Monday, October 27, 2008


I can’t overlook what Joe Biden said. And what some other highly-placed Beltway players said when they amplified his comment.

Judith Young has usefully gathered together some notable comments on Biden’s October 22nd statement in her article “October Surprises in a Culture of Death”, Saturday 25th October on the site Atlantic Free Press (

Biden observed that Obama should expect that he would be “tested” within six months of his inauguration and this ‘testing’ will come in the form of a “generated” international crisis that will “force him to make unpopular” decisions.

Colin Powell – back hanging around the limelight – added that this ‘test’ would come “within a day or two after the inauguration”. Also back hanging around, Madeleine Albright (she who pronounced herself content killing half a million Iraqi children, in a ‘good’ cause, of course) called Biden’s statement “a statement of fact” in the sense that one must always be prepared for “something unexpected”.

Of course, this assumes that the Bush banditti – who certainly have ‘motive’ and ‘opportunity’ – do not declare a ‘martial law emergency’ before the election or between the election (which will presumably go to the Democrats) and the inauguration. And that strikes me as a somewhat generous assumption.

It is a sign of how far We have fallen that in this Year of the Independence of the United States the Two-Hundred-and-Thirty-Second, it is being discussed among Us whether there will be what is in effect a coup d’etat in this country. Lovely. And not by ‘the military’ – steely-eyed, ambitious uber-generals, ala Caesar – as was feared in the Cold War, but by the Presidency itself.

Of course, after decades of politely assuming that the ‘radical politics’ and ‘radical democracy’ of the Revolutions of the Identities were simply an extension of the long-tradition of New Deal and Progressive enfranchisements and ‘liberations’ and ‘empowerments’, and carried out so often under the rubric of ‘reform’ in the face of ‘emergencies’ and ‘outrages’ that played on the citizenry’s purported (or actual) fears and anxieties, who can be surprised that the national discourse is sufficiently debauched as to contemplate over morning coffee that the ‘Unitary’ Executive – quite possibly with the acquiescence of Congress (so far gone down the path of ‘bipartisan’ acquiescence as perhaps now to be known as ‘Gongress’) - and certainly with the ‘balanced’ and ‘patriotic’ cheerleading of the mainstream media, will establish itself as a dictatorial power? Perhaps without over much ‘pushback’ from the Supreme Court that gave Us Bush in the first place, a long eight years ago that now can be seen as an irretrievable watershed in America’s history that will mark this generation down – probably in dishonor – “to the latest generation”.

That all of this might – it is also being wondered – happen as a ‘false flag’ event (i.e. that the ‘emergency’ will actually be manufactured by Our own agencies specifically to provide a pretext for such an assault on democracy and the Republic) can hardly be considered excessive or fantastic. What LBJ did with the Tonkin Gulf in August of 1964 pales (somewhat) next to the ominous doings surrounding the killings of JFK, RFK, and MLK in the years when Hoover’s FBI could be counted upon not to do much against any perpetrators, and far more recently the most suspicious ‘anthrax’ scares of the fall of 2001, precisely targeted at Senators who robustly doubted the wisdom of the Patriot Act.

And again, ‘manufactured’ emergencies have been the staple of Identity and ‘victim’ agitprop for decades now, all for a ‘good’ cause, of course. As will any possible take-over be trumpeted as being for a ‘good’ cause.

Is it possible, one might ask, that both sides of the national political spectrum would go along with this? Abet it? But of course this question itself has long been outdistanced by the political realities that have developed over the past few decades. There are not ‘two sides’, and have not been at least since Tip O’Neill decided in the mid-‘70s that the Dems’ only hope was to stymie both the populist genie and the Identity-Politics demon that had been simultaneously released in 1968 and to throw in the Dems’ lot with Big Money, the military-industrial-complex, and the forces of corporate-inspired and corporate-funded ‘order’.

Reagan’s massive contribution was to put a happy-face on the whole thing, spinning it as ‘morning in America’ and unleashing the dogs of Greed domestically as the dogs of War were being sent out on preparatory hunting trips abroad. George the I’s happy fate was to burnish the continuation of Reagan’s policies with a military adventure marvelously provided by Saddam’s invading Kuwait, thereby offering a pretext for U.S. involvement in the Middle East, home of the oil supplies whose control provided the only - yet so perfect – solution to America’s growing energy-dependence and economic and debt problems. Clinton’s massive contribution was to place upon the whole queasy monstrousness the seal of the traditional Party of the little people and the working man, and to call it Good. Feh.

