Archive for June, 2013

Whose side you on, Barry…?

June 17, 2013
All right Mr. President, it’s time to declare.

You with us…or against us?  No more bullshit.

You hate freedom…or what?  You’re acting like maybe you do.

You believe that a vibrant middle class is what makes this country great…the envy of the rest of the world?  Then why on earth are you allowing creepy people to systematically destroy it?  Without saying a fucking word to stop it.

You believe in the American way — where all people are equal under the law.  Where people have equal opportunities to flourish and to succeed?  Then why have you allowed the deck to get stacked against all but the rich and the powerful?  Why?

You believe in the democratic process — that allows the citizens of this country to select…and fairly and openly,  elect representatives to represent them — and their points of view — when dealing with the great and small issues our country needs to reconcile — to preserve our American life?  Then why haven’t you turned your Attorney General loose on the wholesale and disgusting Campaign Financing abuse and massive lobbying abuse that buys our elected representatives — before they ever get to Washington. Why aren’t you putting people in jail for bribery…and for accepting bribes?  What the hell are you waiting for?  Democracy is rapidly becoming a joke in this administration.  To a point beyond repair I fear.

Do you believe that this country has an obligation in insuring “fairness” anymore?  You thinking that the vast majority of Americans should be penalized with cutbacks in vital educational and health and human services spending – and in cuts in social safety net supports — while the hyper-rich pay way less than their share of taxes – personal and corporate taxes?  If they pay any at all.  You thinking that’s fair, Barry? Why haven’t you done a single thing about this…beyond allowing it to continue?

Why are you filling all the financial oversight jobs in the Treasury and the SEC with the same people who created the problem in the first place?  What’s up with that Mr. President?  Why have you and your cabinet members allowed the Dodd Frank bill to be shredded?  What the hell are you thinking?  These “too big to fail” bastards will take us over a cliff again. You should have put them in jail (or hanged them) when you had the chance.  It looks suspiciously, like there’s a real good chance you may be working with them.  Are you?

And now this whole surveillance thing.  What has been your thinking on this one Mr. President?  You renewed with a vengeance, the goddamn Patriot Act in all its unconstitutional glory — that extended everything that was obscenely wrong with Baby Bush’s neocon revenge on America — like it was of your own making.  And this was after you told us how you were committed to removing this “blot” on American values — at your very first opportunity.  Just like you were going to reverse the Habeas Corpus rights suspension…and you were going to close Guantanamo Bay.

But you changed your mind on all that…and then fully supported and allowed (and funded) the continuation of the secret collection and archiving, and data processing – and real-time tracking — of citizen’s phone correspondence, email, internet search data, social media postings, private health and financial data — and indeed tracking of personal movements by cannily embedded GPS tracking systems and surveillance cameras with facial recognition capability.  Sounds pretty “police state-y” to me, Mr. President.

So where are you on this one?  And don’t give me that “the terrorists made me do it” routine.  I never did buy that one.  Hell, we can’t stop a plane from flying into the biggest buildings in NYC when we know they are coming for months in advance.  But then, that little event was the catalyst for the ‘faster than a speeding bullet’ passage of the Patriot Act — which trumped right reason and the American way — and was used to justify the instantaneously fabricated Homeland Security juggernaut that implemented all these systems and controls to keep people in place and under control. Oh, the urgency of it all…

And everyone knew they were being hustled…and, as it all started getting put together and implemented — everyone pretty much knew that all this data collection of fucking everything personal and private – and all the GPS and camera tracking, wasn’t about tracking terrorists…but was, more precisely, about tracking and controlling us…as we are slipping under.

So, Mr. President, I’m thinking that the Booz Allen boys (who our budding young exemplar whistleblower worked for) – and the really nasty Carlyle Group creeps who own Booz Allen – and who, once you get into it a bit, have pretty much written the script for the eclipse of the American dream since Bush One neocon days — must have gotten to you somewhere along the line.  Back on the old ‘neocon highway’ as it were — to finish the job that just wasn’t quite complete yet.

So, I’d like to know about where you are on all this stuff as well.  Can’t believe your taking money…so, you got a big job promise after you hang up your spurs or something? Or, are you just scared to death of these guys?

Like the rest of us…

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On whistleblowers…they’re better people than the rest of us.

June 12, 2013

Too many times – particularly over the past 20 years – I have been haunted by “knowing” that there was a great hustle going on that I really needed to be concerned about — and needed to protest…but I just didn’t have proof that what I thought was going on, was right.

