Let’s face it. The country we – my generation, the post-WW II generation – were raised to revere, never really existed. Taken in historical context, there may have been some justification in the way things were organized. I mean the guys who wrote our constitution were pretty much running things anyway. Why would they write themselves out of power? And it’s been pretty much the same ever since.
I won’t repeat our genocidal tendencies. Bill Blum has already done that.
What gravels my ass these days is this relatively new tendency to redefine what used to be pretty clear (Orwell, Bernays, et al). “Humanitarian” used to mean helping others during a time of need, for instance, in the aftermath of a major earthquake or flood, where the resources of the country affected were no match for the level of destruction.
These days we speak of the “Right to Protect”, or R2P because “humanitarian” bombing was a little too obviously dissonant or contradictory. Just like the individual right to free speech has somehow been transformed into corporate free speech, as if our oligarchs were some oppressed minority (though they certainly are a minority, but hardly oppressed).
Go ahead, call me naive. But I was just a kid in the late forties, early fifties, when the “Soviet” threat was invading our classrooms and our televisions. Most of us in the midwest actually believed all that bs. Not that my father went so far as to build a fallout shelter, but he was convinced that the Soviets were were perfectly capable of and willing to bomb the United States were they ever presented the provocation or the opportunity. I remember him dancing around the living room in his “I Like Ike” straw boater on the evening of Ike’s election. And even though I rather doubted, even at that young age, that anyone could be so stupid as to start a nuclear war, I used to scan the northern horizon (I grew up in Michigan), just the same.
Nothing much seems to have changed. We seem to be just as gullible, just as naive.