And here We are.

The Republicans – more specifically the Bush banditti – would certainly have motive to get control of the Republic before ‘politics’ in the form of the national elections exposed them to actual legal consequences for their decade-long spree. And surely, martial law would result in the huge expansion of the spirit of ‘military justice’, which is by its very nature and in its very essence subservient to the ‘command authority’ which its JAG priests serve (the genuinely committed and courageous advocates at Gitmo, those few and honorable counsel, very respectfully excepted).

But the Democrats also have ‘motive’, and their recent assurances that there will be no legal consequences for the Bushisti may be more than election-year fake-promises. After all, given the economic catastrophe, any such indulgence of legality and the administration of justice would quickly spread to the princes of the finance-sector which Senator Biden, among others, has served with a hound-like alacrity surpassed only by the truly-revolting, vulpine Phil Gramm, and that wouldn’t do at all, they being such ‘fine Americans’ – We saw this defense rehearsed when the reprehensible Scooter Libby sought to get himself out from under his prison sentence. His excuse – We recall – succeeded.

And if the economy continues to go south and worse - if this mess starts to reduce daily life toward the outlines of East Germany in the bad old days - then the Beltway banditti will immediately seek to fortify themselves. It may be that in their deepest counsels they're wondering why We have let them get away with so much for so long already. That, indeed, will be the hallmark question about this era. You might want to get ahead of 'history' and jot down a few possible reasons for yourself now.

Additionally, the Dems are now in a very difficult position: Obama’s campaign, and especially as it has been embroiled in the events of the economic catastrophe, has willy or nilly re-ignited the fires of a genuine democratic politics – which from the Beltway point of view is bad enough – and equally raised the ante of the Identities who sense that this is their Big Chance to make or break their agendas. It’s 1968 again.

Nor can the Democrats – they see now – possibly satisfy the Identities (they saw that decades ago) but worse, they can no longer simply pander to them; the demands of the Identities have proven to be unworkable and in many cases far more destructive than ‘liberating’ or ‘empowering’. Nor can the Dems turn on their corporate paymasters and hold those well-heeled vampires to account on behalf of the interests of The People that they purportedly represent in the spirit of FDR.

And with Our social unity and common identity as Americans now shot after 40 years of Identity Politics, what else might keep the citizenry in even a minimal state of cohesion except 'war' and the enforced 'unity' of martial law?

In this sense, some ‘tightening’ of American politics, i.e. some much closer approximation to martial law, would appear as a wondrous two-fer or three-fer. They could tamp down or patriotically put aside genuine aspirations for a recovery of a truly democratic politics, while simultaneously doing the same to the demands of the Identities, and without risking ‘electoral’ and ‘political’ consequences. They could simultaneously brush aside any calls for imposing legal consequences upon the Malefactors of Great Wealth or the Bush banditti, because of whatever ‘emergency’ has ‘happened’ and also simply because in martial law the ‘command authority’ doesn’t have to frakkin explain itself to anybody – it don’t need no stinkin badges.

Nor does Biden – certainly – need to make any great changes to his modus operandi. He has in the past robustly brayed his support for unconstitutional laws and his son, conveniently, is a JAG full versed in the queasy usefulness of the military legal system and a professional bedfellow of the that poison dwarf, Lindsey Graham, who with McCain pimped the Military Commissions Act two years ago (which also included a no-consequences-for-torturers clause).

This gambit, of course, would be a domestic replay of the entire Iraq invasion: a glorious two-fer or three-fer that would establish the U.S. as a stakeholder in the oil-rich heartlands of Eurasia (where it would otherwise have no seat at the table of the 21st century’s Great Game), and also would provide control of the oil that would erase all the sins and failures of its debt-and-paper-based economic policies since Reagan’s day, while simultaneously enriching the oil and other corporations (whom Bush, Cheney, and Rice served prior to their ‘public service’), and providing as well the opportunity to militarize the American mentality even as it privatized the military with the infusion of far more reliable imperial storm-troopers in the form of the Blackwater mercenaries. Everybody wins – except The People.

And - the hot and repulsive ironies! – ‘the troops’, who are mired in several losing Fourth-Generation-War frakfests while being simultaneously berated as sex-maniacs by a feminism that is running its own game-plan altogether.

We are going to be laughed out of the history-books in the not-too-distant future.

