Tuesday, September 06, 2005

Help is on the way

“I’m from the government and I’m here to help” Those are supposed to be scary words, or so we’ve been told since the days of the Great Bufoonicator whose party has been at work dismantling every bit of genuine progress this country has fought for in my lifetime. I don’t think anyone on the Gulf Coast has been frightened by those words recently, as tardy as they were in coming in the last week.

The irrational anti-Government hysteria of the last 25 years or so has only been a tool of self-fulfillment for those who want to be the government, but I’m not saying anything new. The Reaganite dialectic based on the idea that the Government can’t do anything properly is so pervasive that we don’t notice it any more nor do we notice that there are many things that even the most Libertarian of us will confess that the Government has the primary responsibility for doing. We hardly notice when Senator Santorum tries to forbid the National Weather Service from telling you about the weather, we don’t think too much about privatizing the prisons or sending mercenaries answerable only to shadowy corporations to do our fighting for us. Want somebody to serve and protect you? Look in the yellow pages. Look under H, for Halliburton.

So President Bush, who is less likely to let go of an idea than a moray eel is to let go of your foot, is still promoting that notion by praising all the churches that have been helping people and continuing to ignore the deliberate decision not to maintain and repair the levees and to have a clear disaster plan with a clear chain of command. I don’t want to belabor the point that is already obvious to so many of us, but if the Republicans hold on long enough, we will indeed be on our own without much in the way of Government services – unless, of course, your name happens to be Exxon. By promoting the idea that the Government is them, he has extinguished the dream of having a government that is us. It isn’t the incompetence, the confusion, the nepotism, cronyism or the corruption that frightens me the most, it’s the deliberate plan to dismantle democracy and take us back to an age of feudalism.

Lies don't get more bald-faced than that, Mr. President.

Oh, just wait; he best is yet to come. When the Times-Picayune printed that last Sunday in response to the claim that FEMA had been providing meals to the Convention Center, the lie machine had just been fired up. I have no doubt that by the mid-term elections, George W Bush will have been the hero of New Orleans and Barbara’s quote (see yesterday’s Fogghorn) about the shelters of Houston being a step up for the “underprivileged” of New Orleans will have been made by Jane Fonda. What happened last week will have happened very differently.

1 comment:

d.K. said...

Oh, there's no doubt about your last point. They'll say it over and over and over again, and voila, history will be re-written and sadly, many of those who lived through the truth will be sold on the revisionism. Say what you will, no one, no one can do this as effectively as the Republicans.

I heard somebody point this out so well the other day: Republicans changed Estate Tax to Death Tax. They changed Private Accounts for SSA to Personal Accounts. The Democrats still call the climatic crisis "global warming" which sounds actually pleasant. We're just not good or effective in the use of Orwellian tactics...