Book Reviews | Gordon Campbell | News Flashes | Scoop Features | Scoop Video | Strange & Bizarre | Search

 


All Bush, All The Time, For The Rest Of Your Life

All Bush, All The Time, For The Rest Of Your Life


John Chuckman
June 15, 2005

A group of Republican legislators proposes to rescind the 22ndAmendment to the American Constitution. This is the Amendment, passed after four terms of Franklin Roosevelt scared the bejesus out of Republicans, limiting a President to two terms in office. The legislators apparently believe that with continued Republican gains in Congress, they may be in a position to change the Constitution by 2006, in time to extend Bush's benevolent work.

Of course, Bush must actually be re-elected in 2008, but that represents a mere technicality. Bush was appointed in 2000 by a Supreme Court whose capacity for critical thinking already resembled that of senior judges in the early Reich. By 2008, Bush will have loaded the Court with creatures who might have made splendid careers in the Holy Inquisition under Torquemada.

The Republican fallback plan for 2008 is to repeat the election of 2004, in which heavy vote fraud in places like Ohio gave Republicans their revenge for Democrats' vote fraud in 1960. Republicans used to be more straitlaced about things like vote fraud. It was only the old Democratic political machines of the nation's cities that supposedly practiced it with any regularity. But with the rise in political influence of America's fundamentalists and neo-cons, Republicans have embraced vote fraud wholeheartedly. Fundamentalist pitchmen provided the party a splendid example of the advantages of fleecing their flocks. America's neo-cons have decades of experience posing as disinterested academics advocating human slaughter as policy. If you really think about it, the plan seems sound, and the timing seems right. Its prospects look quite good.

It has my full support, simply because I believe America needs a belly full of Bush before the world can expect any relief from the country's lunatic course. I know through long experience that what happens to the rest of the world carries little weight with most Americans. Since 9/11, America has been turning itself into a gated community, bristling with ferocious weapons, vis-à-vis the rest of the world, and the truth is we don't hear much outrage about it from America herself.

Americans are stubborn people, convinced of the virtue of whatever they do - even today you'd be hard put to convince many that cremating, poisoning, and blowing apart three million Vietnamese was anything other than heroic self-sacrifice in the name of freedom - so it takes a long time to alter course in America. Steering one of those gigantic super-tankers where you have to anticipate your turn miles ahead is almost child's play by comparison.

Lies have always been used to promote wars, and America's wars, despite the nation's ongoing flirtation with democracy, have been absolutely no different in character to those of despots over the centuries. We could say that it will be the test of democratic maturity when the American people are consulted and told honestly why they are being asked to start a war, but that seems unlikely to happen in our lifetime.

Apart from the ugly lies before wars, remember that America's most weighty contribution to world culture is exceedingly refined techniques of marketing, a smarmy art developed in the course of the nation's historic, headlong rush to get rich. So many things in American life - goods, services, religion, and even elections - have more marketing in them than content. Much of American life has about it the quality of "Have a nice day!" from a computerized phone system.

So I don't understand why any Americans are surprised at Bush's shameless lies. He's almost turned lying into a form of stand-up comedy. As soon as one lie's usefulness is ended, he smirkingly substitutes another, without pausing to consider any need for continuity between the two. It is hilarious to watch the leader of a great nation doing this, at least so long as you are not one of his victims.

The real puzzle is why Americans keep buying tickets to his act. Perhaps, with American media always larded with subtle to blatant lies for commercial marketing and politics, responses to other, greater lies are numbed. Perhaps, America really just doesn't much care.

Orwell was wrong in 1984 putting forward the idea of the Party's gradually eliminating words to control people's ability to think and speak critically. He was of course parodying the Soviet Union which to some extent did follow the practice. But the repressive old Soviet Union is gone while America thrives, constantly inventing new words - marketing gibberish, psycho-babble, political rubbish, science-fiction religion - which strives to puff up nothing into something. In America, you can literally fill a small library with books and magazines on any number of subjects from education to health that contain nothing genuinely furthering human understanding.

Marketing turns out to work better than repression over the long term, although the forces of repression are always there in America to offer assistance in dark corners. Hitler himself could not have asked for a set of laws more devious than the Patriot Act. Its continued existence stands as a monument to American political dull-wittedness. Just as bestial torture cages abroad demonstrate the nation's lack of interest in anything thought not to affect America.

But as the best evidence of America's unhealthy condition, I give you People's Exhibit Number One, the fact that Bush is in office and his polls are still not as low as the nation's ever-hopeful, hopeless liberals would like to believe. After all, vote fraud doesn't work where the vote wasn't already close.

ENDS

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
 
 
Top Scoops Headlines

 

Werewolf: Living With Rio’s Olympic Ruins

Mariana Cavalcanti Critics of the Olympic project can point a discernible pattern in the delivery of Olympics-related urban interventions: the belated but rushed inaugurations of faulty and/or unfinished infrastructures... More>>

Live Blog On Now: Open Source//Open Society Conference

The second annual Open Source Open Society Conference is a 2 day event taking place on 22-23 August 2016 at Michael Fowler Centre in Wellington… Scoop is hosting a live blog summarising the key points of this exciting conference. More>>

ALSO:

Buildup:

Gordon Campbell: On The Politicising Of The War On Drugs In Sport

It hasn’t been much fun at all to see how “war on drugs in sport” has become a proxy version of the Cold War, fixated on Russia. This weekend’s banning of the Russian long jumper Darya Klishina took that fixation to fresh extremes. More>>

ALSO:

Binoy Kampmark: Kevin Rudd’s Failed UN Secretary General Bid

Few sights are sadder in international diplomacy than seeing an aging figure desperate for honours. In a desperate effort to net them, he scurries around, cultivating, prodding, wishing to be noted. Finally, such an honour is netted, in all likelihood just to shut that overly keen individual up. More>>

Open Source / Open Society: The Scoop Foundation - An Open Model For NZ Media

Access to accurate, relevant and timely information is a crucial aspect of an open and transparent society. However, in our digital society information is in a state of flux with every aspect of its creation, delivery and consumption undergoing profound redefinition... More>>

Keeping Out The Vote: Gordon Campbell On The US Elections

I’ll focus here on just two ways that dis-enfranchisement is currently occurring in the US: (a) by the rigging of the boundary lines for voter districts and (b) by demanding elaborate photo IDs before people are allowed to cast their vote. More>>

Ramzy Baroud: Being Black Palestinian - Solidarity As A Welcome Pathology

It should come as no surprise that the loudest international solidarity that accompanied the continued spate of the killing of Black Americans comes from Palestine; that books have already been written and published by Palestinians about the plight of their Black brethren. In fact, that solidarity is mutual. More>>

ALSO:


Get More From Scoop

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Top Scoops
Search Scoop  
 
 
Powered by Vodafone
NZ independent news