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Reply #17: ''Intellectual Violence'' means telling the Truth [View All]

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Octafish Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Oct-28-06 12:28 PM
Response to Reply #10
17. ''Intellectual Violence'' means telling the Truth
"In times of universal deceit, telling the truth will be a revolutionary act." -- George Orwell

Heckuva post, there, Senator:

The RoadMap to Impeachment: "Violence" is The Answer

Posted by Senator in General Discussion: Politics
Sun Mar 05th 2006, 01:26 AM

I've been asked to create a (votable) thread for this.

It is my reaction to the Harper's Magazine Impeachment event from Thursday night. I found the discussion there brought a specific problem into sharp relief:

We all know what needs to happen, but we seem at a loss for "how to make in so."

The original thread is here.

From Mr. Conyers's blog:

We had a rousing and informative evening last night in New York at the impeachment forum hosted by Harpers Magazine. ...

There was a lot of discussion about how impeachment should be presented, how we develop more support -- among Members and in the Media, and most importantly, where we go from here...

I have no doubt that not only would we take back the House and the Senate, but that we would be able to hold the Bush Administration accountable for their mistatements, misteps, and yes, their lies...

I think last night was a milestone. It was so gratifying to see all of our hard work in action outside the beltway...


Since I was lucky enough to be in attendance, I want to report that the most "rousing" part of the evening -- bringing the audience to their feet -- was the introduction of Mr. Conyers himself.

And while I'll agree that the event was a milestone, I must also agree with the lukewarm reaction of the Salon reporter. Mainly because there was very little from the panel on what Mr. Conyers identifies in his entry here as most important: "where we go from here."

And this is where I must take issue and be frank; because the "where" is not in question. Mr. Conyers held the "where" in his hand; a special committee to investigate charges. It is the "how" that is in question and "develop more support" is not specific enough to be actionable. While I don't claim to have any magic bullet, I would like to suggest where the discussion was lacking on this issue because I think these failures are pervasive (on the left) and, at least to some degree, correctable.

So is most important "how do we proceed?" No, MOST important is "what do we do about it right now!" And there is a big difference between those 2 phrases.

To illustrate I'll report the fuller context of Mr. Conyers's phrase (above) - "and yes, their lies." There was a well-received question from the audience lamenting that none of the panelists used the word "lied." The point needs to be well taken that we've all been trained to speak (and therefore think) in euphemisms; particularly those who speak publicly. Screaming "imminent conflagration" will not compel a movie house crowd to move to safety.

Former Congresswoman Holtzman illustrated a different failure. She remains convinced that "more information" can solve the problem. When enough people "know," they will rise up. Like many on the left, she refuses to accept the fact that only the "reality-based community" prizes knowledge above belief. We cannot "teach" our way to impeachment.

Mr. Lapham, after reading the Conyers report, has correctly concluded intellectually that there is a "slam dunk" case and that our nation is in peril. Therefore he politely lays the burden to act on the Congress, in their collegial, non-partisan capacity as oath-takers. (Insert your own joke/expletive here.)

Mr. Rattner is pursuing and recommends a "legal" solution. While it may be helpful to have the regime "found guilty" of some crime in some court, he urged to panel to focus on the most easily provable (already proven?) impeachable offense(s). He has published a cogent, precise brief of only the clearest violations. Thereby giving them less to fight back against?!?

And of course the entire evening was peppered to some degree with our usual rationalizations for inaction: "but we'll just get Cheney" -- "we must wait 'till we take the house" -- "what about electoral backlash." Not to mention the lobby talk about futility, being doomed, and confident pronouncements of "never gonna happen."

So, how do we overcome this -- what do we do right now?

Get violent. (Come again?!?) No, not physically violent. Rather intellectually, politically, and rhetorically violent. We are dealing with fascist thugs/cowards and must deal with them and their tactics accordingly. The public and euphemedia must be slapped to attention and our "leaders" and/or the perpetrators must be forced and/or frightened into action and/or surrender.

This violence is in self-defense. These people don't listen to reason. In fact, they pride themselves on their preference for "belief." Labels like theocracy, monarchy, totalitarian, and authoritarian are irrelevant -- it's all some form of fascism; the conviction that some minority has a right to rule the majority. Whether it's based on divine right, a master race, a family dynasty, or a power theory makes absolutely no difference.

