FROM PHOENIX, ARIZONAAMERICAN AFFAIRS
SPECIAL EDITORIAL COMMENT
Clash of Greens
End of Folly, Not of World
PHOENIX, Sep. 28, 2001 - Before starting to write this editorial, this American carefully pondered the advice against speaking the truth as he sees it at a time when 90% of his countrymen seem to think otherwise (if the national media polls are to be trusted - the current approval rating of George W. Bush is 90%). Such a counsel came in the form of one-liners offered by some of mankind’s formidable thinkers:
ignorance is bliss, 'tis folly to be wise."
a time of universal deceit - telling the truth is a revolutionary act."
American folk wisdom offers similar warnings, albeit more crassly. Doing it at this stage of a warmongering fever in America could be tantamount to “pissing into the wind.”
Yet, as you can see, this writer has decided to chance it. Why? Perhaps because being cautious and pragmatic at this day and age in America’s threatened way of life seems less important, and thus less needed, than being honest and truthful.
Besides, some equally prominent brains from mankind’s history offered words of encouragement:
truth passes through three stages. First, it is ridiculed, second it is
violently opposed, and third, it is accepted as self-evident."
"Minds are like parachutes. They only function if they are open." (Author unknown)
We hope that the TiM readers’ minds will be open as they
read this piece… Especially as another American folk wisdom also warns
us that, “the truth is the first casualty
of war.” And
given that, "the welfare of humanity is always the alibi of tyrants." (Albert
know from e-mail editions of the TiM Bulletins, the TiM editor has just
returned from a 4,500-mile (7,000+-km) journey through eight
western states and two western Canadian provinces.
The road trip, which roughly covered the distance between New York
and Belgrade (Serbia), began two days after the Sep. 11 terrorist attack.
The airplanes were still grounded back then, although this tour of
the West had been planned long ago.
Traveling by car, the TiM editor has had a chance to observe the gradual
swelling up of both the national pride, and the spreading of war fever
across the western U.S. And
not just across America. Everywhere
he went in British Columbia and Alberta, Canadian flags were fluttering at
This writer also watched (and photographed) a group of Canadian cowboys, for example, riding horses in Alberta near the U.S. border. They were led by two men carrying U.S. and Canadian flags respectively...
...while others collected donations for the U.S. in a roadside van:
(and also photographed) a column of fire trucks parked across an overpass
over the Interstate 40 in New Mexico, with firemen waving American flags
at the drivers below.
he watched in Montana, George W. Bush ’s Sep. 20 address to the joint
session of Congress, during which the President gave an extraordinarily
arrogant ultimatum to the entire world: “Either you are with us, or
you are with the terrorists.” This
comment alone instantly turned dozens of potentially neutral countries
into U.S. enemies. Or into obsequious, and thus unreliable, “allies.”
It also solidified the belief among our enemies that they have
nothing to gain by trying to give up the fight and sue for peace.
Bush speech and the ultimatum evidently played well at home.
As the trip wore on, this writer began to notice growing jingoism
among his fellow-Americans, and many examples of shallow, if not
pseudo-patriotism, which is what the sudden flag-waving seemed to him.
an excerpt from a private letter that he sent about his observations from
Belgrade, Montana (yes, there is a Belgrade in Montana, too!):
Montana, Sep. 20 - “I am getting really worried about all this
same-mindedness that I am seeing in this country.
I am afraid we are being led into totalitarianism, but of a
different and more dangerous kind than that practiced by the fascists and
the Communists. Because it is subtler, and thus more perfidious.
than once, I caught myself wondering if this kind of a war fever and
euphoria also pervaded the public mood in Germany of the mid-1930s.
Yet I saw tonight President Bush invoke the Islamic
terrorists-to-Nazi comparison in his address to the joint session of
everybody applauded without dissension.
