Patriotism in the U.S

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Fascism should more
properly be called corporatism since it is
the merger of
state and corporate power

-Benito Mussolini

Estimated Prophet
"Whenever the people are well-informed, they can be trusted with their own government."
-Thomas Jefferson

"...conquest of the earth, which mostly means the taking it away from those who have a different complexion or slightly flatter nose than ourselves, is not a pretty thing when you look into it too much. What redeems it is the idea only. An idea at the back of it; not a sentimental pretense but an idea- something you can set up, and bow down before, and offer a sacrifice to..."

-Heart Of Darkness by Joseph Conrad

The world's major religions have a different perspective of human ideals, especially where they concern this administration's war of pre-emptive aggression on Iraq than do the Bush administration's neo-conservative hawks. Read "This War Brought to You by..."

What is this idea? Who promulgates it and why? Have you thought about the sacrifices, in lives, in our credibility on the world stage, in freedoms we are seeing tacken at home. On our economy now and in the next 10 years...

In addition to that last link, here are some links that offer crucial background on the actual reasons for America waging pre-emptive war:

"Dick Cheney's Song for America" by David Armstrong as it appeared in Harpers Magazine. PDF link and a HTML link

The Robert Dreyfuss article from Mother Jones " The Thirty-Year Itch" (I've linked these before, I know, but folks should read them.)

I suppose it all comes down to a simple question. "Where is your heart? What values do you really hold true?."

When weighing proposition "Is what the Bush administration succeeded in doing, prosecuting pre-emptive war, correct, justifiable, something a good American can stand by as a person of morals, of conscience?", it is a big one. We see the basic nature of the question obscured by stirrings of the idea that to think at all in the time of conflict is unpatriotic, that to keep the inquiry about the validity and nature of this war alive, now that the rush to war has been accomplished and we have people in the field is "not supporting our Troops". This question made larger still by the media, a very potent force in shaping our collective reality and a force with a vested interest. Can/should you blindly follow, is that what Democracy is about? Is that what is best for our country?

We are fighting war on two fronts- the Bush administration has not finished the "war on terror" in Afghanistan yet.

The following quote is from an commentary by Paul Craig Roberts in the conservative (Rev. Moon owned) Washington Times.

We must make clear to the Germans that the wrong for which their fallen leaders are on trial is not that they lost the war, but that they started it. And we must not allow ourselves to be drawn into a trial of the causes of the war for our position is that no grievances or policies will justify resort to aggressive war. It is utterly renounced and condemned as an instrument of policy.

— U.S. Supreme Court Justice Robert Jackson, U.S. representative to the International Conference on Military Trials, Aug. 12, 1945.

"Where is your heart?" Would you buy a used car from these folks, on their word? It seems sensible to "look under the hood", don't you think? Do you believe you can bomb a people into liberation, into Democracy?

We have all heard the conflicting stories told by Mr Bush and company; from the aluminum tubes to the Al-Quaida links proven false. Mr Bush in a White House press conference said he could not claim any Iraqi/ Al-quieda connection linking Iraq to the tragedy of 9-11, but he still mentions them in the same breath in speeches, seemingly suggesting a connection; perhaps playing on the misperception that some 40% of poll respondents held that Iraq did have a hand in it? Mr Powell and Tony Blair presenting a report to the UN Security council that was plagiarised from a 12 year old Doctoral Thesis. Crudely faked documents that Niger had recieved requests for uranium from Hussein's Iraq.

"Next the statesmen will invent cheap lies, putting the blame upon the nation that is attacked, and every man will be glad of those conscience-soothing falsities, and will diligently study them, and refuse to examine any refutations of them; and thus he will by and by convince himself that the war is just, and will thank God for the better sleep he enjoys after this process of grotesque self-deception."

-Mark Twain

With the inspections working, even if plodding along, is the US attack legal?

I was at the Peace March In NYC Saturday, and it felt really good to be part of Democracy in action. All told I saw few pro-war folks- oddly enough I've seen two photographs of all these people, about the sum total of all I saw; since except for a couple guys in leather jackets shouting profanities and waving signs that cried out for spellchecking, that was it numbers-wise. One picture caught one half of the group of eight or so, the other picture caught the others. I guess if you wanted to sell exclusive pictures to more than one market you have to do what you have to do... One could have easily stepped back two feet and caught them all in one frame. Sadly, the pro-war folks seem to equate being against this pre-emptive war with a lack of patriotism and a disregard for the safety of our troops. I did notice that the media focused on a minority of protesters that gave the police a hard time and were violent after the march ended. I'm sorry that the event was marred that way, well after it was over.

The march gathered people from all walks of life, all ages all races. For as far as the eye can see people were walking shoulder to shoulder, a vast sea of smiles and signs. Hope flowed through me as the crowd sreamed and streamed and streamed by. As Marched reading wity and really well done signs I wished I had brought a camera, they ranged from a child holding a sign iin her childish scrawl that said " Boo to you Mr Bush" to signs that made cogent statements on administration policy to the simple " Drop Bush Not Bombs". The people I spoke with were well informed and did not relie only on network news to form their worldview. Speaking out as a matter of responsibility and conscience seemed the main reason for being in the parade for peace. I spoke from one fellow who had come all the way from Cincinati Ohio to be part of this event. The people I met were kind and thoughtful.

One thought was mentioned by most everyone: That we need to reclaim America, we need to help our nation live up to it's promise.

Share what you know, what you are learning. What is your vision for America? Does it include freedom of speech, including debate and dissent?



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