So David Brooks spurts tautologically today in the New York Times. And the thing is, Brooks isn’t talking about the United States. In fact, in Brooks’ new column, entitled “Republic of Fear”, the USA is the cruelty-free, affluent land, where fear has been banished, and we’re all living behind “a great global threshold”, or we might call it The Great Wall Of Wealth.
More than anything, watching David Brooks once again craft his weird, golem-world, where the USA is economically well-off, fear-free, and just loving the NSA-brand security, while the non-USA world is Hell, reminds me of so many dystopian stories, where there are always the state-owned shills posing as journalists and pundits.
The job of these shills is to spin an extremely divisive myth of political and cultural superiority, where the repressive soul-crushing dictatorship is made to seem completely the opposite of its true nature, while the rest of the world, outside the control of the regime, is made to seem absolutely horrible and evil.
These journalistic shills are a fundamental tool of state thugcraft, employed to control the people.
And David Brooks sure smells like one of these shills. But the thing is, most of the MSM smells like them these days.
In Brooks' article, intended to promote that notion that economic and other brands of liberty are not nearly as important as "creating order" in a nation, Brooks tells us all kinds of heartwarming, affirming things about the USA, and the alleged benefits of the order it creates:
“In the United States, there is one prosecutor for every 12,000 citizens. In Malawi, there is one prosecutor for every 1.5 million citizens.”YAY! Prosecutors! And those prosecutors and cops, many of whom are obviously out of control in the USA, have made America the number one country in the world—for incarceration! Yep, more people are locked up per person in the supposedly liberty-loving USA than anywhere else in the world. THAT is supposed to be an indication the safety is spreading. And you are supposed to value that more than anything else in the world, including all those rights you don’t really need.
Brooks allows of course:
“Even when there is some legal system in place, it’s not designed to impose law and order for the people. It is there to protect the regime from the people.”Now, remember, that statement is supposed to help you distinguish the USA, where allegedly, the regime LOVES the people, from the bad places in the world where the government would totally be spying on all the people in the world!—if only it had the resources employed by the United States government to achieve that objective. Increasingly, Americans are coming to realize that, if the US government doesn’t explicitly identify American citizens as “the enemy”, it sure as hell treats them that way.
The NSA and its exploits in tyranny were designed with the assumption that everyone was a suspect, for any and every criminal or just suspicious act, potentially perpetrated, in any future one could imagine (or not imagine). And so, the NSA argued, they needed to collect every single bit of data on pretty much every single person their technology enabled them to spy on. The Constitution? Rights? Nice abstractions. But the NSA and the spy regime in Washington DC treated anyone talking about their rights as a political extremist.
And while it is true, the news today, about what Obama has been forced to do by Edward Snowden, is encouraging, nobody should let their guard down for a moment about the way in which the US government views the people it is supposed to be serving.
As I was saying above, the shill message is very divisive. Brooks illustrates:
“We in the affluent world live on one side of a great global threshold.”YAY! Affluence! Are you affluent? Maybe compared to the poor villagers of Malawi—and as you see above that is who Brooks decides to compare the USA to!—but what affluent world is he talking about, where fear of violence and other bad things happening have been washed away?
One of the bad things about being a 1-percent hack writer for the New York Times, is you probably have a 1-percent chance or less of realizing your lifestyle is actually kind of an impediment to your being able to see the 99 percent all that clearly—or even to see them as human beings at all.
Brooks explains the distinct moral advantages of security in the USA:
“Our fundamental security was established by our ancestors.” MEANWHILE: “When thuggish autocracies [Brooks means Russia] invade their neighbors we impose economic sanctions. But people without our inherited institutions live on the other side of the threshold and have a different reality.”YAY! USA are good people! Russians are thugs!
Except, aren’t the Russians just following the thuggish example set by the American Thug-in-Chief, George W. Bush, and still being perpetrated by Bush’s all-too-compliant successor in thuggish foreign policy, Barack Obama? Indeed, the Russians actually OWNED Crimea for a long time before some commie dictator gave it to Ukraine as a “gift”. How long did the USA own Iraq, before deciding to invade it to rid the world of hundreds of thousands of human beings the USA decided no longer needed to be alive?
And what does “established by our ancestors” mean? Oh, you know, genocide and stuff, committed by the United States military, with plenty of help by civilian thugs, as they swept the American continent (well, actually, the land belonged to indigenous peoples no doubt very grateful to be killed or assimilated) , making it “safe” for Americans, i.e. safe from wolves, bears, and indians. We have to always remember that "our fundamental security" was a lot of people's fundamental terror at being brutalized by American pirates.
There are a lot of articles talking about what is essentially a Balkanization happening in the world, and even in the USA, where Robert Reich says political differences between the two parties and people in general have reached the point where the competing tribes can no longer identify sufficient points of similarity in values and aims with their political opponents to say they are of the same people or even the same nation:
"[T]he two tribes are pulling America apart, often putting tribal goals over the national interest – which is not that different from what’s happening in the rest of the world."Well, that may be what the "two" tribes are doing, but the only tribe that matters in the USA, the rich, could not possibly care less about that. Their assumptions are that they will be profiting, and ever building their power, regardless of which tribe is in power. Anyone who has watched the "progress" of the rich and the poor in the USA since 2009, will have no doubt that the rich tribe has things figured out pretty well.