Just as the Soviet delegates did when the Secretary General of the
USSR used to deliver his speeches to the Communist Party Congresses.
the way, that's also what both the Nazis and the Communists used to do -
invert the arguments against them, and turn a victim into an aggressor [TiM Ed.: as George Orwell beautifully described in his 1948 book -
“1984” - using Big Brother’s slogans, such as, “War Is Peace,”
“Freedom Is Slavery,” “Ignorance Is Strength” - see “Two
Parallel Wars,” Apr. 3, 1999 - http://www.truthinmedia.org/Kosovo/War/day11up2.html
, and the TiM Speeches - http://www.truthinmedia.org/Tour-de-Canada/tor-12-99.html].
worries me is that no one here seems to be asking, or is even being
permitted to ask (which is worse) on major networks, "why did these
terrorists hate us so much to have sacrificed themselves and thousands of
innocent lives? What have we
(meaning our government) done to precipitate that?"
the answer is not that they supposedly envy our freedom and democracy, as
President Bush said tonight. The
answer lies in what our arrogant foreign policy has done to them (for more
on that, read the “Collateral Damage” editorial in the Sep. 11 TiM
Bulletin - http://www.truthinmedia.org/Bulletins2001/tim2001-9-2.html).
what I've seen during this trip, goaded by Washington and the national
media war frenzy, American people are allowing themselves to be ruled
purely by emotions. They
don't want to hear any dissenting opinions.
In fact, I've heard that a Sikh had been shot in Phoenix [TiM
Ed.: Actually, it was in Mesa, AZ, a Phoenix suburb]
for wearing a turban, having been mistaken for an Arab by the ignorant,
yet hateful, "patriotic" American shooter.
all very troubling to me. America is starting to look and feel like the Middle East;
full of hatred and racial intolerance, with compassion reserved only for
one’s own kind…
other words, we may be suckered into fighting somebody else's war.
Yet just look at how futile violent
retaliation has been for Israel and the Mossad.
Israel has been practicing retaliation for decades.
Yet the bottom line is, if peaceful existence has been the goal
(which one hopes every government’s goal is), then retaliatory
violence has been proven ineffective.
Israel is still at war now, as it was 30, 40, 50 years ago.
Is that the future of America?
Is that why the President and his aides have been preparing us for
a "very long war?"
In fact, it could be worse. (Now that Saddam Hussein’s direct belligerence has been quarantined by the West), Israel has had “only” the Palestinians and the Hamas/Hezbollah to worry about. By contrast, Bush et. al. in Washington seem to be taking on more than 1.5 billion Muslims world over. [TiM Ed.: Yes, yes, yes… we’ve also heard the Bush rhetoric how the coming “war” is supposedly not aimed against the Islamic people. But have you ever asked a Muslim if he/she believes it? The claim is just about as preposterous as was the Clinton/Albright assertion that the 1999 bombing of Serbia was not aimed at the Serbian people, but rather at Milosevic. The fact that NATO missed Milosevic, while killing some 2,000 Serbs and destroying much of the country’s civilian infrastructure, should make only the ignorant and the gullible believe such ludicrous claims].
the very term "Infinite Justice," chosen for this
"war," is a provocation to the Muslims.
I am told (by someone very familiar with the Middle East) that they
believe that only Allah (God) can dispense ultimate justice.
This will inflame their anti-American feelings even more. Some
Muslim clerics are already protesting.
[TiM Ed.: We
understand that the operation’s name has been dropped since this letter
was written, due to just such an outcry of Muslim-Americans against it].
contrast, a change in our foreign policy, which helped precipitate the
Sep. 11 terrorist attacks, could help forge a “very long peace”
instead of waging a “very long war.”
But no one seems interested in peace, these days.
For, that would be a victory of brains over brawns, not a popular
outlook in a materialistic society where the Almighty Dollar is God, and
war is good for business.
when seeing the "God bless America"-signs all through the
western states, I kept muttering to myself, "God save America from
her own folly."
I fear that the looming “war” against terrorism may end up as a
“Clash of Greens.” No,
not the environmentalist “greens.”
It will be the U.S. (dollar) greenback, and the New World Order
forces behind it, versus the favorite color of Islam.
now, with this preamble, let us turn to the current situation in America
and around the world. Just
keep in mind that the “Clash of Greens” is the Special Editorial
Comment - III, meaning Part 3 of 3. So
as to make sure nothing is taken out of context, if you have not done it
already, we strongly urge you to (re)read the first two parts - 1.
"Collateral Damage" Hits Home (Sep. 11), and 2. Grotesque
and Pathetic “War” (Sep. 18) - just click on http://www.truthinmedia.org/Bulletins2001/tim2001-9-2.html.
a Don Quixote of the 21st Century, President Bush Is Leading
America into World War III, Swinging at Elusive Windmills of Islamic
Is Sancho Panza When We Need Him?
