American Complicity - Part II
By Timothy V. Gatto
I’ve talked to quite a few people since I wrote an article I called “American Complicity” a few days ago. I really didn’t expect anyone to take my allegations (that the American people went along with the administration’s lies about Iraq) personally. However, if you are the kind of person that takes what I said to heart, I have to agree, it was a pretty scathing indictment. I humbly apologize for that. I will say in my defense, that I have been well aware of the public’s lack of concern about the lies our government has spread about Iraq having WMD’s. I was a bit surprised that people would be offended by mentioning that Americans have not held Bush and his minions responsible. After all, what can one person do in the face of the power that the Federal Government wields?
I can understand how most Americans feel. I use my writing to vent the frustration that I feel every time I realize that I’m being lied to again. I realize that many of my fellow citizen’s have no such outlet. There are some people that write, as I do, and some people that express themselves through other means. The anger that people have is understandable, particularly if they have no outlet for their frustration. This is the reason that I started writing politically in the first place, before that I was writing fiction. (This is something else I can blame on Bush; I could have written “The Great American Novel” with all the energy I have spent writing about politics). Still, it’s a good thing I directed my energy this way, I could probably have ended up banging my head against the wall.
This evening on my radio show (www.Blogtalkradio.com/liberalpro), I had a conversation with one of my listeners on just this topic. My friend was extremely frustrated by people’s lack of concern about the lies and distortions that are coming from this administration and the corporate media. The vilification of former President Jimmy Carter by the media and some government figures, the woefully inadequate coverage about the situation in Gaza, how the media’s lack of concern about our civil liberties surfaces when one examines the questions asked of the presidential candidates, had driven him to distraction.
The failure to confront the politicians about the loss of our civil liberties is a particular sore spot with me as well. Sometimes I wonder if Americans really care about the loss of habeas corpus if you are branded a terrorist or a terrorist sympathizer. Don’t Americans understand that if someone, anyone, is given that designation, that they can be subject to searches without a warrant, wiretapping and even torture? I realize of course that most Americans don’t stay up at night worried that they will be branded a terrorist or a terrorist sympathizer, but still, doesn’t anyone care about their constitutional rights? Doesn’t anyone realize that people, once they surrender their rights, the government, and I mean any government, will not restore these rights because of a guilty conscience? No government gives up power willingly, it takes a fight, either a fight in court or a fight on the streets, but it usually takes a fight. People that give up these rights in order to gain some semblance of security, are anathema to most free-thinking Americans, indeed to most free-thinking people everywhere, in fact, didn’t Benjamin Franklin bring up the same issue up a couple of centuries ago?
The recent trip made by former President Jimmy Carter has some people up in arms. He has been vilified by some in the media for talking with Hamas and the Syrians. The Israeli government has also portrayed him as a traitor to Israel. Some people in this country seem to believe that Israel should be supported no matter what they do. Some politicians seem to put Israel’s interests over their own country’s interests. Prime examples of this type of thinking are the positions taken by Senator Joe Lieberman. The support Lieberman has given to the idea of using force against Iran, and his support for Senator John McCain, are all based on the protection of Israel, not because of legitimate American interests. The voters in Connecticut had a chance to rid themselves of this Israel-first politician, but couldn’t seem to rally enough votes. The idea of putting American interests ahead of Israel’s should be a no-brainer, but apparently that is not the case. Why do American’s tolerate the view that Israel should dictate any roadmap for peace? The idea that places another nation’s interests ahead of our own is ludicrous, yet, that’s the case in regards to Israel, for many of our politicians.
The corporate media and their “selective” reporting on world events are troubling. The American people are well aware that we don’t get all the facts. It is quite obvious to everyone that takes an interest in world affairs that in this day and age, you just cannot rely on the mainstream media. If Americans want to get the complete picture they must go to the internet. This is a travesty when you really think about it. In this so-called “information age”, why can’t the American people count on their media? We all know the answer; it’s because “corporate interests”, and not the editors who select the news that will be broadcast or printed. No longer are the people’s interests paramount, the sponsor’s and the owners of those outlets interests are.
I’m sure that someone will comment on this story and tell me that I have written nothing new. In fact, I’m sure of it. This is why I toyed with the idea to stop writing about politics and the world and go back to writing fiction. There are times that I feel everything I write I have written before, if not me, than somebody. Sometimes I get tired of writing the same kind of articles. Take my word for it, if you only cover those stories that expose government deception, you’ll never run out of material. I took a week off and thought about it. During that time, a number of events popped up that made me want to write. I realized that I don’t write about the same things over and over, it’s that I come to the same conclusions over and over. This is means, at the end of the day (I hate that phrase), it all boils down to the same thing; many Americans don’t confront this administration, regardless of how blatant the lie. The Bush Administration basically gets a free pass on everything, and the American people allow it.
Just think about the lies Bush has told and then make believe for a moment that it was Bill Clinton who had done the very same thing. Can you do it? Then ask yourself why Bush is still the President. Ask yourself if the American people are indeed complicit. If you say that it isn’t the people but the media who are complicit, ask yourself why the people can’t change the media? I ask myself this question everyday.