The truth is that most of these issues are straw-man arguments. Let me mention some of these "critical issues".
Lesbian and Gay marriage, Gun Ownership, Immigration, The War on Drugs and Abortion.
None of these issues threaten the average American family in the way that they are presented in the media, and just as all of these issues can be decided on a local or State level, all of these issues can be negotiated and compromises can be reached.
Why then are they presented to the American public as such critical issues? I believe that because they are complex, they make perfect vehicles to keep the American people off-balance and at swords point with their neighbors. The simple truth is if gay and lesbian marriages were recognized as a legal contract in regard to health care, hospital visiting rights and so on, it would hardly affect most people. The same holds true with most of these issues above. Most of these issues have been decided by individual States. Gun laws are different in New York than in South Carolina. The same with abortion, drug laws and border security.
I believe that these issues will never go away. The people at the Federal level keep bringing these issues up in order to keep people from looking at the things that truly matter. This is the way they keep us divided and at each other's throats. This is the old tactic of divide and conquer in 21st Century America.
What are the issues that need to be visited and are critical to our American way of life? In my estimation, our freedom and liberties are being threatened by the emergence of the "security state" that has been implemented due to our "War on Terrorism". We have been immersed in a never-ending campaign of fear-mongering since 9/11 and this has taken center-stage for the last nine years. Any act of violence by anyone with an Arabic sounding name has been hyped by the mainstream media and is a direct assault on the fears of the American public.
Because of this never-ending threat, many of the liberties that we have taken for granted for the last 200 years have been altered or even removed by draconian legislation like the Patriot Act, The Military Commissions Act and the enhanced FISA laws. Our right to free expression has been altered in the name of "security". A demonstration can now be regulated to "Free-speech zones" far away from the target of a demonstration, keeping the demonstrators away from the media and rendering the protest impotent.
Our government can conduct search and seizures without a warrant with impunity by declaring the recipient a "suspected terrorist". American citizens can be assassinated outside the borders of the United States if they are deemed to be a security threat. Since these are clandestine missions, transparency is non-existent. This could conceivably render a death sentence on an individual with no accountability. Another case of a security state consequence could be as simple as giving to the wrong charity. Let's say that you read an article on the plight of the people living in Gaza and you are touched by their plight. Then you decide to give to a Palestinian charity, but unbeknownst to you, the charity has ties to Hamas. Viola! You are now under suspicion for helping to fund a "terrorist" organization and nasty things may happen to you like an audit by the IRS or being placed on the no-fly list.
Besides our civil liberties that are under assault by the ramifications of dealing with an enemy that is supposedly omnipotent and practically invisible while it supposedly constitutes a constant threat to everything our nation stands for, the current situation involving our economy is perfect fodder for dissent. Now is the time for the politicians to ramp up the diatribe with all the usual "issues" before Americans realize how badly they have been economically screwed.
Let's look at TARP and the so-called "Stimulus" that had the majority of the proceeds handed out to the entities on Wall Street. Just because Bernanke and Geitner are Goldman Sachs Alma Mater and because Goldman Sachs was the second leading contributor to the Obama campaign, didn't necessarily allow the investment bank to get away with buying up distressed banks for a fraction of their value that were bailed out with TARP money and made solvent again thanks to Uncle Sam.
While the real unemployment rate runs about 22%, and there are six people for every open job, statistics like the study conducted by the University of Southern California that disclosed that the top 20% of the people in America own 93% of the nation's wealth while 80% of the rest own a paltry 7% is something that the people in power don't want you to know about. At a time when people are defaulting on their most prized possession, their homes, having the knowledge that most of us share only a sliver of the wealth in the world's greatest economy is enough to foment rebellion. It's far better that we dwell on Michael Douglas's stage 4 throat cancer or Lindsay Lohan's jail term. The mainstream news brought to you by defense contractors like GE or Westinghouse would rather dwell on the latest attack by
residents' insurgents in Afghanistan.
The stateless multi-national corporations consistently depict happy scenes of American families to stimulate our endorphins and lead us to believe that all is well and we are prosperous and happy. To do otherwise might cause us to stop spending on cheap imports. They work to insure that consumer confidence remains high. Just because it is practically impossible to find American made products from the big box retailers, the corporate media shies away from reporting the true nature of outsourcing that has turned our nation into a place that produces very little but consumes too much.
Our wars and military spending are very rarely reported on. The fact that we have military bases in 180 different nations and that we spend 48% of the total world's military expenditures is not advertised. The United States spends 50% of our discretionary budget for "defense". This fact is something that is better left unsaid. When families are scratching and pawing to try to find the money for shelter and food, information like that is not really welcome.
This is why you will hear about Gay and Lesbian marriages, drug use and abortions. The real issues such as aggressive wars being fought for corporate profits on flimsy excuses, and our freedoms enshrined in the Bill of Rights being savaged by the security state, all of this will be hidden by the flag as the President makes another speech about our economic "recovery" and reminds us of our commitment to defeat terrorism, at home and abroad. It matters very little that most of us haven't a clue as to what is really important; our system is designed that way. God forbid that we start asking embarrassing questions, the answers might be too hard to take.
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