Saturday, August 23, 2003

Post 9/11 Manipulations Come to the Surface

I wish it was surprising. A 155-page report released late Thursday reveals that the EPA's post-9/11 air quality reports were edited by Bush's National Security Council

The Environmental Protection Agency's internal watchdog says White House officials pressured the agency to prematurely assure the public that the air was safe to breathe a week after the World Trade Center collapse.

History will look back in disbelief that they got away with it. I think that we may be seeing the ultimate (to date) perversion of the vision of this country's founders. I don't think that's an exaggeration at this point. There has been incompetence and corruption before. But the willfull manipulation and the sheer greed for power and total control, this is the stuff of Saramon. Keep in mind that "they" (and this time "they" has a name, it's Karl Rove, who has taken it upon himself to become the svengali of the Conservative pro-business anti-tax at all costs and with a fundamental Christian bib on to boot) are trying to consolidate power in all 3 branches and in every department. This broad, coordinated strategy relies on the fact that the small set of people who pay attention, protest and publicize things like attacks on civil liberties, loosening of enviornmental protections, and undermining of programs to support those less fortunate (like, say, veterans!!!) can't be everywhere at once. It's unlikely that even a more competent and less complicit press would cover say 3 stories a week in that realm--overseas violence is much more Hollywood-style attention grabbing. The audience needs to have a context (either existing knowledge or be given one in the article), for each of these stories, and it's just too dry too often even for the serious newspapers (let alone the tv news, which has the massively larger audience).

Really our only hope is if we can get a big juicy scandal, ala Watergate or Iran Contra (we can't rely on them to do anything sexy, so that's right out). We need something that would go well as a tv movie or mini-series, something that frontline will cover. Oh dear, we really are so screwed.

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