I don't quite understand why so many prominent "conservatives" keep promoting war and a larger security/police state. I mean, I think I have an idea as to at least some of the reasons, but with public opposition growing to such policies I wonder if maybe (hopefully) they're hurting their credibility and relevance by continually spouting such hateful rhetoric. I understand that these people have to serve their paymasters and that those paymasters are at the very least associated with the corporate establishment if not an actual part of the elite cadre running the world, but there comes a time when one can no longer ignore the rising waters and you either have to evacuate or drown.
Most people don't like war, period. It's a nasty business. Innocent people are killed. The human suffering is beyond tragic. But people don't like to have their nations occupied by foreigners either. This is especially true if they see the occupiers as brutal. Most people don't like to be kicked around and bullied by a bunch of armed zealots. While most people might not like it, not a lot do anything about it. They moan and groan, but they mostly just go along to get along. Most people are too frightened of the consequences to do anything, even when their country and their way of life has been taken.
Most people don't like a police state. We know through the study of history that draconian methods of controlling populations have always been frowned upon by freedom loving societies. The old German quote of "your papers please" has long been an example of the intrusiveness inherent in a police state. We know from the cold war of the evils of setting up citizen spy rings and how such methods can backfire and are ripe for abuse. We understand the inherent danger of setting up internment camps. We realize the dehumanizing effect of check points and intrusive body searches and hold such practices in disdain. Yet police states continue to form around us, despite the supposed protections against such methods ensconced in founding documents. People speak out, some more loudly than others, but most just grumble their complaints quietly, do as they're told, and meekly go along to get along despite any humiliation done to them.
Yet there are those who do like war. There are those who like the police state. Mostly, in my opinion, these are people who feel they are better than the rest of us. Most likely they are self centered, self righteous and feel no empathy for their fellow human beings. Yet I feel these people are a minority, albeit a loud and boisterous one. I feel these people puff themselves up and pontificate in order to attract others of their ilk. These bullies have managed to cow many of their detractors with their loud objections and fallacious accusations. This, however, seems to be changing.
Most of the war mongers have planted themselves firmly in the Republican Party. They managed to gain quite a bit of power there. I have heard that years ago many of these people were known in some political circles as "the crazies." Historic events helped them convince a good many people that war was necessary for the security of the nation. It has been shown that many of the reasons given for going to war were either made up or greatly exaggerated. These facts were more or less glossed over by the corporate media. It has been for the most part the alternative news media that has truly shined the light on these deceptions. As time has gone by, emotions have subsided and thoughtful reasoning has taken better hold in political discourse. Those who favor a policy of aggressive war are reluctantly fading into the background.
But the Republicans aren't the only political party haunted by the ghosts of the war profiteers. Democrats have them too, but they seem to be a little more stealthy about it. It was anti-war, anti police state sentiment that catapulted them to political victories in 2006 and 2008. In the last presidential election Barack Obama led the way by promising change and intimating such change would revolve around ending wars of aggression and reversing the damage done to the Bill of Rights by the Bush administration. Instead, the Democrats decided to squander the good will the populace had shown them by claiming their victories indicated a mandate to further socialize medicine in America and further indebt the nation despite massive protests against such measures.
While it didn't take long for the anti-war movement to become disenchanted with the Democrat Party, the dwindling ranks of the war/police state advocates continued to quietly hang out with the Republicans and maintain the conservative moniker. But there's nothing conservative about war. It is a wasteful, destructive activity. It changes lives profoundly and makes all involved less secure. There's nothing conservative about a security/police state. It costs money to hire personnel and pay for high tech equipment. It costs dignity to endure such a society. Those who advocate policies that are so blatantly anti freedom do not deserve to be labeled conservative and should be ostracized by any movement claiming to be of a conservative nature.
The Tea Party is such a movement. It was started as a non partisan, grass roots organization promoting smaller government and fewer taxes. As the movement grew, however, it was infiltrated by neo conservatives who, while wanting smaller government and less taxation for social programs, feel it's fine to grow government and increase taxes when it comes to funding war and a police state. Some would say the movement was hijacked as certain famous personalities that were known shills for the Republican Party and other neocon organizations sought to use the popularity of the movement to put the spotlight on their own agenda. It seemed to me that this was just marginally successful as the Tea Party movement has more or less managed to stay on message.
This last election cycle we saw many candidates win who stood upon a Tea Party platform. This is a good thing. Now is the time to start working toward making smaller, less intrusive government a reality. It was good that Obamacare was challenged in the House of Representatives. It is good that it is being challenged, nullified and taken to court by many state governments. These are small victories, but some kind of government run health care reform is still on the minds of politicians as they still seek to compromise the principles our nation was founded upon. Nothing but a complete repeal of all federal health care laws should be demanded as we seek to let the market bring back affordable health care as we had in this nation for so long before government regulations jacked up prices in that sector.
More recently, the Patriot Act has come to the forefront of the public consciousness once again. This very unpopular bill was passed unread days after the attacks on 9/11 as an emotional response to those attacks. The sheer size and enormity of the bill suggests that it was already written up long before the attacks took place. It seems perhaps savvy politicians with their own personal agenda were simply waiting for the right disaster to rush it through. This rights shredding law suffered a slight set back earlier this month as extensions to it weren't simply rushed through without debate. Yet many so called Tea Party candidates who profess to be pro freedom and advocates of smaller government switched their votes later as the extensions passed.
These politicians have proven time and again that we can't afford to just let them be. Like children who refuse to stay out of trouble, we have to keep a constant eye on them. We have to remain ever vigilant to make sure they keep true to their words. Fortunately, the pressure the waking masses have been putting on them seems to be working. The senate attempted to sneak through a three year extension to the sunsetting provisions of the bill, but were stopped by Rand Paul's objection to that move. Now, due to public pressure, the questionable provisions are due to be reviewed once again in a mere three months, in May. Let's hope we can apply enough pressure to not only allow those provisions to sunset, but to see the entire Patriot Act repealed once and for all. Then we can move forward toward repealing other freedom killing legislation, auditing the Federal Reserve, and ending many of the unnecessary federal agencies and departments.
Those who managed to infiltrate the Tea Party are losing influence. Those in the freedom movement who have managed to infiltrate the Republican Party and are backing Ron Paul are gaining influence. The debate has shifted. It is no longer big government Republican versus big government Democrat and which big government programs need more funding. It is now about freedom versus tyranny. It is about individualism versus collectivism. Even Democrats who wish to be elected or re-elected are starting to adopt the freedom message. I hope to see more of this type of debate in the coming months as the nation gears up for the next presidential election. As long as the people stay active and involved, perhaps we have a chance.
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