British first edition, cover by Michael Kennard
Let's face it America; when it really comes down to it we haven't been vigilant.
We've gotten complacent, taken our democracy for granted, believed our standard of living was a given, jobs would always be plentiful, that we're "Americans" somehow "exceptional" and "entitled"; the "American dream.
Well the forces of mega corporate greed and gluttony have usurped, corrupted and distorted that democracy and that dream.
Those forces have no allegiance to the country, the Constitution or the rule of law. They are entities purely unto themselves with money and power their sole interest that will connive, manipulate and buy off anything that interferes with their quest. Community means nothing. Civic virtue is a ruse with contributions to charity and cultural institutions used as a smokescreen to deflect scrutiny away from their nefarious pursuits.
Environmental degradation is of no concern; to be fought and distorted as something concocted by pointy headed intellectuals and tree huggers that will cost jobs.
The same type subterfuge used by the bloated defense industry that builds unnecessary weapons against enemies that no longer exist.
The finance industry exists solely to use money to make more money, not to make loans that will actually be used to make or build something. And when their nefarious schemes to make more money implodes and threatens to bring down their whole house of cards into ruin and the economy with it, they go to the government trough to use the people's money to be made whole again. And of course without being held accountable for their misdeeds and the terrible consequences their activities have perpetrated on the people and the institutions they bilked.
Meanwhile the people are propagandized with dissembling and lies, made fearful to believe terrorism and terrorists are everywhere lying in wait and the government must do everything to protect them even as our civil liberties are crushed in the process.
This scenario hasn't happened overnight. It's been a gradual process, like erosion of a beach. Sometimes there have been "hurricanes" like 9/11 that have speeded up the process.
There's always "enemies" to keep at bay and if they're not real threats you just concoct them. After W.W. II, it was Soviet Russia, Communism and the "Domino theory". When that proved to be a chimera after 45 years and the 10 year lull between 1991 and 2001 was abruptly halted with 9/11, terrorists and the "war on terrorism" became the new bogeyman. Only this time with an "endless" war, the perfect foil to forever grease the skids to justify the national security police state that's evolving and eating away at the fabric of our once "republic" now turned empire.
So we have the "illusion" of representative democracy and elections to distract us; semi annual and quadrennial bloviating contests that have no effect on the real life "1984" that's being created for us; a "lie" depicted as the "truth".
That's because most of us haven't been vigilant. We've allowed ourselves to be distracted, passively indifferent and being in denial at what has been happening in our midst; too many "triumphalist" fools, waving the flag and yelling "USA, USA".