It is Anti-American. And it needs to fought, not managed.

We need to make "violent use" of whatever means we have.

For nearly all of us that only means contact with "leaders" (in person, faxing, etc) and the euphemedia (emails, calls, LTTEs).
For bloggers, that means public assault (not polite differing). Particularly with those whose silence makes them complicit with this ongoing treason. (See -- just replicate.)

For those with benefit of a larger megaphone, media-related and political "leaders," that means risking the loss of that megaphone -- shouting the unvarnished truth then turning viciously on those who will (euphemistically) try to dismiss and dillute your message.
By ALL these means we must ALL do the same things:

We need to banish euphemisms. Period. In fact, we need to employ hyperbole when possible. But since "war crimes," "torture," and "terrorized the nation into war" are merely descriptive, it could be difficult to find hyperbole. We must try our best.

The simple fact is that a large segment of the public has been well-trained to ONLY hear such language; and worse to equate such anger/alarm with importance/urgency. Sad? Yes, but we must deal with it as it exists.
If you find yourself trying to be polite or subtle, or even just witty, stop it and just be blunt.
The regime DID NOT "sidestep," "ignore," "go around," or "flaunt." They DID NOT "overreach," "cross the line," or "display hubris." They BROKE THE LAW. They VIOLATED SWORN TREATIES. They SHREDDED THE CONSTITUTION. They COMMITTED WAR CRIMES.

We need to up the ante. Make them an offer they dare not refuse. Threaten. Blackmail. Whatever ugly word you want to put on it.

We must hand over for international prosecution those whose actions have warranted it. The torture and war crimes charges are "above our pay grade." We can expect zero moral standing in the world if we do not abide by the treaties these criminals have violated in our names. Redemption of our National Soul demands nothing less.
We will take the money back. Yes, the "tax kickbacks." Yes, the crony contracts. Yes, the not-so-blind trusts. Every penny we can find.
We will reverse ALL acts of this never-legitimate regime. All appointments. All legislation. All Executive Orders. We need to cleanse the social fabric of their contamination.

We must resolve to never stop. We will never "get over it." We must loudly declare that we will have our children take up this challenge if necessary. This will be our legacy.

Perhaps the largest applause (save Mr. Conyers intro) was in reaction to the statement that you don't have to still be in office to be impeached. We need to make it clear that this goes beyond election cycles. There is no short term attention span to hide in. We will impeach and convict them posthumously if necessary.
This is already true with Bully Bill Rhenquist. We must make clear that ALL crimes against the nation will be accounted for. This includes both stolen elections. The Felonious Five and all other perpetrators of anti-democratic, thereby Anti-American, acts will be accused, tried, and punished. No matter how long it take or how many resources it requires.

We cannot get lost in "legalisms," "strategies," or our usual "neuroses."

We waste far too much time and effort falling victim to "paralysis by analysis." It is irrelevant at this point what any ultimate impeachment charges may be lodged. ALL crimes and misdemeanors of the regime will need to be brought to bear. From the first Stolen Election to the latest Indian nuclear "free pass" debacle/PR stunt.
We must stop worrying about what "they do." Will they change the rules? Will there be backlash? Will they start jailing people? This obsession with the perpetrators is akin to a "battered syndrome." We must really let the chips fall where they may.
We must make EVERYTHING about impeachment. Don't be "anti-war," demand impeachment over the "criminal war." Don't be "pro-environment," demand impeachemnt over "defecating on our environment." Don't be "fiscally responsible," demand impeachment for "looting the nation." You get the idea -- don't you "issue wonks?"

That's it. Thanks for reading this far.

Now, let get on with it and FINISH THIS THING.

There really is no other moral or patriotic option.

Agree whole-heartedly. Thanks for sharing this, Senator.

"If ye love wealth better than liberty, the tranquility of servitude better than the animating contest of freedom, go home from us in peace. We ask not your counsels or your arms. Crouch down and lick the hands which feed you. May your chains set lightly upon you, and may posterity forget that you were our countrymen." -- Samuel Adams
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