PHOENIX, Sep. 28 - Like a Don Quixote of the 21st century, President Bush is leading America into World War III. He is swinging at elusive windmills of Islamic terrorism, while failing to clean house at home. Yet, blinded by arrogance and ignorance, fueled by government and media lies and distortions, Americans cheer when they should jeer. Where is Sancho Panza when we need him?
Miraculous, at that moment, Sancho and his master ride onto the TiM set. We’ll let you listen in on their conversation…
DON QUIXOTE: So we are at war.
SANCHO: Says who?
DON QUIXOTE: The President. Congress says so, too. Even Hollywood says so. So it must be true.
SANCHO: I see. And who is our enemy?
DON QUIXOTE: Osama bin Laden.
SANCHO: One country of 281 million people is going to war against one man?
DON QUIXOTE: Well, not only one man. Against any government that backs him. Such as the Taliban in Afghanistan.
SANCHO: But the Taliban is not a government. Bill Clinton, when he was President, signed an executive order that deliberately characterized the Taliban as a “paramilitary organization,” not a government.
DON QUIXOTE: That’s semantics.
SANCHO: Yes, Sir, it is. But it’s presidential semantics. So it must be important.
DON QUIXOTE: Why do you think so?
SANCHO: Well, you tell me, Sir. You’re defending the President’s actions. All I see is a contradiction. We are not recognizing the Taliban as a legitimate government of Afghanistan. Yet we want it respond to our ultimatums as if it were. To me, that’s not just semantics, that’s a contradiction.
DON QUIXOTE: Sancho, take it easy. You can’t talk like that about president when we are at war. The country must stay united.
SANCHO [undaunted]: But, Sir, staying united in the face of folly will only lead to greater folly. For example, the President’s saying that we are not going to war with the Afghan people, while he prepares our troops for a takeover of their country, is just plain doubletalk. Clinton-style. Different strokes for different folks; same old double-talking hoax. Just ask the million Afghan refugees at the Pakistani border trying to flee their country.
SANCHO [bends down as if in a prayer, whispering]: Oh, Milosevic, where are you when we need you? Who are we going to blame now for this Kosovo-type exodus? Gotta conjure up a Milosevic-like “pariah” among the Taliban before some Americans clue in that these folks may be fleeing - US! [pun intended].
DON QUIXOTE: What are you doing, Sancho? What are you muttering about?
SANCHO: Oh, nothing, Sir. Just seeking some divine guidance.
DON QUIXOTE: Well, all of us can certainly use some of that.
And as the two Miguel de Cervantes’ medieval heroes ride into a 21st century sunrise, chatting about the windmills in their minds, the term New World Order comes up.
DON QUIXOTE: What is that “New World Order,” Sancho?
SANCHO: In its ideal form, the 21st
century New World Order is not all that different from an earlier version
- the Communist International. It’s
just that its crest is the Almighty Dollar, not a ”red star.”
DON QUIXOTE: Really? They worship paper money?
SANCHO: No. They are doing away
with that. It is a world
whose object of worship is The Golden Calf.
Virtual image, of course, not real gold.
Their holy shrine is Wall Street.
Their apostles’ creed is, "I believe in nothing!"
DON QUIXOTE: In nothing?
SANCHO: Except, of course, in the
Almighty Dollar, the Golden Calf and the street called Wall.
DON QUIXOTE: Christ Almighty… what a weird place!?
SANCHO: Dollar Almighty, Sir.
DON QUIXOTE: Pardon?
SANCHO: They believe in the Almighty Dollar, Sir, not in Jesus Christ.
DON QUIXOTE [raising his eyebrows in disbelief]
SANCHO: Furthermore, it is a
world that, like communism, legitimizes state terrorism. It’s a world plutocracy in which six billion people slave
away so that some 4,000 “Princes of the New World Order” could enjoy
the spoils of power.
DON QUIXOTE: Sancho, are you sure you’re not talking about medieval Spain?
SANCHO: No, Sir. That was a much more primitive plutocracy. This one has the slaves cheer and applaud their rulers.
DON QUIXOTE: Never hear of such nonsense! Sancho, are you pulling my leg?
SANCHO: No, Sir.
