Want to work for positive change? Go shopping. Why not, we're heading into a severe economic downturn and the Bush Cheney countdown clock is flipping its way inexorably toward zero. At precisely noon on January 20, 2009, John McCain will be sworn in. Torture will end; that's a major plus, right? Spying on Americans will end, right? Listening in on phone calls and reading e-mails will simply be known as The Neighborly Communications Improvement Act.
You're not a bad guy are you? Well then, not to worry, there is undoubtedly a sale going on somewhere near you, so go for it and enjoy the thrill of buying while helping the economy. Why not do some comparison shopping between the 24 different listening devices on sale at Amazon.com? Hey, just think, instead of suffering the angst generated by the dearth of impeachment supporters in Congress; instead of knocking your head against the stonewall in Nancy Pelosi's office; instead of listening to the long, slow drawl of a weary John Conyers, who clearly has retirement on his mind, you can have endless fun listening in on your neighbors and create syntax maps! Why, instead of organizing those endless and quite repetitive marches through the streets of Washington that get about as much attention from the political leadership as just another nuisance their brownshirts clear away like snow, you can be organizing a new improved neighborhood watch. Oh, the fun you'll have AND you will be protecting the rest of us from our neighbors' really dicey syntax. On the odd occasion they'll be planning to build a nuclear device for use on the nearest library, your early detection will keep our book loan reporting program safe AND you'll earn a merit badge with an embedded chip that applies a 10% discount at checkout.
So, instead of the same ol' protest march which has become a rather predictable reunion of the same weird relatives, why not recruit for the exciting new unpredictable local snooper scooper corp?
Instead of carrying splintering wooden pickets we could carry a really neat Orbitor Electronic Listening Devise with a comfortable gun handle just like the CIA uses. How cool is that! Or we could wear the bionic ear and look so incognito. People will think we're hearing impaired when we really just have a super-sized ear while we serve our country. Why should the CIA have all the fun?
Besides, instead of endlessly begging for support or selling the family jewels for another protest we could get grants! We could even have local competitions between neighborhoods for the best arrest-to-suspect ratio and win valuable coupons for use at the mall. Why, how completely symbiotic! Besides, who would you rather have listening in, distant faceless (or ear-less) bureaucrats or drunken neighbors laughing their heads off?
Okay, tell the truth, what would you rather do: sign another petition or listen-in while your neighbors try to explain sex to their teenage kids?
I know that was too easy. Okay, try this one: would you rather stand in front of the Post Office with a sign that says Impeach Cheney First, or listen in while your neighbors watch the Simpsons? Admit it, that's a tough one.
I know that 2.0% of people reading this will be laughing in a sort of understated, slightly embarrassed way; 3.7% of people reading this will think I have lost it again and have become a plant (in more ways than one); and, 4.3% will have no idea what I am talking about.
But to those of you in the remaining 90%, I say our biggest problem today is not the justice of our cause, it is not the virtue of our efforts, it is not the horrors we've seen come alive in Guantanimo and Abu Ghraib, it is not the repetitive gasps of outrage because of what we see and hear emanating from the the White House or the House of Representatives, that is our real problem.
No, our real problem is having failed to make the case to those who have not yet heard, not yet seen, not yet been touched by the crimes of this administration. To them, a splinter in their little finger will remain the height of tragedy until they can remove it, while America's unjustified war in Iraq will simply remain a matter of, at best, an annoying political policy they still don't understand.
Every act of the impeachment movement must have one of two objectives - either to help those who can make impeachment a reality gather the courage to act on what they know, or to help those who still don't care to see the consequences of their complacency in order to enlist their help.
Oh, and the The Neighborly Communications Improvement Act? It's on the way.