The Creeping Fascism of American Politics

A bipartisan amendment introduced by Rep. Mac Thornberry and Rep. Adam Smith would allow the Department of Defense to utilize propaganda. (image: Telegraph UK)

I have been a regular reader of Juan Cole’s excellent political analysis & commentary (Check out his Informed Comment site). Here the opening paragraphs of his latest piece:

20 May 12

 The Creeping Fascism of American Politics

wo congressmen are attempting to insert a provision in the National Defense Authorization act that would allow the Department of Defense to subject the US domestic public to propaganda. The bipartisan amendment was introduced by Rep. Mac Thornberry from Texas and Rep. Adam Smith from Washington State.

Nothing speaks more urgently to the creeping fascism of American politics than the assertion by our representatives, who apparently have never read a book on Germany in the 1930s-1940s or on the Soviet Union in the Stalin period, that forbidding DoD and the State Department from subjecting us to government propaganda “ties the hands of America’s diplomatic officials, military, and others by inhibiting our ability to effectively communicate in a credible way.” And mind you, they want to use our own money to wash our brains!

[continued here].

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2 Responses

  1. Poo says:

    Seems to me that this is a side show compared to the very real possibility of financial collapse. Some radical interpretation of an unpassed bill may pass as creeping something but you have galloping ruin on your doorstep. The U.S., as large as it’s markets may be, is within inches of becoming Greece. You cannot spend your way into a savings. Does borrowing more money to “act” , and I do mean “act,” as a stimulous not strike you as a meaningless gesture? It is a blip until the bill arrives on the next generation or in the case of the U.S., on the next, next generation. After the U.S. election there are, in December, several tax increases and borrowing issues that will need addressing. All will impact heavily on the U.S. economy and must not be hung up in congress. By raising the debt ceiling yet again you will have increased the debt under one president by a greater amount than all previous presidents combined. Duh! Meanwhile you guys yammer about abortion and gay marriage, more side shows! For the record, both are legal in Canada and though I oppose both, I couldn’t care less. Neither are my business and I would never get off my couch to vote for or against either one of them. Like most Canadians, I see social issues as a matter of personal conscience. But try to bankrupt the country, drive unemployment through the roof and worse, create punitive an envious tax laws and I’m off to the polls! Here in Ontario, the next to be ex-Liberal (it’s a party here) government placed another tax, the 4th, on incomes over $500,000. This was done in order to get the vote of the NDP, our Socialist Party. The Liberals are a minority government and will do anything, and I do mean anything, to cling to power. Naturally, the once rich and powerful “engine of Confederation” now has the greatest debt in history and, like the U.S., was downgraded for the 1st time. The next government will repeal the ludicrous tax but the damage is done. There are not enough rich people anywhere to make up the loss. Money is fluid and never so much as today. Ask the Swiss banks where you cannot get an appointment so busy are they with French and Greek money flowing in. The French are also gobbling up real estate in London. My point being, sideshows are entertaining, cocktail chatter at best but they won’t pay the bills. As I’ve repeatedly said in the past, fix your tax code. Europe should fix itself. It has the means. Unfortunately, a union that separates fiscal and monetary policy is doomed, if not today then tomorrow. I’m guessing that if the Germans knew they could conquer Europe through their own economy, industry and efficiency, 2 World Wars would never have happened! Happily, our Federal Government is prudent. It has told the IMF there will be no more funds for Europe. You cannot blame Wall Street and/or Bush for 50 years of largesse. Our Finance Minister also poked the hole in that other sideshow, the auto industry. The bailout lost the Canadian taxpayers over $800 M on Chrysler and, all bills not yet in, probably 3 times that on GM. Google Flaherty, Chrylser, $800 M. And now the unions control them, I can hear the time bomb ticking. They waited too long to bankrupt themselves but I suppose that was the plan. Pity we had to follow it. My very long point is, if you/we, allow ourselves to be distracted during elections (a very easy thing to do what with all the provocative advertising) we will find the world in a deeper depression than in the 20s. It won’t affect me. I’m old and retired. It’s the next and the next generations I’m thinking about. I shouldn’t let sideshows and unpassed bills take my eye off the ball lest I drop it. It’s not my ball anymore; it’s theirs.

  2. Poo says:

    And another thing!!! I’m in full rant mode now. What is all this crap about someone’s religion? Who cares what they believe beyond prudent management of government and fiscally responsible delivery of services? Up here in the frozen north (it’s hot lately) the question never comes up. That could be because for generations there was an unwritten tradition of having politicians from Quebec lead parties on an alternate basis with the dreaded “English.” Religion was different as a given so never arose.

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