Yes, Virginia, there is a double standard. It’s called hypocrisy, and there are certain talk show hosts and reporters that are intimate with its details. You see, it’s all well and good for a sitting president to “de-classify” the covert status of a CIA operative who has associates all over the world who doesn’t know she’s a spy. It’s OK for a sitting president, back in 2002, to say we’re going to track down terrorists using their bank accounts, but it’s not OK for the New York Times to report — four years later — that the government may have abused their power to do so because it was targeting US citizens. It’s OK for Ann Coulter and other right-wing pundits to condemn the New York Times and say she wished Timothy McVeigh had chosen that newspaper’s main office as a target instead of the FBI building, but that does not stop her from asking people NOT to refer to her as a “New York Times Bestselling Author.” Come to think of it, I don’t think any right-wing pundit has ever had a problem with being referred to as that.
It’s so transparent, is what it is… It’s defensiveness… Kill the messenger, right?
On July 4th, I plan to read the whole Constitution of the United States (annotation is provided at that site as well), since I’ve never read it other than those sections which I studied in high school.
Perhaps the most famous amendment to the Constitution is, of course, the First, which states that “Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the government for a redress of grievances.”
Now, people like Ann Coulter might say she was “never a big fan” of the First Amendment, but it is that amendment that allows her to distribute her filth in the bookstores and spout it on the Today show. When the founding fathers left England, the presses were licensed from the government, and the church and state had to “approve” the content. Ann isn’t a fan of the First Amendment because her hate propaganda would most likely be deemed acceptable in a climate such as the late 1600’s, since it falls right in line with the message the ruling theocracy would like to send to the masses. Those of us who would like to hear and speak the truth aren’t always so lucky. This is why the First Amendment was passed, and progressives should never be surprised when those who love political hate speech would like to see it go away.
I’m not saying anything new here, I know. But it just continues to amaze me how transparent the GOP’s motives are… How they can continue to chastize the press for finally doing its job of revealing this administration’s ever-widening web of extreme abuse of power.
As the neo-con movement dies and its remaining members clamber up its decaying hull, their cries will reach a fever pitch. Hopefully through all of this, it will be easier and easier for the public to see how hollow this whole “values campaign” charade has been. They are not out to help us, they are out for themselves — out to line their pockets with United States Treasury cash. They need to stay in power to keep their bank accounts flush, and their tactics will get ever more desperate. This July 4th, America finally seems to be watching the high drama unfolding in Washington. Congress has lower approval ratings than George W. Bush, and there is a reason for that. America knows that the Congress is spinning its wheels, paying itself big bucks to discuss issues that have little or no bearing on the daily lives of US citizens. They wonder just who are these people we’re paying to send to Washington to represent us, and what are they doing with our time? Why are they talking about flag burning and rolling back a tax that affects 0.27% of the people in this country? Why did those same people refuse to give the working class a break by raising the minimum wage for the first time in ten years in the very same week they voted themselves pay raises? What is going on?
Perhaps this is part of a large agenda to raise the level of static so that we’ll all be deaf to what’s really going on? It’s the job of the press to take away that static — to report things that really matter to us and to tell us what’s REALLY going on.
That’s totally contrary to the current neo-con agenda. They don’t want the media to clarify the view. They want the controlled message. In their ideal world, all messages would once again be approved by the ruling class. Their propaganda would continue to speak of the grand successes of their strategies instead of revealing the truth of it all — that every one of their policies for the past six years have been total and complete failures for this country as a whole, starting with their complete dropping of the ball on 9/11 and ending with… Well, who knows where it ends. All we know is that if it wasn’t for the First Amendment, they’d be getting away with murder right now.
So tomorrow, we celebrate our independence. We celebrate our independence from England, but we should also celebrate our own personal independence. I am thankful for all those who had the courage to stand tall so that I could write this today without fear of someone knocking on my door in the middle of the night (although I do see that an ever-increasing number of visitors to this site are arriving from US Government IP addresses — hello there).