

He had been mercilessly beaten during a night in jail, not for committing any crime, but just for being in the wrong place at the wrong time. The police had arrived and arrested him without asking questions, and because he is homeless, dirty and hungry they treated him with utter contempt; berating him and trying to beat a confession out of him with various forms of cruelty and torture; some of it painful beyond description. This had gone on for hours. He'd been deprived of clean water and food, and even the use of a toilet. Now he was swollen and bruised and in obvious pain.

Less than five minutes before he'd been released from the jail, unceremoniously booted out onto the street once they'd decided he had not committed the crime, without so much as an apology. He was not offered any assistance by the police. They disdained him and didn't hide that fact.

Bruised and betrayed, starving and violated, he had slowly walked a block from the police station. He was exhausted and in too much pain to go much further. He needed to find a safe place to lie down and sleep, but he was very hungry. He desperately wanted to be in a safe place, to clean up, tend to his wounds and sit down to a decent meal.

Standing in an alley way, in the giant cold shadow of a great gray building he studied his surroundings. He needed to make sure no one was looking. Then, bending down he removed one of his battered shoes. Carefully he felt inside it for a loose flap of fabric near the heel, then opened it and gently pulled out a single tightly folded fifty dollar bill. It was all he had in the world. It was given to him by a kind passerby a month ago, an act so charitable and generous that he couldn't bear to spend it. He thought it could be his lucky charm, a sign that things would soon change for the better. He'd decided to keep it hidden away and promised himself he would not use it unless he was in truly dire straights. This qualified.

His hands shook from hunger as he wrestled the bill from the shredded shoe lining. He was so glad that it was still there that he felt like crying.

He resisted the urge to break down, it wouldn't be seemly for a veteran; because in spite of society's disrespectful treatment of this war vet, he still had his self respect. He did not judge himself by his clothing as they did, and he would not allow his pain and inability to understand his fellow man's attitude toward him, keep him from retaining his dignity. Such as it was.

He now replaced the shoe onto his bare foot with one hand, and holding the fifty dollar bill in the other he glanced down the street looking for someplace to buy food. He could get a cheap hotel room, just for one night, to give himself a soft place to lay down and a single night to begin to heal his battered body. He could actually get some rest if he didn't have to stay awake all night to protect himself. He'd be out of danger in a small room with a locked door and a sturdy brace.

It sounded very good to him, so he headed for just such a place. Hotel Fancy was dirty and run down, and rented by the hour, day or week. It was host to prostitutes and johns, drug addicts and suicides. It was a likely place for the homeless to go whenever they managed to beg enough money to buy a room for a day or two and get a rare, coveted hot bath. With real soap and everything.

His footsteps were slow and shuffling, every move he made hurt. But as he walked he imagined hand washing his clothing in the hotel sink, then being able to have clean clothes again, to wear the next day. Things were looking up, he told himself. After a hot bath his hair would be clean and he wouldn't smell so bad, and that would make it easier to go into a store or restaurant to find some food. He wouldn't get run out so fast. He might actually get something decent to eat.

Lost in thoughts of a real hot meal, he didn't even see who stabbed him. His eyes were fixed in horror on his fifty dollar bill as it was grabbed roughly from his weakened grasp. It slipped through his fragile fingers as the knife blade retracted from his left lung, and back out of his body. Sadness and anger burst forth in a single soundless cry, "No!"...

The feeling of sadness and disappointment literally overwhelmed him as the pain of the knife wound hit, changing his hopeful expression into an open mouthed grimace of desperation and agony. It was almost too much for him to bear. Now he was having serious trouble breathing.

His military training told him he had to get help or he would die, but he was out of the sight of passersby. He did not want to die. More than anything he wanted the chance to keep on living and regain his pride, to be welcomed back by the family that discarded him after the war, to prove his worth and be loved, to have a normal life again. It was what he wanted more than anything else in the world. If he couldn't make himself seen, he would die where he lay.

With all of his strength he struggled to his knees, and then to his feet, leaning on his outstretched arm, his shaking hand flat against the building. Then turning, he grimaced with pain, and saw he was only a few feet from the corner; the corner of Main Street. Someone would surely see him from there.

He went for it. The blood loss made his already weakened condition all the more fragile and his head spun as he staggered for the brightly lit patch of sidewalk ahead. He had to make it. He just had to.

On Main Street, the crowd was beginning to grow restless. A chorus of chattering voices echoed between store fronts as the sunlight began to dim. The clock on the bank tower chimed the hour, it was 4pm, precisely. It was at this exact moment that he stumbled around the corner and out into the middle of the street. A street lined with expectant parade goers; people who were waiting to meet one of the richest men in the world.

All eyes turned to him immediately. The hum of voices was punctuated by whispers and gasps and a few pointing gestures. He felt himself losing consciousness, and as he fell to his knees, he looked out at the faces, which were no more than a blur, and he whispered, "Help me .... Please ... ". He fell face forward onto the dark pavement, then lost consciousness. He was so afraid he was going to die.