But We are going to meanly lose this Republic before that, if We do not start to ‘get it’, to grasp just what is at stake here and what is going on around Us, or may be at this moment “slouching toward” Us “to be born”.

The Dems can’t go back. And they can’t go forward. And for any one of a dozen reasons - the plundered and ruined economy, the immoral and failing wars, the broad and sustained pattern of Beltway dishonesty to The People, the constitutional insults of torture and half a hundred assaults on civil liberties - the history-machers inside Fortress Beltway may be figuring that there's gonna be a whole lotta angry folks around soon, on all sides of all the issues, and precautions must be taken. What may or may not have occurred to them is that a crisis in the legitimacy of the entire government as it has presently devolved may also occur - even if only (but who can be certain?) taking the form of a third party. They have to change the rules of the game itself. Which is precisely what the Founders feared and sought to avoid.

But in the wake of ‘deconstruction’ and financial ‘deregulation’, they will try to spin this as just a form of ‘Executive’ deregulation. And Gongress will go along. And We can only pray that the Supreme Court will not.

And nobody really knows whether the troops (and the ominously attired police and even the FBI and other federal law enforcement agencies) will go along with such a game; they – after all – are the ‘teeth’ and the ‘claws’ of any such monster. As Maria Doria Russell noted, “Hitler never personally fired a weapon; all the evil he ever did, was done for him by others”. Those ‘others’ were not simply rabid slavering Party members and leering Gestapo agents, but fearful and cowed judges (think Burt Lancaster and the other accused German judges in “Judgment at Nuremberg”), dedicated career police officers, and millions of youngsters who patriotically answered their country’s ‘call’ by putting on uniforms and obediently following orders. And the ‘press’ barons, whose game-book now guides the Foxified corporate media here today.

Nor do We need – nor were We ever intended to have – a “protective father figure”. That was not included in the role of the Executive by the Founders. Lincoln was never so considered, even after the assassination and his apotheosis. It was only as the American male became used to ‘salary’ and the economy became so awesomely concentrated and complex that FDR came to be seen – to a generation who knew no other President in the 12 years of their growing up – any other President, that calm and ringing voice of inspiration that came into their living rooms on the radio every week as their world, it seemed, was teetering into the abyss.

Nor did the feminization consequent upon ‘feminism’ nor the youth-worship inherent in the bobby-soxers that came to whacky engorgement in the Boomers do anything but increase this ‘father-need’ among a citizenry that was originally conceived as being adult and able to manage its own affairs with some amount of self-possession and focus on the vitally important roles of Citizen and People.

It is another of those under-appreciated whackeries of American politics since 1968 that as the feminists were doing everything they could to discredit actual fathers and daddies and ‘men’, yet somehow they triggered a deeper need for a ‘national father’ who would console and bring closure to the many ‘victims’ of man’s chimpish world. We may not be an imperial people with no-clothes, but We most certainly have been an imperial-people parading around with some mighty ripped and mismatched threads, all the while secure in the assumption that everybody else on the planet saw Us as ‘the indispensable nation’ that knew what the frak We were doing.

And it is one of the ominous yet under-appreciated dangers that has evolved over that same period, that the Power-People, whose wealth bribed the politicians who were eager to preserve their sinecures in the first place, found a way to harness that whackery, and so in the end the Identities have indeed turned Us into donkeys, although they had been going for ‘chimps’ and ‘baboons’. Donkeys who will now be so desperate for whatever wage and financial bones might be tossed to Us that We will not dare to rock the boat and stand up to re-assert the Founders’ authority vested in Us.

We may have reached the point reached by Germany in the early 1930s and France in the mid-1930s: things are so messed up that authoritarian ‘order’ is the only thing will ‘work’ any longer. ‘Democracy’ will be blamed, as being the font of all the undisciplined and unthinking destruction of the national unity and productiveness. Which is precisely what ‘deconstruction’ was designed to do by its creators and clearly labeled as such. We can’t say there was no skull-and-crossbones on the package before it was eagerly opened and injected.

We face a rendezvous with Destiny as great if not greater than that which faced ‘the greatest generation’. And unlike the members of that generation, We cannot console and encourage Ourselves that We were simply minding Our own business until – in FDR’s ringing phrase – We “were deliberately and dastardly attacked”. We are about to be attacked by Our own government. And We have invited it.

As George II said, in what may be the most self-incriminating Freudian slip ever uttered from within Fortress Beltway: “they hate Us for Our liberties”.

What say We?

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