As reported in this article from Lynn Stuart Parramore, the much respected by the LP Dr. Cornel West is warning of the growing authoritarianism in America. Notes the article:
West sent a powerful message about governments harassing and exerting control over citizens. The Associated Press, he noted, is “as mainstream as red apples” and yet its reporters and editors have been under surveillance by the Department of Justice, as recent revelations have made clear. “Can you imagine what you and I are under?” he asked.
Steve Rosenfeld reports in this article of five more injustices against civil liberties enacted under the Obama administration beyond the current AP scandal, or as I would have titled it, five definitive reasons to not be an Obama apologist. A point taken much further by the generally awesome Glenn Greenwald in his own article. He actually does a highly effective job of summing up how voices in the political right are oh so fast to attack grievances of the left which they themselves were once fallible of, and versa vice, as we see modern progressives embracing nationalism in ways just as frightening as was done in the George W. Bush years by the other side. We see, beyond the supportive commercial media complacency, how policies are freely traded off forth and back every few years, but as the eternal ping-pong game is not unto itself daunting enough, only in American politics is all reasoning abandoned in the doing. The NeoCons, the Tea Party, and FOX News all deserve scorn, but so too do their equivalents on the other side of the aisle, for all of the same exact causes and effects. In this light, middle of the road politics does not seem so healthy or feasible after all, as any X-Men fan can tell you that should two mutants make a baby, the child will more than likely be a mutant as well. Zounds!
As this article from David Dayen suggests, the IRS has always favored the rich, regardless of which party sat in what office. Don’t lose site of that bigger picture. Even when it comes to the costly drug war, as this article from Clarence Walker shows, if marijuana could in fact be decriminalized federally it would open a vast new resource for taxable goods. But this would never happen, as the money of big business controls the government, and so law officials AND the IRS are obliged to cut off the competition of the wealthy pharmaceutical industry’s trademarked products. Boycotting the products of any industry is an option, but an increasingly smaller and smaller option thanks to corporate consolidations, as this piece from Forbes entails. But Jed Morey reports here that in violation of the Posse Comitatus Act, the armed forces can now act freely on domestic soil, under any pretenses they desire. Now, it can be argued that every single major action by the United States military going all the way back to forcefully claiming the Hawaiian islands for the Dole Foods Company over a hundred years ago has ultimately been for the pursuit and advancement of American industries. And while similar legislation was quietly passed for such actions by the Pentagon to continue on foreign soils indefinitely and cost be damned, there is absolutely no reason to believe that soon one might even be arrested, or worse, for any boycott domestically. We now know that the peaceful student anti-war protesters at Kent State were indeed murdered by federal troops. That was over 40 years ago. Have times really gotten any better?
The disruption of the lives of U.S. citizens is already in effect under the guise of the perverse “war on terror”, as Carl Gibson reports. It is difficult to not believe the conspiracy nuts who see all of this as intended discord, so that the general public will welcome increased military presence in the streets for the illusion of safety. And when the army is on these streets, which they have now given themselves the right to do, what exactly will they be doing there? Whose agendas will they be pushing? Even traditional law enforcement is freely harassing and arresting and assaulting people who are entirely innocent of any and all charges. With the stories of torture condoned in Abu Ghraib, and of more recent charges concerning sexual harassment and outright rape among American soldiers domestically, military presence should be considered by nobody as a good idea, unless there is someone or some agency expecting to find literal profit in the matter. Think about that. Debtors prisons are already making a comeback, but what happens when nobody has any money left to even begin buying any products at all, much less just fall behind in payments? Should the worst possible scenario present itself down the road, short of taking up arms ourselves, what possible recourse might there be for the masses? I’m not worried myself, because I’m drinking milk! And selling GRIT!
In all seriousness, these are frustratingly brutal times for too many people the world over. Even persons damaged enough to have religious convictions are being denied logic and reason to guide them into tomorrow by their chosen superiors, as Ian Millhiser reports here. As Cherri Gregg reports, even a job fair structured specifically to assist ex-convicts had to be prematurely ended after a turnout that proved exponentially greater than the organizers were prepared for. I could name you a few dozen folks I personally know who are as down and out as I am right now, and while not one of them is looking for a handout, none of them are finding a hand to get back up. Not from their strapped churches, not from any political organization. Ezra Klein wrote this funny article about what our leaders should be saying. It’s heart-breaking in its accuracy. They’ve never pursued unemployment as they know others need those resources more, and they also know there are many who abuse the system nonetheless. I try not to associate with greedy persons. When the wealthiest of the wealthy engage in the breaking of laws, they already have resources more than most, which implies they without exception are acting from greed. And yet they are the ones with dominating power over every aspect of the lives of the people I know. Of the people you know. And greed has no limits.
But hey, a “dark, massive asteroid” is expected to swing by the Earth in a few days, so there’s still the chance them Mayans were just off by a few months in their primordial calculations. Then perhaps we can all have a well-deserved, good and hearty laugh over all of this for the rest of eternity. And on a happier note, did I actually arrange for the one and only Sandy Plunkett to share a story from his one man show of a never before published, original graphic novel anthology for the upcoming A1 Annual from ATOMEKA and Titan Comics? Why yes, yes I did. And you are so welcome! Between that and adding the DodgemLogic link to Alan Moore’s wikipedia page, I think comic books owe me. But I won’t collect, because nothing remotely good has ever come from greed. And we could all benefit greatly from a little more good and a little less greed these days, couldn’t we?
And a special congratulations to verified Friend of the LP, Muhammad Rasheed, for winning big at this year’s Glyph Comics Awards. He has taken home the Story of the Year Award AND the Best Male Character Award (actually beating out Brian Michael Bendis in both categories). We are elated for his success, and look forward to what comes after his impending final chapter to the Monsters101 graphic novel series.