It was now that the crowd could finally see his blood soaked back. But no one in the crowd made a move to help. They were too appalled, too concerned that their involvement would prove to be an inconvenience, and he was too disgusting. His face had barely hit the pavement when at the other end of the street the very wealthy man came round the corner in his chauffeur driven open top limousine. It gleamed in the dappled sunlight.

His gorgeous tailored Italian suit was made of a soft, silky deep blue material that shimmered each time he moved. His perfectly shaped padded shoulders and the perfect all over fit of this expensive handmade garb made a stunning and strong first impression. The blue of his eyes matched the blue of his tie which had tiny golden stars woven throughout in a sprinkle pattern, and they were made of 24 karat gold.

His gold watch glittered out from under his shirt sleeve as he raised his right arm to greet the crowd while flashing a perfect white smile, which was just as fake as his thick brown colored hair. The limo slowed to a full stop, and he stood and raised his other arm in the air making a "V" shape. V for victory, the name of his latest book. He looked fabulous, quite impressive, and very wealthy.

The marching band began to play and he just stood there like that, smiling, receiving hand thrown hailstorms of colorful confetti from the crowd. The people on both sides of the street went wild, cheering and applauding him. Many began to rush toward his car, surrounding it and calling out his name. There was much excitement and fuss as the music blared, and it beat out the perfect rhythm to match the crowd's exuberance. The once calm street had now become a celebratory circus of idol worship.

A pretty young woman leaned into the car to hand the rich man a pen, then excitedly asked him to sign her copy of his book. As the man complied with exaggerated gestures, much to her giggling delight, at the other end of the street, the cold, hungry, beaten and stabbed veteran died in the street, alone.

THE Answers

Everywhere that I have ever been in America there is a sincere belief in the notion that the Answers are out there. Answers to all of life's questions. Not just any old answers. The answers I'm talking about are THE Answers, the only real, legitimate, for sure, the buck stops here, no matter who asks the question this is the answer, Answers. THE Answers.

There can only be one "THE" Answer for every question, and that is the one everyone wants. Because once you get THE Answers, you have it made. You're good to go. You can't be wrong about anything. Life is a piece of cake, everything works, you glow in the dark and everything you do is right, forever more, yahoo.

Unfortunately, we're born without THE Answers and we soon realize we'll never get THE Answers unless we go out looking for them. And they are always "out there" somewhere, never right under our own noses or anywhere else we can find them easily, or come up with them ourselves. That is especially frowned upon. (And there in lies THE Problem, IMHO).

Even though they're in widespread demand, THE Answers are tricky to come by. They're mysterious, ethereal things, lurking secretively in far away places. Many have searched far and wide, and many believed they found the darn things, and they told everyone else all about it out of the kindness of their hearts.

Yet, for all the millennia that humans have been searching for THE Answers, no one as yet has passed Go, collected $200 and become the undisputed winner of the title, "The one who finally found THE Answers". Hasn't happened yet. So, even though there are many who claim to have THE Answers, the search is still officially on. The REAL, absolute, hands down, genuine "THE" Answers are still out there somewhere, ostensibly, waiting to be found once and for all.

The Historical Search for The Answers

Every culture throughout known time has recorded their own stories about people who have gone in search of THE Answers. The people in the stories have given their entire lives over to their journeys, traveling to all of the far flung places of the earth. They explored all four corners, crossed every ocean, slogged across every desert, sat in every cave, have conversed with every kind of talking animal, had amazing encounters with countless half human half something else creatures, met bizarre physical and nonphysical beings or forces, some with amazing powers, some with none, and it all became a part of the stories describing those journeys for The Answers. Whether memorized or written, the stories have been passed down for generations, as a gift for future seekers of The Answers, so that they will be informed that somebody who went before them already found all the answers and they must not bother going themselves. Apparently it is considered very disrespectful to start fresh and explore the world and life for yourself, and find out what you can find out on your own. In the olden days that was cool, but not so today. It is very uncool today.

History's real or mythological seekers of THE Answers have been painted in the most glorious terms. Never were there more pure minded, noble hearted, upright or brave people, always men, who walked the face of the earth. Reading their stories you are sure you could never hold a candle to them. They were so honorable and dedicated that they deserved to find THE Answers.

It often got very tough for them but they never gave up, no matter what, nothing could detour them from their goal. They endured the worst kinds of hardships and deprivations. Nearly killed a dozen times or killed in the end, they were driven by the all consuming need to know the truth. According to the stories, they usually found THE Answers, and from their discoveries all manner of great and small Answer Franchises have come into being.

The Modern Search for The Answers

Answer Franchises have sprung up all over the world and they are wildly popular because they have THE Answers, that's a widely accepted fact. Religious, political, medical, educational, scientific, fashion, hipness, ecological, musical, pop culture, entertainment, sports, you name it, they're all there, ready and waiting to give you The Answers to all of your questions.

