Tuesday, May 23, 2006

Outrage Fatigue

Outrage has paralyzed me for the last several weeks. Anger, outrage, disbelief -- all have contributed to a downward COPD spiral, bordering on exacerbation. But, my hero, "The Steroid Steed", has come to the rescue and I now feel I can at least begin to address the myriad of notes and scribblings I've accumulated while watching CNN and MS-NBC and put my thoughts into some sort of cohesive order. Or it just may be the steroids talking ...

My old mantras, "Semantics Matter" and "Connect the Dots", are now joined by "Follow the Money", and "Who Stands to Benefit?"

Who benefits from diverting public attention away from Iraq and focusing it on undocumented workers aka "illegal aliens"? Has anyone else noticed that the estimated numbers have risen from 8 million a month ago to 12 million and now 20 million? And that the folks calling for English as the National Language (the mono-linguists who run Washington) can barely speak it themselves? Who benefits from this diversion? What investigations have been put on the back burner while Congress hammers out ridiculous legislation to strip even more small brown people of their basic human rights? Which corporations are quietly getting rich and watching the price per barrel of oil steadily rise while righteous Americans call into talk radio to vent their collective racist spleen at the rest of us?

Who benefits by starving the Palestinians in the Gaza Strip, withholding their tax revenue, allowing only a trickle of medical supplies to seep through while Hamas and Fatah battle it out in the back alleys of Khan Yunis and Rafah? And who benefits from Israeli air strikes on cars carrying mid-level Islamic Jihad functionaries (as well as women and children)? Certainly not the Palestinians. Do the Israelis even benefit in the long or short term? If someone wishes to follow the money trail it probably will lead back to Washington -- politicians, of course, but also the religious right and their corporations.

Who benefits from the Apartheid Wall which continues to snake through the West Bank, creating new "facts on the ground" daily as Olmert and Bush shake hands in the White House over the idea of a unilateral pullout from small parts of the Occupied Territories, leaving Bantustans of Palestinian farmers who can't access their land and whose water rights are being usurped? Even Bush and Olmert know that these actions are against all international laws and treaties governing occupied peoples, as well as against a myriad of injunctions in scripture against the destruction of fields and olive trees and date palms, but who's paying attention? Oil is not the only motivating force in the Middle East -- the Water Wars have already begun.

Who benefits from threatening Venezuela, Bolivia, Ecuador and any country in the Western Hemisphere who dares to believe and then elect a leader who will stand up for the rights of the Indigenous, the concept of fair and equitable land distribution, the concept that mineral resources belong to the people under whose homes they lay? Once again, look to Exxon, Halliburton, Bechtel -- all the usual suspects are still the usual suspects, even if the names change. The fact of robbing the poor to feed the rich and fat remains the same no matter who wears the mask.

If you're looking for answers to any of these questions, sorry. You've come to this blog on the wrong day. I may not have the resources to actually follow the money trail, but it doesn't mean that I can't see it just as clearly as if it were a Yellow Brick Road leading to Oz. Pull back the curtain, and the Wizard is probably Cheney (or someone who looks a lot like him).

It's a small planet, folks. All the dots connect, semantic still matter, and you and I are definitely not benefiting from any of this.

1 comment:

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