Sometimes, ‘time’ and reveal articles written by “after-the-fact truth sayers” — who actually knew something because they were part of the hustle in the first place, proved me right…that we were indeed being hustled.  And sometimes, when I thought we were being hustled big time — what I thought was going on, while plausible, was either wrong or wasn’t completely right — or, was revealed to be a hustle sure enough — but was different than what I thought it was. But, overall and mostly, my ability to recognize when I’m having smoke blown up my ass has been pretty reliable.

I have a pretty good sense of smell for these kinds of things it seems. For bullshit, that is. When, despite piles of assurances, and reams of apparent supporting evidence, and groundswells of public embracement of the facts being offered — I just kind of know when things just don’t add up or make sense. When the answers and evidence offered to justify and explain something untoward, creepy or just plain hinky…simply defies plausibility. When people are lying their asses off.

All of which leaves me in an uncomfortable position of knowing/sensing/intuiting a lie has just been offered to explain an action that is, to at least some degree – bullshit…and frustrated beyond belief, because there are no real and solid facts to show that what has been offered — has been contrived to make me (read here ‘us’) believe that something bad — is something good and righteous.

The point here is that there is nothing more frustrating than an undelivered “reveal” of a missing truth.  At least for me. Particularly on the big lies. And certainly, I’m sure the frustration is even more true for many whose job it is to ferret out what’s really is going on versus what we are being lead to believe is going on — like investigative reporters.  At least back when telling the truth — no matter what — was part of the job description.

Then there are those who know the truth about something — where those who are involved in the deception are trying to keep it secret (i.e. the “real” reason for the development of a massive surveillance program) — or to justify their actions with lies (i.e. the bullshit WMD rationale offered as justification of the invasion of Iraq)…who may even be compelled to tell the truth…who weigh the personal trade-offs of doing so…and decide the risk is too great and the reward not worth it.

And then there are those few who are compelled to tell the truth about what’s going on — and reach the conclusion that speaking the truth is so absolute critical for the greater good — that they “have to tell the truth” because the trade-offs are so profoundly tilted towards the greater good that they trump the personal concerns that accrue as the consequence of doing so. And they do the selfless thing…and throw caution to the wind, and blow it out there. Personal risk considered and traded off for the greater good.

And each time I see it done by completely sane and sensible people, I am blown away by their bravery and willingness to believe, so completely — that what they are doing is right and completely necessary — and that they are ‘moved’ out of the shear intensity to do right for the world — and that they have the personal integrity and commitment to act out of their beliefs.  Wow.  Just fucking wow!  You just don’t see that much any more.

Tragically, whistle blowers are an endangered species these days…such is the commitment to lying and creating cover-ups and cloaks of secrecy to justify doing things that are inherently wrong…for personal gain…or, because of the belief the actions considered and taken are the right ones…when they are wrong ones.

And in relief…there are all those who also knew the truth — and knew that what they knew was justified by lies…and were clearly not supportive of the greater good — who may or may not have actually been involved in the actions and deceptions in the first place — and who were fully aware of the scope of consequence that the deception inherently contained…who maybe even felt badly about what was being done — and what was being lied about — and who said nothing.

Who said nothing, because perhaps, their conscience wasn’t developed quite enough…or their instincts toward survival of the species wasn’t acute enough…or their sense of altruism towards mankind and others in community, wasn’t strong enough — or because “honor and integrity” were foreign concepts to them — or because their “fear of personal consequence” of ratting out the perpetrators, overwhelmed the need to preserve the greater good. Or, perhaps and more likely, because they just didn’t give a shit.

And then there are all those…including me, too frequently…who intuitively know that something of grave importance with massive consequence is being done — that is really wrong…that just doesn’t make sense with everything else we know — who hold back — or worse, who “swallow whole” the lies offered as deception and as a cover-up.  And don’t say shit…even through they have a mouthful.

So, I’m thinking, God bless the whistleblowers — because they force us to know what we don’t know — and, entirely too frequently, what we don’t want to know — to deal with the truth.  And because they are better people than the rest of us are. They just are.

Liars and deceivers hate whistle blowers because they reveal their duplicity — and their malicious, misguided and ocassionally evil intent.

Whistle blowers embarrass those who know the truth and the deception — and the dimension of consequence — but can’t find the courage to speak the truth.

They stand in stark relief against those who have no concern or interest.

And they make most of us arm chair opinion jockeys — who ride the fence and never take positions…because we’ve never been challenged to do so…and because we don’t have to — look precisely the way we should look. Pathetic. Because we never demanded the truth when it was absolutely critical to do so.  We let it slide.