We find Answer Franchises to be incredibly helpful because we can't all go off trekking to the lost jungles of Borneo, where THE Answers would most likely be, or they'd be buried somewhere under 14 miles of petrified Swiss cheese under some obscure European meadow, or painted on a cave wall, or hidden in a long lost pyramid, or etched on a clay tablet, or sewn into the label of your underwear... who knows, the point is they are darned hard to find and the bottom line is, people have to have them.

Answer Franchises meet the needs of a much rushed, overworked, somewhat dippy public who has come to rely on them almost entirely to make all of the most important decisions of their lives. And most of the unimportant ones too.

Now, some people don't care so much what THE Answers are, they're fine with whatever everybody else is believing. The important thing for them is just to be recognized as a member of an established group which is generally accepted to be in the category of those who claim to have THE Answers.

Other people need more of a hands on, interactive exploration of the Answer Franchises available to them.
They must go to every Answer Franchise they can find, wanting to test drive them all before deciding which Answers they like best. It's a lot like going to Benihana, except it's not necessarily Japanese, and you're not going out for dinner, but everything else is pretty much the same. Let me explain.

Attaining Enlightenment
You go in and take a seat around a big table which has a special reserved area at one end just for the franchise operator, then everyone sits around waiting while looking at the pretty lamps and commenting on the decor and the atmosphere and how crowded it is or isn't, and sometimes visitors share tales of previous trips to the franchise or relay stories they've heard from others. Some are old hard core members who are generally stand offish, others are nervous newbies anxious to try it, others are stubbornly dubious that there will be any real answers here, and so on.

Everyone is waiting for the franchise operator to come out because that's where THE Answers are. They're not in the Answer Franchise building, you can sit there for three weeks and not get any answers, it's only the franchise owners who have THE Answers and if you want them, you gotta get them from him. So it's always a big deal when he comes out, everybody claps or they stand up, or they sit cross legged or they fill out a questionnaire, or they play Hail to the Chief, or they take a seat in the waiting room, or they sit in front of a moving picture and sound box, it's a little different at every franchise. The bottom line is, the people are ready and facing front, waiting to hear THE Answers.

The chef finally appears wearing the garb of the franchise, always very nice stuff, not the usual street attire in many cases and takes his place at the reserved, off limits to others, special end of the table and then with well practiced moves, he proceeds to dazzle the onlookers with his many brilliant skills which proves that he has The Answers. He often tosses a whole fish into the air and by the time it comes back down, he's managed to julienne it six ways from sundown and get the skin off too, then he effortlessly fans the pieces out like a deck of cards, perfection.

Now that everyone is duly impressed he asks everyone which answers they seek and then he proceeds to prepare their answer plate, giving them samples of strange and unusual things which he presents as The Answers. It's a splendid show filled with much mystery and surprise. Often there are tears and weeping, sometimes there is laughter, even applause, but no matter what, all eyes stay on the franchise owner and his very splendid show. After every plate is filled with an impressive arrangement of answers, the people take them in, sometimes with discussion, more often privately, some with thinly veiled revulsion, others with gratitude and when everyone has had their fill, they pay the bill and go on home.

If you decide to become a member of that or any other franchise then you simply need to show up there to get all of your needed Answers, and voila, you'll be treated to a show, get answers to questions whether you asked them or not, pay the bill, and go on back home. You're in the know now by golly. This is how it's done, and how it's been done for a bajillion years. Everyone gets a membership with an Answer Franchise, then, they become instantly Enlightened for the whole rest of their lives.

Availability And Self-Teaching

As to choosing the Answer Franchise best for you, sometimes there's not much choice in the matter. There may be only one major brand for a whole vast region so most everyone is a member of the same Answer Franchise. The individual franchise outlets can be quite different, but they will still serve up the same menu items with some minor variations and this is considered acceptable. It's only when the variances become a little too different that real problems can occur that can split entire nations and even families right down the bloody middle.

Often there's a handbook given out to everyone who joins an Answer Franchise, in case you can't wait to get all of THE Answers. You can technically get all of THE Answers from the handbooks, but it's not recommended really because you have to be a franchise owner to get it right, you see. It's easy to misinterpret the handbooks and go off making a fool of yourself because you don't understand the special ins and outs of Answer recognition and interpretation. It is strongly encouraged to depend on the franchise owner to do all interpretation for you, self teaching is too error prone. However, some Answer Franchises welcome group participation though most often they strictly forbid it. In any case its quite normal for the members to not even bother reading the handbooks even though they own one because they'd rather get it straight from the horse's mouth. It really feels like THE Answer when you hear it spoken in real time, directly to you.


There is one noteworthy drawback to Answer Franchises however, and it bears mentioning. No one is ever allowed to question THE Answers they are given, no matter how ineffective, unhelpful, unjust, illogical, unproven, unsubstantiated, downright hurtful or obviously wrong they are.

Doubt is forbidden at all Answer Franchises, it can get you in a lot of hot water too, depending on the Franchise. There is a direct relationship between how high and mighty any given Franchise is, and it's untouchability. A general rule of thumb is that the more wealthy the franchise is the more powerful it is. The lesser ones can't do much to hurt you if you go around saying things like, "These people are phonies and liars who should be in prison".

