The open society steeped in economic and personal freedoms the West has been known for, is gradually succumbing to the inevitable ramifications of a short sighted, self serving and ultimately devastating monetary system. Though some can claim that evidence for this contention is still sporadic and anecdotal, the reality is that it is happening and the trend is ominous.
The exaltation and promotion of the security apparatus in Europe and in the USA is following a well known and, till society wakes up, inevitable pattern.
The first step is to affirm the immunity of the state as an entity above the law and above the constitution
The second step is to re-define and broaden the definition of whom and what poses a threat to the state
You then re-define certain violations from civil to criminal
You then expand and attribute extraordinary powers to the security apparatus
Finally you seek help from citizens to report “suspicious” activity.
At this point, a bit of history is instructive. A big hat tip to Alex Jones of Prison Planet
Excerpt with emphasis added:
“One common misconception about Nazi Germany was that the police state was solely a creation of the authorities and that the citizens were merely victims. On the contrary, Gestapo files show that 80% of all Gestapo investigations were started in response to information provided by denunciations by “ordinary” Germans.” […]
Gellately discovered that the people who informed on their neighbors were motivated primarily by banal factors – “greed, jealousy, and petty differences,” and not by a genuine concern about crime or insecurity. Indeed, history tells us that any Stasi-like society does nothing to increase genuine security and only turns the host population against each other while decaying the country from within.
Gellately “found cases of partners in business turning in associates to gain full ownership; jealous boyfriends informing on rival suitors; neighbors betraying entire families who chronically left shared bathrooms unclean or who occupied desirable apartments.”
“And then there were those who informed because for the first time in their lives someone in authority would listen to them and value what they said.”
Gellately emphasizes the fact that the Germans who sicked (sic!) the authorities on their neighbors knew very well what the consequences for the victims would be – families torn apart, torture and internment in concentration camps, and ultimately in many cases death – but they still did it with few qualms because the rewards of financial bounties and mere convenience were deemed more important to them.”
Which brings me to Stanley Milgram (1933-1984) and his “Obedience Experiment“. And this is the part you should find terrifrying:
“Ordinary people, simply doing their jobs, and without any particular hostility on their part, can become agents in a terrible destructive process. Moreover, even when the destructive effects of their work become patently clear, and they are asked to carry out actions incompatible with fundamental standards of morality, relatively few people have the resources needed to resist authority.” […] Later, Prof. Milgram and other psychologists performed variations of the experiment throughout the world, with similar results although unlike the Yale experiment,[dubious – discuss] resistance to the experimenter was reported anecdotally elsewhere. Milgram later investigated the effect of the experiment’s locale on obedience levels by holding an experiment in an unregistered, backstreet office in a bustling city, as opposed to at Yale, a respectable university. The level of obedience, “although somewhat reduced, was not significantly lower.” What made more of a difference was the proximity of the “learner” and the experimenter.”
The Milgram experiment took place at the time of Nazi war criminal Adolf Eichman’s trial in Jerusalem in 1961 and it makes for fascinating if terrifying reading. In fact, the experiment touched on such horrifyingly dark aspects of human behavior that it was never carried out again till the mid 90s when the results turned out to be exactly the same.
Just in case there may be any doubts, more recent research finds that most people will inflict pain on others if prodded: http://health.usnews.com/health-news/family-health/pain/articles/2009/01/05/researcher-finds-most-will-inflict-pain-on-others.html – left to their own devices to interpret guidelines from the authorities, most people will act upon their hard feelings towards others. Hard feelings that may be nothing more than petty disagreements or perceived competition for jobs, girl/boyfriends, parking spaces or being annoyed at someone making noise at night.
And now, a re-post from January 2010; but first, the conclusion. If alleged terrorists ostensibly hate us because of our way of life, they have already won. Our societies are becoming ever more obscurantist and our governments oppressive just like in dinky countries in remote, tribal and primitive areas of the world where these presumed terrorists hail from.
Politics cannot be separated from economics or social science or the law. All are results of human choice and action and all are intimately related. Some choices come upstream of all others thus drawing a framework within which all others evolve; the choice that is upstream of all others is our monetary system.
The deliberate but arbitrary choice of a fiat monetary system must perforce lead the entity that maintains exclusive control of the monetary system to becoming the largest actor in the economy thus influencing the law thus politics thus the social sciences.
Fascism and/or corporatism is the inescapabale and logical conclusion of a fiat monetary system. As the presumed beneficial role of the currency gradually wanes, government has a vested interest in at first tolerating but then progressively colluding-in and eventually sponsoring legislation that is contrary to stated moral or fiduciary values of yore.
The only question is when does society deem that enough is enough.
But the more important question is how society comes to deem that enough is enough and what legislation it may be capable of vetoing or enforcing in order to avoid the most undesirable, but logical, outcome of a fascist state. That is, when are we collectively going to take the steps required in order to bring order to our monetary system, our economies, our political systems and avoid a perpetual state of war that as of now is guaranteed to evolve into a world war.
I don’t have an answer to that question other than to say that the only true, peaceful and legal instrument that is still within reach of anyone that understands what is going on and that wishes to effect political change is to accumulate gold and silver bullion.
When all is said and done, as our governments, wittingly or not, are hell bent on destroying the currency in order to perpetuate a perceived desirable political system, bullion is the only thing that could alter the otherwise logical course a fiat monetary system dictates.
Excerpt (emphasis added):
On Jan. 5, a ruling by the Federal Appeals Court in the District of Columbia gave away the most essential protection of liberty by declaring that the U.S. government is not bound by law during war. The ruling absolves Washington from complying with America’s own laws and from complying with international laws, such as the Geneva Conventions. It makes a mockery of all war crime trials everywhere. By elevating the executive branch above the law, the court gave the government carte blanche.
The rationale offered by the court for refusing to uphold the law came from Judge Janice Rogers Brown, who said that America had been pushed by war past “the leading edge of a new and frightening paradigm, one that demands new rules be written. War is a challenge to law, and the law must adjust.” By “adjust” she means “be set aside” or “be thrown out.”
The U.S. Supreme Court has refused to defend both the Constitution and the principle that government is not above the law. Last Dec.14, the Supreme Court refused to review a ruling by the Federal Appeals Court in the District of Columbia, which dismissed a torture case with the argument that “torture is a foreseeable consequence of the military’s detention of suspected enemy combatants.” In other words, neither U.S. nor international laws against torture can be enforced in U.S. courts. The opinion [PDF] was written by Judge Karen Lecraft Henderson.
The “war on terror,” which is enriching Halliburton, Blackwater (now operating under an alias), and the military/security complex, while denying Americans health care, is running up debt that is a threat to Americans’ purchasing power and living standards. The contrast between America’s sanctimonious rhetoric and the murder of civilians and torture of prisoners has destroyed America’s reputation and caused Europeans as well as Muslims to despise the United States.
The sacrifice of the Constitution and rule of law to a hyped “theorist threat” has destroyed the heart and soul of America herself.
As a poet wrote, “our world in stupor lies.”
My final thought is this. We are ostensibly fighting “terrorists” because they threaten our way of life. Clearly, the terrorists have won.