If God were to (re)create the world by the designs of the NWO
Princes, there would be only three kinds of creatures:
All two legged-creatures would be ostriches.
All four legged-creatures would be sheep.
All sea-living creatures would be sardines, anxiously waiting in
long lines at the Princes' ports to be stuffed into cans by some New World
DON QUIXOTE: Well, Sancho, that’s not all bad. Such a world may appeal to some sheep farmers.
SANCHO: Yes, Sir. But only provided that they are willing to stoop down to the level of their livestock. For, the modern NWO is a world without borders, without religions, without traditions, without nations, without morals, without cultures…
It is an allegedly multicultural world, yet one that is represented globally by monocultural symbols, such as the English language, CNN, Hollywood, Coca-Cola, Nike, Levi’s, McDonald’s or Pizza Hut logos. But above all the “greenback” - the Almighty Dollar.
DON QUIXOTE: So if you’re not one of them, you’re against them, you’re saying?
SANCHO: Not just me, Sir. You heard the President say so himself.
DON QUIXOTE [shaking his head]: My, oh my… I see your point, Sancho. We could looking for trouble.
SANCHO: Indeed. Sometimes arrogance and such dichotomies can backfire on the NWO architects. What happened on Sep. 11 is a case in point. They didn’t listen to one of our contemporaries, Sir.
DON QUIXOTE: Who is that?
SANCHO: Nicolo Machiavelli.
DON QUIXOTE: What did he say?
SANCHO: Well, writing in 1573 in “The Prince,” Signor Machiavelli warned that, “there is nothing more difficult to plan, more doubtful of success, nor more dangerous to manage, than a creation of a new order of things.”
DON QUIXOTE: Guess our President didn’t read The Prince.
SANCHO: Guess not, Sir. The Princes usually don’t read, especially not about the Princes. Which is why their New World Orders always end up in a dustbin of history.
And as the two Miguel de Cervantes’ medieval heroes went on their merry way, we took a virtual stroll down Wall Street in order to gauge the stockmarket’s reaction to the Sep. 11 World Trade Center and the Pentagon attacks.
Goes Up Must Come Down; Cashflow-driven Wall Street Shifts Funds to Bonds,
When the New York stockmarket reopened on Sep. 17, following the deadly Sep. 11 terrorist attack on World Trade Center and the Pentagon, the Dow dropped 7% and the airline stocks plummeted about 40%. To some investors, it seemed as if the end of the world had come. It did not. The universe was unfolding as it always has been. What goes up must come down. The end of folly, not of the world, was merely taking place.
By the end of the week, the Dow had shed 14% of its pre-Sep. 11 value, prompting some analysts and TV networks to proclaim that the Era of Doom had arrived. “More than $1.5 trillion of market value had been wiped out,” declared even some prominent financial news media and commentators who should have known better.
Nothing had been “wiped out,” “vaporized,” or had “vanished,” except unfortunately thousands of lives and two New York landmarks. A cashflow-driven market, which is what we’ve been saying for years the Wall Street casino has become, simply shifted its assets away from some U.S. equities into other investment opportunities.
Just like back in 1997-1998, the U.S. equities benefited from investors’ flight from the Asian financial crisis, now some bonds and overseas markets are benefiting from the capital fleeing America.
As a result, the two-, 10- and 30-year U.S. Treasury securities are all up, propelled by the prospect of a prolonged war, a collapse in energy prices and the Wall Street woes. Furthermore, professional fund managers and individual investors are putting more money into cash and European stocks, according to today’s (Sep. 26) Wall Street Journal report.
“Globally, we may see some rebalancing of investments away from U.S. assets to other regions, particularly Europe,” Adam Seitchik, chief global strategist at Deutsche Bank Asset Management in London, told the Journal. “There has been some evidence in recent weeks of significant redemptions from U.S. equity funds by U.S. investors.”
In Europe, retail investors have also been pulling some of their money out of U.S. funds. DIT, Dresdner Bank AG's asset-management unit in Frankfurt, reported net outflows from its equity funds of about 700 million pounds, half of which was from U.S. funds, between Sept. 14 and Sept. 21.
“This was a very irregular amount of net outflow,” said Karl Hammel, an assistant director at DIT. “I think it can be compared to periods during the Gulf War.”
