Saturday, August 26, 2006
by Hanno T. Beck (originally written January 28, 2003) http://www.progress.org/2003/america1.htm
Terms such as "American values" and "anti-American" are all too often used by politicians and news media without careful definition. Here are some ideas toward clarifying what we mean by "American values."
The citizens of the United States have been feeling extra stress recently, concerning war against the citizens of Iraq. At the time of this writing, polls indicate that most oppose the war.
When facing stress, many people revisit basic, fundamental questions that had not been recently examined. For instance, what are American values? How do you know if a person is anti-American or a patriot?
Let us make a start right now. Here, for your consideration, are some of the hallmarks of the distinction between truly American values, and the anti- American values that some try to use instead.
American Characteristics in BLACK
Anti-American Characteristics in RED
Holds the U.S. government to high standards of ethics, openness and fairness. When the government fails to meet these standards, criticize it in order to bring the mistakes forward so that they may be corrected.
Feels anxious when hearing criticism of the U.S. government, and feels worried that criticism will weaken it.
Believes strongly in inventiveness, entrepreneurship, and human initiative. Opposes taxes that hinder production, opposes corporate welfare handouts, opposes government-sponsored special privileges such as "limited liability" rules.
Is quick to embrace corporate welfare, special privileges and other government interventions, rather than initiative.
Wants America to have lots of flexible options for energy sources.
Wants America to be dependent on petroleum as an energy source.
Thinks critics of the status quo are patriotic.
Thinks critics of the status quo are unpatriotic.
Believes in the special preciousness of human life. Opposes government sponsored killing programs such as war and capital punishment.
Believes that governments have the right to kill their own citizens and the citizens of other countries.
Believes that the best way to lead people is to understand and help them.
Believes that the best way to lead people is to be powerful.
Supports freedom of speech throughout society.
Is worried or made anxious by others' use of freedom of speech.
Favors freedom of religion and feels proud to live in a land where people of many religious backgrounds co-exist.
Feels threatened by unfamiliar religions, and seeks to have just one religion given special privileges.
Patriotism involves wanting the best for all Americans and demanding the best government in the world.
Patriotism means asserting that the U.S. government is already the best and brooks no criticism.
Strongly supports the right to privacy. Does not want government collecting information about individuals; opposes laws that criminalize victimless private behavior.
Supports centralized government collection of individual information. Favors the government "war on drugs."
Considers commerce (buying and selling) to be a private matter, not a government concern. Therefore, opposes tariffs against international trade, and sales taxes against domestic trade.
Does not mind government intrusion in commerce, such as tariffs or sales taxes.
Tuesday, August 15, 2006
Characteristics Of Fascism
By Dr. Lawrence Britt
Source: Free Inquiry Magazine
Dr. Lawrence Britt has examined the fascist regimes of Hitler (
Black type are the original quotes, and red type are my comments.
1. Powerful and Continuing Nationalism - Fascist regimes tend to make constant use of patriotic mottos, slogans, symbols, songs, and other paraphernalia. Flags are seen everywhere, as are flag symbols on clothing and in public displays.
Of course it is American to display the flag, but better yet it is becoming so much Un-American to say anything against the country, leaders, or flag.
2. Disdain for the Recognition of Human Rights - Because of fear of enemies and the need for security, the people in fascist regimes are persuaded that human rights can be ignored in certain cases because of "need." The people tend to look the other way or even approve of torture, summary executions, assassinations, long incarcerations of prisoners, etc.
Torture, laws about spying on citizens, locking people up with no trial or arrest, secret tribunals, secret arrests which by law can put you in a military court without representation.
3. Identification of Enemies/Scapegoats as a Unifying Cause - The people are rallied into a unifying patriotic frenzy over the need to eliminate a perceived common threat or foe: racial , ethnic or religious minorities; liberals; communists; socialists, terrorists, etc.
Muslims are today being singled out as the leading terrorist cause. Just like the Jews in the 40’s, Muslims are all evil and should be exterminated. In order to better identify enemies at home we are being subjected to far worse screening then ever before. This is getting worse and worse. Our “trusted” news anchors are calling for extermination, and nukes over the
4. Supremacy of the Military - Even when there are widespread
domestic problems, the military is given a disproportionate amount of government funding, and the domestic agenda is neglected. Soldiers and military service are glamorized.
Oh my gosh, do I even have to mention anything here? You don’t even have to believe anything we say, but it is pretty clear our military and contractors (the military industrial complex) get most of the money in the
5. Rampant Sexism - The governments of fascist nations tend to be almost exclusively male-dominated. Under fascist regimes, traditional gender roles are made more rigid. Divorce, abortion and homosexuality are suppressed and the state is represented as the ultimate guardian of the family institution.
This is definitely the case in the
6. Controlled Mass Media - Sometimes to media is directly controlled by the government, but in other cases, the media is indirectly controlled by government regulation, or sympathetic media spokespeople and executives. Censorship, especially in war time, is very common.
