Sunday, August 27, 2006

The Drug Of Fear: Unfortunately For Us, The W, Rove And Co. Is Hooked On The Crack It Pushes On America

Terrorism is only as vile and divisive as you make it. Once you accept that death is a certainty (well, okay, and taxes), you can go about your day. That old axiom fits here: You cannot control what people do to you, but you can control your reaction to it.

Unfortunately for America, and the Globe for that matter, the W, Rove and Co bought lock, stock, and barrel, what Osama and his pals sold us; and it is proving to be addictive. Fear, I'm afraid, has become the GOP drug of choice. And the W, Rove and Co has willingly become Osama's pushers.

It is a shameful turn of events where fear has become the primary political lever for getting things done in the W, Rove and Co, and some of us are hooked. And, members of the GOP are the biggest users, having become crack addicts selling the soul of America to pay for their fear addiction. More disappointingly, the pushers themselves have been using their drug and have become addicted as well.

If we were to subtract the message of fear from the W, Rove and Co political platform, what is left? Subtract the fear and you will see that the W, Rove and Co has not done much good for America, barring doing more for a small slice of the upper crust in hopes that it trickles down to the average person. Well, it ain't trickling down, but that's a bigger problem best left for another post.

It strikes me that W was and is an accidental president: selected, but not elected. And before Nine Eleven, he didn't have a platform upon which to stand. Post nine-eleven, his platform is firmly grounded on and predicated upon fear. But that indeed, is a shaky proposition because it has made him and us co-dependent upon the terrorists that supply that drug. Like all good drug dealers, Osama gave us the first dose free, and we have been paying for it ever since.

Here’s a good illustration of what I mean. If we are winning the "war on terror," why don't the color levels go down as more of the bad guys are rounded up and brought to justice? Instead, you will notice that as they catch more bad guys, the fear scale is elevated rather than taken down a notch or two. Why? Because fear sells more of the drug, greasing the skids for more war-mongering and the war-time-profiteering approach to policy setting and political decision making.

Apparently, the GOP as a whole and the W, Rove and Co specifically has decided that it is better for their party to have the American people living in a constant state of fear rather than work toward peace by any means necessary. Let’s have a quick tour of some of the latest attempts by the W, Rove and Co to load up the Presidential Propaganda Catapult and sell us some more of their drug of choice: Fear. Let’s start with Rummy:
If we left Iraq prematurely, he said, the enemy would tell us to leave Afghanistan and then withdraw from the Middle East. And if we left the Middle East, they’d order us and all those who don’t share their militant ideology to leave what they call the occupied Muslim lands from Spain to the Philippines. And finally, he intoned, America will be forced “to make a stand nearer home.
Next up, let’s see some of the artful fear mongering from Tony the Snow job, knowing full well that the bathroom in American homes is more dangerous than terrorists:
Q Tony, there's a new Washington Post poll out today as to which political party people would trust to do a better job handling the U.S. campaign against terrorism? And Democrats got 46 percent, Republicans got 38 percent. Are you concerned that in this particular category, in which Republicans have always done better than Democrats, here, as well as in other categories, Republicans are falling behind?

MR. SNOW: For the umpteenth time, I will remind you that the President is not trying to conduct foreign policy in the war on terror in response to public opinion polls, but to the realities on the ground, and I am sure that that is going to be an important consideration voters are going to have to make this November: Who really does take seriously the threat of the war on terror; do they acknowledge or not that terrorists are still trying to hurt Americans and American interests around the globe; and who has the most credible way of addressing it. And that is a debate we look forward to having.
And The Veep has another stab at scaring the party faithful out of their hard earned dollars at a fund raiser in AZ:
Above all, we're going to remember our number one responsibility: to protect the American people, and to support the men and women who defend us in a time of war. There is still hard work ahead in the war on terror, and the central front of this war today is in Iraq. We can expect further acts of violence and destruction by the enemies of freedom.
And again, here’s where we discover that the W, Rove and Co is hooked on the drug they are selling us as Tony the Snow job just about confirms for us that the republican strategy for winning elections is to keep the fear of terrorism at the fore because it helps them win:
Q Tony, isn't one of the reasons the poll numbers look bad is because Americans hear the administration say again and again, we've captured or killed two-thirds of the known leadership of al Qaeda, we've got them on the run, and, yet, a plot like this is uncovered?

MR. SNOW: Well -- no. I really am not going to sit here and do a seance about public opinion polls because I don't know. I don't think anybody knows. I think it's pretty -- when you're in a war like this, and especially with a vague and unseen enemy, you can understand that people are going to have anxiety. And one of the frustrations is you can't show everybody the kinds of things that are going on each and every day. But the fact is, just because you've degraded a lot of al Qaeda doesn't mean that you still don't have people who are committed to killing Americans. And that is an important ingredient.
And the President continues to push the fear to drum up political support for his agenda:
Yet these young democracies are still fragile, and the forces of terror are seeking to stop liberty's advance and steer newly free nations to the path of radicalism. The terrorists fear the rise of democracy because they know what it means for the future of their hateful ideology.
And one final example, where W slaps the Nine Eleven Monkey and gets called on it:
You know, I've heard this theory about everything was just fine until we arrived, and kind of "we're going to stir up the hornet's nest" theory. It just doesn't hold water, as far as I'm concerned. The terrorists attacked us and killed 3,000 of our citizens before we started the freedom agenda in the Middle East.

Q What did Iraq have to do with that?

THE PRESIDENT: What did Iraq have to do with what?

Q The attack on the World Trade Center?

THE PRESIDENT: Nothing, except for it's part of -- and nobody has ever suggested in this administration that Saddam Hussein ordered the attack. Iraq was a -- the lesson of September the 11th is, take threats before they fully materialize, Ken. Nobody has ever suggested that the attacks of September the 11th were ordered by Iraq. I have suggested, however, that resentment and the lack of hope create the breeding grounds for terrorists who are willing to use suiciders to kill to achieve an objective. I have made that case.

And one way to defeat that -- defeat resentment is with hope. And the best way to do hope is through a form of government. Now, I said going into Iraq that we've got to take these threats seriously before they fully materialize. I saw a threat. I fully believe it was the right decision to remove Saddam Hussein, and I fully believe the world is better off without him. Now, the question is how do we succeed in Iraq? And you don't succeed by leaving before the mission is complete, like some in this political process are suggesting…

…THE PRESIDENT: This is a global war on terror. I repeat what our major general said -- or leading general said in the region. He said, "If we withdraw before the job is done, the enemy will follow us here." I strongly agree with that. And if you believe that the job of the federal government is to secure this country, it's really important for you to understand that success in Iraq is part of securing the country.
Really, “the best way to do hope is through a form of government?” When was the last time you gathered some “hope” from our government?

This accidental president turned pusher of fear, uses it very effectively to lever his political and policy agenda. He and his cronies have had almost five years of practice with the GOP drug of choice. And because they have been using this drug for the same amount of time, they have become hooked on the crack of fear. And this addiction of our accidental president has caused a gory accident in the Middle East. And unfortunately, the GOP - in charge of all portions of the executive and legislative branches - is too busy rubber necking at the accident scene, and its party members are so buzzed on the fear that they can't see any solutions to the problem.

But I do have hope, and that hope rests with the people of America. The America I know does not cower in the bunkers W would push us into. And when they (particularly the incumbents) come to us this Fall during the election cycle we are about to enter and again try to sell us more of the drug of fear they are pushing, it is our responsibility to “Just Say No.” It is time for Americans to stop the selling of our Constitutional soul by our politicians for the illusion of safety and protection, otherwise indeed, the terrorists have won again.

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