And what does that say about the U.S. economy, which, we are told by major networks, is down in the dumps because of the Wall Street slump? In a word, nothing! The stockmarket buys and sells perceptions, not economic realities. The Wall Street casino has long lost any direct correlation with economic performances of the companies it trades (see “The Great American Hoover,” Nov. 23, 1997, “Wall Street Boom, Main Street Doom,” Oct. 1998, "From a Nation of Producers, to a Nation of Gamblers " - June 23, 1999, "Small Caps Sinking First" - Aug. 2, 1998, “Armonk's Fudge Factory” - Apr. 9, 1999, among some Annex Bulletins and other columns in which this writer warned of the folly of “bull markets”).
To be sure, there are segments of the American economy that are hard hit by the Sep. 11 terrorist attack. Certainly the airlines are among them. They are shedding jobs like fleas. Delta was the latest U.S. carrier to announce a layoff of 13,000 employees on Sep. 26. The move follows similar announcements by several other airlines and aircraft manufacturers last week.
Back on Wall Street, the United Airlines and American Airlines shares plummeted 44% and 40% respectively by the end of the first full week of trading following the Sep. 11 disaster. But both companies had warned of looming earnings problems BEFORE the terrorist attack. So not all of their problems can be blamed on Osama bin Laden.
Furthermore, such high value drop percentages can be misleading. In dollar figures, the two airlines’ (UAL and AMR) shareholders suffered paper losses last week of $739 million and $1.8 billion respectively.
Now, to put things in perspective, we picked four leading information technology (IT) services companies, and four hardware vendors, to which to compare the airlines stock price changes. Plus, of course, the Big Blue, which epitomizes a services/hardware computer conglomerate.
During the Sep. 17-21 trading week, the Dell stockholders, for example, suffered a $15.5 billion paper loss. That’s more than six times (!) greater than the declines in the UAL and AMR shares - combined!
The IBM shareholders didn’t have much to cheer about, either. They saw $10.4 billion of their market value disappear last week - over four times a greater amount than the drop in the two airlines’ market cap.
Sun Microsystems ($7.5 billion), Hewlett-Packard ($5.7billion), and Compaq ($4 billion) investors also lost several times more money (on paper) than did the two airline owners combined (see the above chart).
Yet, the U.S. Congress, at the urging of the White House, rushed a $15 billion-emergency bailout package last week for the “ailing airline industry.”
Call it a sympathy vote. Or charity. Just like the aid for the families of the WTC victims. For, Dell and other hardware vendors’ shareholders certainly lost more money.
Some IT Stocks Went Up
Meanwhile, some IT stocks went up last week. Electronic Data Systems (EDS), for example, was up 2% on the first day of trading after the Sep. 11 attack. It stayed up for the rest of the week, even as the Dow dropped by 14% or $1.5 trillion.
Perot Systems was also up by 2%, while Computer Science Corp. (CSC) finished the first week of trading after Sep. 11 virtually unchanged. Which means that all three companies were up relative to the market.
Once again, the universe was unfolding as it should. At least according our universe. As you’ve already seen from this writer’s Sep. 18 Annex Newsflash, e-mailed to you from Coeur d’Alene, Idaho, that’s what we expected before Monday, Sep. 17.
In a Friday (Sep.
14) interview with a reporter from New York, he wanted to know what we
thought the stockmarket reaction would on Monday?
This writer replied that if logic and reason prevail, most of the
high tech services shares should be UP!
Why? Because what happened on Sep. 11 highlighted the
vulnerability of INDUSTRIAL era structures.
But it has also underlined the resilience of the INFORMATION era
Well, judging by the way Wall Street traded the IT services stock last week, looks like every once in a while, logic and reason do prevail among investors and traders. Here’s what the Dallas Morning News, for example, said about it in its Sep. 18 report:
companies proved their worth in the Sept. 11 attack by keeping their
computer systems running despite an interruption in phone service after
the attacks, said Bob Djurdjevic, president of Annex Research
these systems, there's no such thing as a nerve center you can hit and
disable everything," he said. "The companies that provide
whatever additional new support or services that are needed for those
systems will benefit from this".”
There were some
exceptions from that general rule, however.
As you saw, the still hardware-laden IBM was one of them.
But that’s not the only reason.