The larger ones however, who are the ones most likely to be phonies and liars who should be in prison, can and will come get your ass if you get a little too loud or if too many people start paying attention to your messages of doubt. Doubt of any kind directed at a Major Franchise owner or member will often result in a cold shoulder effect that will dismiss you, discredit you and eject you from further participation with that franchise.

Conversely you could be legally forced to comply with a franchise you wholly reject, which is very scary to say the least. Answer Franchises are serious business. Just because they'll let anybody in doesn't mean they're flexible about anything. They aren't. If you express doubt you'll be treated to the same contempt given to any non Franchise member, which is always entirely unpleasant and can even be deadly.

Probably 75% of the people in any given country will tell you they are subscribers to, or members of, one or more of the most popular Answer Franchises in the region, but there always remains the pesky remnant, the other 20% or so who blow off the Answer Franchises as being silly and made up. Such persons often cause serious upset by saying things like, "Your answers are wrong", or "There is no proof that your answers are The Answers", or "There is no such thing as The Answers", or "I like to come up with my own answers thank you very much".

When they say things like these they are never embraced. On the contrary, they get lots of hissing and foul language and are often accused of being child molesters or otherwise dangerous, unsavory and untrustworthy without any evidence to support such horrible accusations ever being provided.

When an individual lacks membership in the most wildly popular Answer Franchises it is apparently incredibly threatening to franchise owners and members alike, who have been known throughout history to the present day to become downright violent with anyone who shows disinterest, disrespect or who expresses doubt about their personal franchises having The Answers.

People invest a great deal of their identity in their belief that they possess The Answers through their chosen Answer Franchises and someone coming along and saying, "My answers are correct and yours are imaginary" or "Your answers are not THE Answers" is almost the same as saying, "You are too stupid to live" or "You are naive and would believe anything you were told by an authority figure", either of which, were they true, would be deeply disconcerting.

The Major Answer Franchises offer a good deal of protection to their members in the face of any doubters coming around. There is might in numbers and this is no exception. Franchise members can be counted on to come together in solidarity to protect their claim that the answers they get from their franchise are THE Answers for sure. It doesn't matter at all if they're wrong or right, that's all irrelevant. No proof is offered to disarm the doubter. It's much simpler than that. The most dependably common response to doubters and miscellaneous disrespecters is to attack and destroy anyone who says such things.

The Gang Attack and Destroy Method eliminates any possibility that the doubters are right. Well, it doesn't do that really, but it does shut them up so everyone can get back to their Answer Franchise and feel comfy and secure in the belief that they have The Answers.

It's that insecurity, that terrifying idea that THE Answers are out there somewhere and we don't have them that makes people so unbearably uncomfortable. Insecurity is so horrible that anything that must be done to avoid it is by necessity all right. Even if it means the organized mass serial killing of perfect strangers in far away places it is acceptable, it becomes a matter of honor because it defends our version of THE Answers.

It guarantees our continued sense of security, which does not apparently come along with having The Answers. Instead it comes along with clubbing other people to death who have different Answers than our own. In all Answer Franchises, 'they' are always wrong, which makes it okay to kill them, in fact, we're doing them and us both a big favor. Their wrongness is polluting our rightness and that's just rude. Who needs it? The end justifies our need to not feel insecure about THE Answers we happen to have.

For many there is nothing worse than not having The Answers. Existing in real time like everybody else and being on your own journey is too terrifying a thought. Having The Answers feels like someone's got your back, you won't be as hurt when you fall, and random bad things won't happen to you unless there's a good reason, though when they do they won't be as bad as they would be without you having The Answers.

Having The Answers means you are doing things Right which makes you feel legitimate every day no matter how much of an ass or a jerk you may actually be. It also guarantees your acceptance into the very best neighborhoods in the after life, which are reserved only for those who are Right here on Earth. When you are so Right in life then when you die that Rightness is your automatic back stage pass to the best that death has to offer. That's all nonsense of course but this nonsense is so strongly desired that standing between it and someone who needs it will get you mown down without hesitation.

Acting like you have all The Answers is also perceived by many to be a status symbol that elevates someone to "better than you are" status. Many people otherwise lacking genuine self worth or any meaningful purpose in life will glom onto this aspect of being seen to have The Answers very quickly, and they never let go. Many go on to become Answer Franchise Owners and Operators themselves and because doubting The Answers is strictly forbidden, there is literally no chance at all that they will ever be discovered to be every bit as devoid of The Answers as everyone else. It's the perfect gig for those who don't mind being revolting inside.

