Jim Hightower on the Orwellian Pentagon

Here's Jim Hightower at AlterNet:

In 1928, Justice Louis Brandeis wrote that the real threat to American freedom was not from an outside assault, but from the devious manipulations of our own misguided leaders. "The greatest dangers to liberty," he observed, "lurk in insidious encroachment by men of zeal, well-meaning, but without understanding."

Nearly 80 years after Brandeis's warning, the zealots have been brought in from the far-right fringe on the golden chariot of George W, and they've shown that they have no understanding of the essence of America, which includes our hard-won liberties, our rule of law and our system of checked-and-balanced governmental power.

But these men of zeal — Bush, Cheney, Rumsfeld, et al. — are hardly well-meaning. They are deliberately and determinedly striving to impose the AntiAmerica on our own land — an unrecognizable America of supreme executive authority, constant surveillance of the citizenry, secret government and suppression of dissent. Their chief weapon is fear. They feverishly wave the bloody flag of 9/11, shouting that the citizenry must surrender liberties or be attacked again by The Madmen, that we mustn't question authority for this only encourages The Madmen, that all government operations must be cloaked in a dark veil of secrecy to keep The Madmen off balance, and that executive and police power must drastically expand to protect us from The Madmen.

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I  chatted with several Canadian colleagues at the CALL (Canadian Association of Law Libraries) meeting in Edmonton a couple of weeks ago, trying to get a sense of what Canadians think of America these days.  Being the friendly, tactful folks they are, they generally said nice things, but were clearly concerned.   They have no idea how frightened the situation truly is.

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