Ever since IBM sold its Federal Systems Division in 1994, the
company has been virtually absent from the Pentagon market. Which means that the Big Blue shareholders aren’t likely to
benefit directly from the war that President George W. Bush has been
promising the nation and the world.
that’s practically invisible in the federal IT services market,
dominated by the likes of EDS and CSC, is Accenture (ACN), formerly known
as Andersen Consulting. Its
shares were also an exception to an otherwise robust stockmarket
performance of IT services companies.
They tumbled by 16% or $1.9 billion by the end of last week.
And their slide
continued this week, too. The
newly issued ACN stock is now down 19% or $2.4 billion since Sep. 10.
Accenture had a very successful IPO (Initial Public Offering) only
two months ago (July 24). The
ACN shares remained quite stable after that, trading in a fairly narrow
range ($14 to $16 per share). Until
the terrorists’ strike on Sep. 11 that is, which evidently shook the ACN
Some Bailed Out Early
The relatively small value of airlines compared to IT vendors’ shares suggest that most of the investors had fled these companies long before the terrorist action on Sep. 11. But not all. Some did it just before, according to the U.S. Treasury Secretary, Paul O’Neill.
In a thinly veiled innuendo that among the sellers may have been the chief suspect, bin Laden, or some his associates, O’Neill said this week that a part of the government investigation involves tracing back some large sell transactions of the UAL and AMR shares that were executed immediately prior to the attack.
O’Neill warned that just like the 19 terrorists’ fake names and passports, it may take a long time to figure out the real identities of the sellers. It’s like peeling an onion. Sometimes it takes 10 or more layers to get to the real principal in a transaction.
But what if someone other than bin Laden or his associates had been also selling airline shares prior to the attack? What if someone else knew? And if so, will we have to wait 30+ years to find out, as with Coventry WW II bombing, which Churchill covered up?
No One Is Taking Responsibility
Just like one wonders why the heads of the CIA, the NSA, or the FBI are still in their jobs, after the most monumental intelligence services’ blunder in history?
If these three government officials were men of honor, they would have submitted their resignations within hours of the disaster. If they were Japanese men of honor, they would have probably hung themselves, as some JAL executives did, for example, after a 747 crash in Japan in the 1980s.
After all, our “intelligence community” (what an oxymoron!), on which we’ve been spending $30 billion a year, failed at the most basic government responsibility - protection of its citizen lives.
Yet their ultimate chief, the President, said today that he has full confidence in the CIA and its Clinton-appointed boss, George Tenet.
Excuse me? Nearly 7,000 Americans are dead; symbols of American capitalism (WTC) and military power (the Pentagon) are in ruins, yet our President is happy with performance our “intelligence” services?
The only thing one can conclude from that is that George W. Bush must be a part of the problem. As an Eastern European proverb says, “a fish always stinks from the head.” A good CEO knows that he is responsible for actions of his subordinates, whom he must hold accountable for the results they deliver.
Harry Truman knew that when he said, “the buck stops here” (meaning at the White House). Evidently not so at the Bush’s White House.
It is utterly amazing that no U.S. official has so far taken responsibility for what happened on Sep. 11. No one is being held accountable. Is that why Bush and his cohorts in the federal government are now trying to deflect our attention and scrutiny away from themselves, by skipping proof, and rushing straight from grieving to retaliation?
But if the news reports are true - that Bush is supposedly enjoying a record 90% approval rating - this suggests that we (American people) are also a part of the problem. We are applauding (!?) the current White House occupant as he leads us into a protracted, yet vague, war against an amorphous enemy. We are letting him off the hook for his own administration’s culpability in the disaster. We are allowing him put himself above the law.
Just check out the Terrorism Bill the Bush Administration sent to Congress this week, and then sit back, relax and let the Big Brother join you in your living room. Or if you really want to freak out, consider the Bush delegating the authority this week to two lower-level US Air Force generals to shoot down AMERICAN (!) - yes OUR commercial jetliners. If they feel a U.S. city is being threatened. Yes, with you and I - American citizens - on board!
Soviet Union on the Potomac? You be the judge...
Who gave, either the President, or these two generals, the right to play God and decide which American lives are more precious - those on the ground, or those in the air? What if these "Top Guns" get trigger-happy and blow the plane away just as the crew or the passengers are overpowering the hijackers? Guess the passengers' epitaph would read - killed by "friendly fire" (what an oxymoron!). And it wouldn't be the first time, either, Americans died from "friendly fire."
