Eternal Vigilance

This morning, over coffee, two interesting items caught our attention.

We are presently in San Miguel, Mexico, and the Spanish word of the day was:
                                                culpable:
                                 guilty, culpable, accusable
          Ejemplo: cuando me siento culpable no pongo nerviosa y me puedo dormir.
                    When I feel guilty, I become nervous and I cannot sleep.

The second item was a quote heading up an article we received on the Internet called, “It’s the Corporate State, Stupid.” The quote was, “Fascism should more properly be called corporatism because it is the merger of state and corporate power.” Benito Mussolini

Fade to seventy years ago on December 7. There was a sneak attack by Japan on the US naval base at Pearl Harbor. Five thousand Americans died that day in the prelude to what has been described as a necessary war. One questions if there have been many really necessary wars. This was one that humanity agreed upon. The United States declared war on the Axis of Evil, Germany, Japan and Italy. It was a war against fascism, understood well by Mussolini, who was its inventor and representative, and subsequently imitated by Hitler.

So, fascism should more properly be called corporatism because it is that merger of state and corporate power. Anyone getting nervous? We all should be.

If the US declaration of war in 1941 was a military response to a military attack, in a larger sense it was a democratic response to totalitarian aggression. We must remain aware that it was corporate power that made and supported both Mussolini and Hitler as Heads of State. Corporations thrived while blood ran everywhere and terror controlled the populace.

Worldwide, we have seen that if we are ignorant of history, we are doomed to repeat it. The reptilian brain is powerful, and politicians can play on the archaic, “like me, I greet you; not like me, I eat you.” Watch politicians today in the US, and in the world, use that primal divider.

Because we live in a country where free speech is protected, growing movements against the pernicious influence of corporations in politics don’t go underground. They are out in the open, on the Internet, occupying physical space, and our minds.

The current protests are in response to egregious usurping of power by people who believe they deserve it (the divine right of kings), that business should have no ethics, and you are as good as what you can get away with. Great crimes were committed by the financial wizards who made something out of nothing, except for themselves. Who was called out? Who went to jail?

And then, the Supreme Court, once an institution commanding great pride and respect, decided, in a logic undecipherable, that corporations were people, or at least were entitled to the same rights and protection as citizens. Then, the smoke of protest spread far and wide.

The Occupy movement is in its infancy. Move to Amend is an organization trying to use the system to protect the system; our system, the best experiment on Earth, to keep it safe, to keep it free, to keep it protected from all the special interests and power groups that attempt to destroy what we all hold dear.

Thomas Jefferson declared, “Eternal vigilance is the price of freedom.”

If we are not willing to pay that price, we are all culpable.

Barbara & Oliver

 

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