Our mass media is way more than controlled. Our government buys multiple millions of dollars of advertisements, and at least a Billion dollars on one campaign of fake news. Our mainstream media just drools over the chance to spout more and more lies from the government, no matter how ridiculous they are.
7. Obsession with National Security - Fear is used as a motivational tool by the government over the masses.
Are you kidding me? The
8. Religion and Government are Intertwined - Governments in fascist nations tend to use the most common religion in the nation as a tool to manipulate public opinion. Religious rhetoric and terminology is common from government leaders, even when the major tenets of the religion are diametrically opposed to the government's policies or actions.
Most Christian leaders would NEVER in a million years agree with our foreign policy, yet we haven’t spoken up. Christians do NOT believe in torture, killing the innocent, or of many other policies our government is doing. For sure the amount of money laundering, stealing, and outright felonies our government perpetuates goes against all of God’s laws.
9. Corporate Power is Protected - The industrial and business aristocracy of a fascist nation often are the ones who put the government leaders into power, creating a mutually beneficial business/government relationship and power elite.
Corporatism is the
10. Labor Power is Suppressed - Because the organizing power of labor is the only real threat to a fascist government, labor unions are either eliminated entirely, or are severely suppressed.
I don’t know much about this one. Maybe somebody can e-mail about unions. We should get some really good labor lawyers to find out what the trend is here.
11. Disdain for Intellectuals and the Arts - Fascist nations tend to promote and tolerate open hostility to higher education, and academia. It is not uncommon for professors and other academics to be censored or even arrested. Free expression in the arts and letters is openly attacked.
This has already started. Many academics have been blacklisted, jailed, and accused of crimes when all they were doing was their normal academic practice. Google this up and you will see a trend here. Once again, if there are doctors and professors out there who have been following this, let me know.
12. Obsession with Crime and Punishment - Under fascist regimes, the police are given almost limitless power to enforce laws. The people are often willing to overlook police abuses and even forego civil liberties in the name of patriotism. There is often a national police force with virtually unlimited power in fascist nations.
A total police state is basically in place. Most federal swat team practices are being implemented in city government police. SWAT teams are now black mask, Darth Vader outfit type cammo gear. It is becoming more and more where our local police are replaced with what looks to be the military. This goes to show that our military and military practices will really replace all normal police in a matter of time. Certainly during any future threat they will all spring into action together and swift. Please look into how much Federal money your local police stations are getting for complying with certain Federal mandates.
13. Rampant Cronyism and Corruption - Fascist regimes almost always are governed by groups of friends and associates who appoint each other to government positions and use governmental power and authority to protect their friends from accountability. It is not uncommon in fascist regimes for national resources and even treasures to be appropriated or even outright stolen by government leaders.
This is happening. Many land grabs are happening because of lawyers, officials, and corporations are all in league together. There were trillions of dollars missing from the Pentagon’s budget and then 9-11 happened. Just Google government corruption and you will get quite a laundry list.
14. Fraudulent Elections - Sometimes elections in fascist nations are a complete sham. Other times elections are manipulated by smear campaigns against or even assassination of opposition candidates, use of legislation to control voting numbers or political district boundaries, and manipulation of the media. Fascist nations also typically use their judiciaries to manipulate or control elections.
ummm, 2000 and 2004? 2004 was by far the most horrific. It was pretty plain during the 2004 elections that it was stolen. I didn’t necessarily want the other guy in office, but I also didn’t want our Country to elect someone with less than 50% of the popular vote. It also came out afterwards that
Most of these conditions are met now. They are just getting worse every day. Wake up and start reading, or we’re all screwed.
Tuesday, August 08, 2006
What we need is a bi-partisan tech branch, which works for Congress. They wouldn't support PC's and stuff, but would be driven by project requests from Congress members. We absolutely do not want to have any political appointees, but long-term hires which would work from administration to administration. They would be a mix of management, engineers, and assistants. When Congress has bills to review with technology in them, the technical branch would also get a copy and assist with the required parts.
We wouldn't want money, or lobby groups, or other external influences getting in the way here. Pay the employees a fair market salary, with good benefits. Lets cut through all the red tape and just get Congress the real deal information, without spin. Does this sound too unbelievable? It can happen. Congress is paid to make the decisions for this country. They should have bi-partisan support services working for them they can trust.
I think this idea could work for a whole host of other support services Congress needs as well.
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Wednesday, August 02, 2006
Violence is violence. Terrorism is Terrorism. Let’s not blur the two lines. Look up the definitions for yourself. Personally, terrorism is an act which is designed to bring terror into a place for the purpose of furthering an agenda for another place. Violence is when you are being violent, but does not fit the definition of terrorism. Think of it in a top-down scenario. Terrorism is first, and then violence. If something matches terrorism then that is what it is. Let’s not read into things deeper than that, or we enter politics. Politically you can swing any crime as terrorism in order to further some agenda.
I find that Michelle typically will swing any story in favor of Israel in order to further her political agenda. I simply want to know the truth, and the facts.
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