Another time a big nation let a democratically elected leader rise above the law “for the good of the people” was Germany. The year was 1934. The leader was Adolf Hitler. In an emotional speech to the Reichstag on July 13, 1934, he explained why:
anyone reproaches me and asks why I did not resort to the regular courts
of justice, then all I can say is this: In this hour I was responsible for
the fate of the German people, and thereby I became the supreme judge of
the German people!”
(For more on the “Night of Long Knives”, check out the HistoryPlace.com).
Once again, as Alber Camus reminded us, "the welfare of humanity is always the alibi of tyrants."
Of course, no one is accusing the Bush administration of any crimes or of being tyrants. Yet. But negligence and its cover-up can lead to greater problems downstream. This country and its citizens would be a lot safer and better off if our government stuck to our system of checks and balances, instead of using the "rah-rah," "fire, fire, aim," and "trust me"-tactics to bully the nation into another war. Or to shoot us down from our own skies.
What happened on Wall Street last week may have signaled the end of one folly. What’s happening on America’s Main Street may be the start of another.
Which is why this writer decided to show his patriotism in a way that doesn’t involve flag-waving. He decided to do it the traditional American way - by putting his money and his life where his mouth is. He will take a three-hour non-stop commercial flight within the continental U.S. - just for the weekend, a frivolity he had never allowed himself before. Except that now it’s not an act of luxury, but a gesture of support for our beleaguered airlines, and an act of defiance against terrorism in the air. It is also a sign of his faith in God and His ultimate wisdom.
Anyone else feels that way? Then if you can afford it, take your wallet, hop on board an American air carrier, and have a fun weekend - in OUR COUNTRY! And once you and I get back home, we should light a candle and thank God for letting us survive a "Russian roulette" with our own Top Guns (the two USAF generals) and our President's folly, and not just the would-be terrorists.
Back Home! (a post script)Oct. 1, 2001
PHOENIX, Oct. 1 - Just letting you all know that I got home okay from my weekend jaunt to Cincinnati, Ohio, in support of the U.S. airlines.
Unlike the Saturday Phoenix-Cincinnati flight, which was surprisingly full (about 2/3 to 3/4 occupancy), this morning's Cincinnati-Phoenix flight had only about 25% to 30% of seats taken. So I guess a lot people are still afraid to fly, as I said in the opening comments of my Chuck Harder Talk America radio interview, which I gave as soon as I landed in Phoenix (to hear a replay of the half hour-interview, click on http://playlist.yahoo.com/makeplaylist.dll?id=944098, and go to the top of the second hour of the Chuck Harder show on your RealPlayer dial - start with 1:00:00).
The security people at the Cincinnati airport were a little more hyper this morning than the ones in Phoenix on Saturday. They made a fuss about my (small!) finger nail scissors and my pen knife/bottle opener set (from my wash kit). So they just took them and kept them. They even tried to keep a pair of tweezers, but I talked them into putting them back in my case.
I also told them they should be posting notices about specific items like that, since probably 90%+ of travelers carry them in their wash kits. Especially considering that the Phoenix security people didn't have any problems with them. I took down the name of the Terminal 3 security supervisor - Rick Andreas - and told him I may do a story about it.
Meanwhile, as you can see, put all sharp objects into your checked baggage (which was a physical impossibility for me this time, since I didn't have any checked luggage). Or just keep your sharp objects at home [especially tongues... -) (ha, ha... just kidding!) - which is another physical impossibility in my case] .
TiM Readers Forum
PHOENIX, Oct 2
- Here are some of the letters we have received as TiM reader reactions to
our above stories:
GEORGIA - I Agree with You 100 Percent, Bought New Olds
last Friday. I am also trying to put my money where my mouth is, instead of wrapping myself in the flags. Keep up the good work.
Joe McCullough, Savannah, Georgia
U.S. (state unknown) - You Were Great!
You were great !!!
Thanks so much for telling the whole truth - that took a lot of guts -especially since you're one of the world's top 100 websites!! Best Regards,"
ARIZONA - Fear of Flying Unfounded
PHOENIX, Oct 2
- Here is a letter we received from Fr. X, a priest who is also a flying
instructor for commercial airliners. His full identity is known to
* Includes 16 accidents in U.S. involving non-U.S. registered aircraft.