So realize, this is no small thing. It's a real biggie. It's such a biggie in fact that it has become the template by which we get all of our answers today. It's a well established system, it's familiar and comfortable and it completely eliminates the need to get up off your ass and get your own answers for yourself. Plus it eliminates any nagging feeling that THE Answers you are given should probably be verified. It eliminates the need for your answers to actually be correct which removes decades of loathsome self exploration and questioning to achieve balance, maturity and a philosophy of life based on reality and a value system that is genuine. That's just too much work, and face it, why engage your own brain, soul, spirit, creativity and life energy just to get The Answers when they're already in a local Answer Franchise right down the street from you, ready and waiting in convenient, easy to receive standardized formats? The work's already been done for you! And there are bona fide Answer Franchise Owners and Operators all over the place these days. Why wouldn't you take advantage of it? Everyone else does.

Medical Answer Franchises all have certified Answer Franchise Owners and Operators, licensed by the state, so wow, obviously they can't be wrong about anything. How crazy to look into your own health yourself or be responsible for your own education or political beliefs or determine your own opinions or actions about anything, when certified, bona fide Answer Franchises are everywhere you go.

It leaves you free to use all that creative energy and critical thinking ability for really important things, like filling out tax forms, or working for someone else who will get rich off your labor while you don't, or choosing a movie, or memorizing all the titles for every season of Star Trek, or finding shoes to match your purse, or figuring out how to cheat on your wife without her catching on or the other broad finding out you're married.

Those are the kinds of things we need to use our time and energy for. After all, what's more important than our immediate carnal and empty ego gratification? We need to look right, and there are Answer Franchises to tell us how to do that. We need to have certain hair cuts and shoes and jobs and go to certain schools and engage in certain leisure activities, and again, the Answer Franchises are there for every little thing in life, so you never have to figure anything out for yourself. It's just a matter of what appeals to you most. It simply can't get any easier or be more efficient or more guaranteed to ensure your security.

You can always be "right", even when you're wrong, have all The Answers, and come off as slick as a rainy road just by utilizing all the best Answer Franchises, local and global, because the whole world is now yours to access in this modern age. Could it get any better than this?

The only question I have is this. If someone feels too inadequate to the task of finding The Answers by themselves, if they feel more secure accepting as true the prefab pay as you go Answer Pack of someone else; then how can they be sure they're qualified to decide who has THE Answers or that The Answers they're being given are in fact THE Answers?

I guess it should be self evident that being right isn't all that important to Franchise members. Being really really right simply boils down to majority opinion, consensus reality. And when the Franchise owners and operators join hands and proclaim each other fabulous and credible, that appears to be the hot ticket to THE Truth.

Somehow if it turns out that in the end they were wrong or they were liars, we'll still all be off the hook because we weren't responsible for what they told us. How could we help it if they lied and people died? That's not our fault, we were only following orders. They were experts, they were overwhelmingly accepted by almost everyone, they were highly acclaimed in their fields, they had the most famous faces in Hollywood, they looked like they knew what they were talking about, they wore white coats and had stethoscopes, they had grand titles and status, they were on the biggest cable news channels, they were seen on television all the time, they were rich and making huge salaries, they went to the most prestigious universities, they were democrats, they were republicans, they were the president and the vice president ... who would have ever expected people like that to lie?

Oh come now. Who could have ever expected people like that to do anything BUT lie?

When it's THAT easy to take over the minds of millions, you almost can't blame them for trying. When it's also so very lucrative, in the end it would be down right irresistable for them. The whole world subserviently obeys the Grand Franchise Owners who are able to create a planet made to order in their own image without any fear of ever being made to account for what they say or do. Herein lies the oldest most guaranteed recipe for corruption. It's flat unavoidable.

The blame for our own ignorance lies in our own hands. Where else could it belong? Who is responsible for our lives? We are. Directly, ultimately, inescapably. That's not what they're saying in the Answer Franchises. It's one of THE Answers people need most but will never find there.

Wednesday, January 02, 2008

Did Bush Watch the Torture Tapes?

A man gets up from the sofa, walks into the kitchen and takes the last piece of scrumptious chocolate cake. He eats it. It is SO good. He wasn't supposed to eat it though, it was being saved for another family member who had to work late and missed dinner. It was a rotten thing to do. When the family member finally comes home tired and hungry, a dinner plate is quickly set down for them but there's no chocolate cake for dessert.

The woman says to the man, "Honey, did you eat the last piece of chocolate cake?"

The man says, "I don't recall eating it dear".

"That's odd", she replies, scratching her head. "Where on earth could it have gotten off to?"

The man grins as he brushes the last few cake crumbs off his chest. He's gotten away with it and he didn't even have to lie about it. He thinks he's so clever. By simply sidestepping the question with an abrupt change of subject, both the question and the only two possible answers changed. "I don't recall" is not an answer to the original question. There is a definite answer though. It's either yes or it's no, whether anyone 'recalls' it or not.

Sidestepping the answer by changing the question is a staple tactic of the bush gang. They all have the worst memories on the face of the earth too. They do this routinely and they get away with it routinely. The best part for them is they can never be busted or punished for being big fat liars. They haven't technically lied. If they lied that could be proven and they could be prosecuted. But good luck trying to prove whether or not anyone can remember something.

While this has always worked beautifully in the past, in this case it backfired.

