Tuesday, June 16, 2009

big hat, no cattle

Do you know this phrase? I first heard it in a Randy Newman song.

It's what comes to mind as I hear the coverage of the election protests in Tehran, and I am thinking about my Fellow Americans, as a whole.

We talk big about how much we love our Democracy, and how we are the Home of the Brave, but when our own national elections were (to be charitable) compromised, did we march in the streets and show the world that we would not let injustice stand?

No, we allowed media and political bullies cow us cattle into accepting a coup, sanctioned by a Supreme Court stacked with political hacks. We had too much prosperity to lose, to stop working and show up. You all remember the result of that - I don't need to list the consequences.

Of course, it takes a healthy dose of media complicity to shield the populace from news about mass demonstrations, kinda like what happened in the run-up to the Iraq war here, and kinda like what is happening today in Iran, where the state-controlled media is not reporting on the hundreds of thousands marching in the street, demanding justice.

What gives me some hope is the vague sense that, perhaps, the lesson that the world learned from watching the US 2000 election was that it really is every citizen's responsibility to shout in the streets, when you see your media ignoring statistical impossibilities that suggest chicanery. Without that willingness to stand up and confront the evil-doers among us (you know who you are), we can never honestly call ourselves the Land of the Free, etc.

Just sayin'.

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