The greatest risk of death is driving to and from the airport!
If it is not "your time" (as Americans like to say) then even if you are caught at ground zero, you will survive by some miracle.
The airlines are offering some incredibly low fares now too, so I don't think your "frivolity" was so great... you can fly to LA from Phoenix and back for less than the price of a day at Universal Studios.Best regards,
Father X, Arizona
TiM Ed.: The TiM editor replied as follows:
AUSTRALIA - Who Is Really to Blame?
I'm a bit concerned about the nature of Bush's speech where he states its going to be a long drawn out affair and if we are not with him, we are terrorists. Consider your governments past actions in regards to a tragedy:
So with this track record one can be cynical about who really is to blame for the tragedy on the 11th. My money is on those who want to impose the NWO (New World Order). Any takers? Regards,
Nikolas, Melbourne, Australia
CANADA - Jeb Bush's Sep. 7 Executive Order
ITALY/GERMANY - Spread the Truth around the Globe
AUSTRALIA - God Help Us All
INDIANA - "I Fear No Evil for Thou Art with Me"
CANADA - Archbishop: NATO Is a Terrorist Organization
To which the TiM editor replied:
have some idea what the people of Belgrade felt. Nor will the ever hear the words of Holy Prophet Hosea: "Ye have sown the wind, ye shall reap the tornado." Rather they will keep sowing the seeds of destruction and despair around the world, and the words of Christ: "Whatsoever ye sow, that shall ye also reap" - will never have meaning to them even when they come true.
Archbishop Lazar, Vancouver, Canada (http://www.new-ostrog.org)
TEXAS - How to Raise Bush's Approval Rating
Good post. I comment, sarcastically, on only one of your points:
At 0113 AM 9/28/01 -0700, you wrote:
Perhaps the U.S. government could raise that 90% approval rating to 95% by requiring that all Muslims wear a sleeve band when they are in public, green with a yellow crescent moon?
Daniel New, Texas (father of Michael New, the famous U.S. Army dissenter who refused to wear the UN blue on his US Army uniform).
CANADA - American Same-mindedness Is Frightening Indeed
NEW YORK - U.S. Making Old Mistakes
PHOENIX, Oct 2
- Here is a letter we received from John Collins (a pen name), a writer
and a practicing lawyer from Long Island, New York, who is also a Vietnam
Frankly, the scene sounds like `1984' first we love this bin Laden give him $$$ to fight for Islam against USSR, Iraq, Yugoslavia (hey that was last year!) and now we loathe him.
The same could be said of Saddam Hussein and any of the other Arabs. (On Sadam we've now gone back and forth he's now a responsible Arab). The lack of understanding is that in these Arab states the government is secondary to the religion and the religion urges violence against the West. And due to that fact none of these little countries needs very much by way of infrastructure... Islam will survive physical destruction of the national state.
A state of mind will survive where a material state will not.
I am one of the very few Americans of non-Orthodox heritage who has studied the Byzantine (Christain) Empire. I can tell you that the US is making the same mistakes in the same sequence that led to the fall of Constantinople and the internecine religious wars in Western Europe that followed.
John Collins, New York
AUSTRALIA - Don't Give Up!
Please Bob, don't give up. There are people like me out there who know the truth and read your articles with great interest. My best wishes.
F.F. (name withheld but known to TiM), Perth, Australia
BELGIUM - Excellent Piece!
FRANCE - Finally Something That Makes Sense
TEXAS - Payback Is a Bitch
GERMANY - Globalists Will Not Win
FRANCE - We Should All Unite to Fight Islam
Also, check out... Djurdjevic's WASHINGTON TIMES columns: "Christianity Under Siege," "Silence Over Persecuted Christians", "Chinese Dragon Wagging Macedonian Tail," "An Ugly Double Standard in Kosovo Conflict?", "NATO's Bullyboys", "Kosovo: Why Are We Involved?", and "Ginning Up Another Crisis"
Or Djurdjevic's NEW DAWN (Australia) magazine columns: "Macedonia: Another Farcical American Oil War," "Anti-Christian Crusades," "Blood for Oil, Drugs for Arms", "Washington's Crisis Factory," and "New Iron Curtain Over Europe"