Wednesday, May 30, 2007

How did we get here?

An Iranian blogger that I like, Naj, of Neo-Resistance, has a long post about an article by R. K. Ramazani called "An Iran-US Partnership: Thinking the Unthinkable. Professor Ramazani writes "Anti-Iran hawks will be horrified at the idea to partner with Iran against al-Qaida. Iran’s ties to Hezbollah and Hamas, they will claim, establish Iran and al-Qaida as woven from the same terrorist cloth.

But such charges gravely distort reality. There is no such a thing as good and bad terrorism; terrorism kills and maims innocent civilians, regardless of the cause. But failure to grasp the importance of conflicts between al-Qaida and Iran benefits al-Qaida and blinds us to common American and Iran-ian interests in the peace, security and stability of Iraq."

If the common goal is to defeat al-Qaida, I am for it. But I fear that Bush wants to invade Iran. For the USA, it has never really been about al-Quaida; that terrorist group was a convenient excuse to invade Iraq, and will be a convenient excuse to invade Iran.

Naj's blog is quite interesting, and she speaks eloquently about looking at many sides of issues. On her homepage, she writes: "I strongly believe that the path to peace crosses through the battle with self."

In my own battle with self, I am struggling with the moral disintegration of my country's government. I struggle with it because there is a part of me that believes nothing has changed, despite all the facts of the last six years of Bush's regime. Our Constitution has been rendered nothing more than a useless piece of paper. We live in a climate of fear: fear of an unseen "enemy" and fear of attacks that may or may not happen, depending on the needs of our President. Is that too cynical, even for me?

Why does Lindsay Lohan make front page news? Why does anyone give a rat's ass about Paris Hilton? How can we have a climate where people become famous for being famous, yet we can't afford our prescription medicines? Why do I wonder if I am doing enough, if I could do more, to try and heal what's wrong?

In sobriety, I know that all I really can control are my own actions. I can vote, I can speak out, I can live my life according to a code of ethics that matters, I can be of maximum service to those around me. I can be an example of what I want to see in the world. But is this enough?

So one more time, I wonder: how did we get here?


Coffee Messiah said...

Many of us are too, at wits end at the madness and lack of outrage.

It's all one can do to survive each day in the US that is in no way the same one I remember growing up in!
; (

LL who??? Ugh..........

robin andrea said...

I often think that the reason it is hard to figure out how we got here is because there has been intentional obfuscation, because the true hands of power are unseen, because the war against democracy has been waged against us for a very long time. Bush has wedded the Nixon age to the Gilded Age, and the results are horrific. He was handed the death of 3000 on 9/11 and transformed it into world-wide catastrophe that has as its underpinnings the quest for oil. Pathetic and outrageous.

I wish I had something to say about Lindsay Lohan and Paris Hilton, but I have never read a single word about them. I've heard things on the "news" but I tune it out completely. I can never understand why Keith Olbermann does stories on these mindless, self-indulgent stick figures.

proudprogressive said...

I ask myself the same questions and have been so reluctant I mean REALLY reluctant to give up hope and be cynical and have in the Buddhist sense - NO HOPE. let me share that this was the best thing that happened to me so far..MY mind opened.and i have begun to read Emma Goldman, Hanna Arendt, Zinn and some Choamsky. Its there we find the thread that holds the answer to how we got here.. Basically its corporate greed of the POWER ELITE in all countries ALL countries are part of scheme really to pacify , obfuscate (yes) what s really happening..And these power elite thrive when the peoples of nations are in chaos, fighting echother. So the first step is we have to free our own minds with knowledge from unusal sources. We have to use the internet for the gift it is..a huge library of opinion and scholerly works. ITs clear that governments are NOT LISTENING to their people. Most of the people no matter what their beliefs want peace. They do not want to kill or be killed..Governments including ours have abdecated their diplomatic functions..WHY ??? war is good busines..its a money maker..

thats all for now, we trusted politicians when we should not have. That is how we got here. Look at yesterday's supreme court decision...on Women's pay..folks things need to get a lot more personal before they will get better and we have to find a way to build locally. Progressive movies nights, brunches were people can meet face to face and discuss real issues and ideas of change..Mostly though we need to find the hidden history of the world. Its there.Jood thank you for posting these questions...its through questioning we all learn.

DivaJood said...

Coffee, nobody has suffered more than Cindy Sheehan. And this morning, I am thinking back to the 1950s, and how closed and repressed everyone was - building bomb shelters. I wonder, have we really not changed at all?

Robin, Bush had a tremendous opportunity with 9/11. It's just his view of that opportunity was quite different than the view of the rest of us.

Progressive, the one thing I know I can control is my own behavior. And today, that has to be enough.

SB Gypsy said...

I've been wondering that lately too.

I am reading back through recent American history, and the main thing I see is that our govt has not, since FDR, lived up to it's tradition of exceptional integrity and ideals.

If we didn't claim to be more humanitarian and more moral, then the world would not be so upset when we fall to venal domination and violence. Our govt needs to practice what our constitution preaches, and we need to do it now.

DivaJood said...

SB, the current administration has used our Constitution as toilet paper, so we really don't have one any more.

mirth said...

Diva, it seems like the societal low place we are now, much like the repressed 50s as you say, is our leveling point. No matter our opportunities and advances, we arrive back in this place.