Wednesday, October 26, 2011

DICTATORSHIP IN AMERICA

Some days I wake up in the morning with a sudden realization. This is one of those days.

I got up, went right to my computer and jotted down four subjects to write about.
• 180
• 11%
• FOIA
• Can’t wait

Item number one is a thirty minute video I found on the Internet yesterday. You can view it at www.180movie.com.

It is the most moving and frightening thing I have seen in a long time. Hitler’s Third Reich. Marching, chanting mobs. Horrible scenes of the Holocaust.

And then the interviews. Young people who never heard of Adolph Hitler. Didn’t know who he was. Didn’t recognize the name.

A tattooed neo-Nazi nut case who denied that there ever was a Holocaust. Then a Jew-hating racist who insisted that the pogrom wasn’t so bad. And anyway, they deserved it.

The second item is the Congress of the United States. It now enjoys the worst public approval rate in the history of our country. Eleven percent.

That means eighty-nine out of every one hundred American disapprove of the body of elected officials who are supposed to represent the people of the United States.

The people of this country have lost confidence in their elected representatives. They have lost confidence in our constitutionally mandated republican form of government.

Members of Congress are seen as crooks, career politicians, greedy, self- serving liars who have sold out to multi national corporate lobbyists and who no longer represent or serve the people.

First the Tea Party. Then the Coffee Party. Then Occupy Wall Street and Main Street. Direct democracy is the byword. Forget electing representatives to govern us. We want to govern ourselves.

Benjamin Franklin said the United States is a Republic “if you can keep it.” Do we want to keep it?

Number three. FOIA is the Freedom of Information Act. It empowers the American people to have access to government records. At least that’s what the law says. Now the Attorney General issues ‘guidelines’ telling government agencies that they can lie to the courts about records they don’t want to disclose.

‘Guidelines’ that repeal laws enacted by the Congress?

Who needs Congress anyway? The Code of Federal Regulations which contains all the rules made by government agencies boasts 50 titles, nearly 200,000 pages and 25 feet of shelf space. In addition, the President issues Executive Orders which have the force of law. Barack Obama has issued 95 of them so far.

That brings me to number four, “Can’t Wait.”

This is the President’s new mantra. He can’t wait for the Congress to do what he wants them to do. So he issues orders.

Stroke of the pen. That’s how laws get made by dictators. Hitler did it in the 1930’s and the crowd cheered.

President Obama tells the American people they can’t wait for jobs and foreclosure relief. And he’s got that right. The American people just can’t wait. In a culture of instant gratification, we want what we want and we want it now.

Just do it. Make it happen. Or as a friend of mine said the other day, “What America needs is a benign dictator.”

That’s an oxymoron. Dictators aren’t benign.

The primitive cycle of human governance is playing out in the Middle East. Dictatorship. Revolution. Mob rule. Martial Law. Dictatorship. Revolution, etc. etc.

It can’t happen here. Or can it?

2 comments:

  1. A pertinent excerpt from my book "Don't Vote For Me":

    "Although so much blame is heaped upon our elected officials, I worry just as much, if not more, about us -the people of the United States of America. Can we do the math? Are we really willing and able to govern ourselves? Instead of merely complaining, will we also accept our role in problem solving? Are we worthy of our republican form of government? Of a representative democracy? Ultimately we get what we deserve. There is no guarantee, and once we lose it we are not likely to get it back. It will not be any easier than it was 235 years ago, that's for sure."


    Kevin Hayes

    www.hayesandhyde.com

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  2. "Can't wait" isn't just the mantra of our current President. It found its origin in the Bush Administration. The passage of the Patriot Act and TARP are perfect examples of this.

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