In the first place, how can anyone claim not to remember watching someone being brutally tortured? How could that 'slip the mind'? Witnessing someone being tortured would be impossible to forget.

The torture photos released by the press a few years back will be forever seared into the memory of all who saw them. No one forgets the hooded man with electrodes attached to his body. Someone with severe dementia would probably still retain that memory.

How much more shocking would it be to watch actual live torture taking place? Hearing the screams, the begging and pleading to make it stop, the terror, the agony, the blood. Who could forget seeing that?

What kind of person could really forget seeing and hearing that? Sorry, I'm not buying it. Only a guilty person would claim they can't remember, and they'd be lying. Maybe it's time to bring out the lie detector and see how well he does keeping up his "I don't recall" story.

If the president swears he really can't remember then he has a very serious, very scary mental illness, I mean worse than the one we already know about. Which means he's either lying through his teeth, or he is not mentally sound enough to run the country. In this particular case it's clearly both.

We already know that the president watched these videos because he refuses to answer the question. We know he's lying. We know much more than that too.

The torture videos were made on orders from the top. They wanted to watch them. Rumsfeld watched them. Cheney watched them. bush watched them. The lawyers watched them. The upper echelon of the military/intelligence gang watched them. How do I know that? Easy. Because you and I never got a chance to watch them. Those tapes were under the absolute control of these people and only they could have the power to make sure nobody else ever got a look at them. If they didn't have total control over those tapes they would have gone to the media and the whole torture thing would have blown up in their faces. How would they know that what was in those tapes was so bad they couldn't let it get out? They watched them.

We already know this criminal administration loves torture. Years ago they set their lawyers to the task of working out ways to legalize torture. They are not offended by torture. They are not against it. They fully support torture, we all know this. The painful, embarrassing, shameful reality is that the bush gang alone brought torture back out of the dark ages and into modern day America, and they alone are its sole enthusiastic proponents.

Since torture is patently illegal, why would those who perpetrated it videotape it? How many criminals videotape their crimes? Dozens of times. Why would they? They wouldn't. It would be the last thing they'd do. It would be damning evidence against them that would guarantee prosecution and punishment.

If the perpetrators took it upon themselves to torture prisoners in some misguided attempt to gather intelligence there would be no photos, no videos, and no discussion about it. It would have involved a small group of specific individuals who would carry it out somewhere that precludes discovery. But we know that's not the case.

This torture is institutionalized. It was videotaped numerous times, cataloged and placed in a library of torture tapes, as if it were a perfectly normal procedure, which it is to the CIA. It was done with stealth because it is illegal and despicable, but it was done, repeatedly.

Videotapes are made for only one reason: to be watched. Since the torturers wouldn't want videos made and cataloged by the government, the only way torture sessions would be captured in living color and sound, is because it was ordered to be done. The only person in this country who claims to be above the law is the president. Only on his orders would such tapes be made. His orders couldn't be carried out unless he gave them to others, his administration, upper echelon military and intelligence thugs. They all knew. They are all complicit. In fact only upper echelon government and the torturers knew and participated in any of it.

The usual reasons to make videos of military action are for historical records, for teaching purposes, or to cover your butt. Video evidence presented in court can provide proof of innocence. It can prove that things were done legally, following all requirements, and that no wrongdoing occurred. But these tapes were all about wrongdoing. That rules out CYA reasons, and historical records. Which leaves training. It leaves one other thing too. Entertainment value. There's not much chance the bush gang was watching to learn anything.

We know when his lawyers saw the tapes they were adamant they be destroyed. There was no way, no how they could pull any legal tricks to cover what was in those tapes. What those tapes showed was not only illegal but morally reprehensible. The public and worldwide backlash would be so profound that bush's whole pro-torture agenda would be grasped by the scruff of the neck and tossed out into the trash heap where it belongs. The way out of such things is well known to these folks. They know that as long as no one actually sees the suffering on TV, or hears the screaming, or witnesses the demoralizing violation of another human being perpetrated by their own government, well, it's almost as good as it never happening at all. The lawyers couldn't do a thing except fly into a panic and make it clear those tapes had to be destroyed. Then voila! The tapes were destroyed.

The evidence was destroyed. That's what criminals do with evidence. Then they say they don't recall ever seeing it. Which in this case means the president's depravity is so profound that he can't recall seeing anyone tortured on video, or hearing their screams, or listening to them being brutalized by depraved well paid employees. He is so morally decomposed that watching others being brutalized slips his mind.

Why would all these high level pro-torture ghouls feel the need to lie about watching those tapes? Why wouldn't bush just say, "Yes, I saw them". He could always claim that he had nothing to do with ordering any torture, and that none of his cronies knew a thing about it. He could say he got wind of torture going on and sent in operatives to film it. He could say when he saw it he was outraged and disgusted.

Only trouble with that is, nobody would believe him.

