Friday, August 06, 2004


Digby is on fire. I've been quietly reading Hullabaloo for a long time, but Digby's postings over the past few days have been insane in both quality and quantity. Of course, it's not like there's been a deficit of targets of opportunity:

Target 1:The Media

...This problem with journalism is not simply a problem for the Democratic party. It is a serious national issue that goes beyond politics. The world is more and more fast paced and complicated and we must be able to depend upon at least some parts of the news media to resist the temptation to jump on the entertainment or propaganda bandwagon and see the forest for the trees. These last few years have been a disaster for journalism. And, aside from the predictable mea culpas after the fact, this article and all the others suggest there is little reason to hope that it will change.
Seems like I'm frequently screaming into a wind tunnel (or a complete void, depending on how you view ASZ) about the same exact thing. But Digby's more eloquent. I tend to move toward profanity to express righteous indignation.

Target 2: Swift Boat Liars

You can't have better character references than Haldeman, Colson and Nixon. That association speaks for itself. John O'Neill has done nothing noteworthy in his life except oppose John Kerry. Indeed, he barely exists as a human being except for his opposition to John Kerry.

And the fact that John Kerry has been keeping Republicans up nights for more than 30 years also speaks for itself. That election Nixon was so worried about was the first and only election John Kerry lost.
If you followed my thread on the same topic, you'll know that Digby and I went in somewhat opposite directions in addressing the same issue. My problem is more with John McCain, and the fact that he didn't resign his honorary post as Chairman of the Arizona Bush ReSelection Campaign today. But what Digby does is give you some background on John O'Neill, one of the primary instigators of Swift Boat Liars. You'll understand after reading why the orchestrated attacks on Kerry are even more repulsive than they appear on the surface. This guy's been on a vendetta for 30 years. That's a long time to harbor a grudge.

Target 3: Institutionally Approved Torture - Our National Descent To Hell

It is a long detailed account by three of the British prisoners who were held for more than two years and have since been released and are back home, free and presumably not considered dangerous since they were released by the authorities within 24 hours of landing. The story of their treatment, most particularly the cold and calculating, relentless mental torture combined with harsh conditions and regular bouts of physical abuse is difficult to read.
Digby plumbs another one of my least favorite memory holes - the institutionalized abuse of "detainees" and Mengle-type medical oversight of said detainees, specifically at Guantanamo Bay, but also at other institutions of higher torture around the world which are sanctioned and operated by the government of the United States of America. The story of the British detainees is particularly compelling.

Between Digby and myself, you now have a full night's worth of reading. I promise you, you'll go to bed depressed. What I'm hoping is that you wake up angry. Angry enough to do something to, as Susan Powter would put it, stop the insanity.

The America that Digby describes is not the America I signed up for by birthright. One can only carry so much angst in the Jungian animas before something has to give. Personally, I reached my limit awhile ago.

What I can't understand, for the life of me, is how people who truly know the real deal with this stuff, and occupy a place of influence (media, government bureaucrats, whatever) can live with the knowledge that they're enablers of crimes against humanity. In a court of law, it's termed "complicity". If I rob a bank, and you drive the getaway car, even though you didn't rob the bank you're still my accomplice. What's the difference between being an enabler, by virtue of silence or turning a blind eye, of a government that commits crimes against humanity and driving the getaway car?

Morally and ethically, there is no difference.