It has been a really long week. I can attribute a lot of it to the really tough work week I had, ahead of a trip to CA that I start tomorrow (forcing me to miss the Giants game, which may be a blessing in disguise). Work was crazy, as I had to finish 3 documents in one week. For a perfectionist like me, that is tough.
But I think what really got me was just how negative a week this has been. Coming off my high of last week (when I had a great experience presenting at a security forum in New York), this weeks negative energy hit me even harder. The big thing this week was the whole Blackwater scandal. Blackwater. Even the name sounds like something Dr. Evil would come up with. In the continuing story of the disaster in Iraq, the Blackwater story proved to be a stark reminder of just how corrupt and evil the business of war is, especially for this administration. And this week proved to be a vortex of stories around Blackwater.
As if the case of killing innocent civilians is not enough, the Blackwater scandal also revealed that Blackwater is not subject to either Iraqi law or American Military law. In other words, it can do whatever it wants, with no checks or balances, and no system for policing them. The military has been privatized, and free market economy states that a privatized army can do whatever it wants so long as people (our government) are willing to pay them for their services. It is just sickening.
On the heels of this, I watched the pilot of the new Fox series K-ville. The plot involved a police investigation into what can only be classified as acts of terrorism (violent interruption of two fundraisers, including a murder), where it turned out that the acts were committed by security guards from Blackwater, that have been hired by the government to “police” the state, on the orders of a vindictive heiress with money to spare. Well, turns out that the story was not so far fetched. Our government did hire Blackwater to provide security to FEMA and other government agencies in New Orleans, because they couldn’t find enough people in the National Guard to do it (cos they are all in Iraq). Again, a paramilitary force, on American soil, that is not subject to military laws and standards.
And then on The Colbert Report, author Naomi Wolf came to talk about her latest book in which she talks about the blueprint that every fascist dictatorship has followed to gain power, and how each incremental step is currently taking place in this country. One of the steps in the blueprint is the establishment of a paramilitary organization that is controlled by the fascist power, but is not answerable to the government or the people – Blackwater again. I disagree with her conclusion that this is leading to fascism here, because I believe the media (for all its flaws) still gives enough information to the people to act as a sort of check on all this, but maybe I am being incredibly naive.
In any case, all of this got me really, really angry about the state of affairs. And depressed about it too, because aside from signing a bunch of petitions, I don’t really know what I can do about it. And maybe that is why things will continue to be this bad, because all I feel I can really do is just get up and continue with my life as normal.Tags: Blackwater, Hurricane-Katrina, Iraq, K-ville, Naomi-Wolf, New-Orleans, rants, The Colbert Report