Thursday June 20, 2013

"If people can't trust not only the executive branch but also don't trust Congress, and don't trust federal judges, to make sure that we're abiding by the Constitution with due process and rule of law, then we're going to have some problems here."

While President Obama used the right words in this quote, he clearly doesn't fully understand its meaning. Because we do have some big problems, but they are not caused by misguided citizens who foolishly mistrust their government. Our problems stem from the fact that our leaders in government have consistently lied to us, been corrupted by big money and have acted to benefit corporate interests to the detriment of the commonwealth.

On March 12 of this year, when Obama's National Intelligence Director James Clapper told a congressional inquiry that the government does not wittingly conduct surveillance of Americans, he was lying. He was deliberately deceiving the very people upon whom we're told to rely to exercise oversight and safeguard our rights. Obama himself has radically changed his tune about dragnet surveillance techniques which he criticized under President Bush but has now embraced fully. We can trust only that their words are untrustworthy.

Trust Congress? Venal, corrupted, pawns of their powerful financial contributors, feckless posturing maintainers of the status quo; not too much to trust there.


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How about the courts? How much trust can we gin up for brilliant black robed justices who have anointed corporations with personhood? When they go duck hunting with a torture advocating vice president one day, and rule on the constitutionality of his draconian national security laws the next, how much trust do they inspire?

No, Mr. President, the problem is not with us, it is squarely with you and the national security state that preceded you. This week your security apologists are wagging their tongues about all of the terrorism that has been thwarted by this unconstitutional eavesdropping, but they all seem to have forgotten something; nobody ever gave your or any other administration permission to trade in our Constitution in exchange for a supposedly safe and secure "homeland." In fact, if it were not for successive U.S. administrations' policies that have helped tyrants oppress their citizens, if it were not for our aggressive and destructive military adventures throughout the world, we would not be facing the level of terrorist threats that we have today. Terrorism is not some mysterious, misguided and undecipherable phenomenon. It is a direct response to American foreign policy that alienates and enrages those whom it affects.

So first you ignore the interests of the American people in order to serve the interests of the corporate and financial titans. Then, when the chickens start coming home to roost, you use that as an excuse to introduce a national security state where we're all supposed to accept the loss of privacy and full-time surveillance as natural and nothing to worry about. Built on your consistent record of lies and deception we are now being asked to trust you and your farcical system of "checks and balances" that doesn't even have access to the information that it's supposed to checking and balancing.

So one of the president's trust problems seems to be showing up as a streak of anarchy. Private Bradley Manning, faced with evidence of horrific war crimes being ignored, took matters into his own hands and gave Wiki-leaks documents to shed light on the illegal and unconstitutional actions. Analyst Edward Snowden, upon learning of the massive unconstitutional surveillance that the government is now conducting, decided to take matters into his own hands and shared that information with the Guardian and the Washington Post. When we can no longer trust the chain of command, our representatives or even the judicial system to honor the Constitution when faced with the pressures from the National Security Apparatus, then we simply have to trust our own instincts to do what is best and what is just for the continuance of our Republic. Manning and Snowden will not be the last patriots to speak out about government overreach and unconstitutional actions. Others will surely follow, because American myths about the rule of law and right independent action by an informed citizenry run deep in our national consciousness. As much as we've been beaten down by mindless media entertainment, commercialism and propaganda,there are still many of us who will recognize dangers to our Constitution and Republic when they arise and we will continue to blow the whistle or expose the fraud. Non-compliance, non-cooperation, any number of trends will be emerging in response to this all out push to foist the security state down our throats.

So one of the president's trust problems seems to be showing up as a streak of anarchy. Private Bradley Manning, faced with evidence of horrific war crimes being ignored, took matters into his own hands and gave Wiki-leaks documents to shed light on the illegal and unconstitutional actions. Analyst Edward Snowden, upon learning of the massive unconstitutional surveillance that the government is now conducting, decided to take matters into his own hands and shared that information with the Guardian and the Washington Post. When we can no longer trust the chain of command, our representatives or even the judicial system to honor the Constitution when faced with the pressures from the National Security Apparatus, then we simply have to trust our own instincts to do what is best and what is just for the continuance of our Republic. Manning and Snowden will not be the last patriots to speak out about government overreach and unconstitutional actions. Others will surely follow, because American myths about the rule of law and right independent action by an informed citizenry run deep in our national consciousness. As much as we've been beaten down by mindless media entertainment, commercialism and propaganda,there are still many of us who will recognize dangers to our Constitution and Republic when they arise and we will continue to blow the whistle or expose the fraud. Non-compliance, non-cooperation, any number of trends will be emerging in response to this all out push to foist the security state down our throats.

No, Mr. President, we do not trust you or the other branches of government. It would be irrational for us to do so. All we can do now is to trust ourselves and to let the chips fall where they may.