Saturday, September 16, 2006
Regime-Speak: Three Examples
There are myriad ways in which the people who rule us, and those who shill and flack on their behalf, express their disdain for our intelligence. Perhaps the most common expressions of contempt are the gems of transparent hypocrisy or starkly obvious dishonesty that litter the public statements and writings of the ruling class.
Such moments offer a tacit but unmistakable message: “We can afford to be candid, because the public at large isn't paying attention – and those who do we can easily denigrate as paranoid types.”
The news yesterday (Friday, September 15 – the birthday of my incomparably lovely wife Korrin, incidentally) offered several suitable illustrations of what I'm describing, which I'll call “Regime-Speak” for want of a better description.
Toward the end of his syndicated column – in which he admitted that the impending war with Iran would be an economic, diplomatic, and military disaster, yet insisted that war was the only rational course of action -- Charles Krauthammer decanted this specimen:
“Then there is the larger danger of permitting nuclear weapons to be acquired by religious fanatics seized with an eschatological belief in the imminent apocalypse and in their own divine duty to hasten the End of Days.... Against millenarian fanaticism glorying in a cult of death, deterrence is a mere wish. Is the West prepared to wager its cities with their millions of inhabitants on that feeble gamble?”
As I read those lines, I found myself asking: “do you mean apocalyptic religious fanatics like John Hagee, and the rest of the Ecclesio-Leninist Armageddon Lobby?”
Nope. Krauthammer wasn't referring to pseudo-Christian men of the polyester like Hagee, who want to nuke Iran as a way of triggering the End Times. He's talking about their addle-pated Iranian analogues, who are just as devoted to an eschatalogical vision more or less identical, but who -- unlike the American apocalypticists who are tightly allied with Bush -- don't have the luxury of a huge nuclear arsenal to wreak havoc on the region.
Elsewhere in the headlines, I noticed that the regime's counterfeiting arm, known colloquially as the Federal Reserve system, is going after the good folks at NORFED, creators of the privately circulated Liberty Dollar.
The Liberty Dollar comes in various denominations, either in silver or gold or in negotiable notes (storage receipts accepted on a voluntary basis by merchants who understand the system) backed by gold and silver.
The appendage of the regime calling itself the “Justice” Department insists that voluntary use of the Liberty Dollar “is a crime,” reported USA Today.
Think of this for a second.
The Constitution specifies that the government can only use gold and silver as money. The “Justice” Department insists that the use of gold and silver is a crime.
"We don't want consumers to be fooled," lied U.S. Mint spokeswoman Becky Bailey. "The United States Mint is the only entity that can produce coins.”
Mizzzzzz Bailey is not only dishonest, she's apparently illiterate as well, since she probably meant to say that only the Mint “may” produce coins, not that it is the only entity that “can” do so. NORFED and other private interests are obviously capable of creating beautiful gold and silver coins, they simply don't have the regime's permission to circulate them.
Compare the Liberty Dollar's glorious silver bullion coin to the regime's ugly little scrap metal slugs:
Reciting the regime's party line in a way that is both dutiful and bulimic, USA Today complains that the precious metal coins manufactured by NORFED are often “accepted unknowingly by clerks who are unaware they are not receiving real money” -- an inversion of reality so brazen it might cause a double-take from a desk-bound drone at the Ministry of Truth.
McPaper similar “reports”: “The Mint notes the coins share some resemblances to real money, such as the term `Trust in God' instead of `In God We Trust' and use of a torch in the design. Such similarities may confuse people into thinking the money is real, the Mint says.”
Here's the “truth,” as the regime would have us accept it: “Real” money has no real money (precious metal) in it. Real money isn't “real,” because it consists entirely of precious metal, without the missing ingredients necessary to make “real money”: Force (the government compels people to use FRNs as legal currency) and fraud (the government refers to ugly pieces of scrap paper as “dollars,” even though the term “dollar," per a 1792 law, refers to a specific quantity -- 371.25 grams -- of pure silver).
Everybody got that? It doesn't matter. Our rulers recognize that most people don't choose to think, and has ways of marginalizing those of us who do.
Additional samples of Regime-Speak were found in abundance during the Wee Decider's press conference yesterday.
Hunched over and gesticulating in full General Urko mode, the War Prezidunt was frustrated that the Republican Senate isn't quite as enthusiastic as he would like when it comes to authorizing “coercive interrogation” techniques – y'know, what honest people call torture.
The Decider was particularly outraged by the suggestion that the use of torture undermines the moral standing of our country:
“If there’s any comparison between the compassion and decency of the American people and the terrorist tactics of extremists, that’s flawed -- flawed logic.... It’s just -- just -- I -- I simply can’t accept that. It’s unacceptable to think that there’s any kind of comparison between the behavior of the United States of America and the action of Islamic extremists who kill innocent women and children and -- to achieve an objective.’’
Let's see: When Washington bombs and invades a nation that neither attacked nor threatened us, thereby killing (inter alia)"innocent women and children," following a decade-long embargo that killed tens of thousands of "innocent women and children," it must be displaying "the compassion and decency of the American people."
So stammered our Logician-in-Chief.
Of course, the issue here isn't the behavior of the country at large, but rather some elements of the military and intelligence organs of the regime that rules us. And it's significant that the military itself has opposed the means and methods the Bush regime is trying to institutionalize, such as extra-constitutional terrorism tribunals, “extraordinary rendition,” and the use of torture.
But then again, to the extent that the population allows itself to be gulled into compliant silence, we do share the moral responsibility for the crimes committed by the regime ruling in our name.
As an unfrozen caveman blogger, I've yet to master all of the features of Blogger, which is new and frightening to me. So I'll just mention a couple of important links here:
The New American magazine -- "That Freedom Shall Not Perish."
World-class information entrepreneur Tai Aguirre, who created the terrific investigative radio program "Scams & Scandals" (later "Could YOU Be Next?"), has a new weekly program entitled The ExPat Show, for which I provide a regular feature called "Global News and Commentary."
Please check them out!
at 10:12 AM