Tuesday, June 16, 2009

The Not-So-Great Generation

That would be us.

I had an angry rant prepared about the contrast between the Iranian people’s reaction to a fraudulent election and our own less than heroic response to one in 2000, and, it seems likely, 2004, but Chris Floyd stole my thunder:

Then again, the Iranians are in general a braver, bolder people than some other peoples we might mention, who in recent memory sat slack-jawed and supine when their franchise was stripped from them in broad daylight by powerful elites. The Iranian people have already overthrown one seemingly powerful and permanently entrenched regime in the last 30 years, and could well do so again -- or at least force the current regime to become more open and humane. In any case, the hundreds of thousands of ordinary Iranians who have taken to the streets, risking -- and in some cases, losing -- life and limb to demand their rights shame the bloated, bored, distracted masses of the American empire (and its British satrapy), who have watched numbly and dumbly as their liberties have been systematically dismantled, their public treasuries looted by plutocrats and war profiteers, and their own children thrown into murderous wars of aggression and occupation.…

I would add that the “bloated, bored, distracted masses” here in America are guilty of more than simple apathy. The fact is, your average American doesn’t really give two shits about democracy, freedom, or constitutional rights, nor will he risk his ass for such. We just aren’t like that. Period. All we really want is a chance to slither our way into that rich ten-percent of the population who owns everything, and we’ll abide any injustice, fraud or humiliation as long as we think there’s a possibility we can do so. If you keep the illusion of wealth and opportunity dangling in our faces, abstract notions of liberty and justice are negotiable and we won’t rock the boat. We worship Mammon, not Madison.

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