Oh sure, we've all heard him say, "We don't torture". It must be more of that mental illness kicking in. This is the same guy who staunchly defends the illegal kidnapping of people off the streets and zooming them off to parts unknown for years of brutal torture. He's the one who deprives people of due process. He's the one who orders arrests without evidence, without warrants, and without charges. He stood right there when hundreds of photographs of vicious torture and murder were sweeping the globe leaving no doubt that we torture as much as we damned well want to. He's a big fat liar.

Bush loves torture. His whole administration loves torture, they're the torture gang. Who's going to believe him saying torture is great one minute and that it's repugnant the next? He didn't blow off the Geneva Conventions because he was wishy-washy on torture. He blew it off and put the highest law enforcement official in the country on the task of making torture legal. They made human rights quaint but not necessary, and certainly not good enough for whoever bush wants tortured. Besides, there's always the little nagging fact that neither he nor his crime gang did a thing to stop it. No one was punished, there were no trials, no honesty, no openness, and no signs of outrage. On the contrary. All the evidence was destroyed, and the only steps they raced to take were to protect the identities of everyone involved. Then they all promptly came down with a nasty bout of group amnesia.

It makes perfect sense. What's not to believe?

But wait, there's a way around all that amnesia. Where are those who did the video taping? Where are those who arranged the torture sessions, planned them, provided the checklists and reported back to those who ordered all of this? Who made the copies of the tapes and who distributed them to where ever they were told to take them? Where are the torturers? They could help fill in the memory gaps quite easily, quite thoroughly. They know who they were reporting to, and those men in turn knew who they were reporting to. That trail can be followed very easily. It's a simple thing. Has everyone forgotten the most basic elements of investigative procedure? No. Just like the fighter jets were ordered to stand down on 9-11, everyone involved in this has been ordered to stand down.

You have to admire their chutzpah. "We destroyed the tapes in order to protect the people involved who perpetrated the torture". Seems reasonable at first glance, but is it? Congress wants to know what the hell happened. Who did this torture and why? Who ordered it? Who knew about it? The government's response is simple. "We did it. And now we're covering it up. Okay?" They have to protect the criminals involved, because the criminals are them. So, obviously it would be completely unreasonable of the Congress to insist that any criminals be punished. It hurts your head, doesn't it?

So yes, bush saw the tapes. He ordered them. He ordered his lawyers to make his crimes legal but they couldn't. The evidence disappears. Business as usual. And the scummiest thugs on the face of the planet are still at the helm pretending to be decent people with terrible memory problems. It's all a game show. No one will ever be called to account for this. All it takes to get away with torture, murder, depravity, immorality, grand theft, extortion, blackmail, tyranny and all forms of destructive illegal activity up at the top is to say you don't recall.

All it would take to end this outrage is for the opposition to stop being supporters and confront these animals (no offense to our furry friends) with facts and plain logic and then to demand punishment in the highest order. The opposition is every bit as complicit. This show is being staged to assist in that complicity and ensure that no wrongdoing will ever be punished. It looks like Congress did its job in addressing this scandal when it actually protected the guilty. And Americans will believe justice was done when in fact it was completely subverted. This is fascism. It's not coming friends, it's here.

"All it takes for evil to flourish is for good men to do nothing" - Edmund Burke

Tuesday, January 01, 2008


It's a brand new year and the big wheel is turning. It would be a whole lot better if it wasn't turning on us. It feels like time is growing shorter for those of us who believe in justice and equal rights to raise awareness. It was in thinking along those lines that a simple truth came to mind.

If we truly want freedom, if we really want to be self ruling and live in a country whose government respects the rights of the individual, we might do well to remember this rule of thumb:

Never take orders from rich people.

Rich people have nothing in common with us. Their concerns, goals and perspectives are in direct opposition to ours. Our problems are not problems in the lives of the rich, they aren't interested in helping us solve them. In fact the biggest problem of the rich is our insistence that they do something about our problems.

Unfortunately it is precisely our problems that make the rich rich, and the powerful powerful. They have no incentive to solve them. It is safe to say they never will.

History proves they've always done everything they can to avoid solving the basic, solvable problems the non rich of the world share.

There is enough for everyone to live a good life in this world. But those who control nations do not want to share. They want to dominate and control all wealth, all power, and all resources because only in this way are they able to continue dominating all others and unjustly keep for themselves the vast majority of the wealth and good living we all create and deserve our true share of.

Keeping themselves in control of our government lets them make and uphold the laws that let them do it, and get away with it, and not have to suffer answering to anyone for it.

This explains why there is more than enough food, housing and education to go around and yet ever increasing numbers of hungry, homeless and uneducated people.

If those in power shared our concerns and our values, the tremendous possibilities would long ago have been tapped and by now these basic eternal problems of the working class and the poor would have been solved. All it would take is education, guidance and a little ongoing support.

The cost of educating a nation into self-empowerment and successful individual-level free enterprise would be a fraction of the current yearly national expense, most of which lines the pockets of the wealthy owners of corporations and their shareholders who happen to also be our elected millionaire congress, the president, his cabinet and loyalists, the war profiteers, and the extra-governmental organizations who really run the world and this country.

