Friday, January 09, 2009

Who's the Terrorist?

A terrorist is simply defined a person or persons who terrorizes or frightens others.

It is raining on Capital Hill. Inside the Senate it is warm and toasty. All the recently elected Senators are waiting to be sworn in. All, except for Roland Burris. He wasn't elected, but some would still call him the ‘junior’ Senator from Illinois. Mr. Burris is standing uncovered amid a swarm of journalists. He seems slight, huddled beside his lawyers and the Washington Press Corp. He seems a quiet man—even introspective. He is sorry all the people who have come to hear what he has to say have to hear it outdoors in bad weather. He has been turned away at the entrance to the halls of power. Harry Reid has said he will never accept his credentials because he has been appointed by a person of questionable character. Mr. Burris says he doesn’t understand that. What did he do? The implication shouts injustice, and although not actually spoken asks, should the sins of the father become those of the child? Which, since Burris is 70 and the Governor is about 32, seems a bit of an age enigma, but it’s politics, where nothing ever makes sense.

Actually, I love this kind of politics and yes it’s a little distorted, but I think it’s terrific when someone like Blagojevich kind of sticks it to the those who think themselves smart political operatives or even elected officials. Whatever else you can say about him, (slime, no moral core, cheat, liar thief, and most importantly stupid hair), he is not slinking away either apologetically or with any remorse. He’s in their face --still the Governor. He was just doing his job and appointed an old, black, seemingly qualified, political gentleman, to fill Obama’s seat . If you wrote this as a movie, it would have to be fiction because nothing this absurd could be true.

As I watched Mr. Burris standing outside in the rain, in the middle of the crowd of journalists, he seemed terrified by all that was taking place. He seemed to have great difficulty trying to comprehend what had happened, he had almost no words, and no explanation for what appeared to be the Senate behaving badly. The Senate, in all its glory managed to strike terror into the heart of this kindly elderly local political person who was in Washington to represent the people of Illinois. ‘Surely the people of Illinois have a right to be represented’ he told the press.

You will note I used the word ‘terrified’ to describe the way Mr. Burris appeared. I might have used frightened or scared or even uncomfortable, but I didn’t. Everyone is concerned about terrorism. We are all terrified by the mere mention of a terrorist attack. When we hear ‘terrorist’ we think of the attack on the towers or the Pentagon. Is it possible that we need to think simpler—that we need to think about the terrorist who does not live in the Middle East and wants to destroy our society.

The Powers that be (Homeland Security, the Secret Service and the FBI – so far but it’s unclear because no one actually knows), have made the decision to close all the bridges to Virginia and Maryland during the Inaugural. How does this make us more secure? In addition, if you live in the District you will suffer the “Times Square New Years Eve Syndrome”. Which means, you can come, and stay put, but if you leave—don’t try to come back. We all get why security is important—especially for this Inauguration. But to close all the bridges to Virginia and Maryland? Exactly what does that accomplish. Oh, but buses and taxi’s can cross—because we all know that bus and taxi drivers are much less likely to be terrorists than just a suburban house frau. OK, so we close all the bridges because we know that they, rather than Inaugural activities are a likely target from 2am on the 19th to 7pm on the 20th. So what’s to prevent a terrorist from doing something naughty at 1am or 8pm? The simple answer is—nothing. It takes lots of people to close all the bridges and secure them. Doesn’t it make more sense just to use resources to secure the bridges rather than inconvenience all the rich political donors that live outside the District. Why not forbid any large vehicle (those that might hold explosives), to cross the bridges and insist that only people driving BMW’s, Lexus, and Mercedes can cross. In fact, why not insist that people who drive those cars provide transportation for those of us who drive Hondas, the Prius, or a Volkswagon. Now that makes some sense.

Here’s the thing. We have lost our sense of perspective and have become the terrorists we hear about. The Government is required to spend the money allocated for terrorist activities. It’s just that simple. The Political Conventions had 50 million dollars to spend on security and they managed to spend it in the most embarrassing ways. At the Democratic Convention, they had thousands of police surrounding 100 returning military Veterans who were peacefully protesting the war. And they had SWAT teams roaming the streets hoping to encounter a rogue grandmother. At the Republican Convention they arrested the media who asked uncomfortable questions. It is apparent that there is no one who is thinking about what makes sense. My mother would say ‘smart smart, stupid.’ Which quite simply means that there are people who have a great deal of book smarts but not an ounce of common sense.

So, is the Senate a terrorist body? Has Homeland Security become the our own well funded personal terrorist organization – have they (like any other terrorist group) overreacted to the point of lunacy? It is too hard answer these questions with a yes or no. What is obvious, however, is that the Government is convinced that they can dictate incredibly ridiculous policy by saying that they are protecting the population, and we, the citizens of this ‘free and democratic’ society are powerless to do anything except be afraid. So exactly who’s terrorizing the people of this great nation? The answer is as frightening as the policy. We’re just sayin’…Iris

1 comment:

bspicer said...

Well said. Very, very well said.