Monday, November 10, 2014

"Pledging Allegiance"

This is the story of two American “brands”: (1) The America most of us have learned to accept and expect -- the one we were taught to believe in and (2) a secret America hidden in the shadows of national security, an America we’re learning more about thanks to books like “The Nazis Next Door”.

As examined in this book, one America is a false-front of patriotism. Romantic and sentimental, transparent and accessible, it offers up a rural buffet-style luncheon served on paper plates with forks and spoons scooping up large portions of propaganda and fear sprinkling education, entertainment, sports and media like salt and pepper on bland boiled carbohydrates and fried foods. But the other America is lean and opportunistic, pragmatic, seeking only advantage, ideological and monetary gain. This is where the real power is: in board rooms not voting booths, on the floor of the New York stock exchange, not the floor of small town hall meetings.

America prides itself on the rule of law and order, affecting a pretense of high morals - freedom and respect, honor and equality with “liberty and justice for all”. But the other America is proud only of its privilege, entitlement, and, especially, its amorality. One America believes in “free elections”, democracy, the American Way and fair play, where if you “work hard” you can grow up to be President, judged by your character not your skin color. But the other America has a strong racist history of white superiority and segregation, slavery, oppression, oligarchical elitism and nationalistic, cultural and military exceptionalism.

America wants to be known as the brand for the middle-class: ambitious and devoutly religious; defending the weak and defenseless; protecting victims while prosecuting victimizers and their persecutors. But America is also a secret surveillance state, austere to the point of cruelty, enforcing privatization of everything from prisons to pensions as fast as deregulation will allow. America is indivisible and united: red and blue states promise that those who commit crimes against humanity will be brought to justice, “because there’s no statute of limitations on war atrocities”. But America pledges allegiance only to its own self-interest. Global, commercial and technological loyalties mean that America occupies a place in history as an agent of endless war and concealment. America is as much a legend as a fairytale -- as much a complex mythology blurring the line between fact and fever, as a role-model for psychopaths and sociopaths. Hitler’s ex-Nazis must have been as comfortable in America as they were in Berlin, Munich or Hamburg.

Back in the day when we could still wish upon stars, generations got excited over Walt Disney’s futuristic “Trip to the Moon” inspired by his friend and former ex-Nazi scientist, Wernher von Braun. The German engineer was the mastermind behind the V-2 rocket that nearly destroyed London. As a free man, he lived in the States for thirty-two years until he died in 1977. His beliefs were no insult to our government - not to our intelligence community, nor our law enforcement agencies. But now a new generation is asking questions: How could this happen and why? Did the White House and top aids really ignore the evidence? Were there wide-spread systemic moral and legal failures? How could the “Greatest Generation” allow this to happen in the land and the home of the free and the brave? Should we even care? Hasn't it been long enough?

The book doesn’t attempt to answer these questions; that's not really the point, readers can decide for themselves. However, in view of recent leaks and much-published revelations from whistleblowers exposing alleged criminal conspiracies -- from General Motors failing to recall defective cars, to the three-letter intel secret-surveillance-intelligence-industrial-complex (i.e., the NSA, CIA, DHS and FBI etc.), to the on-going investigative reports on a perpetual “War on Terror” ….. the facts behind the stories in “The Nazis Next Door” make perfect sense!

No comments:

Post a Comment

Note: Only a member of this blog may post a comment.