Sam Smith – If you step back from the ideological goals of ISIS, it is clear that its way of achieving these goals is what upsets decent folks the most, a presumption that if what you are seeking is considered godly, then you are entitled to achieve it anyway you want.
We are horrified when we read of the ways that ISIS acts on this presumption, but we fail to note how this same concept is increasingly driving public behavior in the United States. Thus it is argued by some:
- That police may kill, injure or abuse persons at will provided that they do it in the name of law and order.
- That America may use drones regardless of how many civilians are killed, provided that at least one presumed target is declared a terrorist.
- That Republicans can pass legislation that results in the death, hunger or homeless of large number of citizens provided that it is done in the name of its political goals.
It is hard to argue effectively against such proto-ISIS behavior when our churches are quiet, the media disinterested, and our universities too busy finding new dollars from students and corporations. We must first understand far better than we do how modern corporatism promoted by morally vapid MBAs, modern law controlled by morally indifferent lawyers, and a media interested only in power and not how it was obtained have helped get us to this spot.
We may not be as bad as ISIS, but we are headed in that direction.
The recent IMF loans to Ukraine with their dictatorial provisions are one more example of the world’s concealed great war, which is to say the massive invasion of nationhood by corporations. Far more dangerous than any current military threat, corporations have already taken huge territories, legal and financial as well as geographical. Our politicians, many of them covert allies of the corporations, say little of this. And the major media, massive corporations themselves, steadfastly hide the truth from their audience.
For America, not since the Civil War has the sovereignty and constitution of this land come under such assault. In the two previous great wars the damage mostly occurred across two great oceans. Now the victims of the battle are in the heart of our land, witness the deleterious economic effects of NAFTA, the political disaster of Citizens United and the corporate assault on our public schools parading as education reform. Nestles is grabbing our water, our language has been mangled by corporate gobbledygook and even non-profits have adopted the organizational misanthropy of modern corporations.
Without debate, without formal conflict, without even much consciousness, we have absorbed the principles of America’s greediest, adopted their language, and surrendered our constitution and other values to their will. Our last three presidents have been willing participants in undermining our sovereignty, our values and our culture. One might well expect this of a Bush, but Clinton and Obama were just as deeply involved and their liberal constituency hardly said a mumblin’ word.
We may not win this war but we certainly won’t until we admit we are in it and must stand as firmly for American standards and beliefs as we have in great military conflicts.
The Battle of the Economic Bulge – aka TPP – is the struggle presently before us, involving arguably the most disloyal legislation since secession. We still have time to stand up against it. But to do so, we can’t pretend it’s just another measure. We have to recognize the stakes of the battle that we’re in. Our leaders are not surrendering America, they’re just selling it away bit by bit. But the results could well be the same.