We have paid a thousand times over for this government to solve every existing one of our problems. The problems are not solved, they continue to grow unabated. Where is all of our money going then? To the rich who promptly do nothing with it that could possibly solve any of those problems. They funnel the money to themselves and each other in a maze of noble sounding ways that are nothing but subterfuge. These tactics have worked exceptionally well for the last hundred years to further their own wealth and power at our ignorant expense.

Take for example the fact that there is enough money, ability and human talent out there to provide full health care to everyone. For all we pay, this should be the healthiest country in the world. But it is among the worst off for access to and quality of health care for the people. It is a lie that costs have anything to do with it. Costs are a tool of the rich that benefit the rich and deprive the non-rich from something that can save their lives.

The same is true for all opportunity. Every road to individual empowerment and individual independence could long ago have been paved if this government of by and for the rich, held that goal and intent. But it holds the opposite goal and intent.

It seeks always to prevent the true independence of the people. It's goal is to totally dominate all of the resources that are needed by all, and to silence, undermine and eliminate all fair competition and dissent against their total control. Monopolizing power and access to necessities and the means to a better life creates the means for them to decide who lives and who dies, who is rewarded and who is punished, who succeeds and who fails, who is imprisoned and who is free, and who may speak out and who may not.

So if the people of our country want to be dominated down to what we are allowed to think, then keep doing what we've been doing to bring the rich into power over us. Keep them there above us all and keep giving them our hard earned dollars to pay them for using us and to pay for and man the systems they've devised to stay in power over us. Keep voting for the provided rich people we are forced to choose from who share none of our concerns or values.

We would be infinitely better off in locating another person who grew up in a log cabin and was so poor they had no shoes and electing them into the office of the president. We should find the battle-weary honest representatives of the poorest, most downtrodden, most oppressed struggling people in our country and put them into all the positions in Congress and the Defense department and the State department and every other department. Then, and only then, would this country begin to show any care at all about the realities of the human beings that live in it and instead of using us for our money and labor, we would be using government to make our lives and this country, and this world a much better place than it ever was.

It is hardly impossible. It's just not likely because they will go to any steps to prevent the poor and the working class from obtaining the power they have always monopolized. That and because we still believe the charades of power and we still play the games at every election. We don't see the most obvious truth that rich people are not us, and until we figure out that obvious fact we will continue to watch the country systematically looted while embroiled in endless wars of aggression abroad, and we will continue to endure acts of terrorism within that convince us to go along with what the rich want. No matter which team you pick, it has been provided by the rich, and so we will all continue to lose.

We have to wake up to defend ourselves. But I'm afraid too many of us love our habits, day dreams and illusions of freedom and democracy more than our real personal rights, real freedom, real democracy or any of the endless possibilities for real change in our lives.

If we can't break through the mass hypnosis of the people to spread the urgent message, "It is time to get informed and wake up! We are under attack from within!", then we will all stand and watch as our own people, of noble intent but tricked into believing that wrong is right, put everything they've got into helping the rich take the last crumb and the last bit of freedom this country will ever see again.

If nothing else we can memorize the rule of thumb and spread it around: "Never take orders from rich people". Most folks can remember and believe that much, its message of truth is self evident and won't encounter much doubt. Perhaps it will even get people thinking and we'll all be much better off for that, immediately.

If the idea of putting the poor and downtrodden in control unnerves you, here is what you fear: that they will actively seek to improve their circumstances and that in the process you will be made to pay. If you know that the poor would automatically put their own predictable agenda at the top of our government's policy then you must have no doubt that the rich who are in power now are doing the same, and have been doing the same since before you were born. You are already being made to pay for an agenda that does not serve your needs or have anything in common with your goals. You are paying to support the rich.

Those in power now don't care about being fair to others, nor are they interested in being reasonable. They are only interested in cementing in their own permanent dominance and will break every rule to achieve that end. It is a struggle for total dominance of our political system that we find ourselves in, whether we are conscious of it or not.

At present there is only one voice in control, only one voice on the airwaves, and more frightening is a serious movement to make all other voices into terrorists. We are on the verge of losing everything friends.
We must demand fair representation and equal benefit of all policies to all our citizens or else accept the continued monopolizing of our great national wealth and power by the rich for the rich at our expense and increasing detriment.

Any upset that would put others in power would be an improvement for the vast majority of this country. But be careful who you choose during the next election. They will be dedicated to their own personal agenda, there is no other way they can proceed. Make sure you really understand who they are.

The rich and powerful are the smallest group among us. This is a group that has no wants or needs. Does it make sense that all policy decisions, wealth and power should be funneled directly to them? Does it make sense that we should have to pay for all their unfair advantages over us? Does it make sense that our laws put their desires above our own legal rights and that law protects their wrong doing, leaving us to deal with the damages they cause us all? Is that democratic? Is it even sane? Had enough yet?

In order to have just rule by the people we must stop taking orders from the rich. And judging by the lateness of the hour we had better get started on it right away.